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Contractors

Five Ways To Deal With Difficult Homeowners

By | Contractors, Public Adjusters | No Comments

Even though homeowners are the main source of business for many contractors, they can be difficult to deal with sometimes. It is almost never intentional either, people just care about their houses and want to see them in the best shape possible, but that doesn’t make them any easier to deal with.

There are a few different kinds of difficult homeowners: the arrogant ones, who think they can do your job better than you (disclaimer, they can’t), the clueless ones who don’t know anything about insurance claims or repairs, and question every move you make, and the ones who would prefer to just take the insurance money and not do any repairs at all to name a few. Regardless of which type of homeowner you are dealing with, it’s easy to get frustrated and want to just let the claim go, which is why we compiled a list of our top five ways to deal with difficult homeowners so that you don’t have to lose business over them.

1) Make The Homeowner Feel Heard

Whether it is because they think they know better, or they don’t know anything at all, homeowners will voice their opinions, thoughts, and questions to you. And while it can be easy to mindlessly listen and dismiss them because you know what is best for their property, it can make your life a lot easier to actively listen and respond to them.

People like to feel heard, even when they are trying to tell you how to do your job, and it will be easier for you in the long run to listen carefully to their suggestions and be able to counter them with what you know needs to be done. The same goes for homeowners who don’t know anything about the repairs that need to be done; answering each and every question they have with careful consideration will make them feel more at ease and make them less likely to continue to question decisions and delay the projects progress.

2) Try Not To Let Your Frustration Show

In times of high business when you spend your days running from house to house, going to the house with the difficult homeowners can be downright unpleasant for you. You know that they are prepared with a battery of information that you don’t need, that is going to delay you with while you try and do your other work. It can be really easy to get frustrated with these homeowners, and want to cut them off, tell them that you have it under control, and go about your business, but that is just going to make them more difficult to deal with.

Even if you want to scream, pack it in, and listen, respond, and keep a nice face and tone of voice. Letting them see how frustrated you are, will just make them even more difficult, and more likely to leave you a poor review or spread bad word-of-mouth about you and your company. If you know a homeowner that is going to want to talk and talk to you, when you arrive at the house, say you are going to do whatever it is you need to do first, and then talk to them after. Dealing with your inspection, measurements, or whatever else gives you a minute to breathe and prepare yourself to contain any frustration that may be present when you do go and talk to the homeowner.

3) Put Everything In Writing

Whether it is the way too involved homeowner, or the I just want the insurance money homeowner, they are going to find ways to try and rework things. They might try and change document wording, project scope, colors, timelines, the list can go on and on, and if you aren’t careful, it may never stop.

One easy way to combat these types of homeowners, is to put everything in writing, and we mean EVERYTHING. Obviously certain documents like contracts and estimates are no brainers, but don’t forget about paint colors, shingle types, window treatments, etc. If you are writing that down as those conversations are happening, it is a lot harder for the customer to dispute something they said down the road when they change their mind. Having everything in writing is also helpful in the highly unfortunate circumstance that a difficult homeowner turns into a claim that involves lawyers; if you have everything written down and dated, it will make it harder for the homeowner to make you the problem.

4) Communicate More Than Seems Necessary

Often times, difficult homeowners just want reassurance that you are giving your full attention to their project. They tend to undervalue the fact that you are running a business that has more than one client at a time, and expect you to be fully immersed in their project all the time.

One easy way to combat this is to over-communicate with them. Let them know when materials have been ordered, or when estimates are taking extra time, call and let them know that the window guy is coming even though the window guy called already. Taking the extra few minutes to call and communicate small updates with them, will placate them and leave them feeling like you are focused solely on their project, and will give them less inclination to call you every day and make your life harder.

5) Switch The Project Manager On The Claim

Sometimes certain people just don’t mesh. It doesn’t say anything bad about either of them but they just do not get along, and working together is frustrating for both parties. While it should be a last resort option, switching the project manager on a claim might be the best solution. If the homeowner is mad, and the project manager is frustrated and all other options have been tried, it might be time to just make the switch; let someone knew come in, address the homeowners’ concerns and try and get the project off to a new, better start.

3 Ways Scoperite Makes It Easy To Manage Contractor Information

By | Contractors | No Comments

When it comes to building, altering, and repairing homes and other buildings, there are a lot of moving parts, and therefore a lot of moving people. While there are some contractors who can actually do it all, that isn’t the case for most; most contractors specialize in one area of the building, but that doesn’t mean that is where their business ends.

