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Even if you have the know-how, you might not have the time to tackle every home repair project that comes up. And let’s face it, from leaky faucets to broken dishwashers and beyond, they will come up. This is where a qualified handyman comes in — a good one can save you time, money and a lot of trouble.
Of course, hiring the right handyman is key. The first step in this endeavor is to verify that they know what they’re doing! Need someone to caulk a sink? Find a handyman with expertise in caulking, because if they don’t have the skill set required for the task, you might wind up fixing it yourself anyway (or paying someone else to redo the job).
Also, do what you can to make sure they are reliable and honest, and that they have all the required licenses and certifications for their specialty and your state or municipality. This provides peace of mind and consumer protection in the event that something goes horribly wrong.
Not sure where to find such a person? Good news — the internet and social media make it super easy to gather recommendations.
Word of Mouth
Nothing beats a recommendation from a trusted friend, neighbor or colleague, so before casting your net too wide, ask people you know for referrals. You can do this through a Facebook post easily enough, but asking your neighbor when you see her at the mailbox works, too!
People you know are bound to tell you all the good (and the not-so-good) things about the person they hired last month to repair their rotting drywall. Don’t assume, though, that your friend’s favorite handyman will become your favorite. If the recommendation doesn’t seem like the right fit, move on and don’t give it a second thought.
Nextdoor is a social media app that connects people based on the neighborhoods they live in. Would-be members verify their identity and address; then they can join the appropriate group.
While discussions run the gamut from what is happening in local government to where to find the best tacos, many of the posts are centered around sharing and receiving referrals for service providers — a post asking for the name of a qualified handyman is bound to get a flurry of responses.
The one caveat: Nextdoor does allow sponsored posts and ads from local businesses and brands, so be aware that a listing you see on the app might not be entirely unbiased.
Facebook Marketplace is rich with listings for handyman services. Plus, it’s easy to navigate (especially if you’re already familiar with the interface), and you can contact people directly through the app without giving them your personal contact info.
The downside? It is rich with irrelevant listings as well, so be prepared to do lots of scrolling and clicking.
Craigslist is old school and still going strong. All you have to do is enter “handyman services” into the search field and a list of individuals and businesses in your area will pop up. Unlike some of the newer apps and social media networks, it is fairly basic. Even if you aren’t tech-savvy, you should be able to navigate it with no issues.
When it comes to Craigslist, though, you should always be extra careful about your own safety and home security. Anyone can advertise on the site, and sadly some are unscrupulous — so vet potential handymen carefully before allowing them into your home.
Specific to the home and garden industry, Angie’s List is a membership-based site that provides ratings and reviews on various businesses. As a member, you get to leave honest assessments about your experiences with the folks you hire, rating them on a scale from A to F. Businesses who join Angie’s List are therefore incentivized to do a really great job.
The drawback: you can’t browse Angie’s List without creating an account.
Home Advisor is a great option for people who don’t have a lot of time to contemplate whether the handyman they are about to call is actually a decent one, because the extensive screening is done on your behalf.
The process involves identification verification, a criminal background check and confirmation that the business has all the necessary licenses and certifications. If the business is listed as a corporation or limited liability company, Home Advisor will also make sure it is in good standing with the state it operates in.
As the customer, you simply answer a few questions about your needs and Home Advisor puts you in touch with a reputable professional. Like Angie’s List, Home Advisor requires users to create an account, so if you don’t want to provide your contact info, you won’t be able to access their services.