How to Hire A Good Handyman

Do you wish you had a good handyman for that thing you’ve been putting off for months? There are some things around your home or apartment that require more skill than you’ve got, and more tools.

If you are the average person and you can’t DIY all your home repairs, a handyman is something you need to have in your toolkit. I’m not an advocate for trying to DIY everything. I think it’s an unrealistic goal. You can read more about what project to DIY and what to hire out.

3 Good Places to Find a Handyman

The best place to find a good handyman is through a referral. Ask your friends if they’ve got one they can recommend. Really good handymen can be so busy that you might have to wait to get a spot in their schedule.

If that’s a dead end I highly recommend Taskrabbit.com. The great thing about Taskrabbit are the reviews. You can also see what types of work they are capable of and you can usually hire someone pretty quickly, too.

My third suggestion is to check on nextdoor.com. If you aren’t familiar, nextdoor is a neighborhood app where you and those around you can trade information. You can post asking for a handyman or see if anyone has seen your missing cat.

I don’t recommend using google or the phone book. When you use google you get the handyman service companies. These are companies that hire handymen and farm them out. I’ve had bad luck with this option, they have been not as good and more expensive (because the company gets a cut).

Tips for Using Taskrabbit

When you use Taskrabbit you set a time frame like “I’m ready to hire.” I recommend only going through the process when you ARE ready to hire. You have to estimate the length of the task. See more on that later, but my advice is that everything takes longer than you think it will. Estimate high on the time. You only have to pay for the hours it takes, but you want them to be able to finish.

Once you get to the handyman profiles they describe their skills and the types of projects they can handle. I almost always choose an “elite tasker” just because they tend to have better skills and more tools. They cost more, in Dallas around $60 per hour, but they are worth it. You can get people who are about half that price if you want a newbie.

How To Maximize Your Handyman Time

Batch Tasks – If you are a list keeper, it’s a good idea to accumulate a few things you need to have done and get them all done at once. From the handyman’s point of view, it’s better for them to accept one job for four hours than many small jobs.

Buy Supplies Ahead – If possible, talk to your handyman in advance. When you explain the things you need help with ask them what supplies you will need so that you can have them ready. For example, if you have holes to patch they might need caulk or texture for the walls.

Allocate Time For Last Minute Supply Runs – Over the years I’ve gotten very used to leaving a handyman in the house alone. Inevitably there is one thing I didn’t realize I needed.

For example, you may plan for them to repair the ceiling fan, but when they arrive it turns out the motor is burned up so you will need a new one. This is just one example, but I could list 20.

Most handymen will go pick things up for you, but you are paying for that time. If you are less comfortable with leaving them, be sure to ask if they can pick up supplies.

Once you find someone that does good work, don’t lose their name. I’ve found good people on Taskrabbit that I contact directly after the first task. It can be less expensive per hour when you do this.

Do you have any secrets for hiring a good handyman?

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6 Comments

  1. You made a good point that batching tasks together will help in making sure that a handyman can do their job in a systematic fashion. My friend’s house needs a few minor repairs on its gutter because of a recent heavy rain in his area. I think it would be best if he inspects other places in his home in order make sure that those would be the only repairs he would need.

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