Dear Potential Customer Looking for Service on Craigslist,
I would just like you to know that in order to get a quality product or service you must be willing to pay for it. Period. Craigslist is filled with scammers and wannabes but there are professionals on there too! I know that you've resorted to Craigslist looking for a deal and you can get a deal from a professional, it is definitely possible. The deal you get, however, WILL be higher than the scammer's and wannabe's prices, guaranteed! Don't be shocked.
Now, how do you know the difference between a professional, wannabe, and scammer? A scammer will be about money before anything else, a wannabe will have general knowledge but lack professionalism and deeper understanding, the professional will likely ask more questions about your needs and possibly ask to view things in person in order to give accurate pricing. If you think about this, I know it makes sense to you.
So, maybe your budget can only fit with what the wannabe's price is... what should you do then? Well, if you are comfortable working with this person and the task is rather simple, you can take your chances. Do not expect any warranties, returned phone calls, or even visually pleasing work if you go this route! If you want to stay within a particular budget but would prefer working with a professional, just communicate! Let the professional know your needs, wants, and budget! The professional will want to retain you as a customer and will do their best to come up with a solution that fits your budget and needs, you may have to give up the wants though. And honestly, if the professional can't come up with a less expensive option, they will just keep it real and be honest with you. They would rather lose your business than risk their reputation!
Dear Professional Chasing Craigslist Leads,
Craigslist is not the best lead source if you are making a business out of the service or products you're offering. I suppose you could monopolize certain trades and industries on Craigslist by throwing out low-ball numbers for everything... but in the long run, you'll be mad at all of the time you spent chasing money that wasn't even enough to replenish your gas tank and purchase your groceries for the month.
I would recommend using Craigslist as one of many ways you get leads for your business. It does pay off from time to time. We have received several leads that led to actually work through Craigslist. We have also learned a lot about the type of customers posting on Craigslist. Some things go great, some things don't.
You will have leads that want to suck you dry of every bit of information you have, string you along like they want to work with you, and then toss you to the curb once they feel they know enough about your job to either perform the work themselves or negotiate with a wannabe on the work they need done. These people exist the most on Craigslist. You will also find a customer that is rather impressed with you, your professionalism, your previous work, whatever and then try to puff themselves up as being this super duper millionaire with TONS of work in the pipeline but they'll want you to charge mere pennies on the dollar to do the work... remember, they will promise you the world if you do this super cheap job for them but don't do it!
On more rare occasions you will run into customers who need a deal or a break. They are in need of something but either don't want to spend what the big guys are charging or just can't afford it right then! These are the customers who will appreciate what you have to offer and most likely make working with them a pretty pleasant experience. They will likely have an understanding of your value AND the deal they are getting by working with you. This customer will be a repeat and will recommend you because you did a great job at a price that was affordable to them! You can probably pick this customer out in a crowd of complaining hagglers because they will be upfront with you about what they need. Period.
I wanted to share my thoughts with you Craigslisters because I hate to see customers taken advantage of. We often get customers calling us after they've already invested their dollars into a less than professional worker or company hoping we can save them and often times we can't. We either don't want to go behind someone who did a poor job (because we wind up taking the blame for what goes wrong after we've left) or because we simply can't do what needs to be done to correct mistakes at a cost satisfactory to the customer at that point! We also have experienced being taken advantage of by customers who want to use us for our knowledge and professionalism but nothing else. We have definitely learned our lesson so we hope we can save someone else from the headaches we've already faced.
If your friend isn't an experienced HVAC technician, why are you letting them convince you that they know what to do about your jacked up furnace?
I, as a mother of 4+, know how important it is to save money! Believe me. I also know, and hopefully you will after reading this, how important quality is over price! Cheap equals CHEAP! Don't look for free and cheap fixes for your troubled equipment, just stop doing that, PLEASE! Instead, look for experience. Find experienced technicians who KNOW what they are doing! If they become your friend, then great! I would also encourage you to shop small if you want inexpensive quality work.
