How Much Does a Handyperson Cost?
When hiring a handyperson, the first question to ask is if they charge by the hour or a flat price. If they charge by the hour, they’re likely to charge $40 to $140 per hour, not including materials and travel costs. Some handypeople may also charge half-day or full-day rates, so give them as many details as possible and ask about their pricing structure before their visit.
A handyperson that charges a flat rate will often quote based on the materials, location, size, and scope of the work you need them to perform. This is why it’s a great idea to start hiring conversations with as many details as possible to set both of you up for success. The average flat rate for a handyperson is $400 per project.
It’s important to note that many handypeople will require a minimum rate for a site visit. Even if your task is small and takes a few minutes, like replacing a lightbulb on a high ceiling, a handyperson may still charge you their minimum rate. It may be worth it to bundle a few tasks together to make it worth your while.
How Much Do Handypeople Cost by Project?
The type of project the handyperson tackles is the biggest factor that influences the final price. For example, installing weather stripping on doors and windows ahead of a chilly winter will cost more than hanging a simple light fixture in your new home.
There are a few handyperson hiring tips you can use to ensure you hire a reputable, qualified handyperson. First, ask neighbors and check out online reviews. While a handyperson can complete a wide variety of tasks, you should still look into what projects the handyperson offers ahead of time.
Installing a Light
Installing light fixtures isn’t an easy task, contrary to popular belief. You’re dealing with exposed wires, and one wrong move may end with you zapping yourself and the electrical wiring. The average cost for a handyperson to install a light ranges between $65 to $125, depending on the light fixture.
Installing a Sink
If you’re installing a sink in the bathroom, a handyperson will charge around $100 to $150, so long as you’ve bought the sink ahead of time.
Installing a kitchen sink will cost around $300 to $500. The price is higher for kitchen sinks because they often have garbage disposals or multiple basins, which means additional plumbing work.
If you’re the kind of painter who always gets paint on the ceiling and floor (not to mention on your clothes and in your hair), hiring a handyperson to paint is probably the smart choice. It’ll cost around $100 per room plus about $25 per hour.
Not all handyperson projects are installation jobs. Sometimes you need to call someone to help repair part of your home that’s damaged or worn out.
For instance, say the hinges came flying off your cabinet one night when you were reaching for your favorite bowl. Or maybe you’re tired of how much noise your cabinets make. Either way, repairing cabinets will run you around $300 on average.
Refinishing cabinets is a different story, though. Since your handyperson will need to sand down the cabinets, repair defects, and reapply stains, this job will cost closer to $3,000.
Tile and Grout
Are you finally tired of those cracked tiles staring back at you from the kitchen floor? For a handyperson to replace your tile and grout, you should expect to pay around $450. You may need to pay more if you have more expensive type of flooring, such as marble.
Handyperson Price List
Below are additional average costs for common projects you may consider using a handyperson for:
|Painting||$20 – $25 per hour|
|Installing a light||$65 – $125|
|Replacing tile and grout||$450|
|Installing a ceiling fan||$100 or $250 for second-story fans|
|Installing a bathroom sink||$100 – $150|
|Installing a kitchen sink||$300 – $500|
|Installing weather stripping||$265|
What Factors Influence the Cost of a Handyperson?
While the projects sound simple, the size and scope of each project will vary. That’s why your neighbor may have only paid $250 to have a few lights replaced, while you may pay around $1,000 because you needed every light inside and outside the house replaced.
Be sure to do your research, ask plenty of questions, and check references. All of these precautions will help prevent you from falling for the rare handyperson scam.
Size of the Project
The size of the project will be the most significant factor when it comes to the final price of hiring a handyperson. There’s a good chance they’re operating independently without a team to back them up. So, if you have a sizable project that typically requires multiple people, only one person will likely slow things down and increase the price.
But the upside is that because one person is handling the work, there’s very little room for miscommunication. Everyone is on the same page, and you can adjust and tweak the project together.
Distance to Job Site
Keep in mind that the handyperson needs to travel to your home to complete the task. The further away you are from their home case, the more they’re likely going to charge. Research the travel fee charged by potential handypeople to avoid being surprised by the final bill.
