Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions - Business - Contractor Talk

Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions

 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 01-01-2020, 06:13 PM   #1
New Guy
 
kmerr98277's Avatar
 
Trade: Remodel
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 24
Rewards Points: 52

Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


I do kitchen and bath remodels and it seems there are a thousand decisions that need to be made (countertop type, cabinets, pulls, appliances, colors, materials, finishes, flooring, tile, grout color). I spend so much time trying to get these decisions made so the job can keep moving. What is the best way you have found to make this more efficient?
kmerr98277 is offline  

Warning: The topics covered on this site include activities in which there exists the potential for serious injury or death. ContractorTalk.com DOES NOT guarantee the accuracy or completeness of any information contained on this site. Always use proper safety precaution and reference reliable outside sources before attempting any construction or remodeling task!

   

Advertisement

 

Old 01-01-2020, 06:14 PM   #2
Pro
 
dave_dj1's Avatar
 
Trade: general contractor
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Upsate Ny/Vt border
Posts: 1,026
Rewards Points: 1,168

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


Get them made before the job starts.

Advertisement

dave_dj1 is offline  
The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to dave_dj1 For This Useful Post:
asevereid (01-01-2020), Golden view (01-01-2020), KAP (01-01-2020), MN_general (01-02-2020), overanalyze (01-02-2020), Wile E Coyote (01-02-2020)
Old 01-01-2020, 06:16 PM   #3
I own stock in FotoMat!
 
480sparky's Avatar
 
Trade: 132 on Bush, I've got him at gunpoint!
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 12,333
Rewards Points: 12,874

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


It's not they're not making decisions. It's due to them not understanding there are decisions to be made and think it all just magically 'happens'.
__________________
This post has been modified from its original version. It has been formatted to fit this screen and edited for content.
480sparky is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to 480sparky For This Useful Post:
enterprise (01-03-2020)
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 01-01-2020, 06:18 PM   #4
The Sheriff

 
Jaws's Avatar
 
Trade: Builder
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Texas
Posts: 25,272
Rewards Points: 16,186

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


Quote:
Originally Posted by kmerr98277 View Post
I do kitchen and bath remodels and it seems there are a thousand decisions that need to be made (countertop type, cabinets, pulls, appliances, colors, materials, finishes, flooring, tile, grout color). I spend so much time trying to get these decisions made so the job can keep moving. What is the best way you have found to make this more efficient?
Selections Packet. We have every decision listed prior to the job starting. Now we have a full time AA/Selections Manager and she makes the list off of the plans. We do it for new houses, whole house remodels, commercial all the way down to a kitchen update for an existing client.

Colors, grout colors, grout sizes, countertop type, species, edge etc..., trim details, appliances, tile, flooring, shingles, cabinet knobs, door hardware. whatever. All listed prior to starting

If it's a larger project they have a Schedule of Selections. If they dont make that selection and confirm by the date listed (i.e. counters June 23) they get 5 (five) days added to my build time. That gets their attention. Got sick of people f'inf around not selecting windows and literally causing a 4 week delay on a 10 month build

For a bath or kitchen - all would have to selected and approved before I'd start. In fact I'd want it all in my shop warehouse before we began

Sent from my SM-N970U using Tapatalk
__________________
"If I have wounds I have two choices, See myself as a victim or see myself as a warrior"

Cheif Joseph
Jaws is online now  
The Following 7 Users Say Thank You to Jaws For This Useful Post:
asevereid (01-01-2020), Calidecks (01-01-2020), EthanB (01-01-2020), Golden view (01-01-2020), KAP (01-01-2020), overanalyze (01-02-2020), SummitElectric1 (01-02-2020)
Old 01-01-2020, 06:19 PM   #5
New Guy
 
kmerr98277's Avatar
 
Trade: Remodel
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 24
Rewards Points: 52

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


It took 3 days for a client to decide where they wanted the cabinet pulls located on the cabinet. frustrating
kmerr98277 is offline  
Old 01-01-2020, 06:21 PM   #6
New Guy
 
kmerr98277's Avatar
 
Trade: Remodel
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 24
Rewards Points: 52

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


Jaws, it can be hard enough getting subs to show up on time. The last thing I need are these delays. I like what you're doing.
kmerr98277 is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to kmerr98277 For This Useful Post:
Jaws (01-02-2020)
Old 01-01-2020, 08:29 PM   #7
Capra aegagrus

 
Tinstaafl's Avatar
 
Trade: Remodeler
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Central Pennsylvania
Posts: 23,919
Rewards Points: 1,008

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


Part of the balancing act is to [diplomatically] tell the client how things are going to go, and in some cases not even offering choices. Too many choices = indecision. Of course, you need to use some pretty good judgement going down that road.

