Pros and cons of being a handyman in lockdown
People offering house-to-house services such as window cleaners are seeing a spike in business because of lockdown.
But others like car valeters are feeling the pinch with people not using their vehicles as much or choosing to do it themselves.
And all tradespeople are having to be careful over adhering to social distancing when calling at people’s houses as well as wearing PPE.
Antony Kelly, who runs the Norwich Window Cleaning Co, said although he could have continued working when lockdown began because his job is in isolation, he took three weeks off to allow people to “get their heads” around it.
Gradually work has returned and in fact because so many people are at home, they are looking at their windows and deciding they need a clean, he said.
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He wears gloves, encourages contactless payment and does not come into contact with any householder – although he said this does mean a change in how he usually works.
“I can’t have a cup of tea and a chat at the front door anymore. I think for older customers that is a bit difficult although I think they like the normality of seeing people like window cleaners or a milkman, we may be the only people they see. I now have to have a quick chat at a distance.
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“I have taken on more customers although that’s normal for this time of year but I have definitely had more one-offs, people who have been sitting looking at their dirty windows all day. I have had probably about three people who have cancelled their regular cleans because of the uncertainty over their jobs but generally I have taken on more work.”
But for Daniel Hudson who runs DGH Detailing, a mobile car valeting service, based in Norwich, business is about 80pc down because of coronavirus. A former mechanic, he went self-employed three years ago running a business whereby he cleans and valets vehicles at the owner’s home.
“People aren’t using their cars as much or doing it themselves. March was supposed to be a good month but then it completely dropped off. I am hopeful it will pick up again but with people having more time on their hands, they are choosing to clean their car themselves.
“Luckily I don’t have a family who is dependent on me and I just hope I can build it back up to where it was.”
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