When the downturn hit, lots of remodelers were forced to adapt or go out of business. The same was also true for plenty of new home builders. John Daly, co-owner of Revision LLC., knows what it’s like to be forced to adapt. At the time of the recession, he worked for Stonewood, a home builder that also did small remodeling jobs on the side. But when new home construction plummeted, the company was forced to go in a different direction.
On a dime, the company went from building custom homes to doing boutique whole-house remodels. Daly says he has no plans
to go back to the old way of doing things.
Clients flock to Revision for large high-end projects with ambitious ideas and high price tags. “I don’t do decks. I don’t do porches. I don’t do bathrooms,” says Daly. “There’s already 900 guys in our market who do that really well.”
- It’s all about repeat referrals. And referrals are all about relationships. Though he’s got a busy schedule, Daly tries his best to meet with his clients each week during site meetings. “It helps save some of the headaches and it keeps us boutique,” he says. Another tip? Get friendly. “I tell my clients I become one of your family. I’m living in your house with you,” says Daly. “A lot of them would say they’ve built a really great relationship with us over the years.”
- Choose your jobs carefully. Don’t rush into work. “Tell people to wait, to be patient,” says Daly. “Tell them that we can do it but that we’re six months out.” By making your clients wait, you weed out the less serious homeowners. And Daly adds you should focus on checking your growth to make sure it’s not too fast. Get too big too quickly and you might end up as an impersonal, bloated operation. “Our growth percentage was about 20-25% each year,” he says. “We want to do things and still be boutique about what we do.”