How Can We Add More Value To Our Mold Business?

16 replies
I'm looking for innovate service ideas that I can add to my business contract.

We're getting a lot of business lately ever since the hurricane struck. And for many reasons, we are able to sell our services cheaper than the majority of our competitors. TBPO, there is only 1 reason. We are not that special.

That reason being, our competition is a rip off. We know various companies, selling work right now that costs $2,000-$3,000 to do. And they are selling these jobs for as much as $15,000.

So some of them are clearing $12,000 on a job that only costs $3,000 to do (including labor). Because of this, we've been getting a ton of work, while offering the same exact services they do.

The thing now, we want to sell jobs for a bit more. Which we CAN technically do w/out adding anything else to our contracts. Our quality is the same, our prices are lower. BUT, we want to raise our quality a little bit more, along with our prices.

So offer more, for still less than our competitors, but make more in the process for ourselves.

Right now this is our basic process: (I'm not going to go through all the prices I'm just looking for more possible services we can add)

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We put in 6-10 commercial fans and dehumidifiers to dry out peoples homes for 48 hours prior to the work. Each piece we charge $100 a day to run.

Each 5 gallon bucket of anabec (industrial grade modicide) costs around $220. On average, we use around 15 gallons per home. Sometimes 20-25 gallons if the home is large. Then we have a labor cost for application of the anabec. Everything must be sealed off, and people come in with gas masks/tyvec suits to prep the walls for remediation.

All the walls are brushed with wire brushes, then hep vaccumed to remove mold from any of the dust/dirt/debree.

After brushing, we apply valprene to kill off any left over mold, that the brushes couldn't remove. If we spray before brushing, then dirt/dust will block it from working. Which is why its done in that order.

Final treatment includes a second spraying with an encapsulant to all effected areas. This is for any left over mold spores, not visible to the eye. Plus the encapsulant guarantees the work for 30 years. Mold can not grow on it once applied.

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That is the scope of the work we do.

What I'm looking for are ideas or extra things we can add to our service, to add more value.

One thing I thought of, was doubling the warranty to 60 years, by offering a second coat of anabec. However, that increases the price by another $2,000. I can't imagine that most people would care for an extended warranty, although we will still try it out.

Aside from that, me and my brother are trying to think of more services to add to our contract. I doubt that there are people on here who know anything about the mold niche, but if you have any ideas, please mention them!


Thanks WF! - Red
#add #business #mold
  • Profile picture of the author maxrezn
    Red,

    I don't think your solution is found in adding more value to your service. The solution is to portray the existing process and value as highly as you can portray it. Even if your procedure is the industry standard....simply by outlining each step in close detail you can make your process seem far superior to the rest. Something along the lines of a "Our Signature 51 Step Mold-Removal Process That Protects Your Home and Loved Ones For 30 Years" kinda thing.

    I'm a bit tired so excuse me if what I'm saying is hard to understand. Basically...take your existing procedures and apply that copy writing/marketing touch to make you seem like the clear choice among the competition.
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    • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
      As maxrezn said, if you are telling people the things you do,
      which others do, you set yourself up to be compared with them.

      Think about the problems that leads to.

      If you want to be the maverick in the industry,
      you could do the expose.

      In your case, it could be revealing the material costs the others use and
      what they charge.

      Automatically think "RIP OFF!"

      Then you say you don't use those materials because of their inferiority.

      Then tell you are the only one who uses this special glop and it can't be bought
      from anywhere else because it was especially made for your exacting standards.

      Hence the reason you can give a longer life guarantee.

      You gotta have brass balls to pull this off of course.

      Headline could be...

      ---------------------------------------------------------
      "Basement Sealing: Rip Off Or Legit Since Hurricane Sandy?"
      ---------------------------------------------------------

      That headline feeds the reptilian brain.

      Think battle for a place in the mind.

      Best,
      Ewen
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  • Profile picture of the author Dmagnet
    I agree with maxrezn and ewenmack. You are already providing a valuable service. You may want to consider taking the same proverbial "girl" and just put a new dress on her.
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  • Profile picture of the author NewParadigm
    Put out an offer to beat anyone elses deal, accept any coupon.

    put up a site. Mold Abatement Company reviews (or whatever appropriate term) Also another Site "Mold company ripoffs". Then use those sites to educate the consumer. Designate yourself as an authority in the industry on this information sites.
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    • Profile picture of the author stlcardsfan
      Write a report along the lines "Warning-Do Not hire a mold removal company until you read this report". Write it to where the other companies would have a hard time answering the questions, making you look like the expert.
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      • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
        Originally Posted by stlcardsfan View Post

        Write a report along the lines "Warning-Do Not hire a mold removal company until you read this report". Write it to where the other companies would have a hard time answering the questions, making you look like the expert.
        Lol, I was the guy first to reveal that on this forum...
        Red knows about it.

