The following information is courtesy of Remodeling.com from Oct. 14, 2016. The article was written by Helena Okolicsanyi. To read the full article – click here.
More often than not, the idea of remodeling your home can seem like an overwhelming task. Where do you even begin? The first things that come to mind include varieties of paint colors, window options, door frames, flooring, etc. In order to customize their homes, clients are left paralyzed by indecision. Isn’t the freedom of choice supposed to make us happier?
In 2000, researchers published a study in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology that set out to prove that perhaps being faced with endless options actually leaves us less satisfied. Colloquially called “the jam experiment,” researchers went to a high- end grocery store and observed customers trying out a variety of jams. Some customers were asked to choose a favorite out of six jams, while another group was tasked with choosing their favorite out of 24. What researchers Sheena S. Iyengar and Mark R. Lepper found was that while choosers with more options enjoyed the opportunities, they also reported more frustration during the decision-making process and greater dissatisfaction with their choices.
The multitude of choice leaves us frustrated, less satisfied, and unable to make decisions. When we replace jam, a relatively low-risk investment, with the much higher stakes of home remodeling, the burden of choice becomes even greater.
So what does this mean when it comes to home design? Is providing your clients with more options, versus a carefully curated set of options, better or worse in the long run?
The best thing is to simplify the homeowner’s options and it starts from the very beginning. Keeping things short and sweet allows clients to be less overwhelmed by the wealth of options out there. It also helps them to stay on point with the task at hand.
The Economics of Choice
Barry Schwartz, a professor emeritus at Swarthmore College, knows a thing or two about the economics of choice. Schwartz argues that consumers are often burdened with the choice of “good enough” versus “best.” “The presence of a large choice set creates problems when it comes to choosing because no matter how pleased you are with an option, there may be a better option out there,” Schwartz tells Remodeling. “You are always second-guessing yourself, and the result is that you don’t choose at all.”
Schwartz says that having a slew of options ends up leaving your clients less, rather than more, satisfied. And now, through the inundation of social media, clients always have an opportunity to compare their “good enough” kitchen countertop to what they perceive as someone else’s “best” kitchen countertop. “It’s so easy to imagine that the alternatives would have been better,” says Schwartz.
Inundated by a plethora of choice, clients are turning to you, the remodeler, to help them. You want to guide your clients while simultaneously giving them a feeling of control by seeking their input and making them feel involved.
What can be taken away from this?
Choice is good, but keep the options available to your clients between three and five, no more than eight. Dividing up your selections from high-end, medium, and low or by design categories can help keep the client focused and on what they want and within their budget.
At Remodeling Consultants, our dedicated staff will design and guide you through the building process from start to finish. We will be there to help you pick out out the right kitchen cabinets and be by your side until the final nail has been put into the wall. To ensure the finest results for our clients, we demand that our Designers, Architects and Trade Professionals be the most skilled and knowledgeable in the industry. Their unique talents produce outstanding remodeling projects. From the simplest renovation to the largest and most complicated project, let them show you how to develop your ideas into your dream home!