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Licensed Handyman in El Paso, TX

How to Hire a Good Handyman in El Paso

With average hourly wages of $15.17, handymen are cheaper hiring options than general and trade contractors, who earn hourly average wages that are at least 12 percent higher. Hiring a professional handyman in the City of El Paso protects you from unintentional home injuries, which cause more than 30,000 deaths annually, while also saving you the time and stress of hiring different specialists to handle each individual task. However, to make sure that you hire a legitimate professional and avoid being scammed by con artists, you should strongly consider asking the following questions when hiring handymen in El Paso:

Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Handyman in the City of El Paso

  1. Are You Licensed to Practice as a Handyman in the City of El Paso?

    There are no mandatory licensing requirements for handymen that wish to operate in El Paso. However, as stipulated by Section 18.02.104 of the El Paso Code of Ordinances, these professionals must register as contractors with the city's Planning and Inspections Department before they can perform jobs that require permits. These types of jobs include, but are not limited to, exterior door and window replacements, work involving masonry walls and fences that are over 42 inches in height, and interior or exterior remodeling that involves structural changes to a building.

    Handymen that have to register as contractors may do so by completing and submitting a Contractor Registration Application Form to the Planning and Inspections Department at:

    • One Stop Shop
    • 811 Texas Avenue
    • El Paso, Texas 79901
    • Phone: (915) 212-0104
    • Hours: 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Mondays to Thursdays and 8:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. on Fridays

    Registrants will typically be required to pay applicable registration fees, provide proof of insurance and bonding, and also submit any additional documents that the department may request.

    Note that, in addition to registering as contractors before they can obtain permits, handymen in the city must also register their businesses with the El Paso County Clerk's Office before providing their services to interested homeowners. This business registration requirement is mandatory for all handymen that wish to operate in El Paso, regardless of whether or not they intend to perform jobs that require permits. Other business registration requirements that handymen in El Paso need to meet include obtaining a Sales and Use Tax Permit from the state's Comptroller of Public Accounts Office and filing federal-level tax obligations with the IRS.

    You should always confirm that your intended handyman has met all applicable occupational and business regulatory requirements before reaching any hiring arrangements with them. You can do this, and also get additional information on the regulatory requirements for handymen in El Paso, by contacting the city's Planning and Inspections Department via email or by calling (915) 212-0104 between the hours of 7:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Mondays to Thursdays, and 7:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. on Fridays.

  2. How Much Do You Charge Compared to Handymen in the City of El Paso?

    Hourly rates for handyman services in the City of El Paso are generally dependent on a lot of variables, such as the nature and complexity of the job, the type and cost of materials and supplies needed for the job, and the urgency of the required service. Note that not all handymen in the city charge hourly rates for their services, and some of these professionals utilize flat rates for relatively straightforward jobs like artwork hanging.

    As such, it is advisable to get estimates for your required service from at least three different handymen and compare these estimates before deciding on the one that best suits your budget. Note that your hiring decision should not be based solely on the estimated cost of the project, as some handymen may fraudulently submit low estimates to get you to retain their services. To this end, always look out for estimates that are markedly higher or lower than the others, and be wary of the handymen that submitted these estimates.

    El Paso handymen earn an average wage of $31,550, annually. The table below compares and contrasts the average hourly wages of handymen and other general maintenance and repair workers in El Paso with those of workers in this industry across the State of Texas and major American cities:

    El Paso Handyman Average Hourly Wage
    $15.17
    Texas Handyman Average Hourly Wage
    $19.38
    Houston Handyman Average Hourly Wage
    $20.96
    New York City Handyman Average Hourly Wage
    $24.50
    Los Angeles Handyman Average Hourly Wage
    $22.77
    Detroit Handyman Average Hourly Wage
    $20.28
    Boston Handyman Average Hourly Wage
    $25.61

    Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

  3. Do You Require a Permit to Complete This Work in the City of El Paso?

    Per Section 18.02.105 of the El Paso Code of Ordinances, permits must be obtained before the construction, alteration, or repair of buildings and structures as well as the installation, removal, repair, or modification of electrical, gas, mechanical, and plumbing systems in the city. The provisions of this law apply to several types of home repair and improvement projects that handymen in the city may perform, such as interior or exterior remodeling work that involves structural changes and the construction or repair of porches, awnings, and carports. Note that permit exemptions are equally made for several types of projects that are commonly handled by handymen, and these include, but are not limited to:

    • Ordinary, minor nonstructural repair or remodeling work, such as painting, siding, and papering
    • Work involving the repair or replacement of switches, receptacles, fans, fuses, light fixtures, and other similar equipment, provided that this work does not alter existing mechanical, electrical, or plumbing systems
    • Work involving masonry walls and fences that are not more than 42 inches in height and chain link fences that are not more than six feet in height

    In situations where a permit is required for a home repair or improvement job, these permits can be obtained by completing and submitting a Building Permit Application Form to the El Paso Planning and Inspections Department through its One Stop Shop located at:

    • 811 Texas Avenue
    • El Paso, TX 79901
    • Hours: 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Mondays to Thursdays and 8:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m., Fridays

    Note that the payment of permit fees is typically required before requested permits will be issued. Likewise, applicants may also be required to provide additional documentation for necessary review, and the specific documents that will be requested are largely dependent on the nature and scope of the home repair or improvement work that has to be done.

    The El Paso Planning and Inspections Department also provides interested parties with the option of applying for building permits online via the city's Citizen Access Portal. However, parties that wish to utilize this permitting option will be required to register a user account on the portal before they can do so. Finally, it is important to note that permitted building and construction-related activities in El Paso are usually subject to inspections at various stages and upon their conclusion. This is done to ensure that the work being done complies with all relevant provisions of the city's Code of Ordinances. Additional information concerning the El Paso permitting process can be gotten by contacting the city's Planning and Inspections Department via email or by calling (915) 212-0104 between 7:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. on Mondays to Thursdays and 7:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. on Fridays.