        Best,
        Ewen
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        • Profile picture of the author stlcardsfan
          Originally Posted by ewenmack View Post

          Lol, I was the guy first to reveal that on this forum...
          Red knows about it.

          Best,
          Ewen
          Sorry I learned it from Joe Polish
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          • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
            Originally Posted by stlcardsfan View Post

            Sorry I learned it from Joe Polish
            Have you seen Joe tell people what you do when your competitor uses that?

            I'd be interested to know.

            I came across this problem this week and solved it.

            Best,
            Ewen
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  • Profile picture of the author TimD
    My washing machine just overflowed a couple weeks ago. It was a small spill on our top floor, dripped through to the lower floor. We called in ServPro who, in our neck of the woods, are the defacto "go to" guys for all water spills.

    So two things strike me that might be relevant to you.
    1. Why is servpro the obvious choice for this work, so much so that we almost don't consider anyone else
    2. It was still a pretty upsetting experience for me/us. So what else could you do that would make it less upsetting.

    So, why are they they go to guys? I think because
    1. we know mold is BAD, it will hurt my kids and lower my resale value, or stop a future sale of my house. It is bad like almost nothing else. If you don't get it fast and thoroughly the expense goes up and up and up. And people know that.
    2. their slogan is "Like it never happened" and that's what I want. Not "pretty good", or "we get ALMOST all of it". But it is TOTALLY gone.

    So anything you can tell me that assures me that you get it out COMPLETELY would bias me toward buying from you. If you can suggest how they are charging more and are not eliminating my risk. That would be bad for them. So what would really appeal to me is not only that you use really harsh chemicals but that you test really thoroughly. Because I'm always concerned that they will miss the edges or deep in the wood and it will come back once they are gone.

    Second, why was it upsetting and is there some way you can make it less upsetting?

    It's upsetting because they tear up the carpet. and the pad. and expose the wood.

    And then put up big fans that blow all day and night. Which is loud and very disruptive. So if there's anything you can say about using heaters to use fewer fans because heaters are quieter. So if you said, hey, we double the heaters so we can reduce the fans by 25% because its the heat that drys the wood. And we find it's less disruptive for you.

    It's also upsetting because they come in and tear up the house and set up fans and then they just leave for three days. And I'm thinking - man are you using a LOT of electricity for three days and nights. And I"m paying the bill for that. Are you sure you need three fans, on for three days and three nights. And you're not even going to check. So if there's some way you could convince me that you guys are more conscientious about knowing when the job is done and packing it up when the job is done - (could be leaving a moisture monitor for me, or doing remote testing, or checking back more often,...) that would be good.

    It's also upsetting because two days after they left, it smelled musty to me. And I don't want to go to the hassle of calling them back out. But I don't want them to be wrong either. So if you can say, hey, we come back out to make sure. Or if you guys could even spray some febreeze around.

    Oh, and a third reason. The guys who came in to do the work seemed nice and courteous. And not like trained experts. They looked like casual laborers. And I thought - they are doing the job as they were told to do it. But I don't know that they are doing it completely because they know I'm concerned for my family's health.

    So, anything you can do to convince me that your guys aren't just doing the job by rote but are really paying attention to my house, that they're following standards that you have found are important. If they said to me - look we've tested this and hear are the readings. So we are treating out to this point. So I could see that they are really thinking about it.

    So there are two things I find I would want:
    1. Let me know that you get it out COMPLETELY the first time. And your NOT guessing. You know you get it out.
    2. Let me know that YOU"LL get out as soon as the moisture is gone. And I won't have my house torn up and be paying for fans an extra day or two.

    Give me specific reasons to believe both of those are true and you are more conscientious than others.
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    • Profile picture of the author umc
      Red, I just came in from a long day of cleaning myself, so pardon me if I ask something that you addressed.

      1. How do you address potential mold issues inside the walls? I see that you're doing a lot on the surface, but what about getting deeper? Wouldn't mold grow inside the walls too if it got wet, maybe even more since there is no air movement?

      2. Have you considered offering ozone shock treatments? It is supposed to be effective against various molds and bacteria, so it could be something to offer that would essentially not only help treat surfaces, but literally treats the air, permeating everything.

      3. With cleaning, a lot of pricing comes down to branding. There are lots of people that brand themselves as the cheap option simply because it is easy to get work that way. If you can project a more professional image, you can charge more.

