Are You a “Good Customer”? 9:06 pm - September 7, 2019

Everybody wants a good contractor – someone who shows up on time, does what they quoted, doesn’t make a mess, finishes on time – but have you ever considered what we contractors hope for? We hope for a “good customer.”

Outdoor lighting

What makes a good customer? We have a few ideas about that…

1. You call us when there is a problem. Nothing is more disappointing than hearing that the problem has been going on for months! Call me right away! I can get your parts on order, and set an appointment for someone to come help you BEFORE you get feeling all frustrated.

2. You ask for what you want.

It’s broken and you don’t know what the problem is – please ask us to “troubleshoot and repair” it. If it’s not working, please call. Please don’t go play with it. Please don’t change the bulbs with something you bought at Lowe’s- changing the wattage on the lamp can mess with the whole lighting design. It can cause what we call “over-voltage,” meaning – too much draw on that wire run. Then, you’ve messed with the draw on that line, and we come fix that – but by messing with that aspect, you may have accidentally masked another problem – the problem that caused the whole difficulty in the first place.

I want a quote to compare to others for bidding. Just say so. Hey, we are consumers too. But please realize – we use our expertise to design your lighting, develop a system, select the fixtures we think will deliver the BEST possible complement to your environment, then we price it with our LEGAL labor, add some overhead to account for paying our INSURANCE, and we come up with a price. You cannot compare apples to apples in this business. My design will NOT be the same as “Bob and his Builder Buddy” or “Larry the Landscaper.” They aren’t lighting designers. They don’t have a degree in lighting design or a Master Electrician on staff. They probably don’t pay to send their employees to training with the lighting manufacturers representatives. And it really isn’t fair to ask me to design the project, then hand my design to my competitor for him to quote it. YOU don’t work for free, do you?

I”m going to get your bid, ask you to do the work then add on and on and on.  Awesome. We love that. It means you love lighting as much as we do.  Just say – “we’d like to do this work in phases,” We understand. Some of our best projects are done in phases. ALSO, it’s FUN to add more lighting as your plant material grows. It’s wonderful to find the perfect statue for that corner, then light it up!

I want the most I can get for as little money as possible. Don’t we all?! If you have a budget in mind, say so when we have our initial discussion. If you think you can get a professionally designed and installed system for less than $100 per fixture, you probably need to shop around, make a few more calls, and get a little better perspective about the actual costs of professional equipment. 10 fixtures for $100 is a cheap box of junk. You can price things online, sure. Don’t buy your stuff online then ask us to install it, though. Get a neighbor kid. You get what you pay for. We design with only professional grade equipment, we get from reliable LOCAL BUSINESSES, we install with our trained legal employees, and we GUARANTEE OUR WORK.

3. Pay on time. Here’s a big one. You get your paycheck every week or two. We get paid when the job is done. Really. We want you to pay us. We do volunteer work for the satisfaction of a job well done, and to help our community. We do lighting for free at our church, we help our friends. But seriously, please pay promptly. We have our bills to pay also. We have to pay within 30 days for the equipment you order. If you drag on and on without paying us, we get into a jam! C’mon, be a good customer. Please pay on time.

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