How to Build and Maintain Client Trust as a Home Builder

How to Build and Maintain Client Trust as a Home Builder title on white background with photo of Amelia Lee and Duayne Pearce and Live Life Build Logo

What steps do you take to build trust with homeowners?

Learn some client trust tips from Amelia and Duayne


I’m almost in a mindset that by putting those polished photos out there builders are attracting clients that they don’t want.

Watch the video now, or read the transcript below. Be sure to also subscribe to the Live Life Build YouTube channel.

Put Yourself in the Shoes of the Homeowner


Duayne, the work that I do with homeowners, it’s really clear that TRUST becomes such an important factor in the relationship that builders and clients have with each other. 


At the end of the day, if a client is building their long term family home, they’re investing personal finances that they’ve either taken a very long time to save up for, or are going to be paying back for a long time. It’s a huge investment for them. It’s also their family home. So, it has a lot of personal meaning for them. 

And they’re handing all of that to you as a builder and saying, “please don’t rip me off”. They’re fearful that as a builder, they’ve seen all of the horror stories that you’ll just hide all of the mistakes in the walls, the floors and the roof of their home. And that will come back to haunt them well after you’re gone, and they can’t do anything about it. 

Social Media – But Not As You Know It


So for homeowners, trust becomes so crucial. How do you build trusting relationships with your clients so that they actually treat you like a professional and they trust in you and working with you?


Social media.

I absolutely hated social media, when it first came out, didn’t have a personal profile, couldn’t stand it. But we had a marketing person working in our business that convinced me to give it a go. 

And it’s got us where we are now. Social media is such an incredibly powerful tool for getting what you do across. We don’t hide anything. You see so many builders’ social media pages out there, and it’s just all the fluffed up pillows and the beautiful finished homes. 

And to me, that isn’t giving you a true indication of what that builder does, or the quality of their work.

Anyone can make a picture look good and fluff it up at the end. But we’re the real deal. We like showing why we do things, how we do things, the products we’re using. 

Because for me, that shows the client how honest we are. We show our jobs at all different stages. We quite often give regular updates on our jobs, so the client gets to see the progress. We’ll occasionally talk them through why we’ve done something, whether it’s lifting a house, or whatever, so we’re educating them as well. 

And we’ve just found that attracts the best clients. The clients that come to us, are the clients that we want, because they see how we work.


I think it’s really worthwhile builders understand that a lot of homeowners who are doing their long term family home, they will spend sometimes up to five years thinking about it, planning, researching, seeing who’s in their area, watching what other people are doing, and following social media accounts, to start getting a sense of who’s going to be good to work with. 

They might have been watching you for two years

even longer. 

And when you can use social media you can show up in a real way really helping educate them about how you work. Show how you do business, what you’re like as a person, what your communication style is, and how you run your sites. As a builder, you know what’s important for your team, what kinds of materials you use, you’re then able to craft a relationship with them before they’ve even picked up the phone to call you, and they can make a decision about whether or not you’re going to be the right fit. 

And it means that, by the time they actually come into contact with you, they’ve already seen you in operation for some time. And you’re not having to do that big song and dance of “hey yeah, you can trust me” because they’ve been figuring out if they think they can trust you by watching how you’ve been putting things out. 

And I think builders forget. They fall into that trap of wanting to just put up very pretty glossy images of the finished styled homes. 

But I know I’ve had homeowners say to me, who’ve then gone and used you as a builder, they’ve said oh it was this one video of Duayne standing on scaffolding showing that he punched nails in weatherboard. That he punched nail holes to get the nails flush in the weatherboard before the paint was done. Or it was another detail that really was the clincher. Equally that’s happened in the way that they’ve watched other builders as well.

It’s What You Don’t See That Matters


I’m a very big believer in it’s all the stuff you don’t see that makes a difference, in all parts of my life, but especially building. Once the job’s finished and it’s at a stage where you can take the pretty photos, everything’s painted up, it’s landscaped, and a lot of the stuff that actually matters and makes a difference long term is all hidden. 