We received a call this past week from a handyman friend who attempted to repair his friends heat pump. First of all... Mr. Handyman, WHY? Okay, okay... so anyway, we get there and find that Mr. Handyman blew fuse after fuse after fuse over the course of several hours. We get there and within minutes determined that just 2 simple parts needed to be replaced. It took us a total of an hour to repair this heat pump. We also don't charge an arm and a leg...
Now, why did this guy call his friend to repair his heat pump? Why did his friend think he could wear and HVAC hat and actually fix it? Why were hours and resources wasted? Because the homeowner didn't want to pay a service call fee plus repairs! Well, he wound up paying a service call fee, repairs, and for his friends time! Just because they fix drywall or can even build a house does not mean they know how to get your heat running!
They say that hindsight is 20/20 but how about this other saying I love? A wise man learns from his mistakes but a wiser man learns from the mistakes of others! Learn from the mistakes of others. Don't let your friend touch yo sh*t unless they are experienced and CERTIFIED to do so! It's really not worth it.
Okay, how many of you have tried to install your own thermostat and totally failed??? C'mon, don't be shy! You are not alone at all, I promise.
Thermostats are our biggest... challenge? Or is it you that is our biggest challenge because of these freakin' thermostats?! Hmmm... That really doesn't matter, we love you anyway, even if we've spoken to you 12 times in the last two days about how your thermostat won't read the right temperature or how your unit won't turn on! It's totally cool!
So, here's the first thing you must know about installing a new thermostat! It MUST be compatible with your unit! This is probably the biggest mistake we see homeowners make, and no worries, stuff happens! But, "if ya don't know, now ya know!" *in my Biggie Smalls voice* And now that you do know, you are a step ahead of the rest when it comes to installing your new thermostat. So what kind of system do you have installed in your home? A gas furnace? An electric furnace? Or a heat pump system? Also, do you have two stages of heat with one stage cool or one stage heat with two stage cool? ...Or do you have one stage of each?? Do you see why this is typically the biggest mistake homeowners make?
Now that you've determined your system type you can proceed to your local home building supply store or even your HVAC guy (US, pick US!!!)! I can't speak for every other company in this industry but we're affordable and you'll probably save a ton by purchasing your thermoatat from us, particularly those fancy wi-fi ones. If you're just going for your basic stat, Home Depot or Lowes will do the trick! If you need help picking a stat... maybe I will do a follow up post to assit you. Just leave me some feedback so I know.
If you have gotten this far after deciding that you're going to replace your own thermostat, I bet you don't need my help with the next steps involved. I will follow up with a tutorial at some point but getting this far is HUUUUGE! Just in case you do need a little guidance going forward, please, PLEASE make sure the power to you HVAC system is turned off completely! Your next step... now, take your time, some mistakes tend to get made at this point... is to look before you touch! Be sure you know how to remove the current thermostat from the wall. Take note of where each wire is landed on your old thermostat. Some stats are easier to match up but if you are going from mercury to digital you will likely find that the wiring is different. You may even have more wires in your old stat than are needed in your new one! Thermostat manufacturers, although not typically HVAC technicians, can be extremely helpful to you over the phone.
If after calling the free help over the phone you find this task still too challenging at this point, please call a professional. So what if you have to pay 55-125 bucks for an hour of someone's time. At least you will get your thermostat installed properly! Improper installation of a thermostat could cost you much more!
Greetings to you!
Given the new year, my husband and I have decided to do and try new things! This blog is one of them.
As HVAC business owners we (mostly he, he's the one with more than 20 years of experience... I'm just his supporter/road dawg/admin) get a zillion and one questions about heating, AC, controls, you name it! It's hard to answer every question, and even though hubby dearest and his crew really try to, it just doesn't always happen! Sometimes they have to run off to their next appointment, get to an emergency miles away, or just get home to watch Netflix and chill (just kidding)!
I wanted to create a platform for our current and future customers, as well as newbies to the industry, like myself to learn about HVAC life! On this journey we will all learn a little more about the components used to heat and cool our home through these simple post, video tutorials, and I may even throw in an e-book or two!
Please share this blog and follow us. Also, feel free to send us messages directly about any topic you'd like to know more about! ...and don't forget to comment below!