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Getting small jobs done!

Reds

Registered User
Sep 5, 2011
565
Hertfordshire
My husband has Alzheimer's so he doesn't do small maintenance jobs around the house and garden now. Last week I asked a workman to paint our shed, he did one coat for £80! Today I have struggled to put a tiny halogen light bulb in our oven, feels frustrating! I rang an electrician he said he would do it for £85! Think so pricey, feels worse when someone is ill!
 

Grable

Registered User
May 19, 2015
175
Get the word out among your friends, Reds, to see if there are any retired people nearby who would do small jobs for small prices. Most of the professional electricians, etc, have a call-out fee, which is what bumps up the prices. Especially now, with so many people out of work, you might get somebody who would do these jobs for you for the pro rata equivalent of minimum wage.
Could you, also, contact Social Services - there maybe a charitable organisation in your area that does this kind of thing. It's worth a punt!
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
13,416
South coast
I have a cleaner through AgeUK (the Help at Home service) and just before the lockdown I discovered that they also had a handyman service. There is an admin fee and then you pay the handyman (supplied by them) by the hour. or part of the hour They will only do small jobs, but if you are going to use them a lot it works out much cheaper.
 

Louise7

Registered User
Mar 25, 2016
2,375
It's also worth contacting your local authority to see if they offer this service. My local council has a 'book a handyman' service, with the first hour £55 then £25 for every extra half hour, or you can book someone for half a day for £150, so worth getting them to do more than one job at a time (materials extra).
 

Izzy

Volunteer Moderator
Aug 31, 2003
62,807
69
Dundee
I would contact your local authority.

Our local council also has a 'Handyperson' service. It is very reasonably priced and anyone over 60 (I think it's 60) can access it. It's certainly worth a try.
 

Lynmax

Registered User
Nov 1, 2016
554
Have a look on Facebook for a group local to your area. They often post details of general handymen who do small jobs like you describe. The one I use charges £20 an hour so for £75 he fixed a leaking gutter, installed a new smoke detector, screwed a house number onto my new garage doors and checked out a faulty fan in the bathroom - it needs replacing so he's going to buy the new one and install it next week, for another £10 plus the cost of the fan. Even if you don't use FB, it's worth joining just for such community pages, especially at the moment.
 

Philbo

Registered User
Feb 28, 2017
834
Kent
Hi @Reds

I think over many years, I've become a fairly competent DIYer and so rarely have to call in an "expert" so it always amazes me just how much some tradespeople quote/charge. When there's someone in the house to do all those little things, you take it for granted.

I'm not sure is recommendations like this are allowed, but I belong to a "neighbourhood" website called Nextdoor.co.uk. It's a national scheme, promoted as a Neighbourhood Hub. I have found it very informative about all sorts of issues in my local community. Registration is simple and you cannot hide behind a nickname or alias, so you can see who you are interacting with.

Members are always posting about both offering services/suggestions or seeking recommendations or advice, or alerting members about scams, crime, missing pets etc etc.

Hope this helps.
Phil
 

cobden 28

Registered User
Dec 15, 2017
68
I live alone, and although I don't have dementia nor do I care for anyone with this, I'm useless when it comes to DIY because my ex-husband was the expert therer so all this was left to him. Nowe I'm on my own I wait until I hace several small jobs needing doung before I call in a handyman to tackle the lot in one day. I don't have the specialised eqipument my handyman has and there are spme jobs for which his extra tall set of stepladders is required!

Try asking at your local branch of Age Concern if they offer a Handyman service; my local branch offers a gardening service which covers garden maintenance as well.
 

AbbyGee

Registered User
Nov 26, 2018
78
Portsmouth, South Coast
One of the positive things to have come out of lockdown is that I've managed to master the art of wielding an electric screwdriver and electric drill, (thanks, Amazon, for the easy supply of my shiny new toys) have attempted some minor electrical work, a bit of plumbing and woodwork and started planning a wee bit of brickwork.
It was just too easy to pop into the local pub, when the work chappies called in for their chill out before going home, and do the helpless woman act when in reality all I had to do was try to tackle the little jobs unaided.
I'm not sure how long or well my DIY efforts will last but it's been great to try. Trouble is, I'm now looking at some nice new tools to see if I can carry this lark further. I seem to have DeWalt tastes on a Lidl's Parkside budget. :(
But as an added bonus my PWD, who has never been a DIYer, leaves me alone to get on with it.
 

Greyling

New member
Jul 25, 2020
8
I agree regarding the "neighbourhood" website called Nextdoor.co.uk.
It is invaluable! All you do is join, then you can start posting requests for anything and everything you need recommendations for: e.g., a good, local plumber who doesn't overcharge or let you down, a mobile hairdresser, a cat sitter, a gardener who doesn't charge £45 per hour for basic tasks like strimming grass, and so on.
 

Reds

Registered User
Sep 5, 2011
565
Hertfordshire
Thank you! Lots of ideas. Hopefully will have better luck with workman in future. The ones I have used always charge their daily rate even if they are not here all day, ha!