We all want our customers to be ecstatic when the job is done, but in many cases the most practical thing is to lead them and hope they're happy with the end result. You can go broke consulting over every little detail and waiting for decisions.
Tinstaafl is offline  
The Following 7 Users Say Thank You to Tinstaafl For This Useful Post:
asevereid (01-01-2020), Calidecks (01-01-2020), Dirtywhiteboy (01-04-2020), Jaws (01-02-2020), mrcat (01-01-2020), SummitElectric1 (01-02-2020), tgeb (01-01-2020)
Old 01-01-2020, 09:50 PM   #8
Pro
 
rrk's Avatar
 
Trade: remodeling
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: new jersey
Posts: 6,681
Rewards Points: 5,434

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


I tell my customers appliances must be selected ( not necessarily bought ) before cabinets are ordered, cabinets are ordered before job starts, I narrow down sink/faucet selection to 2 or 3 they can be finalized week before tops are templated, tops are chosen when cabinets are delivered same with backsplash and knobs, they can take door with them.

Light fixtures are finalized very early in project, locations are finalized early. Knob locations take 10 min choice A,B, or C

Once they understand you have done more kitchens than them they will adhere to the deadlines you give them. Once they trust you, they know it will turn out great.

I rarely require everything on site at the start, especially after appliances getting damaged. Appliance places will hold them for months without an issue, sinks, faucets can be obtained in a few days, tile 10 days at most, special lighting 3 weeks
rrk is offline  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to rrk For This Useful Post:
asevereid (01-02-2020), Jaws (01-02-2020)
Old 01-01-2020, 09:57 PM   #9
Talking Head
 
EthanB's Avatar
 
Trade: Poking Things With Sticks
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Rhode Island
Posts: 5,388
Rewards Points: 438

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


Same as John(Jaws). For a smaller project, kitchen or bath, etc. I would provide a selections list that needs to be filled out and signed before day 1 on site. For longer jobs I provided an attached list as an Exhibit and dated when each selection needed to be made with a damages clause for delays.
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaws View Post
Planer.....
EthanB is offline  
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to EthanB For This Useful Post:
asevereid (01-02-2020), Jaws (01-02-2020), NJ Contractor (01-02-2020), overanalyze (01-02-2020)
Old 01-01-2020, 11:30 PM   #10
Pro
 
avenge's Avatar
 
Trade: Remodeling
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Not here
Posts: 3,212
Rewards Points: 304

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


I want as much as possible on the jobsite when I start. I'd be screwed if I let them make decisions without my input.

It requires planning on the contractors part decisions are made way beforehand.
avenge is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to avenge For This Useful Post:
Jaws (01-02-2020)
Old 01-02-2020, 06:36 AM   #11
Pro
 
Tom M's Avatar
 
Trade: GC/ Interior & Exterior Remodeling
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Bergen County, NJ
Posts: 11,023
Rewards Points: 12,348

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


Turn around and walk straight into the wall and talk it.

People yes you to death and ignore your advice and guidance way more often than they listen.
Tom M is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to Tom M For This Useful Post:
B.Johnson (01-02-2020)
Old 01-02-2020, 07:04 AM   #12
Pro
 
builditguy's Avatar
 
Trade: Carpentry
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Missouri
Posts: 2,349
Rewards Points: 2,138

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


Agreed with making decisions before ever starting. I list it out, for them. I realize there will always be some changes, but heading it off, beforehand, makes life so much easier.
It also makes you look more professional, because the job will go much smoother. A year from now, they won't remember the job took so long because they couldn't make up their mind. The will just remember it took you a long time to complete the project.
That goes for the neighbors watching also. They don't know you waited 3 days for a handle placement, they just watch you come and go, and think you work slow.

I blame the internet for customers not being able to make choices. They spend too much time looking at pictures, looking at pintrest, discussing it on facebook, and doing too much research. HGTV doesn't help either.
builditguy is offline  
Old 01-02-2020, 07:16 AM   #13
Pro
 
Tom M's Avatar
 
Trade: GC/ Interior & Exterior Remodeling
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Bergen County, NJ
Posts: 11,023
Rewards Points: 12,348

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


A big thing nobody talks about is your ability to make a mark up with quality products at your preferred vendor.

for years I used to talk people out of going to box stores and buying off the internet due to quality issues and lack of accountability. The best laid plans still show up damaged or other hassles and there's nobody to talk to.

Well now my venders are starting to be just as lousy trying to keep up with all that business they were losing. Your customers are getting the same price as you and you still have the same quality control issues only now you took responsibility.
Tom M is offline  
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Tom M For This Useful Post:
asevereid (01-02-2020), Jaws (01-02-2020), overanalyze (01-02-2020)
Old 01-02-2020, 10:13 AM   #14
New Guy
 
cabindoc.sa's Avatar
 
Trade: Remodeling and restoration of log homes
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 26
Rewards Points: 52

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


I donít do a lot of remodels, but I have everything selected before I start, collect for appliances or have them purchase, have it shipped to my shop waiting for my schedule. Once we start, any changes to scope requested by customer will carry $500 c/o fee on top of what labor and materials may be. A lot easier to change on paper.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
cabindoc.sa is offline  
Old 01-02-2020, 08:42 PM   #15
Member
 
