When something goes wrong with a customer’s utility service, the first thing they do is turn to their provider. Most customers understand they are responsible for their in-home systems, but many don’t know their responsibility extends to cover the lines supplying their homes.

Replacing a gas or electric line could cost thousands, but one in three homeowners don’t have even $500 set aside for an emergency home repair, according to HomeServe USA’s State of the Home survey. Learning they are not only responsible for the repair, but how costly it is, can come as quite a shock to your customers.

When a customer has an unanticipated issue with their utility line, it can be frustrating to learn that they are responsible for the repair and their utility is unable to help them. When a customer doesn’t have electricity or heat, they look to their provider for guidance and assistance, and not being able to offer them anything is a missed opportunity to provide excellent customer service and increase satisfaction.

In 2013, 51 percent of consumers in the U.S. switched brands or businesses because of poor customer service, former California Public Utilities Commissioner Timothy Alan Simon noted in a recent white paper. Of those who switched, 81 percent said the company could have done something to retain their business.

Offering customers a satisfying solution to their problem, especially when doing so is going above and beyond, is a great way to promote customers satisfaction and retain business.

Customers want a recommendation from a trusted source, otherwise, there wouldn’t be such a proliferation of contractor referral sites. They may even ask your customer service representatives if they have a list of vetted, licensed and insured contractors in their area.

You are already communicating with your customers about a host of issues in their bill – safety first and foremost among them. Good corporate citizenship, including communicating about benefits your company offers to the customer and their community, is one of six factors measured by the J.D. Power Residential Customer Satisfaction Study. J.D. Power also has found increased customer satisfaction means improved ROE.

Providing customers with beneficial information about reviewed contactors and a warranty that could cover repairs both to the utility line and in-home systems is a no-cost way to become a trusted partner.

HomeServe USA provides home warranty service to more than five million customers in the United States and Canada with 24-hour support from an award-winning call center.

Contact HomeServe USA and learn how offering home repair programs can increase customer satisfaction.