Why you need residential construction estimating software that gives clients options

Posted 9/5/2022

Whether you’ve been in the residential construction and remodeling world for one year or a decade, you know that customers very seldom know what they want. Trying to get a clear list of their wants and needs is hard enough. Getting them to choose their fixtures and finishes is nearly impossible.

That usually means that you have to revise their quote, offer alternatives, and spend a lot of time on every project long before you ever get the order.

It doesn’t have to be that way. There is residential and remodeling estimating software out there that can offer your customers options automatically. Here’s why that’s good for your business and your customers.

1. Once It’s Set Up, Quotes Take Minutes

We’re not going to lie. It takes a little time to set up the best remodeling estimating software so that all of the options you offer are built into the system. However, once it’s done, quotes that would take you an hour (per option) can be done in minutes.

Even better? Once you’ve calculated the quote on this kind of remodeling and residential construction estimating software, your customer has all the options at their fingertips.

2. Customers Don’t Always Know What They Want – and That’s Okay

Sometimes, it gets frustrating when you’re working on the tenth revision of a quote with no end in sight. But it helps to remember that most residential construction and remodeling customers don’t know much about construction or the materials on offer.

They probably struggle to picture what you’re offering them, and they might not be entirely sure that the products you’re recommending are what they want.

To you, it’s a job, but to them, it’s an investment they need to live with for many years to come. So it’s only natural that they want to be completely sure before they give you the go-ahead.

3. Options Equal Upsells

One of the most remarkable things we’ve noticed since we’ve been helping construction companies to build quotes that give their customers options is that they usually don’t choose the cheapest option.

Very often, customers will scroll through the options on their quote presentation, find something they love, and choose it instead of the base option.

When customers have all the options at their fingertips, and they can combine them any way they choose to, they very seldom choose the cheapest version of the quote. Even if they do, at least they know that they’ve reviewed all their options, and that’s what they really want.

4. It’s About Going Above and Beyond

When it comes to renovations, remodeling or additions to their homes, your customers want to be sure they’re choosing the right contractor for the job. A big part of that is how you present yourself to them.

If you’re the contractor who arrives on time, looks and sounds the part, and then presents them with a graphic, e-commerce-like quote that lets them have total control of nearly every element of their project, you will make a great impression.

People take great pride in their homes, and they want to be sure that they’re working with the right person and company for the job. When you’re the one that is giving them a fantastic quote experience from day one, you’re very likely to be the one they choose.

5. It Reduces Changes Later In the Process

We all know that change orders are a hassle.

They often cause delays while customers are deciding what they want to do. Sometimes, you’ve already ordered materials, and you have to scramble to make changes before it’s picked and delivered. Not to mention the paperwork!

The most common reason for change orders on residential projects is because the homeowners simply change their minds. Maybe they find a new product that they love, or they just don’t love the product they initially chose.

When you give your customers more options up front, they’re a lot less likely to make preference-based changes later on. This means you will have a more straightforward project with fewer change orders.

6. Your Customers Can Take As Long As They Need to Decide

When your residential construction estimating software gives your customers all the options right from the start, they can discuss their needs, budget and design choices at their leisure.

They can try different combinations and see, in real-time, what their choices will do to the overall cost of their project. So they can make as many changes as they like until they find the perfect combinations of options, and then they can contact you to place their order.

7. More Accuracy Under Pressure

One of the biggest problems with doing multiple quotes for customers (if you don’t have the best remodeling estimating software) is that you probably have an extensive quote backlog most of the time.

That means that you’re trying to get estimates to your customers under a lot of pressure, and that’s usually when you make mistakes, especially when you need to work each option out as a separate quote!

If you’re using software that automatically calculates your quote based on every specification and product you want to offer your clients, and everything is preprogrammed to give you every option on every quote, there’s a lot less pressure.

Not only will you have accurate estimates every time, but you’ll also have a lot less pressure getting them done!

8. Easy Material Lists

You already know that the job of estimating doesn’t end when the client makes a choice. A lot of it starts once you’ve got an order.

One of the critical things you need to tackle is producing an accurate material list for the job, so you can get all the materials ordered and on-site when they need to be.

However, if you’re still trying to estimate all the options and alternatives on a spreadsheet (or six!), translating that into a project budget and material list might take a while.

You won't have that problem if you’re using residential construction estimating software that automatically creates all the options you want to send your customers from day one. You can simply convert whatever combination of options your customer chooses into an order, generate a material list, and start ordering materials!

9. More Time for Your Sales Team

When your estimating is simple, because you’re using the best remodeling estimating software, your team is going to have more time on their hands.

That means they’ll have more time to follow up on quotes. More time to network. More time to spend explaining options to customers who need more information.

It’ll allow your team to give your customers better service all around, which will translate into happier customers and a better reputation for customer service.

The Best Thing You Can Do for Your Business

CostCertified was created by people who have hands-on experience working in residential buildings and remodeling. We know exactly what these customers want and need and why they want to have more than one option.

That’s part of why we created CostCertified, and why we’re always working to make it the best remodeling estimating software and residential construction estimating software out there.

We want to allow our customers to give their customers all the options they offer in one quote without spending hours creating it.

Our system allows our customers to create as many options as they like for each product or process. It also crawls your supplier’s websites, so you’re always using the latest material prices – which also cuts down estimating and sourcing time.

You don’t have to reinvent the wheel every time you give a client an option. CostCertified lets you make it part of your everyday estimating process. It makes life easier for estimators, and it means you have happy customers from day one.

Contact our team here if you want to learn more about how you can transform your estimating process. Let’s schedule a demo of the CostCertified platform, so you can see for yourself how easy it can be to offer customers choices.