I don’t want my clients to question what we do, so most of our videos are all about just the real deal. Such as what is happening on site. Showing them how we fix our cladding, how we do our sarking. We try to do as much as possible, but a lot of time, it just comes down to how busy I am when I’m on the site and none of the videos we do are planned. 

So, it is really the real deal. You sometimes get to see our site’s in a little bit of a mess, but that’s a real job site. They’re not spotlessly clean the entire time. It’s up to the trades to clean them in the afternoons. 

But for me, putting myself out there on social media, I think that’s probably the biggest part. I would recommend to everyone to have a go. 

We Know How You Work

You don’t have to be putting these crazy polished videos out there, and these beautiful architectural photos. Some people might take this the wrong way, but I’ve really noticed through doing what we do, and seeing the troubles other builders have, I’m almost in a mindset that by putting those polished photos out there builders are attracting clients that they don’t want. They’re attracting the wrong type of clients, they’re attracting clients that are coming to them for completely different reasons to what they’re probably in business for. 

And by us showing the real deal, I’ll quite often get on there and have a bit of a rant about something that’s gone wrong or whatever, but I’m keeping it real. So, by the time clients get to me, like you said, they feel like they know me. 

And I still get taken back, that quite often now when we meet a client for the first time, and they’ll fill out the inquiry form, they’ll go through the admin team, and they’ll get to me and they’ll get to have a meeting, and I’ll turn up with my dream projects folder, and this is what we do, and I’ll start talking them through things and doing the big sales pitch. 

The client will say, alright, Duayne, we’ve been watching you for two or three years. We know how you work, you’ve got the job, let’s just work through the design and get this thing priced. 

And for us, it’s been an incredible experience in the power of social media, because I actually can’t count them on my both hands now, that we’ve actually got more than a dozen clients that we’ve become such good friends with. We’ve gone on family holidays, day trips, we’ve actually got, I think it’s three clients that we’ve gone on overseas holidays with.  

So you tell me a builder that builds that good of a relationship that they actually go on holidays with their clients. 

And for me, that’s a goal that I set a very long time ago to be in a position to give my clients such a great experience, that they want to do it again, and to become friends and that sort of thing.  That’s just the ultimate goal for us, because they’re going to tell their friends and family and we’re going to get more work. 

So, don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. Do some trial runs.

I guess the other thing for people that might be sitting there and going, oh, it’s alright for you, you’re on social media all the time. In the amount of videos that we do, there might be a one, two or three minute video, and I’ve wasted an hour and a half trying to get it right. And look, to be honest, the best videos and the videos we get the best response from, are the instantaneous ones that are just done. They’re raw. There’s mistakes in them, I might drop a swear word, and people love them. 

Building Connections


I think the thing is that it can be really nerve wracking to put your phone in front of your face and start talking and create something when you’re not used to doing it. At the end of the day, this is the new way of being able to connect with people in a social way that really does show who you are and how you operate. 

And if you’re leaving it behind, if you’re not using it as a platform, you’re really missing out on the opportunity to connect with people, which is going to then mean that you’re going to have a whole heap of tire kickers. People coming to your business and and not having self selected as to whether you’re a good fit for them before they’ve got to that point. 

So, use social media, just put yourself out there. It’s not easy to begin with, but the more you do it, the easier it does get. And it’s a great way for you to start building trust and start building that connection with potential clients to help them find you so that you can then work with them and really operate as a professional builder in a trusting relationship.


And flip it around. Have a think about the people that you follow on social media. There’s so many things that pop up on my feed. So, one thing that I try to stay focused on is, I only get on there to do my posting. 

It’s very unusual unless you’re on my feed when I get on there and the time it takes me to post something I really don’t see too much about what goes on, but flip it around and have a think about the people that you are connecting with and how they’re doing it and I guarantee you nine times out of ten, the reason why you’re connecting with them, and that is the power of video. 

With video, you get their voice, you get their personality, you get their expression, you get their passion. You pick up on details that inspired them.  So I really recommend you watch a few other people doing the videos and just give it a crack and have a go.


Go do a video and tag Live Life Build whilst you do it.

To learn more on this topic you can take a look at Managing Expectations at Work, as well as How to Build Your Reputation as a Builder

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