What influences the price of handyman’s services?
There are several crucial points that determine how much a handyman will charge for his services.
The scale of the job at hand
This part of rate formation is quite simple: the bigger the job the more the customer would have to pay to get it done. The handymen that have more experience in a particular area will be able to make a precise estimate of the timeframes required to complete a job. That way, the customer will know the exact service cost before agreeing to the terms and signing the contract with a handyman.
This is basically the type of job that “anyone can do”, meaning that a handyman doesn’t have to have the specific qualification to be able to get it done. This could include cleaning or minor electrical services, like changing the hard-to-reach light bulb or fixing a loose socket. These types of works don’t require the use of sophisticated tools and don’t consume a lot of time. Usually, a handyman would charge a flat rate for such jobs which would take around one or two hours to complete.
Here are some examples of small services often billed at a flat rate: installing a tap in the bathroom sink – the job won’t take more than an hour and would cost a house owner around $60 to $65. However, some handyman companies in smaller towns may charge as little as $20.09 or $20.55 per hour while delivering the work of great quality.
Obviously, these are the larger job than the ones in the previous category as they require more time and skills as well as the use of certain tools. For instance, in order to perform the drywall works, a handyman would have to use special tools, such as a T-square, a drywall knife, a cordless drill, a sanding pole etc. Certain plumbing works in the kitchen or the bathroom may also fall in the category of mid-sized projects. Before hiring a handyman to do such works, make sure that he or she is adequately skilled and attentive to details. The medium projects shouldn’t take more than a full workday (ideally, a handyman should finish in no more than a few hours), and you will probably be paying him on the basis of the established hourly rates.
The example of mid-sized jobs: replacement or installation of a front door.
These are the type of jobs that require a handyman to put extra effort into the work and apply specific skills. Consequently, to hire a handyman to do the most complicated work would cost the homeowner a significant amount of money. For instance, a New York handyman could charge anywhere from $50 to $100 per hour for performing complicated tasks around the house. However, such handyman costs entitle a homeowner to carry out a rigorous quality check.
The range of large-scale job may include the installation of new wiring around the house, installation of all kitchen or bathroom appliances, complete kitchen remodeling, minor construction works etc. The turnaround time for these jobs may vary from a full working day to several days.
Understandably, the pricing for such works would be the highest – the hourly rates for handyman services may reach $130 per hour. If you want to pay a flat rate, then expect to be charged no less than $500 per day of handyman’s work.
Some homeowners may become doubtful of whether they should hire a handyman or a contractor to carry out complicated tasks. Here is one of the tips we would like to give you regarding that matter: if it is a long-term (two or more days) job that requires the use of specialized tools or machinery and may lead to costly damages, if performed by an incompetent worker, then you should definitely consider hiring a contractor.
Let’s summarize the handyman’s rate for different types of jobs:
- The small-scale works take one to two hours and may cost from $60 to $83 per hour.
- The medium-sized jobs are priced from $90 per hour and may take up from four hours to a full workday.
- The large–scale works usually require more than four hours of handyman’s time with an average hourly rate of $100.
Handyman services: payment per hour
The majority of works done by the handyman could be qualified as the small jobs, like the installation of kitchen cabinets or minor repairs, would cost a homeowner around $60 to $65 per hour. We are speaking about the average price across the country, the rates may vary significantly from city to city. But there are some handyman service businesses that charge a lot more, up to $130 per hour. Such companies usually offer more than the teams of professional handymen – they also provide contractors for bigger jobs, like construction, re-building or demolition. Whilst is it more expensive to hire a contractor, the employers obtain assurance of the quality of provided services. If you want to opt for a contractor, then be prepared to pay around $83, if you are not living in a megapolis. A contractor in New York or Los Angeles may charge you twice that amount.
Professional experience of a handyman
If you are a practical person, then you should know that a vastly experienced handyman will save you more money even if he/she charges a rate that’s above the average in your city. The reason being that the experienced worker usually does the job much faster than his inexperienced colleague. For instance, the job that would take a rookie handyman around three hours to complete, will be done by a seasoned handyman in less than an hour. Even if the rookie charges three-fold less than an experienced worker, let’s say $15 compared to $50, you will pay almost the same amount but get less assurance of the quality of the final result.
However, you should also consider the fact that this rule applies only to the jobs of medium and large scale. The small jobs, like a bit of carpentry or painting, can be done successfully by a handyman who’s making his first steps in the business. In that case, there no reason to pay more than a minimal rate.