  4. What Works Can You Do Legally as a Handyman in the City of El Paso?

    Handymen in the City of El Paso can legally provide any type of home repair or improvement service that does not require a permit. These include nonstructural repairs and remodeling, light fixture repairs and replacements, and work involving portable HVAC units. Note that handymen in the city that wish to perform any construction-related work that requires a permit are statutorily required to register as contractors with the El Paso Planning and Inspections Department. In situations where the work involves the installation or modification of electrical, mechanical, and plumbing systems, these professionals must also possess state-issued trade licenses obtained from the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation or the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners where appropriate.

    As such, always determine the scope of your home repair or improvement work before finalizing any arrangements with handymen in the city and make sure that they are qualified to provide the required service. You can find out if your project will require permits, and also confirm that your intended handyman is qualified to pull these permits, by contacting the El Paso Planning and Inspection Department at (915) 212-0104. It is also a good idea to get an estimate of the cost of the job from the handyman before it begins to avoid misunderstandings down the road. Cost estimates for some commonly requested handyman services in El Paso are listed below:

    Artwork hanging
    $60 - $155
    Cabinet repair
    $100 - $450
    Drain unclogging
    $85 - $200
    Driveway sealing
    $85 - $230
    Drywall repair
    $100 - $250
    Electrical appliance installation
    $100 - $300
    Faulty fixture repair/replacement
    $85 - $300
    Gutter cleaning
    $95 - $250
    Home childproofing
    $120 - $450
    Lawn care/landscaping maintenance
    $60 - $300
    Patio/deck painting
    $150 - $500
    Snow removal
    $60 - $250
    TV mounting
    $60 - $220
    Residential handyman services
    $59.85 - $107.10 per hour (labor only)
    Commercial handyman services
    $58.75 - $67.85 per hour (labor only)
  5. Do You Carry the Necessary Insurance Policy for Handymen in the City of El Paso?

    According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, injuries amongst construction, maintenance, and repair workers accounted for over 37 percent of all fatal on-the-job injuries reported across the State of Texas in 2020. These figures serve to underscore the importance of always hiring hired handymen to work on your home repair and improvement projects. Failing to do this opens you up to both financial and legal liabilities if an injury or other unforeseen circumstances like property damage occur whilst your project is ongoing.

    Therefore, even though there are no compulsory city or state level insurance requirements that must be met by handymen operating in El Paso, you should always make sure that any handyman you hire carries commercial general liability insurance. Make sure that the handyman's coverage is adequate to cover any bodily injuries or property damages that may occur during the job by requesting a copy of their insurance certificate and validating it with the relevant issuing organization.

    Note that, in situations where handymen in El Paso have to register as contractors to enable them to obtain city-issued permits, these handymen will be required to meet certain minimum insurance and bonding requirements. These include carrying general liability coverage of at least $250,000 for bodily injury for each person or $500,000 in aggregate, at least $100,000 for property damage, and holding a building construction bond of $25,000. You can get additional information concerning insurance and bonding requirements for city-registered contractors by contacting the El Paso Planning and Inspections Department at (915) 212-0104.

How to File a Complaint Against a Bad Handyman in the City of El Paso

Every year, the Texas Attorney General's Office receives more than 30,000 complaints from consumers across the state concerning scams and other fraudulent business activities. Locally, in October 2020, KTSM 9 News reported that an El Paso contractor had scammed a local couple by asking them for upfront payment to fix their leaking roof, and then subsequently taking off before completing the job. According to the couple, the contractor had incorrectly installed gutters on the roof without actually sealing the leakage, leaving them with a leaking roof, partially installed gutters, and out thousands of dollars.

Therefore, when searching for legitimate handymen in the city, it is important that you stay on the lookout for fraudulent contractors and con artists that prey on unsuspecting homeowners. Some common signs of these scammers include unsolicited repair offers, insistence on cash-only deals, requests for full upfront payment, and reluctance to provide references or written contracts. The following tips can help protect you against the activities of these scammers when searching for handymen in El Paso:

  • Avoid door-to-door handymen, especially ones that come with offers of special deals and discounted repair services
  • Get referrals to handymen in the city from trusted relatives and friends or reputable online sources like the Better Business Bureau
  • Request and compare estimates for your project from at least three different handymen
  • Be wary of handymen that hesitate or cannot provide you with local verifiable references. You can also get reviews and testimonials on your preferred handymen via third-party websites like the Better Business Bureau and Google Review
  • Never pay the full cost of the job upfront. Always make sure that the job has been suitably completed before making any payments. Also, in situations where you have to make advance payments, make sure that these payments do not exceed 10 - 30 percent of the project's total cost
  • Request a written contract for the job and take the time to properly review this contract before signing it. Never sign any contract that has blank spaces, as unscrupulous handymen and contractors may later fill in these spaces with unfavorable terms and conditions
  • Always confirm that your preferred handyman is properly insured
  • Contact the El Paso Department of Planning and Inspections at (915) 212-0104 to find out whether any permits will be required for your job. If yes, make sure that your handyman has been duly registered by this department and is thus eligible to obtain the necessary permits

The Consumer Protection Division of the Texas Attorney General's Office is charged with handling reports of scams and other fraudulent business activities that occur in the City of El Paso. Interested parties can file complaints with this division online or by calling (800) 621-0508. Complaints can also be filed with the Consumer Protection Division by mailing a consumer complaint form, along with copies of all relevant supporting documents, to:

  • Office of the Attorney General
  • Consumer Protection Division
  • P.O. Box 12548
  • Austin, TX 78711-2548