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The Home Repair Business

How To Make Money With Your Skills

A. William Benitez

HANDLING COMPLAINTS


Complaints tie in with guarantees because your guarantee of the work you do assures the customer that their complaints will be adequately resolved. In the handyman business complaints are a little different then that of businesses selling small and specific products that can be easily replaced. Complaints about your work or service will be more complex to resolve and could certainly cost you more. Nevertheless, you must be prepared to make good every job you do. A business can only succeed with satisfied customers.


When a complaint arises, the important thing is to make the situation as painless as possible for the customer. Let them understand that your main concern is always their complete satisfaction. By doing this you convert an unpleasant situation into a positive experience. This way the customer loses nothing in the process and will certainly consider hiring you for additional work in the future.



Copyright      2009     Positive Imaging, LLC

In more than twenty years, one almost impossible customer.


If you make certain that your work is always good quality, it isn’t that difficult to avoid complaints. In over twenty years of running a business, I had some opportunities to deal with situations that were less than pleasant. In all those years, which involved hundreds of jobs, I can remember only one customer that was impossible to satisfy. And that was not completely my fault although I was certainly a participant. The situation was complicated by the actions of a general contractor. He tried to serve as a middle man and made a real mess of things. Even in this case, the only real disagreement had to do with the price and not the work.


Satisfying the customer brings more business.


All the other cases where problems arose in my business they ended with the customer completely happy and giving me additional work. In one case I built a conference table for a law firm and they were not happy with the way the top turned out. I asked them to use the top for the next two weeks while I made a new top that would meet their requirements. After I delivered the new top they commented on my professionalism and gave me another large job. It was obvious that they had been through several unpleasant experiences with other firms.


Some customers will try to take advantage of you.


There will be times when a customer will take advantage of your fairness. There are always some people who will abuse your honesty. You will have to review each case on its own merits to determine how best to deal with a particular situation but I have included a simple handyman - homeowner situation below.


When you install a door for someone, the norm is to give a one year warranty against manufacturer defects of inadequate installation. Many homes have storm/screen doors and the storm portion is removed or left open when the weather is ideal. What if you installed this for a homeowner and he or she calls you during the one year guarantee period because their screen has been ripped. Normally you would be responsible for a manufacturers defect. If it seems that the screen is defective, replace it promptly and without question. However, if this is a regular occurrence and it is obvious that the damage was caused by an animal or a child simply jumping through the screen, it is time to stop further abuse.


My experience has been that most customers treat you fairly and it is always best to give them the benefit of the doubt, especially the first time there is a problem.


Remember that the objective is to develop a rapport that will ensure that all of your customers will become referrals for your business.

The Handyman’s Guide To Profit:

Using Your Skills To Make Money

In Any Economy

By A. William Benitez

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