Career Development

What Does a Handyman Do?

Find out what a handyman does, how to get this job, and what it takes to succeed as a handyman.

Handymen are skilled tradespeople who can fix or repair just about anything. They commonly work on residential projects, but they may also be called upon to perform repairs at commercial properties or even industrial sites.

Handymen often specialize in a particular area of expertise—they might focus on electrical, carpentry, plumbing, or other types of repairs and installations. Regardless of their specialty, however, all handymen share the same set of skills: they’re able to quickly assess problems and determine the best course of action to take in order to solve them.

Handyman Job Duties

A handyman typically has a wide range of responsibilities, which can include:

  • Installing cabinets, countertops, flooring, and other finished surfaces in residential or commercial buildings
  • Installing new electrical wiring for outlets, switches, and light fixtures
  • Repairing leaks in roofs or walls, replacing insulation, and repairing or replacing structural components such as joists or beams
  • Installing carpet or other floor coverings such as hardwood or laminate
  • Installing plumbing fixtures such as sinks, toilets, or faucets
  • Installing security cameras and alarms as well as home automation systems such as thermostats or door locks
  • Installing cabinets, shelving, countertops, flooring, and other finished surfaces in residential or commercial buildings
  • Installing new tile flooring in kitchens, bathrooms, and other rooms in a home or business
  • Repairing plumbing leaks and other plumbing issues such as clogs in pipes or broken water heaters

Handyman Salary & Outlook

Handymen’s salaries vary depending on their level of experience, the company they work for, and the type of job they are doing.

  • Median Annual Salary: $47,000 ($22.6/hour)
  • Top 10% Annual Salary: $70,500 ($33.89/hour)

The employment of handymen is expected to grow at an average rate over the next decade.

Demand for handymen is expected to continue due to the increasing popularity of home improvement shows and do-it-yourself television programs. As homeowners learn how to fix things around their homes, they will need to hire a handyman to complete more complex projects.

Related: 25 Handyman Interview Questions and Answers

Handyman Job Requirements

A handyman may have the following qualifications:

Education: A high school diploma or GED is often a minimum requirement for a handyman job. However, some employers may prefer an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in construction, building maintenance or a related field.

Training & Experience: Many handymen learn the specific skills and techniques they need for their role while on the job. Training may include shadowing a current handyman or performing duties under the supervision of a current handyman until they are comfortable enough to complete tasks on their own. Training may also include learning how to use certain tools and equipment.

Certifications & Licenses: Some states require handymen to get licensed or certified to work in the electrical, plumbing, heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems. Whether or not you choose to pursue licensure depends on your career aspirations. If you want to become a master handyman or a professional contractor, then getting licensed is a great idea. If you plan to work as an unlicensed handyman, then certification is a better option.

Handyman Skills

Handymen need the following skills in order to be successful:

Basic construction skills: Handymen often have basic construction skills, which can include knowledge of how to use tools and materials for building and repairing structures. This can include knowing how to read blueprints, use power tools and operate machinery. Knowing basic construction skills can help handymen complete projects efficiently and safely.

Electrical knowledge: Handymen use electrical knowledge to install and repair electrical systems, including outlets, switches, light fixtures and other electrical devices. Electrical knowledge can also help handymen troubleshoot electrical issues and identify potential hazards.

Mechanical aptitude: Handymen use their mechanical aptitude to understand how machines work and how to repair them. This includes knowing how to read and interpret diagrams and schematics. Mechanical aptitude can also help handymen troubleshoot and fix common household appliances.

Problem-solving skills: Handymen use problem-solving skills to identify and address issues that arise during a project. For example, if a tool breaks during a job, a handyman might use their problem-solving skills to find a solution to the issue. This could mean finding a replacement tool or repairing the broken tool.

Attention to detail: Handymen often work on projects that other people build, so it’s important for them to pay attention to detail when working on a project. This ensures that the project is done correctly and that the handyman doesn’t have to come back to fix it. Attention to detail can also help handymen save time and money on projects because they notice when something is not done correctly and fix it before moving on.

Handyman Work Environment

Handymen work in a variety of settings, including private homes, apartments, office buildings, and factories. They may be exposed to a variety of weather conditions, depending on their work location. Handymen typically work full time, and some may work overtime or be on call to respond to emergencies. Although most of their work is performed indoors, some handymen may be required to work outdoors, on scaffolding or ladders, or in crawl spaces. Handymen must be able to lift heavy objects, such as appliances, and use a variety of tools, including power tools.

