The survey results are still pouring in and I am excited about the great response. I am also encouraged by how much influence social media has in generating responses. I’ll leave that for another post because I have much to say about that as I explore the best methods for inspectors to go to market.
Getting back to the survey, I will publish a report on all the responses, but I would say by far my biggest surprise is how many people are not concerned about improving their delivery time. In almost every facet of society, faster delivery, prompt service and delighting the customer are seen as key strategic differentiators.
Home Inspectors should be endeavoring to use prompt service as a competitive advantage and means of winning more business. Remember, there are generally 2 homeowners and 2 real estate professionals in the transaction. Impressing the professionals can lead to more and expanded business. Furthermore, people in a real estate transaction are on edge, in a hurry and anxious. Fast delivery of the inspection report alleviates one unknown in the transaction.
Exacerbating the need for speed is the trend in this day and age of “instant gratification by smartphone.” Remember how upset people were last Christmas when Amazon couldn’t get their last minute gifts delivered. I have always been an information junkie and have, more than once, annoyed my friends by having to know who that actor was in that movie or needing the exact definition of a word according to our friend Merriam. Much to my surprise, this jones-ing for information has spread like wildfire and now includes almost everyone I encounter. I sat at a gymnastics meet today watching my daughter compete while another non-techno-savvy mother communicated with her son in Australia for free and paid her booster club fees all using her smartphone.
As instant gratification has made people become perpetually impatient, one would expect home buyers to want the inspection report before the inspection was even finished. This Boston Globe article on the subject explains this phenomenon, and as there are more Gen-Y homebuyers, the pressures will only heighten. It will be interesting to conduct this same survey in 1 year and 5 years to see if the industry adapts to this increasing time pressure.