Running a business means you have to be on top of about a dozen different things at the same time. Not only are you a marketer, salesperson, admin, and HR expert, you have to know how your business is exposed legally. Luckily, there is expertise and tools at your disposal to make sure you’re company is safe legally from the risks of doing business.
Oral agreements vs. written contracts
The home improvement industry is full of movers and shakers. Being on the move all the time means you may be forgetting a few things between the sale and installation. Unfortunately, contractors sometimes make the mistake of verbally agreeing to a job and not writing a contract for both parties to sign. Going forward with a job with no contract leaves you open to a lot of sticky situations and legal exposure.
Even if your jobs are delayed for legit reasons like a slow permitting process or supply chain issues, customers may not be very understanding. They may choose to seek litigation against your company.
Then, it becomes your word against theirs. Unfortunately, some people have a hard time remembering exactly what was said between two people, especially as time goes on. This can become a war of words. You’ll spend time trying to find any kind of evidence to back up your point of view. What you end up doing is spending hours and days working with lawyers and in meetings trying to fight a lawsuit.
How it relates to the customer experience
Having contracts as part of your processes shows customers that you have their best interest at heart. Walk them through the parts of the contract that are most important to them and the project’s progress.
The scope of work of a contract will help you create boundaries of what work you will do and when you’ll get it done. This makes sure there is no miscommunication. Also, make sure you have an open line of communication with your customers. Doing this as much as possible can clear up any confusion about the project’s progress and prevents headaches. Your contract can also include guidance on what should happen if any changes need to be made to the project regarding materials, due dates, and more.
Why digital contracts
Hearth’s Pro and Elite memberships include the ability to create, customize, and send digital contracts to your customers and track their statuses. You’ll no longer have to chase down physical signatures with Hearth Contracts. Remember, you should find legal help from a professional whenever you are creating contract templates or thinking of changing your contracts to make sure you are protecting your business as much as possible.