Guide To Choosing a Handyman
Want to install a Murphy bed in your bedroom but don’t know where to start? This is where a handyman comes in. Choosing a handyman that suits your needs can be a tricky and somewhat painful process, especially if you live in a city or town where there are several services to select from. In this case, we will use the example of building and installing a Murphy bed in your bedroom as an idea of what type of handyman suits this type of job. Compare your project to our example and you will have a better idea of which type of handyman to choose. You need someone who will meet your standards and offer value for money and that might come in the form of a lone handyman working for himself, a small business of a couple of people or something bigger where an employee of a company visits you. Each style of handyman delivers something different and has there own benefits and disadvantages depending on what you need. Here is a look at what each type offers.
Large handymen franchises
Some of the more successful companies tend to be larger ones who are able to spend more money on attractive advertising, trucks with the companies name and number on and many employees. Those who are part of a larger franchise get benefits other than better advertisements and marketing tools. It is easier to start a business, employ other people and get customers. On the downside for them they have to pay for that. This means they have a small profit margin and larger overhead and the temptation for some of them is to charge more money for any work they do to cover their expenses. If you have had quotes already you will already have noticed that the range of prices is quite amazing and those that are a part of a franchise tend to be in the higher end of those bids. For just a Murphy bed, this type of handyman is not the one you should go for unless you don’t mind paying more than you need to.
The advantage for you in using someone who is part of a large franchise is that you will probably receive quick service, as with a number of employees they are more likely to have someone who can come out and do the job when you need them to. This is important when that job is an emergency repair to be done and visitors coming to the house and it has to be done now!
If you do choose this option a good idea is to discuss the employees with the owner or salesperson. Try to find out who their top craftsman are, who are their average workers and who are their not skilled or experienced people. Usually there are 1 or 2 in that last group and those are the ones you want to avoid having come around! Try to schedule the best people for more difficult work especially. The point of using this kind of business is to be able to get quick service and be able to cream the best of the workers to do it.
Smaller companies built from scratch
The smaller company is one that has been built from scratch by the owner who employs another one or two people at most. With these handymen there is a sense of pride involved in the work they do as they want your repeat business and they cannot hide behind customer service or salespeople to shield complaints or questions. They deal directly with you and you are unlikely to get lost in the process. You cannot really ask them about their best guy now though as there are only 2 or 3 of them!
Small companies are either good at what they do or not good at all and that is controlled by the owner. If he is skilled and has good work ethics he will expect that of his workers too. He does not have the kind of overhead costs that the larger franchise companies have so you are likely to get better quotes from him. But he does have one or two employees to pay wages to so this drains some of the income. He needs enough work to keep him and the other busy and able to pay wages or the other worker will quit and find a new job. He also probably has a family to look after so needs to bring in enough money for himself too. Therefore his prices while less than the franchise company are still going to be mid ranged to cover those costs.
The lone handyman
This is a common job to have one person working at, picking up jobs where they can. Now in this type of handyman you can get a real mix of different types. At the bottom are those who are just working for cash in hand to go spend at the local bar. At the top are professional and qualified craftspeople who are only happy when they have completed a job to exacting standards and have chosen to work on their own because others may not share that level of commitment. In terms of costs this group of handymen will have prices and quotes at the lower end of the scale as they only have themselves to pay and operating costs that are low to cover. Even skilled craftsmen will charge a lower fee just because of less costs though their charge may be more than the local drunk charges. If what you are looking for is building a Murphy bed and you don’t know how or don’t want to build it yourself, a lone handyman is the type you need. A tip: Buy some furniture from IKEA and combine them with your murphy bed. Work with your handyman on how to build your Murphy bed IKEA for a stunning Murphy bed.
Whichever service you decide to go with one of the most important things you should do before hiring anyone is to get references from each of them. Call previous customers and talk to them about their level of satisfaction. It is not a hard thing to do but could save you a great deal of stress, money and difficulty in the long run by helping you avoid the cowboys out there. If you are just wanting someone to rake your lawn that is not such a problem if you get let down. But if you are hiring someone to do a large project this is especially important. Talking to other customers will tell you not just whether the job was done well, but whether it was done on time, at a price agreed upon, their attitude, how well the repairs have lasted and might even give you some ideas on other projects you want to start!
For most people finding a handyman is not just a one time deal. If you use someone once and you are happy with their work you will likely use them again for the next project. Owning a house means there will often be repairs or projects that need to be undertaken. It is important to have a handyman who gets the work done how you wanted, in the time frame you needed, at a price you can afford. If you find someone that works well for you, you may in the future become a reference for them yourself!