Monthly Archives: January 2012

So You Think You Give Great Service?

 

 

If we polled 100 business professionals, I bet over 95% would say they give their clients great customer service. But are we really as good as we think we are?

What prompted this post was a bad experience I had recently with a local printing company. I had used them before and worked directly with the owner, so I felt there would be no problems. Unfortunately, after receiving poor service I had to take my business elsewhere. This could have easily been avoided with just a little effort.

WHAT MOST PEOPLE DO WRONG

I was never asked questions up front regarding what I wanted in terms of service.  In my mind, how can you meet and exceed someone’s expectations if you don’t define them upfront?

To make matters worse, when I told the owner I was unhappy, he was shocked and a little defensive.  In his mind he was giving me great service and even told me as much. There was obviously a huge disconnect between what he thought I wanted and what was actually going to make me happy.

He confused giving me a great price as giving me great service, which was not the case. It just so happens that my project was very time-sensitive and speed was more important than price to me. The failure to recognize this caused the printer to lose my business.

COMMON MISTAKES THAT COST US BUSINESS

During the time we worked together, I noticed that the printer made many mistakes that business people make every day. He:

1. Failed to ask me up front what was important to me.

2. Told me that he was swamped every time I spoke with him – making me feel that my business wasn’t important.

3. Didn’t communicate with me proactively, making me call him for a status.

4. Didn’t offer to correct the problem.

5. Failed to recognize he gave me a bad experience.

 

In our real estate business, we ask our clients a lot of questions up front regarding their expectations.  Our belief is that if you don’t know specifically what will make a client happy, how in the world can you properly service them.

Plus, every client is different. Some want constant communication, while others don’t want to be bothered unless it’s an emergency. Many people prefer to communicate by email or text, but some still like the personal aspect of a phone call or face to face meeting. Everyone has a different definition of “great service”, so without asking what they want, you’ll have a tough time giving them a truly memorable experience.

When it comes to customer service, asking the right questions and communicating effectively are the keys to success.  The ability to do these things well will make a huge difference to your bottom line.

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About The Authors

The above information is compliments of The Schuman Team, Amy and Dan, of Howard Hanna Real Estate Services.

They can be reached at 216-346-3235 or 216-403-9189 or via email, danschuman@howardhanna.com or amyschuman@howardhanna.com.

The Schumans service the following Cleveland area suburbs: Bainbridge, Bay Village, Beachwood, Bentleyville, Chagrin Falls, Cleveland Heights, Gates Mills, Highland Heights, Hunting Valley, Lakewood, Lyndhurst, Mayfield Heights, Mayfield Village, Moreland Hills, Oakwood Village, Orange, Pepper Pike, Shaker Heights, Solon, South Euclid, University Heights, Westlake, Woodmere.

So you think you give great service? is the property of The Schuman Team and may not be duplicated or used without their written consent. ©January,2012

Solon Ohio Real Estate Market Report 2011

Solon Real Estate Market – Year In Review 2011

 

Solon Sold homes

The following is our annual year in review for Solon Ohio real estate. We will give sales and pricing statistics for 2011 and make a comparison to 2010. Commentary will be provided afterwards.

ALL HOMES

Year          # of Homes Sold        Ave. Sales Price   Sales Price/List Price

2011                      227                    $287,205                 94.24%

2010                      202                    $292, 547                94.61%

WHAT ABOUT BANK OWNED HOMES?

While bank owned homes constitute a small percentage of sales, they still have a tendency to affect home values. We were curious to see what the numbers would look like if we excluded bank owned homes and have included them below:

2011                      212                    $291,708                 93.50%

2010                      192                    $293,265                 94.53%

LUXURY HOMES ( sales price over $500,000 )

2011                       29                     $626,888                94.58%

2010                       25                     $645,830                94.17%

 

2011 FIRST HALF VS. SECOND HALF OF THE YEAR

Jan. – June                99                 $282,575               94.40%

July – Dec.                113               $301,013               94.11%

Source: NEOHREX

 

COMMENTARY

While the last few years have been challenging to say the least, this past year showed us some positive signs. Below is a list of 5 important things that the above statistics tell us:

 

1.     2011 had more home sales than 2010

2.     The average price of a home in Solon was almost unchanged

3.     The market IMPROVED during the second half of 2011

4.     Homes are selling for a healthy 94% of asking price

5.     Affluent buyers are feeling more confident

 

INCREASED CONFIDENCE

The numbers show that buyers were more comfortable buying a home in 2011 compared to the previous year. There are likely many factors involved here, including a very slightly improving economy. The fact that values have stopped declining is worth noting as well.

Over the past few years, when home values were declining, buyers were not willing to pay market value for a home. Many buyers, fearing the market would continue to decline,  would attempt to buy a home for 5-10% less than market value just so they could have some security in the event the market continued to depreciate.

Basically, buyers wanted a built in cushion to protect them from future market fluctuations. As you could imagine, this approach didn’t fare well with sellers. Buyers are now more comfortable paying market value for a home, although bringing buyers and sellers together is still a challenge.

Moving forward, the recovery in the local market will still take some time. Areas like Solon will continue to be desirable thanks in part to the highly rated school system, but the Northeast Ohio real estate market in general is still soft.

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About The Authors

The above information is compliments of The Schuman Team, Amy and Dan, of Howard Hanna Real Estate Services. The Schumans are proud residents of Solon, Ohio.

They can be reached at 216-346-3235 or 216-403-9189 or via email, danschuman@howardhanna.com or amyschuman@howardhanna.com.

The Schumans service the following Cleveland area suburbs: Bainbridge, Bay Village, Beachwood, Bentleyville, Chagrin Falls, Cleveland Heights, Gates Mills, Highland Heights, Hunting Valley, Lakewood, Lyndhurst, Mayfield Heights, Mayfield Village, Moreland Hills, Oakwood Village, Orange, Pepper Pike, Shaker Heights, Solon, South Euclid, University Heights, Westlake, Woodmere.

Solon Real Estate Report 2011 is the property of The Schuman Team and may not be duplicated or used without their written consent. ©January,2012