Handyman Trends

Here are three trends influencing how handymen work. Handymen will need to stay up-to-date on these developments to keep their skills relevant and maintain a competitive advantage in the workplace.

The Rise of the DIYer

The rise of the DIYer is a trend that is changing the way that people do home repairs and renovations. With the help of online tutorials and videos, more and more people are learning how to do basic home repairs and upgrades on their own.

This trend is having a major impact on the handyman industry, as more and more people are turning to DIY solutions for their home projects. Handymen who can provide quality DIY solutions will be in high demand in the years to come.

More Focus on Energy Efficiency

As energy costs continue to rise, homeowners are becoming increasingly interested in making their homes more energy efficient. This is leading to an increased demand for professionals who specialize in home improvement projects that will reduce energy consumption.

Handymen who are able to install energy-efficient products such as insulation, windows, and heating systems will be in high demand in the years to come. They will also need to be familiar with other ways to make homes more energy efficient, such as installing LED light bulbs and using smart thermostats.

A Growing Demand for Green Solutions

The demand for green solutions is growing rapidly as more and more people become concerned about the environment. This is creating opportunities for handymen who are able to install and maintain these solutions.

As the demand for green solutions increases, so too will the demand for handymen who are able to install and maintain these solutions. In order to stay competitive, handymen will need to be able to offer these services to their customers.

How to Become a Handyman

A handyman career can be a great way to get started in the construction industry. It’s a good idea to start by learning the basics of carpentry, plumbing, and electrical work. This will give you a foundation of skills that you can use in many different situations.

You should also take advantage of opportunities to learn new skills. There are many online courses and videos that can teach you how to do almost anything related to home repair and maintenance. You can also attend workshops and classes offered by local contractors and building supply stores.

When starting your own business as a handyman, it’s important to build a network of customers who trust you and know that they can count on you for quality work. Offer competitive pricing, but make sure that your work is always top-quality.

Advancement Prospects

Handymen typically start out as helpers or apprentices to more experienced workers. With experience, they may be promoted to lead handyman or supervisor positions. Some handymen start their own businesses after gaining experience and a good reputation.

Many handymen learn their skills through on-the-job training. Some learn informally by working with and observing experienced handymen. Others may receive more formal training through an apprenticeship or technical school.

Handyman Job Description Example

At [CompanyX], we believe that a well-maintained property speaks volumes about the quality of our company. We’re looking for a reliable and experienced handyman to help us keep our properties in top condition. The ideal candidate will have a wide range of skills in carpentry, plumbing, electrical, and general maintenance. He or she will be able to work independently with little supervision and complete tasks in a timely and efficient manner. Additionally, the candidate will be expected to perform general cleaning and upkeep tasks as needed.

Duties & Responsibilities

  • Be responsible for the upkeep of all buildings and grounds, including but not limited to: painting, repairs, maintenance, snow removal, and landscaping
  • Maintain a clean and safe work environment by adhering to all company policies and procedures
  • Perform general handyman tasks such as minor electrical repairs, plumbing, carpentry, and drywall repair
  • Assist with major projects as needed, such as renovations, additions, and new construction
  • Respond to emergency maintenance requests in a timely manner
  • Keep accurate records of all work completed and materials used
  • Order and stock supplies as needed
  • Report any safety hazards or concerns to management immediately
  • Adhere to all OSHA regulations
  • Comply with all local building codes
  • Maintain confidentiality of all company information
  • Perform all other duties as assigned

Required Skills and Qualifications

  • Proven experience as a handyman or general maintenance worker
  • Working knowledge of electrical, plumbing, carpentry, and HVAC systems
  • Basic understanding of general repairs and maintenance
  • Ability to read and follow technical manuals and blueprints
  • Good physical stamina and strength, with ability to lift heavy objects
  • Valid driver’s license and clean driving record

Preferred Skills and Qualifications

  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Technical training in relevant trade
  • Additional certification in OSHA standards, CPR, and first aid
  • Experience working in commercial or industrial setting
  • Familiarity with computer-aided design (CAD) software


What Does a Store Manager Do?

Back to Career Development

What Does an Agronomist Do?