Most homeowners, as busy as they are, can see the value in hiring a good handyman to help out with chores and projects around the house. Unfortunately most also realize that finding and hiring a good handyman can be a bit of a challenge. Because of the wide variety of services that handymen offer and the lack of a governing body and absence of local licensing requirements, finding a good handyman can even be more challenging than hiring a home improvement contractor. Nevertheless since the advantages are obvious let’s look at how to go about finding and hiring a good handyman.
One of the first things you should do if you think you need handyman services is create a list of all the projects around the house you need help with. The point of this exercise is to help you determine what type of home improvement professionals you will need to help you out with all of your projects. When creating your list of projects, there’s always a chance that some of the projects on your list will require the assistance of a licensed professional. Not to say that a handyman wouldn’t be able to help you out but if you need plumbing help in your home than it’s probably best to go with a licensed plumber in that instance.
One of the biggest keys to finding and hiring a good handyman that you’ll be happy with is hiring a handyman that has the skills and experience that are needed for your project! Unfortunately a lot of homeowners make the mistake of hiring a handyman just because a friend or relative referred him to them. This is not the right way to hire a handyman! It’ always best for the homeowner to do their own due diligence and determine if the handyman is a good fit for the work they need done.
Getting referrals from your friends, relatives and neighbors should just be the first step in the process. Really what you want to do is create a list of handyman “prospects” that you can than take and screen and prequalify before you have them bid on your project. This is the ideal method for finding a good handyman; it takes a bit of work and time but you’ll be glad you did it in the long run. Ideally you’ll have a list of 3-5 handymen that you can generate using referrals from your friends and family and you can also seek out referrals from real estate agents, home improvement stores and materials suppliers.
Once you get a list of 3-5 handymen going you should than start to prequalify and screen the handymen to make sure they’re well qualified and trustworthy enough to come into your home. One of the first things you should do is a Google search for the handyman’s name or business name. Keep an eye out for reviews and feedback from past customers to get an idea of what quality of work the handyman produces as well as how he is to work with. Along with Google you can also check websites like citysearch.com, insiderpages.com and yelp.com to look for reviews and feedback.
To further screen and prequalify the handymen you should also do a thorough search for complaints. A good place to check for complaints is the Better Business Bureau. It’s also not a bad idea to check for scams and rip offs; you can check online at ripoffreport.com. To finish, do a Google search for the handyman’s name or business name and add words like complaint or complaints to the search queries to see what comes up. At this point you’re ready to start talking to some handymen and essentially there are a couple different topics you should cover to find yourself a good handyman.
The first topic is experience and skill. It’s a good idea to ask the handyman what type of work he enjoys the most to get a good idea of what his specialty is. Once you discover what type of work he prefers you can than ask about experience. The key is obviously to find a handyman that has experience in the area you need help with. A really good handyman will have no problem telling you that he is not the best choice when your needs don’t align with his talents and abilities.
Once you’ve determined the handyman has the right set of skills for your job you can move onto asking about references. Any good handyman should have several references for you to review and evaluate. Make sure you not only ask for references but also make sure you take the time to contact them and ask about the quality of the handyman’s work. This is one of the best ways to ensure you hire a good handyman.
Well there you have it! Most homeowners realize the value of having a handyman that you can call whenever a project arises that you can’t get to yourself but few put in the time and effort to ensure they’ll be happy with the handyman they hire. Follow the tips above and you’ll be sure to hire a handyman that you’ll be happy with! For more tips on how to find and hire a god handyman please check out: How to find a good handyman.