Will the ‘Right to Repair’ Law Affect Plumbing Businesses?
Since summer 2021, UK ministers have confirmed that consumers have the right to repair any goods they buy. The new law is designed to cut down on energy and reduce the need for new materials. As a result, manufacturers will be legally obligated to make spare parts available to product owners for the first time.
But, whilst the new law may be positive news for consumers countrywide, how will it affect plumbing companies?
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the new law and explain what it means for plumbers. Plus, we’ll share how you can deliver an outstanding service that will make customers want to hire a professional plumber rather than attempt DIY fixes.
Will People Still Hire a Professional Plumber for Fixes?
According to a YouGov survey, 60% of Britons feel most confident fixing wooden furniture out of all home items and appliances. However, with plumbing being a highly skilled trade requiring qualifications to practice professionally, does the general public feel as safe repairing more dangerous household appliances?
Let’s take a look at some of the most common items you would find in the average home:
When it comes to carrying out fixes in the bathroom, the public’s opinion is divided. Only 41% of people would try to repair the toilet themselves, but around 7% have had a negative experience doing so and would hire a professional plumber instead next time. Those who have been put off attempting a repair again in the future join the 59% of people who wouldn’t fix the toilet themselves, so there is undoubtedly still a significant demand for plumbers.
Although toilets and taps are considered more straightforward fixes for the average homeowner, only 16% of people indicated that they would feel comfortable mending an electric shower. So, whilst manufacturers must make parts available to consumers, there’s a good chance they will still want a professional to carry out the repair.
You’ll be able to find most of the appliances covered in the ‘right to repair’ law in the kitchen. Yet, YouGov data suggests that not many people are comfortable taking advantage of the scheme and attempting to restore broken items. Out of all kitchen appliances, people feel most comfortable repairing their washing machines, but that only covers a meagre 22% of the population.
For fridges and freezers, the percentage drops even lower to just 13%. But, cookers are by far the most unpopular item to repair, with only 9% of people claiming that they would try to mend them.
Other Household Appliances
Did you know, 77% of the UK’s population uses a gas boiler to heat their homes, making it the most popular method? Still, only a quarter of people would be happy to repair a radiator, and just 8% would tackle a problem with their boiler.
The good news for plumbers is that it is often much more cost-effective and efficient to carry out repairs instead of simply replacing the boiler altogether. As a result, you can still expect many bookings, especially during the winter months.
Tap into Your Plumbing Business’ Full Potential with Field Service Management Software
Climate change is a serious issue, with electronic waste having risen by 21% over five years to a total of 53.6 million metric tonnes. Therefore, the ‘right to repair’ law is a good move, environmentally speaking. Plus, it seems that consumers’ newfound access to spare parts hasn’t affected their willingness to attempt DIY repairs. Nevertheless, plumbers will still need to ensure that they deliver outstanding services to maintain a reliable stream of customers.
Luckily, with field service management software like BigChange in place, you can impress your clients at all stages of the buyer journey. Customers can easily make and amend bookings using our online portal, meaning they won’t have to wait on the phone to speak to a representative.
Then, you can immediately assign and dispatch a plumber based on location, qualifications and vehicle type, meaning the best person for the job will attend and fix the issue the first time. In the meantime, you’ll be able to keep your customers in the loop by sending them an automated email update that includes a live GPS tracking link and an estimated time of arrival. As such, your customers won’t have to wait at home all day for their plumbers to arrive.
Once the work is complete, plumbers can complete essential documents and send invoices directly from their mobile devices. Customers can then pay the invoice the same day using a range of convenient payment methods.
Finally, you can keep client engagement high post-job by sending out a customer satisfaction survey to make them feel valued. Additionally, the survey gives you the vital data you need to make continuous improvements to your business and persuade people to use your business instead of attempting DIY fixes.
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