Five years ago, Allen Harris, owner of ALH Home Renovations, in Prairie Village, Kan., rebranded his company, including creating a new logo and website, and opened a new office.
But it turned out that potential clients still thought the company’s focus was high-end jobs and that it would balk at taking on smaller kitchen and bath projects. To help dispel that strictly upscale image, 18 months ago the company came up with kitchen and bath packages for different budget levels. “We needed to reeducate our client base,” Harris says.,“[and show them that] we offer kitchens and baths for every price point and every budget. A $20,000 bath is as appealing to us as a $100,000 kitchen.”
Harris says that the company’s bronze, silver, and gold kitchen and bath packages, which each have a set starting price point, are a useful tool to both weed out prospects who have unrealistic expectations and to help prequalify those who are serious.
Both the kitchen and bath bronze packages keep the existing layout and just update the finishes. Clients usually choose between a silver and gold package for kitchens, and between bronze and silver for baths.
Although ALH worked with local interior design company Interiors Nouveau to come up with the packages’ product selections, each package still includes consultation time with a designer: 10 hours for bronze, 15 for silver, and 25 for gold.
Harris has found that when designers shop with clients and the client chooses an $800 faucet, rather than the $300 faucet in the package, clients are “well aware that they went over-budget,” and tend not to be shocked when the designer points out that a change order amount will be added to the package cost.
Though only 30% of the company’s projects are packages, since Harris has negotiated pricing with vendors for package selections, he also offers that product pricing on other non-package jobs if the custom project fits the size/linear square footage of one of the package levels. E.g., if the client’s project size fits a package countertop selection, the client can receive the same pricing as the package but is limited to the six color choices in the package.
ALH recently completed a kitchen that grew from the gold package, which starts at $55,000, to include the adjacent dining room (final budget: $70,000). Harris says that clients tend to stay within budget for tile materials, but will splurge on tile designs and increased labor cost.
—Nina Patel, senior editor, REMODELING.