fire damage

We do contents and structure cleaning in our business and do not touch the structural repairs or demolition at all. I feel like this puts our company at a disadvantage and other restoration companies that do all of it are more likely to get the entire job. Do you think I should become a contractor and go into the structural repairs side of restoration so I can get more cleaning jobs?

That is a great question.

The first thing I would do to answer it is to ask you another question: Do you want to do structural repairs and become a contractor?

If the answer is “no” then you have your answer. I believe very strongly that you should only do what you truly enjoy and love doing in your business.

Being in business is not just about making money, it is about making a difference and you can’t make a difference if you aren’t excited about what you are doing. Taking on the building repair side of restoration is no little task, especially if you have no construction experience. So you want to be sure that it’s something that you feel is worth the cost, time and exposure to get into it.

The other thing to consider is that reconstruction is the least profitable side of restoration. Profit margins are ridiculously higher in mitigation and cleaning in this industry than they are on the building repair side. And when I say ridiculous, I mean like double and triple profits.

It is also where most of the stress and headaches come from as you work with your clients past what we call the “honeymoon phase,” which lasts for about 7 days. In this phase you are still the night in shining armor riding in on the white horse to save the day. When the job entails just mitigation and cleaning we usually stay within the “you are awesome phase” as we are in and out of their lives quickly.

I am not telling you to stay out of reconstruction. But I want you to go into it, if you decide it’s a good fit for you and your business, for the right reasons. And doing it just to get cleaning jobs is not the right reason in my opinion.

I think the real question you would like answered here is: How do I get more cleaning jobs? So let’s talk about that for a minute.

There are several ways to get cleaning jobs from agents and adjusters without doing reconstruction. The big picture here is to build outrageous value so they really have no option but to use you.

Think about it: Why would an agent or adjuster call anyone else, even if that person was doing the reconstruction on a job, to handle the cleaning side of things if they knew that by using your company with its team, expertise and systems their jobs would be infinitely easier and their clients would be happy campers. All of this translates into the adjuster and/or agent looking like a rock star for using you or recommending you.

Also, adjusters and agents realize that contents are a specialty part of any job. They are quite used to having more than one contractor on any given job when it comes to flooring, contents and even mitigation. So not doing the reconstruction part of a job doesn't necessarily stop you from getting the contents side of the loss, as this is a specialty trade that takes specific expertise and training.

So your job as a restorative cleaning business is to market your services in such a way that shows them these kinds of results. The best way to do that is through leveraging client testimonials and referrals. And do this in such a way that they have to stop and take notice. Remember there are other companies vying for their attention so you want to be the red car in the parking lot full of blue cars.