For many contractors, they themselves specialize in electric, or roofs, or paint, you get the picture, but their business can do more like electric and plumbing, roof and siding, paint and windows. For those additional services offered, most contractors partner up with or subcontract work to other contractors whose specialty they need, which allows for greater business for both parties, and a wider list of services businesses can offer.

With that greater business and wider lists of services, however, comes the need for more management, more paperwork, and more people to keep track of, which can get time consuming and complicated if you don’t have a solid organization system.

This is where Scoperite can help.

Within the settings of the software, there is a section labeled “Manage Contractors” which allows users to organize and store information on all the other contractors that they work with, making life easier on you in a few distinct ways.

1) Easy Access To All Contractor Information

The “Manage Contractors” section allows users to store all contact information within the contractor’s page; this includes names and phone numbers, but also addresses, emails, and fax numbers as well. Having all the information easily accessible on both desktop and mobile devices allows contractors to be able to find contact information needed to share invoices and estimates, call offices, and coordinate with the other contractor without having to spend time searching for the necessary contact information.

The page also contains a section for notes, allowing contractors to add additional names and numbers of specific contact people, notes about how they receive payment, or any additional relevant information. These notes are visible to everyone with access to the “Manage Contractors” page, allowing everyone to stay up-to-date with the right contacts and information for other contractors.

2) Document Storage

Each contractor page also has space for document storage. This allows contractors to keep copies of contracts, agreements, insurance paperwork, and whatever else your company requires in an easy-to-find, easy-to-download place. The documents can be saved to the page for future reference, created into a PDF, or dropped into a link if they need to be sent out. Having all the documentation for each partner or subcontractor in one place means less time digging for information and requesting paperwork, and more time keeping the partnership strong and doing the work you actually enjoy.

3) Important Date Notices

Each contractor page also allows users to input expiration dates of important documents, such as general liability and workman’s compensation insurance. These dates show up on the page, as well as in the display table of all contractors; making it simple to see whose insurance documents are up-to-date and who you need to reach out to, to get updated ones. This small feature can save contractors time and headaches, but alerting them to expiring documents before it may become a problem.

Four Ways Scoperite’s Reports Function Can Help Contractor’s Marketing Efforts

By | Contractors | No Comments

The way consumers take in and respond to communications from companies has changed drastically over the years, from ads in newspapers, to radio commercials, and now to email and social media ads. Keeping up with these ever-changing marketing tactics can be a lot of work, and cost a lot of money, and many contractors would rather focus on their clients and their projects than spending hours planning and designing marketing materials.

Managing and improving marketing efforts doesn’t have to be endless amounts of work, if you have the right tools. One of Scoperite’s most useful features, are the reports that can be generated within the system. These reports compile customer data from all claims entered in the system, and give users an easy to read, sort, and analyze Excel spreadsheet.

These reports can be used for a lot, but specifically can help contractors advance their marketing efforts without having to use a lot of effort.

1) Targeting

Targeting is absolutely essential to marketing, without it you are just shoving information at people who don’t really care. Targeting for contractors can be a little complicated in the fact that the “target markets” are often broad such as homeowners with hail damage or people who want a kitchen remodel. These broad targets can make it hard for contractors to ensure that their message is getting to the right people, and that is where the reports can help.

The reports compile customer information such as names, addresses, and phone numbers into one sheet. This information can be searched, sorted, and analyzed however is easiest for you. Which means that contractors can use this information to look for trends within their customer base, and identify potential target segments. For example, the data could be sorted by zip code and you may notice that there are certain zip codes where you have done a lot of work. You could then use this to geographically segment customers in those zip codes, and target more customers who need or want your services, all while saving money by targeting areas you know are more successful for your business.

2) Brand Building and Customer Loyalty

For many contractors, their brand focuses, at least partially, on giving their clients the best experience, not just the best result. People will remember the very good (and the very bad), but the very good do more than just repair or renovate a home. The contractors that are remembered for being very good are the ones that follow-up, they give a company warranty, they are available to inspect and repair years after, and they are the ones that customers are loyal to.

Typically, when a job is finished, it fades from being front of mind, and those customers fall aside to new ones whose projects are happening now. But when all client information is accessible in an easy to read sheet, it’s easier to keep finished jobs at top of mind. You are more likely to see a name of a client from a few months back, and pick up the phone, check in with them, see how they are liking their new kitchen, or if there have been any issues with their windows. And that is what clients like: to be remembered and to feel important; it will make them more likely to call you for other projects, refer you to their friends and family, and leave your good reviews, all of which help build your company’s brand.

