The complexity of your project is really the key
It seems there’s an online marketplace for almost every industry. In real estate, services like Local Agent Finder and Open Agent, which allow homeowners put out a request for appraisals from real estate agents in their local area, are further disrupting the industry.
Although these online lead generators for the real estate industry are still in their infancy, online marketplaces for tradies and other professional services are not. Services like Oneflare, AirTasker, Service Seeking and hipages have been around ages, so should you use them to find your next tradie?
How complicated is your project?
There was a time when you’d turn to the classifieds section of your local newspaper and call around to a few of the tradies in your local area. They’d usually come out to have a look at the whatever it was you needed them for, and they’d either give you a quote on the spot or come back with one late that day.
With an online marketplace like Service Seeking or hipages, you describe the project or problem you have, upload a photo if necessary, and await the quotes to flood your inbox.
An algorithm determines which tradies signed up to use the service receive your project request, and they’ll reply back with a quote. Depending on what you’re after, and how common your request is, you could wind up with many tens of quotes. Or you may get just a few. Generally, the simpler your project, the more responses you’ll get.
Do you know exactly what you want?
According to hipages, you can get your bathroom or kitchen entirely renovated using their tradespeople, but this would require detailed instructions, in order to get meaningful quotes. A lot of the time, though, most people don’t know precisely what they need done. They just know that something needs to be fixed or constructed.
On the surface, this may seem pretty straightforward, but, as can sometimes be the case when building granny flats, there may be complications lurking beneath the surface. If you’re lucky, the tradesperson will pick up any obstacles before work commences, but if he doesn’t, expect the cost of your project to inflate significantly, and quickly.
Online marketplaces for tradies and other services can be great, but it depends on the project. If you’re looking for something fairly complication-free — such as carpet or window cleaning — a site like Service Seeking or hipages is a useful resource. For more complicated projects and jobs, however, it’s probably best to do the legwork yourself. Or, at least, exercise caution when accepting quotes.
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