There’s a lot to be said for old-fashioned work sense, but technology advances make a good thing better. A new, high-tech tool and computer software don’t mean that you’re turning your back on longstanding protocol. They do mean that your business can be more efficient and productive, which is always a good thing.
Here are three ways technology can help improve your business, both for the customer and for yourself:
Automated Scheduling Means Fewer Missed Customers
Everything shouldn’t be automated, but giving your customers the ability to schedule their own inspection time could help you attract more business. An online scheduling tool makes you more accessible to customers, which is great for busy inspectors who sometimes miss calls.
It’s simple, really. With an online scheduling tool, such as PlaceFull, you set your own scheduling parameters. If you want to perform inspections Monday through Friday between certain hours, you can program the software to reflect that.
Customers can log in and set up a home inspection appointment without either of you worrying about whether there’s a conflict. Once an appointment is on the books, you’ll have the ability to follow up and get more details before the appointment, and another customer can’t take that slot.
Home Inspection Software Makes Every Step Faster and Simpler
With so many digital options, clipboards and filling in paper reports are a thing of the past. You can use almost any business software to manage your business, and you can also create customized reports that let you fill in the blanks and add notes using a laptop during an inspection.
Another option is using software that’s made for home inspectors. With software that’s ready to use, such as Palm Tech, all of your devices work together. You can access it using your laptop, desktop at home, and even your iPhone, Android, or tablets.
There’s a learning curve with home inspection software, but the time it saves once you’re comfortable is worth it. Instead of writing out everything longhand, you and your customer can have a professional report the same day instead of a few days later.
High-Tech Tools Add Value to Home Inspections
Nothing will likely replace a ladder and flashlight, but as technology improves, so do the tools for home inspections. And when you offer more to your customers, your business gains a better reputation.
The cameras available today have far surpassed anything available as recent as 5 years ago. In some cases, a smartphone can take better images than an older digital camera. Taking it up a notch, thermal imaging cameras allow you to inspect HVAC systems and determine where a home may have subpar insulation without digging in. These are only the tip of the iceberg.
You’ll want to stay on top of tool technology, and a subscription to publications such as Home Inspector News can help. Maintaining a membership in one of the major home inspector organizations, such as ASHI, is another great idea.
Just because something is new doesn’t mean it’s important, or even good. That’s where doing some homework through industry magazines and your home inspector organization helps.
Sticking with what works will always be important, but knowing what’s available gives you more choices. You might not want to invest in a full suite of software, and you don’t have to. But anything that makes your life easier, your inspections better, and your customers happier will make your business grow.
If you’re still thinking about home inspecting but aren’t quite ready to sign up for training, get a demo and see firsthand how the ICA School program works. We offer one of the leading programs in the nation, and can help you get started toward a worthwhile career.