This is an estimate-driven business. Everyone in home improvement cannot make any money if they do not go on appointments and give an estimate, and this is what we do. As the owner of McFall Masonry and Construction, I spend roughly 50% of my time giving estimates, which includes driving to your home, giving you as the homeowner an estimate on the spot, and then driving to my next appointment.
This cruises right into my next subject on estimates. I spend a lot of time going back to the office and working on and writing up estimates for large projects. This is all free to the potential client. We spend an enormous amount of money on fuel traveling the DFW area on appointments, averaging $25 a day in fuel costs. Now, I’m not complaining because this is what we do. I have over 35 years of experience, so I would like to offer a few tips to you as the potential customer.
Please be home during the window of time that is scheduled. There are times that I will drive 45 minutes to an appointment with no one home and no phone call asking us to reschedule. If you decide that you no longer need an estimate, don’t just disappear, just let us know. If I drive to Carrolton for example, and you are not home, then my next appointment is Prosper, that means I will drive for about 90 minutes doing nothing but driving. Please be courteous and be home or let us know otherwise.
Often a potential customer cannot understand why we cannot be at there home right at 1pm for example. When we begin our appointments around 8am and move from town to town, we don’t always know how long an estimate will take because sometimes not everything has been explained to us completely what you are wanting a price on. We may plan 20 minutes for an estimate and we’re there for 60 minutes, then there goes our schedule. This is why we ask for a window of time if at all possible. We usually ask for a two-hour window, but even a one-hour window helps us a lot.
I have also mentioned before, please be prepared. I do not know what is in your head, what you may want or what you may envision. At times, I’ll arrive at an appointment and first thing I hear is, “I don’t know what I really want.” Please know what you want ahead of time. Another issue that is so important is if you’ve submitted your idea to your HOA or not. If it’s something like a retaining wall over 4’ height, have you called an engineer? These things are so important, just today I went on an appointment and the retaining wall would be about 6’ high and they had very loose soil. I couldn’t give an estimate, which was a waste of time and fuel on my end.
At McFall Masonry and Construction we do all we can to help you, the customer, but please help us with these tips.