Change is Hard—How Do You Get People to Accept It?

Changing one’s daily routine and making big decisions about money is hard. When a home performance contractor asks a customer to consider an audit, they are asking a lot. Besides the cost of the audit and any retrofit measures the homeowner chooses to pay for, which is probably the biggest challenge, there is also the inconvenience. The audit and retrofit may require the homeowner to take time off from work. Having workers climb in and out of the attic, under the crawlspace, and drill holes in the wall can be very disruptive. After all, people come home to find some peace and quiet after a day at the office and a long commute, or they are at home raising a family or working in a home office. Instead of peace, you are offering them a few days of chaos. Instead of a nice clean house, you are asking the homeowner to put up with a lot of noise and dust.

And after paying the price in money, inconvenience, and missed work time, there is no guarantee the contractor can give to the homeowner that the home will be more energy efficient and comfortable; or that the retrofit work will add value to the home. The former depends a lot on the lifestyle of the people living in the home, and the latter, at least for now, usually depends on the whims of the housing market.

Change is always inconvenient; it is always disruptive. But home performance contractors are asking their customers to change—and not just for a day. In order for the homeowner to realize all the benefits of a retrofit requires him or her to be more aware of the settings on their thermostat, and the exhaust fans in their bathrooms. Who wants to climb into a dusty, spider-infested attic with rusty roofing nails at head level to change a furnace filter every three months?

I know that there are “first adopters” out there—people who have the money to experiment with new technology and who have places to be comfortable while their house is being worked on. But for people who are living closer to the edge financially, and who have very little free time, it’s a real challenge.

I don’t know how you get someone to go through everything involved in a retrofit. So I’m asking you. How do you do it? What works and what doesn’t work? What have you found that makes people willing to put up a lot of money and put up with a lot of disruption, to take a chance at having a more efficient, comfortable, and healthy home to live in?

Views: 850

Comment

You need to be a member of Home Energy Pros to add comments!

Join Home Energy Pros

Videos

  • Add Videos
  • View All

Twitter

Latest Activity

David Ware added a discussion to the group Energy Auditing Equipment for Sale, Trade or to Purchase
Thumbnail

Weatherization and Testing Equipment for sale - Wisconsin

2000 Chev. W-4500 Tiltmaster Truck           Outfitted with shelving specific to insulation…See More
32 minutes ago
David Ware joined allen p tanner's group
Thumbnail

Energy Auditing Equipment for Sale, Trade or to Purchase

Discuss the pros and cons of the equipment you are interested in prior to purchase. Post equipment…See More
45 minutes ago
Kobus Niemand commented on Alfie Davis's blog post Ways to Give Your Kitchen a Beautiful Makeover
"I got some new black and white granite tops to replace the old laminated stuff. They really change…"
3 hours ago
Kobus Niemand commented on Home Energy Magazine's blog post Natural Gas is Becoming Less Attractive
"Well after the greatest natural disaster in human history, who can blame…"
3 hours ago
Kobus Niemand commented on Alfie Davis's blog post Chic New Trends in Kitchen Renovation
"Nice tips! Thanks for the recommendations! With tiles for the kitchen, do you go with dark or light…"
3 hours ago
Alfie Davis posted a blog post
8 hours ago
Profile IconAlfonso Scott, Susan Benford, HomeWiz and 2 more joined Home Energy Pros
21 hours ago
Hannah Wood added a discussion to the group Building Performance Institute (BPI)
Thumbnail

Healthy Home Evaluator (HHE) certification + recorded webinar

Thanks to those of you who joined BPI's webinar on the Healthy Home Evaluator certification…See More
21 hours ago

© 2016   Created by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service