Two Limiting Beliefs When Adding Home Performance to HVAC


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The website “2 Know Myself” defines a limiting belief as “a false belief that a person acquires as a result of making an incorrect conclusion about something in life”. Further, “the biggest problem that limiting beliefs cause is that they force you to live below your potential; limiting beliefs force people to filter information according to their beliefs.” Business owners who add home performance solutions to successful HVAC companies often have preconceived ideas of how home performance can or should fit into their business. Sometimes these are correct but when incorrect, they becoming limiting beliefs that make it hard, or can even lead to failure in the long run.

  1. “Wait for the World to Catch up”
    Talking with Owners of HVAC contacting businesses that either have added or are thinking about adding “home performance” to their existing business I’ve heard this misnomer more than once. They believe that by adding “home performance services”, they’re already way ahead of the curve and at some point the world is going to magically be beating down the door for home performance services. To a large extent, this is not true. It is true that adding home performance solutions to your HVAC services will differentiate you from your competitors, as a company that cares about the client and can offer real solutions the others cannot. In this manner, you are ahead of the curve. On the other hand, if you are waiting for the time when clients will ask for these services (like magic) with the same urgency and understanding that they call for broken AC to be fixed or replaced on a hot summer day, then you won’t likely reach true success in the home performance arena. A large part of home performance is educating the client on the need for it, before they really “need” it. A key concept is the ability to recognize that when a client calls asking you to solve a problem, he assumes the solution is related to the box (which is why you got the call in the first place). His problem may actually be better solved using whole house or home performance solutions. Most clients don’t realize they need home performance solutions, they’re accustomed to the “box” solution as the only option. It’s up to you and your team to make sure they are educated and informed on the best path to addressing their concern.
  2. Mistake financial Investment for commitment to HP
    Adding home performance solutions to your HVAC contracting business model, especially if you plan on offering both testing and installation in-house, is a significant financial investment. Training, marketing, testing equipment, trucks, insulation machine(s), air sealing equipment, duct sealing machine, not to mention adding more staff, all add up to a hefty first-year investment. When talking to Owners about the need for top-down commitment to home performance, I’ve heard “have you seen all the money I’ve spent on this? How much more committed do I need to be?”. My response, well, if you don’t want all the money you just invested to go to waste the “commitment” is much more than financial. Adding home performance as integrated solutions starts with ownership and management integrating home performance solutions as “best practices”, or a refined commitment to quality, rather than new “service offerings”. The required commitment is more than a financial commitment, and the “buy-in” is often more complicated for the Owners. The reason for the hesitation is pretty simple. Commitment to best practices and quality led these owners to home performance solutions initially, but to actually achieve this level of quality the owners and management must step out of their comfort zone and integrate new solutions into every aspect of their business. Home performance solutions are often totally foreign concepts, and many times even defy the ingrained logic that has made them so successful in the first place. Can it possibly be the best solution is to leave your clients 8-year-old equipment in place and focus on the building enclosure or ductwork instead of selling a new box? Are heat-load calculations really that important? Why seal ALL ductwork even if it runs completely inside the building enclosure? Do we really want our CSA’s starting the home performance conversation with the very first customer contact? Do we really need to test out and/or commission every job to verify performance? These questions at the point of sale can cause pause and uncertainty for the leadership and can lead to home performance failures. It’s tough to entertain these solutions when a client is “ready” to simply “get a new box”. Owners should not take the necessary commitment to the training and support of staff and management lightly. This commitment will be the single biggest factor between adding a group of core services that propel your business to an elite service provider known for solving problems your competition can’t (the next level in revenue generation and bottom line profit margin) and an owner with a bunch of shiny equipment collecting dust and negative total on your P&L representing a failed investment.In life and business there many limiting beliefs that can keep us from achieving our goals. Recognizing limiting beliefs and making conscious efforts to consistently step outside the limiting boxes they create will go a long way to your success.

For HVAC contractors, feeling “already ahead of the curve” by merely offering home performance services or mistaking financial investment for true commitment to home performance solutions are common “limiting beliefs”. If you can identify and dispel these limited beliefs early on, you will be much more likely to enjoy the true success of adding home performance solutions to your HVAC business.

Jeremy Begley

Posted In: Building Performance, Management, Money, Residential Buildings

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