3) Email Marketing

Email marketing is truly one of the easiest ways to stay top-of-mind. It keeps your logo in front of customers, reminds them of your services, and sometimes triggers people to act. The reports function revolutionizes the ease of email marketing for contractors; all the email addresses of all the clients you have or have had are there organized into one single column, all you have to do is export them into whatever email marketing system you use and click send.

The emails can be used for whatever purpose you need; reminders to get inspected for damage after a storm, a deal that you are running, a simple reminder of what you do in case anyone needs it. All of these keep your company in client’s inboxes’ and minds, increasing your chances of having them call your or refer you.

4) Storm or Crisis Preparation

For some contracting companies, storms or crisis situations are where they make their name. This means that sometimes marketing efforts consist of getting out into neighborhoods quickly, knocking on doors, and getting signed contracts so you can stick your sign in someone’s front yard, and hopefully encourage their neighbors to sign with you as well.

Being prepared when storms or a crisis hits can be hard because you don’t always know exactly where it is going to be, and what the best way to approach a neighborhood might be. With the reports spreadsheets, you can sort your clients by city or zip code so that people who were in the storm area are easy to find. That allows you to send emails and make calls to people whose homes you’ve helped repair in the past and offer your services to them again before anyone else does. It also allows you to get into the damaged neighborhoods without having to knock on doors or make as many cold calls; you go out and help your established clients, and other people will see your logo and your process, and hopefully will choose to call your company to come help them as well.

What Is Scoperite: A Comprehensive Guide

By | Contractors, Public Adjusters | No Comments

We are inundated with information every day. Be it at work, out with friends, or catching up on our favorite shows, information is being spewed at us constantly, telling us what we need, what we should be doing, and how to make our lives better.  When we are constantly being told how and why we need to listen and make our lives better, we sometimes miss out on exactly what it is that can help us because we don’t know enough about it.

At Scoperite, one of our main goals is to make life simpler and less stressful for the contractors and public adjusters that decide to use our software. In order for you to understand how Scoperite can make your life easier, you need to understand Scoperite. Below we will explain what Scoperite it and its most valuable features in more detail, so that you can see how it can take some of the unnecessary stress out of your life.

What is Scoperite?

Scoperite is a claims management system with the goal of making management of the insurance restoration claim process simpler and more effective for contractors and public adjusters.

We could go on here, add some fluff, but that’s not the point of Scoperite; we keep it simple, we keep it effective, so instead we’ll talk about some of the most useful features Scoperite utilizes to make the claims management process simpler.

Valuable Features

Easy Navigation and Layout:

While it isn’t something that is always top-of-mind when picking a software system, having a layout that is simple to understand and easy to navigate makes a big difference in making your company more effective. Scoperite organizes all claims opened into a series of tables that are organized based on their place in the insurance claim process. The tables can be sorted or searched to find specific claims in matter of seconds using almost any of the claim information.

Everything In One Place:

Scoperite organizes information by claim; each new entry is given a claim number and each claim has its own page within the system.  Within the claim page, all documentation from contracts to photos to final invoices can be saved, making it simple to keep track of all relevant information and easy to find documents when they are needed.

Mobile App:

Scoperite also features a mobile app that can be used when you are not in the office, giving you the freedom to add and edit claims as you need to in the field.  The app works on almost all mobile devices, is compatible with both Apple and Android operating systems, and has all the capabilities of the desktop version.  The app allows you to enter prospects, take and upload photos as you do inspections, edit claims, and find files without confining you to the office.

Email Integrations:

Within each claim, there is a discussion board for all relevant parties (i.e. salesmen, estimators, etc.) to communicate about specific claims in a direct, easy-to-read manner.  Messages sent to the discussion board are also sent to the email of everyone working the claim to ensure that everyone is always up to date, and no one misses messages containing important information.

Easy Document Creation:

Rather than having to shift back and forth between a document and the claim, users can create documents from within Scoperite at the click of a button.  Invoices, estimates, or PDFs of photos and scope notes can all be created from within the claim, and are pre-filled with relevant customer and company information to make the process move faster; simply fill in the specific information and save or send to the necessary parties. All documents created are also saved in the claim so that they can be retrieved or referenced whenever necessary.

Cloud-Based Infrastructure:

Whether it is in cabinets or on the computer, do you find that you run out of space to store all of your files? Scoperite is cloud-based, making it is easier to store the large amounts of information that each claim requires.  The cloud-based nature also makes it possible for you to access your Scoperite account on any device, at any time, no matter where you are; so whether you are on a roof or enjoying time at home, you have access to all your information.