When we say ‘affordable handyman’, what we’re really talking about is getting bang for bucks.
Price too cheaply, and you risk a botch job. On the other hand, there are heaps of companies out there who will charge you a massive sum for something as simple as changing a light bulb.
So how do you navigate this minefield? We asked Airtasker handyman Iain M for some advice.
How handymen set a price
First things first, you need to get a grip on exactly how handymen charge out their services.
The end price is usually a combination of three things: labour, equipment and a call-out fee. We’ll cover the last two a little later.
Handyman labour is typically charged by the hour, and the rate is often determined by the skill level of the handyman. There’s no science to this, each handyman determines their own rate. The average hourly rate of a handyman is in the $30 to $50 price range. However, there are professional handyman services that may charge up to $90 an hour. Below is a rough guide on the cost involved in hiring a quality handyman:
Visit our price guide page for a comprehensive guide.
Understanding the call-out fee
A call out fee is unique to handyman services and it’s basically a fee that you pay to get the handyman to come and inspect your task. It typically costs around $40 to $50, and covers the handyman’s expertise, petrol and travel time to your home. This is either factored into the total price or paid upfront of the work.
Iain says you may be able to negotiate a lower fee by hiring a local handyman that’s close by. If it’s convenient, they may waive or lower the fee.
So, should you buy the building materials?
It’s another way you can save on handyman costs. So, for example, if you’re replacing a door, you buy the door, the handyman installs it.
Iain says handymen typically expect to have to provide all equipment and materials for any task, unless you say otherwise. Depending on the complexity of the task, it’s best to let them, he says.
Iain’s seen situations where people have tried to save money by buying the materials beforehand, but wasted money buying the wrong things. He says you should stick to this rule:
- For tasks that are very basic (something you could do yourself), you can buy the materials ahead of time and shop around for a good price.
- For tasks that require expertise or specialist knowledge, then leave it to the handyman to get the materials – it’s part of the job.
So there it is, some basic ways you can cut the cost of your next odd-job. While you may be able to save money on the call-out and materials, be wary about getting a bargain with the cost of labour, or you’ll end up paying more in the long-run.
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