      4. I don't know what damage is done in your cleanup process, but what, if anything, can you do above and beyond to help after your mold remediation is done? Could you offer general house cleaning services, maybe contract out to a professional house cleaner to come in after you're done and do some detailed cleaning, etc.? Maybe a carpet cleaner if any is salvageable?

      I don't claim to be a mold expert, but I've cleaned houses/carpet and detailed cars for 12+ years now, and I do know cleaning, so hopefully something I said sparks an idea if nothing else.
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    • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
      Great insight Tim.

      Best,
      Ewen

      Originally Posted by TimD View Post

      My washing machine just overflowed a couple weeks ago. It was a small spill on our top floor, dripped through to the lower floor. We called in ServPro who, in our neck of the woods, are the defacto "go to" guys for all water spills.

      So two things strike me that might be relevant to you.
      1. Why is servpro the obvious choice for this work, so much so that we almost don't consider anyone else
      2. It was still a pretty upsetting experience for me/us. So what else could you do that would make it less upsetting.

      So, why are they they go to guys? I think because
      1. we know mold is BAD, it will hurt my kids and lower my resale value, or stop a future sale of my house. It is bad like almost nothing else. If you don't get it fast and thoroughly the expense goes up and up and up. And people know that.
      2. their slogan is "Like it never happened" and that's what I want. Not "pretty good", or "we get ALMOST all of it". But it is TOTALLY gone.

      So anything you can tell me that assures me that you get it out COMPLETELY would bias me toward buying from you. If you can suggest how they are charging more and are not eliminating my risk. That would be bad for them. So what would really appeal to me is not only that you use really harsh chemicals but that you test really thoroughly. Because I'm always concerned that they will miss the edges or deep in the wood and it will come back once they are gone.

      Second, why was it upsetting and is there some way you can make it less upsetting?

      It's upsetting because they tear up the carpet. and the pad. and expose the wood.

      And then put up big fans that blow all day and night. Which is loud and very disruptive. So if there's anything you can say about using heaters to use fewer fans because heaters are quieter. So if you said, hey, we double the heaters so we can reduce the fans by 25% because its the heat that drys the wood. And we find it's less disruptive for you.

      It's also upsetting because they come in and tear up the house and set up fans and then they just leave for three days. And I'm thinking - man are you using a LOT of electricity for three days and nights. And I"m paying the bill for that. Are you sure you need three fans, on for three days and three nights. And you're not even going to check. So if there's some way you could convince me that you guys are more conscientious about knowing when the job is done and packing it up when the job is done - (could be leaving a moisture monitor for me, or doing remote testing, or checking back more often,...) that would be good.

      It's also upsetting because two days after they left, it smelled musty to me. And I don't want to go to the hassle of calling them back out. But I don't want them to be wrong either. So if you can say, hey, we come back out to make sure. Or if you guys could even spray some febreeze around.

      Oh, and a third reason. The guys who came in to do the work seemed nice and courteous. And not like trained experts. They looked like casual laborers. And I thought - they are doing the job as they were told to do it. But I don't know that they are doing it completely because they know I'm concerned for my family's health.

      So, anything you can do to convince me that your guys aren't just doing the job by rote but are really paying attention to my house, that they're following standards that you have found are important. If they said to me - look we've tested this and hear are the readings. So we are treating out to this point. So I could see that they are really thinking about it.

      So there are two things I find I would want:
      1. Let me know that you get it out COMPLETELY the first time. And your NOT guessing. You know you get it out.
      2. Let me know that YOU"LL get out as soon as the moisture is gone. And I won't have my house torn up and be paying for fans an extra day or two.

      Give me specific reasons to believe both of those are true and you are more conscientious than others.
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  • Profile picture of the author tryinhere
    How are people being ripped off ? are you saying all customers have challenges in that they are unable to make decisions and therefore the sales people are acting in an unethical way ?

    Or have they simply learned to add value to their presentation ? there is a big difference, In your eyes they are being ripped but from their view they are getting some great value, peace of mind and are happy to part with their money.

    One reason they might be placing their money over there is that being the low ball guy in town it really would make it easy to position my 12K job over your small job in ? " why are these guys so cheap " / you are positioned as the cheap fix and cheap is associated with rubbish in most cases and a pro sales person could close you down in seconds on that angle.

    A sales guy in your area would love to be working for the 12K guys and in most cases they would take you to the cleaner in that it would be an easy sell over you to get some business ( in general terms )

    Not knowing your GP / nett profits but even without you adding thing else you probably could raise your prices ? although you have not stated your prices ? or are those your prices after markup ?

