Get Obsessed With Customer Service

Michael Kaplan

By Michael Kaplan

We are taught from an early age not to let strangers into our homes. As we grow up, we learn that not every unfamiliar face that comes to the front door is going to sell poison apples or blow the house down. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t stay wary!

It’s sad but true, the vendors your clients work with as they prepare to sell their home, can make or break the entire selling experience. Poor communication from a stager, a no-show from the carpet cleaner or a handyman that makes a mess can all add drama to an already stressful transaction. Unfair as it may be, it is often the case that the service your clients receive from outside vendors as they prep for a sale, will weigh on your agent/client relationship.

Don’t leave these relationships to chance and hope that your clients have good luck … be prepared! If you help your clients avoid the hassle and pain imposed by shoddy contractors, you can strengthen your relationship and avoid a lot of pain and distractions.

So, here are some quick tips to help you find the right service company to represent you with your clients:

  1. Become an online stalker! Real conversations on Google, Facebook and Twitter tell the story of customer service superstars.
  2. Test a company yourself to ensure they are easy to work with and can handle new business. Agents can often get a discount on service because they can become a valued referral source for the company; it never hurts to ask!
  3. Make sure the company has a focus on service. A service warranty or guarantee is a must when you are referring a client. It never hurts to know a company will work until the job is done right.
  4. Talk with the service employee and ask if they enjoy their job. Happy employees are much more likely to provide great service.
  5. Create a master list of vendors and provide it to sellers before they list their home. Think handymen, staging company, temporary storage, painter, movers and don’t forget the carpet cleaners!
  6. Do not rely on discount sites such as Groupon and Living Social, and be leery of paid-search results. There are a lot of “fly by night” companies that use these low-cost marketing tactics. You get what you pay for and you don’t want your clients using the cheapest companies, you want them using the ones that provide the most reliable service.

Additionally, look for companies that want to partner with you and your clients. Having a relationship can get you and your clients better service, better pricing and assurance that a job will be done right. Your odds are always better when you have a partner instead of a contractor. For example, at Zerorez, we have a specialized incentive program for real estate brokers that ensures we provide our partners top rate service and better-than-retail pricing for their clients. This creates a win-win-win as Zerorez, agents and clients get homes sold.

So yes, we’re taught to avoid strangers, especially when it comes to our homes. Be skeptical. Research online and always ask questions. Build relationships with local vendors and test them out. Before you know it, you will have vendors on your team who will bend over backwards to make your clients happy. Your clients will feel comfortable entrusting you with their home and will feel like they have a network of friends – not strangers – to call upon in the future.

Michael Kaplan is co-owner of ZEROREZ Minnesota and is obsessive about customer service. Working closely with a passionate service team since 2006, Michael has helped build cleaning companies that strive to deliver awesome to every customer, every time in eleven states. Contact Michael with questions or comments at or (651) 779-8888.