How Can You Avoid Getting Scammed by a Handyman?

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When you hire a handyman to do house repairs or maintenance, it can be a scary decision.

You may be concerned about:

  • Your personal safety.
  • The safety of your valuables.
  • The quality of work that will be done.
  • The level of professionalism and quality customer service you will receive.
  • How long the work will take.
  • What recourse you may have if the work is not up to par.

When you hire a handyman, you want to make sure you choose a reputable handyman service. You don’t want to fall into a handyman fraud scheme.

Verify that the employees of the handyman company have background checks.

You don’t want someone who is untrustworthy to be at your house when you are there or when you are away. You want to be sure your family and possessions are in good hands. And you want your home improvement projects done well.

Be sure to check some online reviews.

Read the negative reviews, as well as the positive ones to find the very best handyman for your situation. Ask for references from the company and call them so that you can ask important questions you have.

Check with the Better Business Bureau.

You can also check to see if there are complaints against a particular person or handyman company with the Better Business Bureau. If you see a lot of complaints, that can be a red flag to carefully consider.

Check to make sure the company and technicians are insured.

That way, if you have a problem, you know that you can appeal to their insurance, if necessary. You won’t be stuck with the bill for the work and then also for an even bigger bill to fix mistakes.

Get a written estimate and a service contract.

It’s wise to make sure that you have a written agreement ahead of time about the cost of the materials, the cost of labor, and the time frame to expect will be. 

Of course, it is possible that things could change if it turns out that there is more rot than expected. But your contract should specify how unforeseeable expenses and delays will be handled. 

You may want to be sure that the handyman service checks with you before purchasing any materials you hadn’t agreed to and before working more time than you had agreed to.

More tips to avoid bad handyman:

Is the handyman unsolicited? Did he just show up and generously offer to do work for you at a drastically low price?

There are many unscrupulous types who will offer to paint your fence, tar your driveway, or paint your house who will not do a good job. Unfortunately, they tend to be scam artists who dilute the paint and tar and do a quick, unprofessional job, and then leave with your money.

They want all the money upfront.

If a handyman wants you to pay 100%, or very close to it, before he does any work, that is a pretty big red flag that you are dealing with a home improvement scam. Sure, you may need to make some payment of earnest money for him to be able to buy supplies. But if you pay the entire total before he does any work, there are some frauds who will take the money and you’ll never hear from them again.

They never have time to answer your questions.

If a handyman is always too busy to talk and answer your questions about the home services you need, that is another red flag. You want to choose someone who has time to listen and who has the time to do a good job on your home repairs.

Choose the best handyman for your needs.

This takes a bit of research, but the time you spend trying to find a good handyman is worth it. No one wants the heartache and headache of being the victim of a handyman scam.

With a reputable handyman service, you can avoid marriage stress, the frustration of trying to do things yourself that you aren’t comfortable doing, and save a whole lot of free time.

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