    Next I would say grab some one and just update your pitch / presentation and improve on that without adding anything at all. sell the emotion sell the solve problem sell the piece of mind of having it fixed by professions who are expert, use the best tools and products etc etc

    Just playing the cheap option will see you bottom feeding and most sales guys will take you down and walk away with the big jobs, or simply people do not buy cheap not in homes anyway from what I have found, it is their castle, investment and for that they want the very best value for money not the cheapest quote. offer the best value for money / apple for apple - dollar for dollar ( but not necessarily the cheapest quote )

    / on that there are people who only shop for price and they would be the ones you getting in the door, some price rises and re gigging your presentation and adding value will see you gain or take some market share form those already taking some of the profits.
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  • Profile picture of the author vndnbrgj
    You have some great insights here Red, especially from Tim.
    He just told you how to differentiate yourself from the competition.

    Your price is $3k while your competitors are $15k?
    Give homeowners the option of being put up in a hotel for the time being.
    Say you pay $250 a night for the hotel. Well, you could charge $4k for the job, ;ay for the hotel for three days, and still be $11k less than the competition.

    Offer to pay the electric bill. You should know how much your equipment costs to run per hour.
    So just times the amount by the number of hours. Pay them more. Like if the equipment ran for 40 hours, give a check for 48 hours.

    Offer to have a professional, or you guys, check the duct work.
    Normally, sheet metal duct work shouldn't allow mold to grow.
    But, if they have flex duct or some kind of liner, it could grow there.
    We are getting into winter, so people are going to be using the furnace to heat the house.
    The returns will draw in the air in the room, if there are any mold spores that get knocked loose, they could get drawn into the duct work.
    Offer to install a UV light. Look at UV Airre. Most HVAC supply stores will carry some type of UV light.
    They cost around $150-$200 and help really filter the air. Look them up.
    We re-sold them for $399 all day long. They install in 5 minutes. Cut a small hole, put in a few screws, and connect it to power either by hard-wiring it or plugging it into an outlet.

    I didn't see anything about using a probe on the walls to check for moisture in the walls.
    Do you do that? Do you remove bad drywall, carpet, etc? Then replace it?
    Or, just remidiate the mold?
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    • Profile picture of the author TimD
      Here's part of an email I just got from a carpet cleaner that I think begins to do what I suggested:

      Tips From Ben: What the EPA considers to be one of the top 5 health concerns and how you can protect yourself:

      DID YOU KNOW: In 1980, because of energy conservation concerns, homes began to be designed and built more "air-tight". The benefit was that the home would be able to keep your warm air in the home, thus reducing costs associated with heating/air conditioning....

      The thing that no one expected or realized was that by building homes to be more energy efficient, it also greatly impacted indoor air quality in a negative way. In fact, the EPA now states that indoor air quality is among the top 5 health concerns in our country.

      SCARY!

      The problem is, the air has nowhere to go - so it gets recirculated over and over again. After several years your carpet, furnishings and air ducts become packed with allergens - which leads to the EPA's concerns I stated above.

      The truth is, your carpets, rugs, upholstery and mattresses act as big filters for all of the air in your home. So.... What can we do to to make sure that you are living in the healthiest home possible?

      At Pure Clean we've gone through great research and training to provide our customers with much more than clean carpet. This is how we can improve your indoor air quality and reduce illness & allergies in your home:

      • Test your upholstery for pollution range - provide allergen extraction and allergy treatments as necessary
      • Clean your air duct system and replace your filter with an electrostatic filter
      • Test your mattress for dust mite/ derp1 & derp2 droppings - sanitize, disinfect, clean and extract if necessary
      • Test your area rugs for pollution range - bring rug to our rug spa to remove all of the dry soil buildup and proceed with our 10-step rug washing

      After we gather this information we are able to provide you with guaranteed services to remove those allergens, bacteria, germs and gunk - giving you the healthiest home you've ever had!

      We recommend that you have your furnishings & carpet cleaned annually for health purposes. You can clean more frequently for aesthetic benefits as well just remember; you want to clean your carpet BEFORE it looks dirty. If you wait until your carpet LOOKS dirty than it's too late - the damage has all ready been done to the fibers and it becomes harder and harder to restore the appearance as this happens. Air duct systems should be cleaned every 3-5 years as needed.


      Call PureClean today to learn more about our healthy home services! (206) 353-4155 (We will be offering AirDuct cleaning starting in March of this year so if you would like your ducts cleaned please email us to get on our reservation list.)

      Until Later,
      Benjamin Surdi
      Owner



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  • Profile picture of the author rob19028
    Are you guys already doing moisture control in crawl spaces such as vapor barriers, dehumidifiers and encapsulations?
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