Dreaded home repairs … are you up to doing them yourself? If not, you’ve probably considered hiring a handyman.
Maybe you even have a dedicated handyman whom you work with frequently to take care of all of those small fixes that plague homeowners. But even if you have this kind of an established relationship, it’s important to maximize your next scheduled handyman visit.
Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of your next appointment with your handyman:
1. Keep a running list of small problems
As issues arise, write them down. Squeaky hinges, leaky faucets, sticky windows and doors, paint touch-ups, fixtures that need to be replaced or repaired, gutters or downspouts that need to be cleaned … keep a list in a place that is easily accessible so that you can write down problems before you forget about them.
2. Give your handyman the list of tasks before he shows up
Sometimes jobs require specialized tools or parts. Notifying your handyman about the types of jobs you have waiting for him can streamline the process for him; if he shows up prepared, you’re both going to benefit.
3. Play to your handyman’s strengths
Not all handymen are created equal. Some might have additional and even extensive experience in carpentry, plumbing, electrical, or landscaping. If you have a handyman with a concentration in a certain field, you can probably rely on him to accomplish some tasks that you would otherwise relegate to a certified electrician, plumber, etc. So make sure that you keep your handyman in mind for these specific tasks.
4. Avoid surprises
Just like anyone, handymen routinely raise rates for the services they provide. Or they might charge more for a particularly involved or complicated job. Make sure you agree on rates up front and discuss any price escalation so that you can be sure that you are getting a good value for the money you are spending.
5. Ask about guarantees
A guarantee on a job doesn’t necessarily mean financial recompense if the work fails or deteriorates quickly; it could simply mean that your handyman needs to come back to redo the job. Make sure you understand whether your handyman is willing to back up his work with a guarantee of quality.
6. Talk about a timeline. After all, we’re all busy people.
A good handyman will be able to assess a job, identify points of concern, and give you an estimate of the time it will take to complete the task. If you’re paying by the hour, a timetable could be particularly important.
Finding and holding on to a good handyman is every homeowner’s dream. So if you have a “go-to” guy – or gal – don’t let that slip away! Play it smart and you’ll get the most out of every visit from your handyman.