There seems to be a disconnect between the many services an insurance company expects a "disaster restoration" company to provide and those actually provided by many so-called disaster restoration franchises available.
Plenty of restoration franchises present only WATER DAMAGE as the bulk of their restoration services menu. In this article, maybe I can shed some light as to WHY? Let's take a closer look at three things:
1. What does an insurance agent want?
2. What does an insurance adjuster want?
3. How do you best leverage your restoration marketing costs and horsepower?
First, let's look at things from the insurance reps' shoes... A policy holder calls in a property claim. Does the agent (or the adjuster) care what type of damage has been sustained? No. An agent wants their customer taken care of. Good agents see an opportunity for their policy and reputation to shine (earning future premiums/commissions). An adjuster sees the claim as another FILE ON THE DESK that needs to be processed and closed. The local restoration company that provides the ambition and the restoration business systems to deliver these things wins!
Insurance agents and insurance adjusters did not sign on to be general contractors. They are in the insurance business. They don't want the headache of piecing together the trades and skills to return their insured's house and life back to normal. They want a full-service restoration company they can call for any type of damage they encounter... one that actually delivers a start to finish experience "as if the problem never happened."
You may not get to dry out every rebuild you do. You may not get to rebuild every dry-down you do. But logically enough, INSURANCE REPS WANT PROBLEM SOLVERS. A claim is a claim, whether it be a water damage, smoke damage, vandalism, mold remediation, odor or other indoor environmental issue.
Insurance folks refer to restoration as "water and fire damage." You should too. You're ahead in your strategy to build your local restoration company with a full line offering of restoration services. Every restoration industry expert will concur.
PROFITABILITY: If you plan to build a dominant restoration franchise, you will need to align yourself with insurance reps and earn insurance company referrals. So, since you'll be building relationships anyway, WHY NOT OFFER everything the customer needs? You might as well pick up the additional monies connected to the various services a "broken house" might require.
So why don't more franchise brands train and support restoration services beyond water damage, (which would give you access to a bigger piece of the restoration pie)? Good question! Is it simply because it's easier to train and support you on water damage only?
The water damage portion of restoration is where franchisors can require you buy a huge pile of drying equipment from them. But before joining a restoration franchise, few have connected these dots. The sale of a couple hammers and a saw doesn't give franchisors a large, up-front profit opportunity by including reconstruction. STOP just simply doesn't see the lack of up-front profit potential as a reason to misguide you about the restoration industry. And we DO HAVE THE SYSTEMS to guide your full-service restoration company.
Until now, you may not have looked at things from these perspectives. Many restoration franchise brands hope you never will… and that you'll never read this blog!
You are about to start trusting a franchise to explain the restoration industry, teach you, coach you, and build you. Start with a brand (and the people) honest enough to explain the industry openly. There are challenges, but over and over again, STOP proves to have the real formula to build a disaster restoration company for energetic entrepreneurs with big goals.
It would be easier to learn water damage only. But does this marketing plan offer the right formula for you to reach your growth and profitability potential? We trust you know the answer now.