Do you need help for little jobs around the house? It’s always good to do things yourself. But what if you can’t hang wallpaper, change a plug or mend a squeaky fence? Many people are fortunate to have relatives or small businesses that are recommended on trust. But what about everyone else? Do you have to resort to big companies that you don’t know or be charged a fortune in call-out fees for small jobs?
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Fortunately, there are some really good little businesses around, helped by innovative ideas. From social enterprises to online tasking, here are some ideas. These are not just good for those who need help, but also good for trustworthy handymen and handywomen to get involved in too. And having things mended and repaired is better for the planet and your pocket, than buying new.
Find Local Vetted Help
- TaskRabbit is a site where you can help from thousands of vetted Taskers, to help with anything from cleaning to repairs to moving house. Popular projects are mending mending a running toilet, assembling furniture, lifting furniture upstairs, hanging pictures, painting and decorating and installing TVs. Taskers have to provide ID checks, and all taskers are reviewed online by users.
- Airtasker is similar. But as well as handy jobs and moving items, you can also ask for ‘different stuff’ that includes being a chauffeur for a night out, designing an awesome pub quiz, and even watch a football match and text the score! Everything’s above board and insured.
- Zaarly is a good idea from the US. Choose a service and enter your details, then get matched by qualified vetted professionals near you. All items are covered by their refund guarantee, and you only pay for work that’s done right. They take care of licensing, insurance and background checks.
Ethical Services for Renters
- If you rent your home, often the repairs are covered under your lease. England now has some good ethical lettings agents gradually starting up, that have their own team of in-house handy guys to repair things.
- Argonaut Community Enterprises (Birmingham) is one of a growing number of social enterprises, that offer services to vulnerable people in the community at affordable prices. Founded by two deaf people who worked in employment services, they wanted to help other people with disabilities find work. Other ones include The Leeds Handyman and Caring Hands Charity (Newcastle) that offers free services, apart from a small admin fee.
Life Skills is a little manual, to teach you the stuff you should really know by now. From knowing how to make a bed to negotiating a pay rise. From sewing on a button to making a fire. And from how to treat a blister to how to speak in public.