Many of us here on the Gulf Coast, like myself in Naples, Florida, think we're in paradise. The weather is wonderful, if you like sunshine and year-round warmth. The people are friendly, the roads have no potholes and you can play golf just about every day of the year.
After becoming a Mr. Handyman owner, I became acutely aware that this is paradise for another group of people also: home repair scam artists and untrained, unlicensed people who cannot deliver safe, professional, quality work.
We hear the horror stories all the time:
Local handyman charged with stealing from employer
Naples News, 6/10/2009
Handyman charged in flat-screen television thefts last summer
Naples News, 6/12/2010
Widow pulls pink pistol on handyman she believes was trying to steal her jewelry
Naples News, 6/16/2009
Google "Handyman Crime" and you'll see hundreds of the more grisly stories that I won't detail here.
Professional scam artists are really the purview of the police. They carefully craft their stories and pick their victims. They have no intention of performing any work, so to say they have no skills is a misnomer. They have no skills when it comes to home repair; however, they have plenty of skills when it comes to deception and deceit.
The other group of scam artists includes unqualified and unlicensed people who say they will fix your problem but simply cannot because they do not have the work ethic or skill sets to do so. There are many honest, hardworking men and women in our business and I don't mean to besmirch them. Unfortunately, there are also many who claim to be something they are not.
When someone says they are licensed, what does that mean? Below is the actual list, right off the Collier County Web site, of the tasks that a " Maintenance License " allows you to do. You will notice that it doesn't say anything about drywall, tile , moldings , anything electrical or plumbing, carpentry, door or window repair and installation ... etc. So if you're hiring a handyman who says he has a license to do anything except what is listed below, make sure it's a contractor's license or you may not be getting the skill set you need for your job.
Mr. Handyman is a licensed General Contractor.
Tasks requiring a Maintenance License
- Assemble Exercise Equipment
- Assemble Toys
- Assemble Furniture
- Assemble Gas Grills
- Change Light Bulbs
- Clean & Change Ceiling Fan Blades
- Clean Garages
- Clean Gutters
- Edge Lawn
- Hang Pictures
- Haul Trash to Dump
- Install Garage Organizers
- Move Furniture
- Mow Lawn
- Pressure Clean Driveways and Walkways (No Roofs)
- Rake Leaves
- Repair Screens
- Replace Caulking
- Replace Door Handles
- Wash Windows
- Residential/Commercial Cleaning
- Construction Cleaning
There is also the issue of safety when hiring someone who will be in your home and around your family. You see the pickup trucks and vans everywhere. "Dave's Handyman Service" or "AAAAAAAAAAAA Handyman" is common. Please take great care when inviting someone into your home. Some, not all, are less than honest. Some are actual criminals. There are many stories of people being robbed, assaulted, abducted or killed. It doesn't happen all the time, but it does happen.
At Mr. Handyman all our employees are licensed, bonded and insured with $1,000,000 liability insurance policies. All our employees have passed a criminal background check and a professional drug screening. Every technician has at least 15 years of experience in the trades. The technician will arrive wearing a uniform, in a clearly marked company van, on time and ready to work. We will treat you and your home with respect and act professionally at all times. We guarantee you will be satisfied with our work. You can rely on Mr. Handyman for all your home repair and maintenance needs.
Choose your servicing providers carefully. While cost is important, safety and value will let you sleep at night. Give us a try; you'll be happy you did.