How to Find a Reliable Handyman to Do Your Home Repairs

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With so many contractors and service professionals available, it can be a daunting task to find home repair services from trustworthy professionals — and all too often, you don’t know if they’re any good until it’s too late and the damage has been done. Continue reading on to learn tips that will help you to find someone reliable to do your home repairs.

1. Decide whether you need a handyman or a contractor

Professionally speaking, the words “handyman” and “contractor” actually mean two different things. Basically, a handyman can do minor exterior/interior repairs, limited plumbing or electrical jobs, some painting and light maintenance work. You’ll need a contractor, however, for large-scale electrical/plumbing jobs, major repair and construction projects and other types of specialized jobs. Before contacting anyone, decide whether you need a full-service contractor for large-scale projects, or a handyman who specializes in specific, smaller jobs.

For general home repair and maintenance jobs, a handyman will complete the following projects:

  • Replacing/installing sinks, toilets, etc.
  • Painting jobs
  • Yard work and landscaping
  • Drywall repair
  • Fence repair
  • Gutter cleaning
  • Replacing and repairing flooring

A contractor will typically handle the following jobs:

  • Building or remodeling a home 
  • Rewiring 
  • Building patios
  • Replacing electrical and plumbing fixtures
  • Installing tile
  • Replacing or installing HVAC units

2. Know exactly what you want done

Before you start looking for a handyman or local contractor, you first need to decide exactly what you want done. Be specific and prioritize what’s important — otherwise, you may find that, intentionally or otherwise, you’ve been talked into doing something that’s costly, unnecessary and contradictory to your original plans.

3. Use licensed professionals

Be sure to hire licensed professionals for your home improvement projects. Also, make sure to hire someone who not only carries the necessary insurance for the job, but also takes care of getting any permits that may be required. If you go through a home warranty service like Select Home Warranty, the company will vet the professionals for you.

4. Shop around and read reviews

Sites such as Angie’s List and HomeAdvisor, as well as online testimonials, can offer a wealth of information and tip you off about any potential red flags with a contractor’s services. Also, check with friends and colleagues who have had similar home repair services done — they may be able to refer you to someone reliable.

5. Get estimate/service specifics in writing

Before you sign a contract, get everything in writing. This includes a final price quote (not a “ball-park” estimate), and a specific list of all services to be performed.

6. Check credentials and guarantees

Before hiring home repair contractors, check their credentials, and don’t hesitate to ask about past projects that they’ve completed. Experienced service professionals will be happy to provide this information. Also, make sure they offer a guarantee or warranty for their work.

Thanks to the Internet, it’s easy to find reputable expert home repair services that can tackle just about any project. By reading reviews, checking credentials and asking the right questions, you can be more proactive in finding a reliable professional for all your home repair needs.

About the Author

Jeff Hindenach

Jeff Hindenach is the co-founder of Versus Reviews. He graduated from Bowling Green State University with a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism. He has a long history of journalism, with a background writing for newspapers such as the San Jose Mercury News and San Francisco Examiner, as well as writing for The Huffington Post, New York Times, Business Insider, CNBC, Newsday and The Street. He believes in giving readers the tools they need to get out of debt.

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Comments 5 Comments

  • There are so many resources where we can get informations but the question is that is information correct? But after reading thia article I feel relax. Great Information

  • Enjoyed reading this, great job!

  • […] you agree to what will be prepared, you begin the onerous task of finding contractors to make repairs, scheduling estimates, and getting the work done. Depending on the type of repairs […]

  • […] Find qualified companies and contractors through websites such as Home Advisor, Amazon Home Services, Porch and Angie’s List. You can read about what they offer, general price ranges and reviews from people who have hired the business. You have a lot more on your plate as a homeowner, but it’s all worth it. […]

  • […] can find out whether a home improvement contractor is legit by checking out websites like Home Advisor, Angie’s List, Porch, Handy, and Amazon Home […]

  • Thank you for your tip to know what you want before you start looking for a handyman or repairman. My brother found an old clock during a storage auction and he wants to get it fixed so he can find out the value. Now that he knows what he wants, he can set out to find a clock repair shop.

  • […] these and other issues. Make sure you’re protecting your investment by hiring only reputable home repair service […]

  • Get specifics on the scope of work they will be performing, it’s important to set proper expectations so that all parties know what’s expected of them. It just makes things so much easier for everyone once both parties know what is expected of them.

  • I really like your suggestion to read the reviews before you hire someone for plumbing repairs. We’re going to have to have plumbing repairs done in our bathroom, and I want to make sure that we can get things done right. I’ll have to check out a few things about some plumbers before I get someone into my house to do some repairs!

  • It’s interesting that you pointed out that you’ll need a contractor for large-scale electrical work. My husband and I are going to be renovating our kitchen, and we live in an older home, so we want to have all of the electrical work replaced to accommodate new, modern appliances. I’m sure it will be a pretty big job since we’ll be replacing all of it, so maybe it would be best to find an electrical contractor instead of a handyman.

  • Knowing exactly what you want will be better for you and the handyman. If not, communication will be hard and you may not have everything done how you want. This will cause tension and confusion which is never fun to add to any situation! So, I would say you should list everything you want done and that way you can show it to the contractor!

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