MoArk Willy's Avatar
 
Trade: Handyman
Join Date: Nov 2019
Posts: 79
Rewards Points: 208

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


Have all the decisions made before you walk on the job.
Tell them you cannot start until all is in writing. If you think it will slow you down, wait until they get a hold of one of your employees when you are not there.
MoArk Willy is offline  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to MoArk Willy For This Useful Post:
asevereid (01-02-2020), MN_general (01-04-2020)
Old 01-02-2020, 10:23 PM   #16
New Guy
 
kmerr98277's Avatar
 
Trade: Remodel
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 24
Rewards Points: 52

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom M View Post
A big thing nobody talks about is your ability to make a mark up with quality products at your preferred vendor.

for years I used to talk people out of going to box stores and buying off the internet due to quality issues and lack of accountability. The best laid plans still show up damaged or other hassles and there's nobody to talk to.

Well now my venders are starting to be just as lousy trying to keep up with all that business they were losing. Your customers are getting the same price as you and you still have the same quality control issues only now you took responsibility.
Yeah it's hard to compete with the contractor putting in the paper-thin acrylic tub from HD or Lowes. I had somebody ask for a bathroom remodel bid and they first told me they already had a bid for $3k. I told them I couldn't buy decent fixtures for that price.
kmerr98277 is offline  
Old 01-02-2020, 11:30 PM   #17
Fire up the BBQ
 
griz's Avatar
 
Trade: GC
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: ex-calif
Posts: 23,380
Rewards Points: 2,484

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


Quote:
Originally Posted by kmerr98277 View Post
Yeah it's hard to compete with the contractor putting in the paper-thin acrylic tub from HD or Lowes. I had somebody ask for a bathroom remodel bid and they first told me they already had a bid for $3k. I told them I couldn't buy decent fixtures for that price.
imo, you are fishing in the wrong pond if your clients even know what home depot & lowes are.

it is imperative that a GC educate people as to the quality etc of what they are buying.

last time i dealt with a client that mentioned HD i walked, told them we were not a fit as i do not do budget work.

not your fault they can not afford what they want....
__________________
SOME JOBS JUST AREN'T WORTH DOING:
griz is online now  
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to griz For This Useful Post:
enterprise (01-03-2020), Jaws (01-02-2020), KAP (01-04-2020)
Old 01-03-2020, 08:42 AM   #18
Design/Build
 
NJ Contractor's Avatar
 
Trade: GC
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 1,088
Rewards Points: 1,206

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


For smaller projects require that everything be on site prior to start. For larger projects you need to have a selections sheet that they have signed with ordering/delivery dates that must be met along with agreed upon monetary and time delay penalties for not meeting them. If on the other hand you need the work and have to start the project without these items, be aware that there is the potential risk for delays which will cost you money.
NJ Contractor is offline  
Old 01-03-2020, 04:12 PM   #19
Pro
 
eastcoastjoe's Avatar
 
Trade: GC aka adult baby sitter
Join Date: Feb 2019
Posts: 102
Rewards Points: 76

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


I have a hybrid method that works well for us. Cabs, tops and appliances selected and ordered before we start. After that I give them dates I need selections. We're doing demo, they are looking at tile. Plaster guys are there they are looking at paint ect. Keeps them busy doing "their job" so I can do mine. You have to stay at least a 2 weeks ahead of them though.

Most of my customers, one doesn't work and the other work from home often. This gets me away from the "when does this start, when's so and so starting. We mostly do high end kitchen and bath's that take a while.

As for 3 days to select pull location, that's on you. Here's the 3-4 spots they can go, I need an answer in the morning. You may need to be more assertive with the customer as the truly don't know until you tell them.
eastcoastjoe is offline  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to eastcoastjoe For This Useful Post:
asevereid (01-04-2020), rrk (01-03-2020)
Old 01-03-2020, 07:03 PM   #20
Pro
 
DaVinciRemodel's Avatar
 
Trade: Design/Build Remodeler
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Denver
Posts: 6,115
Rewards Points: 1,258

Re: Getting Tired Of Clients Not Making Decisions


Time & Materials! Our clients make fast decisions when they realize I'm standing there and the clock is ticking.

Advertisement

__________________
I love what I do and I'm very good at it!

Da Vinci on the web or Da Vinci On Facebook
DaVinciRemodel is offline  
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to DaVinciRemodel For This Useful Post:
Jaws (01-03-2020), MN_general (01-04-2020), Morning Wood (01-04-2020), overanalyze (01-04-2020)


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Join Now... It's Fast and FREE!

I am a professional contractor
I am a DIY Homeowner
Drywall Talk is for
PROFESSIONAL CONTRACTORS ONLY!

At DrywallTalk.com we cater exlusivly to professional contractors who make their living as a contractor. Knowing that many homeowners and DIYers are looking for a community to call home, we've created www.DIYChatroom.com DIY Chatroom is full of helpful advices and perfect for DIY homeowners.

Redirecing in 10 seconds
No Thanks
terms of service

Already Have an Account?