Handymen services are in increasingly popular demand. What was once thought of as an odd-job profession has seen a shift in perception thanks to the Internet.
Handymen or handywomen work a highly skilled job that requires a wide breadth of knowledge and a strong work ethic.
You must be skilled across a variety of different disciplines and be able to think on your feet, as well as work with your hands.
In the digital age, finding a handyman is easier than ever. Long gone are the days of fliers on telephone poles. The Internet provides the perfect platform for skilled handy workers to showcase their professionalism, credibility, and skillset.
Because there are so many ways to hire a handyman, making yourself stand out is important.
This is an industry where showing your personality is a great way to get the attention of new clients. You are viewed as somewhat of a super hero by your customers—you can fix almost anything! How are you going to translate your can-do nature on paper?
This article will help you polish your handymen proposal skills. We will go over design tips and best practices to make your service shine with every proposal you write.
Getting Started With Your Proposal
To start your proposal, take some time to introduce yourself. If you’ve read our content series on proposals, you’ll know that we always start by writing a cover letter.
A cover letter is simply a letter of intent that states your qualifications for a particular job.
In some of our articles, we recommend keeping the cover letter very basic and straightforward. However, handymen services are a place where your personality can set you apart, so be professional, but have a little fun when you write it!
You can spend a little more time upselling your experience and skills as a handyman. Don’t go over one page in length, and always remember, your prospect is looking for what’s in it for them.
Since the term “handyman” encompasses so many job titles, we aren’t going to write a full cover letter here; each area of expertise would require a different letter.
The important thing to communicate in your letter is who you are, why you do what you do, and what your experience is/why you’re right for the job.
And remember—you’re talking to people. Don’t sound too stiff or formal. It’s just an introduction.
Handyman Proposals: Examples Of Your Work
Another thing you should consider adding to your proposal is a section for examples of your work. This industry is highly visual! It is likely that some of your projects have compelling before and after’s.
You should be taking photos of your work at many of the jobs you do. If you’re using Route, you can save your images in the Walkthrough Builder by individual projects.
People love seeing real-world work, so include your best jobs along with your cover letter.
Depending on what type of job you’re doing, you could choose specific photos to feature in this section. Show off your best painting work if you’re bidding for a painting job. You get the idea.
You can also include testimonials from happy clients to bolster your reputation. This is extremely helpful to someone in your line of work. Word of mouth goes a long way.
Ask your clients to review you in Route, or make yourself a social media page. This is a great way to spread news about your business fast, as well as provide an easy point-of-contact for you and your client.
By utilizing social media, you could even create galleries of your work and schedule walkthroughs and appointments online.
Compile the best client reviews and jobsite media you have onto a page or two and include it with your cover letter.
You don’t have to do this with every job you bid—but if you’re doing a larger project or a job where you have relevant experience to share, include it.
Handyman Project Summary
Assuming this project is large enough to require a walkthrough and a formal proposal, it is probably wise to include a project summary page that details exactly what you are going to do.
Handymen jobs are so vast, every project you tackle is going to be different. According to Wikipedia, handymen jobs include, but are not limited to:
- Minor electrical work
- Minor plumbing work
- Sheetrock installation or repair
- Crown molding installation
- Tile and grout services
- Furniture assembly
- Home organization
Whatever category your job falls under, do a write-up of the service to be performed on a separate page. Include the materials that will be needed and any additional notes you may have from your walkthrough, if you did one. Try to use language your client will understand—you want them to feel informed by the time they get to the estimate.
Setting A Price
Setting a price for your handyman services can be daunting because prices for this type of work have a huge range.
Handyman and bogger Dan Perry recommends not paying attention to the competition’s prices and instead using “Cost Based Pricing”.
You can read his full article on handyman pricing here. The general idea is, you need to figure out exactly how much you need to charge to cover your materials and make a decent living. Then you can add in your own markup to ensure you make a good profit.
You also need to decide if you’re going to charge per the hour or per the job. You may even switch between the two depending on the type of job you are doing. Some jobs are charged at a flat fixed rate and some aren’t.
Homeadvisor.com has a helpful list of common handyman job lengths and average prices you can reference to get yourself started. This article quotes that average handyman prices typically range from $55.00-$75.00 an hour for independent contractors, but the price could be up to $125.00 an hour if you’re part of a handyman company.
After you’ve done some basic math, it’s time for the final step—writing the estimate.
Writing A Handyman Proposal
The final step in creating your proposal package is to come up with an estimate and put it into a service contract to be signed and returned by your client.
There are hundreds of ways to draft a proposal, but we recommend using the Proposal Generator tool in Route. We designed this intuitive software to be easy to use—you can create a professional contract in minutes.
To create a handyman proposal using the Proposal Generator, first open the program in your Route account.
You will see an editor menu and a preview menu once inside the Proposal Generator. In the editor menu, you can input a variety of criteria; you can add all your service charges, your service days, and your task schedule.
Drop down menus can assist you with different tasks. If you don’t need a certain section in your contract, you don’t have to use every tool available to you in the editor.
Your contract will be displayed on the right side of your screen, so you can make edits in real-time and see what it will look like.
Once you’ve added all your service charges and any additional terms and conditions, you may import the standard legal verbiage necessary to create a legally binding contract by clicking the “import legal” button at the bottom of the editor menu.
Just like that, you’ve created a fully functional contract that is ready to be signed and returned by your client. Save your contract as a .pdf and put it at the back of your proposal package. You’ve just finished your handyman proposal.
Handyman Proposals: Conclusion
Being a handyman is a highly diversified job that takes great skill and knowledge. Making a name for yourself is very important to creating a long-lasting career. There is a lot of competition but you have what it takes to make it to the top.
The first thing to do when writing a proposal is to introduce yourself in a professional but memorable way. Write a cover letter about yourself that highlights your great skillset.
You want to show off the breadth of your services, so find a way to make that come through in everything that you write.
Some ways that you can do this are by getting reviews from clients, taking pictures of your work, including testimonials from past jobs, and finding a way to advertise yourself.
Consider making a business profile on a social media account so your clients can spread the word about your services quickly and people can contact you for job inquiries easily.
Before you start the handyman project, give your client a project summary where you detail everything you’re going to do and the materials you’re going to use.
This is usually necessary for large, advanced projects, such as hanging drywall or building a porch; these tasks can take several hours or days and need much for consideration than just fixing someone’s clogged toilet, for instance.
When setting a price, use cost-based pricing to find out exactly what you need to charge to break even, then you can mark up your services from there.
You may also need to determine if you’re going to charge per hour, per job, or both.
When writing your contract, using a template tool, like the Proposal Generator in Route, to ensure professional, cohesive estimates that are easy to understand by you and your client alike.
Lastly, approach every job with confidence. You already do an amazing set of services, and not everyone can say that. Take pride in your proposal and it will be reflected in your work.
Best of luck with your handyman service business; we hope this article makes you even more of a stand-out contract handy worker than you already are.