Are you good at fixing those little things that go wrong around a home; replacing the screen the cat clawed up, getting the kitchen faucet to stop dripping, or sprucing up a few cabinets with a nice coat or varnish or paint? If not, you may need to hire a handyman to help you out. Since your home is a major investment, you obviously don’t want just anyone coming in to do the work, so what does a reputable handyman need to have? |
First, whoever you choose to hire should be thoroughly licensed, insured and bonded. If Mr. Fix-It accidentally slips on your rug and breaks his arm--as well as your prized Ming vase---you are legally and financially responsible for the mishap. Because it happened in your home, not only are you not likely to see compensation for the vase, you may end up being on the hook for medical bills.
By selecting someone who is insured and bonded, you will have the ability to demand reimbursement for any damages to your home or goods while the work is being carried out. The hired handyman should also be able to provide you with a guarantee or warranty for the work being done, as well as for any parts used that would normally be covered by a manufacturer’s warranty.
Next, make sure that the person has a solid reputation in your community. You can check whether he is listed with the Better Business Bureau, or ask for references from previous customers. A refusal to provide any type of references should be a major warning that this person may not be best suited for your needs. Another way to screen potential candidates is to ask about their previous work experience: Is he a member of any professional organizations? Does she hold any specialized certifications? What makes this candidate stand out from the rest?
Finally, discuss the handyman’s prices and how he handles payments. Obviously, you’re only going to look at candidates whose rates are firmly within your budget, but it is important to find out how and when he expects to be paid. Payment should be made once all work is completed to your satisfaction, and a request for advance payment should be another alarm that something is amiss.
Depending on the type and scale of work being done, it is acceptable for the handyman to request a percentage of the pay up front for the purchase of parts, supplies, etc. However, if you aren’t entirely sure about the person you‘re hiring, you can request to accompany them and make the purchases yourself. Be sure to keep any receipts, so that the cost can be deducted from the final payment.
Find anAustin handyman who can fix problems that are sometimes out of your reach. For more information, visit http://www.angieslist.com
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