Waikato homeowners are ahead of the national curve when it comes to adopting online trades services. In the past 12 months, service website Builderscrack.co.nz has had a 20 per cent increase in the number of Waikato homeowners turning to its pool of tradespeople to complete home renovation and repair jobs. That beats the national average, a 13 per cent jump. “Some of that growth is a reflection on the upturn in residential building but it’s also consumer confidence in being able to find a reliable, qualified tradesperson online,” Builderscrack director Keith Roberts said.
Homeowners can post jobs, from deck builds to replacing window seals, on the site free of charge. Tradespeople view the post and provide the homeowner with a quote for the job. The site reports that 80 per cent of jobs posted receive two or more responses within an hour. The homeowners then view the quotes, read reviews on the individual tradies and hire the one that suits, with a small fee of the negotiated price going to Builderscrack.
First-time Hamilton homeowner Ian Wallace said he was alerted to the site earlier this year by friends and used the services three times for plastering and general interior renovations. “There’s bits and pieces that I couldn’t do and I didn’t want to pay a whole lot of money,” he said. He doesn’t think of himself as tech-savvy but said that the site was still fairly easy to use, comparing it to Trade Me in the way it rated the registered tradespeople.
More than 500 tradespeople from the Waikato in various trades from bricklaying to painting are registered with the site, which authenticates any registrations or licences the tradies have for customers to view.