When you’re a homeowner, you tend to have ongoing projects and improvements. Even if they are small projects, they can add up to a weekend of honey-do lists. Some you feel comfortable tackling yourself with DIY tools and YouTube videos. Some you might hire a general handyman to handle, allowing you more time with your family or your hobbies. Others, you know you need a contractor or a specialist. The job is either too big, too important, or requires knowledge or tools you don’t possess.
Where does roofing and siding installation fall in that spectrum of home improvement and repair decisions? Part of the answer to that question comes from knowing your own skills, available time, and access to tools. Knowing a bit more about the importance and technique of roofing and siding installation will help you decide. At Advanced Roofing & Siding Inc., your home’s exterior is our specialty. Our contractors work only with roofing and siding, giving them an eagle eye for details and a significant amount of experience. Let’s examine the difference between a handyman and a specialist and help you determine when you need a simple repair and when it’s time to call in the professionals.
What Is a Handyman?
A “handyman” can be a person of any gender who specializes in helping you with general home repair and improvement tasks. They usually tackle smaller jobs that can typically be completed by one, or perhaps two, people.
Many people keep a trusted handyman on call for routine maintenance tasks, such as gutter cleaning, weather sealing, window cleaning, or other seasonal duties. Handymen are also helpful for that growing list of annoyances and small repairs in your home. Here are some examples of tasks that may have you searching for “handyman near me”:
- Hanging shelves, pictures, mirrors, cabinets, or televisions
- Adjusting doors or windows that stick or don’t close properly
- Painting, caulking, sealing, or small drywall repair
- Installing ceiling fans, faucets, or new light fixtures
- Replacing boards or staining decks; replacing the screen on screened porches
- Repairing cracked or missing siding
- Replacing missing or damaged shingles on your roof
- Small flooring installations or repairs, such as laminate, hardwood, vinyl, or tile
- Hanging blinds, shutters, and other window treatments
How Much Do Handymen Cost?
The biggest difference between hiring a handyman and a contractor or specialist is in how they price their jobs. Handymen typically charge by the hour, which means that for small jobs, or a group of tasks, a handyman can often save you money. A skilled handyman can combine tasks, and work efficiently, tackling multiple items on your to-do list in a few hours.
Specialists, such as HVAC technicians, electricians, plumbers, and appliance repair people charge a flat fee to arrive on site and then price the necessary work by the job. Their rate is all-inclusive, including materials, supplies, and labor. You’ll know up front how much the job will cost.
Handymen and contractors typically handle materials and supplies differently. Both come with their own tools, but handymen usually have a more general and limited amount. When you work with a handyman, you typically provide the materials for them to use.
For example, if a handyman is working on your siding, you will have extra pieces of siding material they will use for the minor repairs. For roofing, a handyman will repair or replace shingles from your supply.
Contractors, on the other hand, purchase and bring all materials needed for the job. Those supplies are usually marked up in price to cover the costs of negotiating, selecting, carrying, and delivering the items. Of course, those are duties you didn’t have to take care of yourself, and you can trust your contractor to obtain the proper amount and quality of materials.
Not All Handymen Are Equal
There is no handyman license or qualifying exam. No rules or regulations govern who can be considered a handyman, or a list of skills they must possess. Any person can call themselves a handyman and get hired to help homeowners with maintenance, repair, and installation tasks.
General contractors must pass exams for various skills and obtain a license through their state or locality. Contractors are registered and must keep their skills up-to-date and their licenses active.
If you’re unsure whether a handyman is qualified to do the work that you require, check their references and reviews. Angie’s List is a good place to start, but the handyman may be able to put you in contact with folks for whom they have done previous work. Ask them if they have ever done this particular type of job before and listen carefully.
Hiring a Handyman for Roofing and Siding Installation
Your roof is a significant investment for your home and performs a crucial function. It protects your house from water, air, and pests, and insulates it in all seasons. Of course, it also needs to look good, because the state of your roof affects your home’s curb appeal.
Minor roof repairs, such as replacing shingles, can generally be left to handymen. However, missing shingles can be a sign of more extensive water intrusion damage. A handyman won’t be able to give your roof a thorough inspection to discover potential problems or make a more comprehensive repair to protect your home.
A roof replacement or new roof installation is something to trust only to roofing specialists. You want to ensure the roof is installed correctly so that your home is watertight and your investment lasts 20-25 years. Improperly installed roofs can allow water to enter your home and create major problems down the road. Your manufacturer’s warranty is likely to be void as well in that situation. This means you’ll be responsible for future repairs due to roof failure.
The same goes with siding. Replacing a section of siding damaged by a storm is likely something a handyman can handle. A whole-house siding installation project requires a team of installers, often over several days. Improperly installed siding will not be watertight and will cause you problems later with costly repairs and voided warranties.
If you need roofing or siding repair or installation, give the pros at Advanced Roofing & Siding a call. Our estimates are free, and our work is guaranteed. Our Master GAF Elite Certified installers are among the best in the industry, and we stand behind our work for the life of the warranty. See what a difference a professional makes with Advanced Roofing & Siding.