Scope of the Job
Handypeople handle a wide variety of jobs, but like everyone else, they tend to excel in certain areas while only handling more straightforward tasks in others. For example, if you hire a handyperson who specializes in tile and grout but finds plumbing installations more complicated, you may pay more for the tiling and less for the plumbing. You could also experience the reverse, where you pay more for plumbing and less for tiling. One person may charge more for the work they know will get done with high quality, while others may charge more for work they don’t specialize in.
Additional Material Costs
Projects with high material costs, such as the price of tile installation, will add to your handyperson's rate if they bring related materials themselves. However, many professionals will also bring their basic tools or have access to power tools that would be more costly for you to rent or purchase.
How your handyperson handles material costs will vary project by project. For example, when you're painting your living room, you may opt to purchase the paint on your own. In other circumstances, such as fixing the wiring on a light, the handyperson may shop for the parts necessary for the repair.
When requesting a quote from a handyperson, be sure to clarify these questions regarding tools and materials:
Does the proposed rate include tools and materials?
Are the shipping costs of specialty materials included in the rate?
Do you charge an hourly rate for shopping?
Minimum Hours or Flat Rate
Like all contractors, a handyperson must be able to cover their basic overhead costs when they come to your house for a job. That’s why you will encounter either a service fee made up of a minimum number of hours or a flat-rate fee per project.
A service fee will often include at least two to three hours of work to ensure that the price covers gas, basic tools, and general overhead costs like insurance. If the handyperson's hourly rate is $75, the job may cost $150 to $225, even if the project only takes an hour.
On the other hand, flat rates take time out of the equation and account for everything upfront. Handyperson flat fees can range anywhere from $65 to $1,200, which accounts for everything from changing an out-of-reach light bulb to replacing your windows.
Cost to DIY Common Handyperson Tasks
The great debate when considering whether to hire a handyperson: Can I pull this off myself? We know there are projects you shouldn't DIY without experience, but there are plenty of projects that are doable and more cost-effective to complete yourself.
For example, the cost of painting the interior of your home is a great example of a project you can easily outsource for a bit more money. If you're painting a 10-foot-by-12-foot bedroom, you'll pay a handyperson between $300 and $750 for materials and labor, but $200 to $300 for the materials to paint the room yourself.
Learning how to replace a light fixture is a crucial task to cut down on the need for a pro's help, and you'll likely only pay for the cost of the new fixture. Let's look at some of our earlier handyperson projects and check how much they'd cost to DIY.
|Project||Handyperson Cost (Labor and Materials)||DIY Cost|
|Painting a bedroom||$300 – $750||$200 – $300|
|Installing a light||$150 – $930||$50 – $1,000 (Cost of Fixture)|
|Repairing cabinets||$130 – $500||$20 – $200|
|Replacing tile and grout||$400 – $6,000||$280 – $4,200|
|Installing a ceiling fan||$140 – $350||$100 – $275|
|Installing a bathroom sink||$200 – $630||$400+ (Cost of Sink)|
|Installing a kitchen sink||$220 – $630||$550+ (Cost of Sink)|
|Installing weather stripping||$130 – $410||$10 – $30|
How to Save Money on Handyperson Costs
Saving money on the cost of a handyperson often comes down to big-picture thinking. If you hire a handyperson to repair something instead of attempting it—and possibly botching it—yourself, you'll save money in the long run.
Additionally, reducing handyperson costs comes down to using their time wisely and communicating during the proposal process. Here are some cost-saving tips to consider.
Speak with at least three handypeople in your area when hiring.
Explain your project’s details, including possible specialty tools required for the job, before they come out to the house.
Provide photos or videos of the issue or area in your proposal to clarify the plan or problem.
Group home projects together into one visit to avoid paying extra travel or flat-rate fees per visit.
When possible, purchase the materials and specialty tools for the job before hiring a handyperson.
Handyperson Rates in My Area
The local cost of living and corresponding labor rates will have a big say on your handyperson's hourly rate. As we mentioned above, the pro must be able to cover their travel and overhead fees with each job. While the national average per-project rate is $400, the price will vary based on your region.
New York City: $200–$740
Los Angeles: $160–$590
Matt Marandola contributed to this piece.