Phil Bennett is proof you don’t have to do big jobs to get big dollars. Over the past 17 years, he’s turned a small repair job he did on a lark for a real estate agent into a substantial business. Today about 1,000 real estate agents rely on his firm repair problems that were discovered by home inspectors and that, if not fixed, could ruin a home sale.
“We work for desperate people in an emotional situation,” says Bennett. “Sometimes I have to be Contractor Phil and sometime I have to be Dr. Phil. But we’re always the hero, because we come in and get it done on time.”
Being the hero for real estate agents means that when their clients need remodeling, they turn to Bennett as well. In fact, Bennett sees an 80% conversion ratio from inspections to remodels. “We are highly recommended by real estate agents,” he says. “And most people, when they move in, they want to make changes that are more their style. So we help them out with that.”
The conversions from inspections/repair to remodeling have become so prevalent that Bennett has started a new arm of the company called Real Remodels.
But no matter whether it’s a small repair or a major renovation, Bennett’s approach is always the same: to exceed customer expectations. As one example, he refuses to allow a punch list after a job.
“To have a client go around a house and find things that are wrong is insanity,” he says. “It’s so easy in this business to break all the stereotypes about contractors. Most companies are Chuck-in-a-truck types. But we excel in a world of due diligence and closing deadlines.”