When it comes to handyman services, many are independent contractors. In fact, most started out as simply doing a few odd jobs for neighbors and friends during their weekends or time off. But as requests, and revenues, began pouring in, those adept in a variety of tasks chose to start their own business. In the process, they found a number of home improvement apps that could help them find clients and manage their business. All of this paved the way for the handyman services sector to enter into the gig economy.
Today, dozens of home improvement apps exist that help customers find all kinds of handyman services. Whether they need help with plumbing, yardwork, minor home repairs or major remodeling, platforms are readily available. Likewise, those in the handyman business are better able to grow their clientele and reputation through these apps and platforms also. Business tasks that used to be extremely time-consuming is now efficient and productive. And with the flexibility that these home improvement apps offer, it’s not surprising the overall industry is flourishing.
“There is no doubt the home services sector has always been and will always be necessary, but with people spending more time at home due to the pandemic, it is ripe to explode in growth.” – Blake Taylor, Independent Handyman Business Owner
Moving Toward an Uber-Like Model
Home improvement apps are not necessarily new in terms of consumer services. Angie’s List was among one of the first platforms that connected homeowners with handyman services and other professionals. Today, Angie’s List has over 3 million members and offers a wide variety of home services. It also provides an excellent pricing guide for specific needs and offers reviews of various professionals. But this was just the beginning as the number of home improvement apps have grown significantly since. And in some cases, mergers and acquisitions have occurred, helping consolidate the industry. (Read more about the growth potential found in mergers and acquisitions in this Bold story.)
Today, the parent company for Angie’s List is simply called Angi HomeServices. In 2017, Angie’s List merged with HomeAdvisor to form Angi after being acquired by IAC. Angi then acquired Handy in 2018, which was one of the more popular home improvement apps. In essence, Handy provided a platform where customers and professionals could connect for specific jobs. Like other gig platforms, Handy takes a fee when jobs are completed as part of its services. Thus, in many ways, it acts just like other gig platforms like Uber, Lyft and others. Given the range of services that Angi offers, it is very possible more mergers and acquisitions will follow.
“Pros use the Handy platform as a way to supplement their income and find jobs that fit their schedules, including other jobs and personal obligations.” – Oisin Hanrahan, Cofounder of Handy and CEO of Angi
Other Home Improvement Apps On the Rise
Surveys that have asked professionals about various platforms for handyman services, Handy ranks near the top. But it’s just one of many home improvement apps they routinely use to enhance their ability to provide business services. Handy and Angie’s List are great for matching customers with needed handyman services. But others help professionals manage marketing, finances, invoicing, estimates and other essential business needs. With this in mind, the following are among some of the most popular home improvement apps today.
- Joist – This is one of the most commonly used home improvement apps by handyman professionals. In fact, Joist has recorded over $29 billion in contractor invoices involving over 900,000 handyman professionals. The platform streamlines the ability to provide customers with estimates. It also efficiently manages invoices and payments. And reports and documents created are highly professional and can be accessed on mobile devices.
- Thumbtack – Not only can marketing handyman services be time-consuming, but they can also be costly. With this platform, however, professionals can create their own marketing profile that will then be promoted on the app. Job type preferences, location, scheduling options, and more can be included. Thumbtack then connects handyman professionals with clients whose needs and profiles match. This saves both time and money in the process for everyone.
- Thimble – Another inconvenience in running one’s own handyman services business involves liability insurance. Annual premiums through a traditional insurance company can be expensive and unnecessary. Fortunately, Thimble is one of the home improvement apps that tailors general liability coverage to professionals’ needs. Policies are tailored to the job, and can be purchased for a duration lasting hours, days, or weeks. Likewise, an application can be completed within minutes with a Certificate of Insurance immediately available.
- TaskRabbit – Though not only for handyman services, TaskRabbit does pay handyman professionals the most. This platform allows customers to list various home tasks for others to complete. At the same time, professionals can list their specialty, rates, and availability. Plus, unlike other home improvement apps, TaskRabbit allows tips to be earned in addition to wages. Many handyman professionals thus include this platform among their list of job searchers on a regular basis.
- Chore Relief – Some home improvement apps tend to be more locally focused than others. Chore Relief is such an app as it strives to connect local community providers with customers. In addition, it also provides customers with advice and recommendations based on other customers’ feedback. In this way, Chore Relief utilizes trust economy strategies to provide higher quality services to its users. (Dig deeper into the trust economy, and how AI is used to combat fake reviews, in this Bold story.)
Future Home Improvement Industry Changes
As with other platforms involved in the gig economy, home improvement apps face some challenges over labor policies. But it’s clear that the home improvement industry is evolving as new technologies emerge. Some major players in this sector are beginning to consolidate offerings through various acquisition strategies. Others are considering a franchising approach. But in either case, it reflects an industry undergoing notable change, and many additional changes are likely to occur before the dust settles for good.
Home improvement businesses can grow dramatically with strategic consolidation. Learn more about how Bold Business can make that happen via mergers & acquisitions services!