Helping the Buyer Beware

Taking the time to educate your customers about their septic needs creates a win-win situation for everyone involved
Helping the Buyer Beware
Greg Mayfield, owner of Southern Water and Soil in Zephyrhills, Florida.

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Greg Mayfield, owner of Southern Water and Soil in Zephyrhills, Florida, knows the best customer is an educated customer.

Attempting to avoid a clientele concerned with only the bottom line, his business targets high-end residential and commercial customers. Experience has taught him the more affluent do research and are easier to educate, therefore his primary marketing tool is Google. He also joined Angie’s List to reach homeowner associations.

Part of Mayfield’s presentation to homeowner associations includes tips about how to hire the right contractor for the job.

The top of his list includes confirming that contractors pay workers' compensation. “If a worker is injured, the association’s insurance shouldn’t have to pay,” Mayfield says. He also advises associations to add their name to the contractor’s insurance policy, stressing the importance with the following example.

After a contractor proved to an association that he had insurance, he canceled his one-day policy. The excavator’s boom hit the side of a home, damaging the siding, destroying the roof and leaving the homeowner’s insurance to cover $7,000 in damages. The homeowner sued the contractor and won a judgment against him, but it took a lot of time and aggravation.

Mayfield also tells homeowners to research companies through the Better Business Bureau website, Angie’s List and reviews on Google.

“Septic emergencies often have a myopic effect on people,” he says. “They think only of fixing the problem rather than protecting themselves against property damage.”

Mayfield’s sales presentation explains every replacement product and why it’s important. “Homeowners don’t know about control panels and alarms,” he says. “They’ve never heard of passive aeration or effluent filters. By educating them about components and how they differ in quality, they understand why our system costs $3,000 more than standard drainfields.”

Each job concludes with Mayfield reviewing the final paperwork with the homeowners. His package includes a list of components with model numbers, a pamphlet on what not to put in the system, and an as-built AutoCAD drawing. “Our customers and their service providers know exactly where everything is."

Learn more about Mayfield’s business in the Onsite Installer August cover story


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