The home inspection business can be a lucrative industry. From real estate agents to property investors and savvy homeowners, more and more people are now hiring inspectors to assess the condition of their property prior to buying or selling. But with so many home inspectors in the market, it’s not easy to grow your home inspection business. You need a steady stream of customers, lasting client relationships, innovative services, and continuous marketing efforts to stay alive in the game. Check out these tips on how to scale a home inspection business to lock in long term success.
Tip 1: Evaluate your marketing plan
Marketing is the heart and soul of every business. Even if you offer stellar services, your business wouldn’t reach the right market without proper marketing techniques. To scale your company, you need to re-assess and evaluate your current marketing plan. Improve areas that need enhancement and retain those that bring positive results. Keep in mind that marketing is implemented to drive customers into your business. But first, you need to understand the market and determine who’s leading the competition. Also, be specific when choosing your niche market. Always define your services and compare them to the needs of your audience, and compare your price range to that of your competitors. Here are some marketing tips to help you out:
- Use social media to promote your business; Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, etc.
- Make a detailed home inspection marketing plan with clear actions and strategies.
- Don’t forget face-to-face marketing to turn prospects into clients.
Tip 2: Provide customer value
Every consumer wants to receive professional service at a competitive price. If a customer is paying your home inspection company hundreds of dollars per hour, they expect factual and timely results. But it’s equally important to provide customer value that exceeds client expectations. A customer value proposition is the benefits you promise customers using your services minus the cost of services and ancillary fees. You need to ask yourself, what value does my home inspection business create for customers? Although the perception of value differs, remember to invest in your clients to increase customer satisfaction; this will help you earn a loyal customer base. Here are some ways to create a value proposition:
- Offer free technical support whenever you can, not just during inspections.
- Provide ballpark figures before inspections to inform and prepare your clients.
- Give discounts, free items, vouchers, or useful products to new customers.
Tip 3: Expand your services
If you want to grow your home inspection business, try to offer new services. The main duties of a home inspector include examining the exterior and interior of the property, infrastructure check, electrical assessment, plumbing system, and water quality. To expand your business, think about the different varieties of services you can offer under these categories.
These services can be done on top of your basic offerings. Some examples include termite inspections, radon tests, indoor air quality checks, sewer line inspection, toxic mold inspection, asbestos inspection, and energy efficiency checks.
- Make sure to include your new services when marketing your business.
- Try commercial inspection, which may require additional training but can offer a regular stream of customers.
Tip 4: Engage with existing clients
While incorporating new marketing methods into your business is important, there’s still value in the traditional way of promoting your business – referrals. Word of mouth promotion from satisfied customers might take more time and serious legwork to accomplish but when utilized the correct way, it will boost your home inspection business.
As the owner, you have the power to decide what people want to remember from your business. Do you provide quality services? How well do you treat customers? Do you contact customers and thank them after an inspection? Here are some ways to spread awareness through referrals:
- Follow-up with customers and encourage them to write positive reviews about your business.
- Regularly visit real estate agents and ask if they’ll refer customers.
- Give out as many business cards as possible and stop in at open houses whenever you can.
Tip 5: Secure the right insurance
One of the most important tips to grow your home inspection business is to carry the right insurance. Big or small, every home inspection company needs proper coverage to protect their business against damage and financial losses. What if one of your employees gets injured while working? What if one of your inspectors damages a property? There’s a lot of liability that comes with being a home inspector.
One insurance policy you should definitely consider is E&O (errors and omissions) because it protects your business against mistakes, oversights, and errors that might happen during home inspection process. It provides coverage against settlement costs so you don’t have to drain your wallet paying for legal fees, medical treatments, and compensation expenses. Other insurances you need to consider include:
General Liability: This policy covers claims associated with bodily injury and property damage.
Business Interruption: This policy covers the net income that would have occurred during a period of interruption when your business is unable to operate. This policy is typically used after a natural disaster or fire.
Equipment Breakdown: This covers the cost associated with repairing damaged equipment.
Commercial Auto: If you use a company vehicle to get to and from job sites this policy covers the cost associated with bodily injury or damage caused by a car accident.
Growing a business takes time and patience, but by following these tips you’ll have more customers through your door in no time.