The job difficulty
It would be logical to assume that difficulty of the job, as well as the amount of time necessary for its completion, have a direct impact on the price that you would be asked to pay. The ability to provide an accurate estimate regarding the complexity of the job, its duration and the overall price separates a professional handyman or a contractor from an amateur.
The honesty, or the ability to adequately gauge his capabilities, is yet another trait you should be looking for in the handyman. He should be able to tell you when the job is beyond his level of competence or skill set in order to prevent you from wasting time and money. In that case, you should opt for the services of a contractor who is capable of putting together a team of professionals in a certain field of construction of repair works.
Also, you should be able to distinguish a ‘small job’ that requires a lot of time from a ‘large job’ that can be done is a couple of hours. The complexity and the need to implement various skills are the main factors in that matter. For instance, fixing the doorknobs in the entire house is a much simpler, thus ‘smaller’ job than installing a new sink or changing a flush toilet which demands the application of certain knowledge and skills. Therefore, don’t get confused by the duration of work, and if you reckon that the job is of a ‘small” type, then insist on establishing a flat rate.
What’s the structure of handyman’s rates?
As you have probably understood, there are two types of rates that handymen and contractors charge for their services:
The flat rate – the amount of money that the employer agrees to pay a handyman for performing a certain job regardless of how much time it may consume. The flat rate is usually applied to the jobs of larger scale or complexity: building or reconstruction of a deck, installing a kitchen or a toilet sink, mounting a big flat screen TV on the wall etc.
The hourly rate – a fixed sum that a handyman will charge for each hour that he/she spends working. The average handyman prices per hour of work across the United States are somewhere between $50 and $100, depending on the company’s location, experience, and reputation. For example, you probably won’t be able to find a handyman in New York who would charge less than $80/hour, whilst a professional in Buffalo would ask for $30 per hour.
As already mentioned, you should clearly understand the distinction between a ‘large’ but cheap job and a ‘small’ but expensive one in order to avoid being overcharged. And remember to always ask a handyman for a comprehensive estimate of a job that he’s about to undertake.
The average duration and cost of the handyman’s work
The following are the examples of the most popular handyman services accompanied by the approximate time required for their completion.
The handymen are usually reimbursed for these jobs on the basis on the established hourly rate:
- Hanging a large set of bookshelves or kitchen cabinetry, repairing a damaged bathroom water pipe that causes leaking, changing a damaged window screen – approximately 1-2 hours.
- Drywall repair works, painting, replacement of several tiles – 2-3 hours.
- Changing the broken window, installing a new front door, carpentry – 3-4 hours.
- Repair the electric wiring in the entire house, carpeting several rooms, installing the water boiler and heating registers – more than 4 hours.
While other works are performed on the basis of the pre-established flat rate:
- Installation of lighting in the hall: $65
- Replacement of the toilet valve: $75
- Installation of a ceiling fan: $150
- Installation of a bathroom bowl: $150
- Installation of a sink and a work surface in the kitchen: $300
How to find a competent handyman
Given that the industry of handyman services is booming, and the number of companies is growing by the hour, finding a competent and reliable provider could be quite difficult at times. Here is a list of tips that will help you distinguish an honest professional from a bragging amateur. Moreover, it includes advice on how to interact with a handyman in order for your cooperation to be more straightforward and cost-effective.
- Compose a list of jobs around the house that will have to be done by a handyman. State the problem and the requirements very clearly. By doing that, you can expect to receive a more definitive quote from a handyman (or a contractor) and adjust your budget accordingly.
- Go online and search for the available handyman service companies in your area. Once you narrowed down the list of appealing companies to three or five, engage in more detailed research by visiting their Facebook pages or forum, and read the feedback left by their previous customers.
- Contact the company and have a small discussion with their manager regarding the potential work. Take notice if they are showing genuine interest in landing your job.
- Ask them to tell you about their experience and inquire about their rates for similar jobs.
- If you have a large job at hand, always ask for the estimate to be conducted on sight and in written form.
- Ask if there is a possibility to hire a contractor instead of a handyman.
- Lastly, don’t forget to inquire about their policy regarding liability insurance and the refund policy.
Once all the details are settled, make sure to prepare the space where the works will be carried out: clean up the unnecessary items, provide some rugs or plastic film, make sure that the children and pets are being kept away from the work sight. A cup of good hot coffee would also be a good bonus that will make the handyman work more vigorously.