Jaime Westenbarger Explains the Steps Being Taken by Remodeling Companies to Provide Safe and Effective Services
You may have the desire to bring your property to the next level through remodeling, which is what a lot of people are doing during the pandemic. It makes sense — more people are spending more time at home, as well as working from their home offices. Not only that but investing in your home now can pay off big down the road when it comes time to sell.
However, some people may be hesitating a bit to do the upgrade work because they’re unsure of how contractors are taking steps to deliver their services during COVID-19. But rest assured many companies have adapted to newer practices to reduce contact while still providing quality renovations, says Brentwood Tennessee’s Jaime Westenbarger, director of sales for Bluebird Roofing.
Reducing Physical Contact — While Staying in Touch
Reputable contractors such as Bluebird Roofing keep their customers in the loop when it comes to progress on their renovations. However, they have found a way to get around some of the steps required for a job by turning to technology, explains Jaime Westenbarger.
One of the measures being taken are contactless appointments, which are a modification from the typical handshake meet-and-greet you’d have when first meeting with a contractor. That usually involves knocking on a door or texting to let the customer known the crew has arrived and then talking from a safe distance. If the contractor wants to show a customer specific area of the property that needs to be addressed, some companies are using video conferencing to walk them through it.
Meanwhile, other companies have reduced the need for handing over paper contracts to customers, which is not only safer, but also cuts down on paper use, notes Jaime Westenbarger. Paperless contracts are still legally binding (as part of the ESIGN Act) and can be conveniently and securely signed by customers in the comfort of their own homes and then returned electronically.
Drone Inspections Rising in Popularity
Meanwhile, contractors are finding other ways to generate estimates that may be for insurance claim purposes. Drones have become a convenient way for companies to survey a property accurately from above, assessing the condition of the roof with on-board cameras without the need to step onto it. This approach is also safer as weakened or faulty roofs can become a hazard for contractors, adds Jaime Westenbarger.
This use of technology by skilled operators produces surprisingly detailed images that can be used when assessing the scope of a roof repair or replacement, or even collecting an accurate estimate for an insurer.
When the work involved requires an insurance claim, companies like Bluebird Roofing can eliminate the need for direct contact with your insurer, as they will liaison on your behalf to clarify your coverage details, notes Jaime Westenbarger.
Making Use of Electronic Invoicing and Payments
Many contractors are moving away from handling cash or checks and are instead making it easier for customers to pay through electronic means. That includes sending an invoice by email (or traditional mail) and letting customers log in to secure payment portals and paying with a credit card or even accepting bank e-transfers in some cases.
This eliminates the need for customers to carry cash, while also giving them the ability to pay electronically from anywhere rather than dropping a check in the mailbox.
Contractors Adapting to New Protocols
Bluebird Roofing and many other home renovation contractors are quickly adapting their practices to ensure they can still deliver their services during the pandemic, while increasing safety for both the customer and their own crew, explains Jaime Westenbarger.
If you’re putting off renovations that can increase the value and function of your home because you’re not sure if it’s safe, be sure to call your contractor and discuss the additional measures the company has in place such as contactless appointments.