Handy with tools? If you can do any type of building and construction, from painting to putting together IKEA furniture, you can find plenty of ways to find jobs in the gig economy.

The only problem is that some of the better-known choices, such as Thumbtack, Porch, and HomeAdvisor, stink. That’s because they charge contractors handsomely for “qualified leads” which lead to disconnected phone numbers and confused or disgruntled non-customers.

Good news

The good news is that some lesser-known sites provide great ways to find work. And the best of them even let you list your services for free. Those sites:


ToolBelt connects contractors and tradesmen with individuals and other contractors who need help. The site has both a free plan and a pro plan. The free plan plan provides as many as two leads a week. Want more? The pro plan costs $99 a month, but it you’re getting more than two leads a week, it may be worth it. More about ToolBelt here.


Once criticized for strong-arming freelancers into taking rotten jobs, TaskRabbit has reformed and now is among the most freelancer-friendly sites for job seekers of all stripes. Construction and handyman services is a well-trafficked category where you can break down your services as granularly as you’d like. Want to assemble furniture for $20 and hour; paint for $30 an hour; tape and mud drywall for $40 an hour? It’s up to you. TaskRabbit charges nothing to freelancers who list and sell here; all the site’s fees are paid by customers. Find out more about TaskRabbit here.

(Know enough? You can sign up to be a tasker at TaskRabbit here. (TaskRabbit is a SideHusl affiliate. This does not affect our reviews, but means we could earn a small commission if you sign up with them.)


JiffyOnDemand helps contractors provide a wide array of services, from yard work to plumbing, at rates of pay that range from about $40 to $85 per hour. The rates are set by the site, which takes a commission on each sale. However, Jiffy is only available in a few cities, such as Boston and Chicago. Find details about Jiffy here.


Handy connects freelancers providing cleaning and repair services with clients. However, it has a number of troubling terms that you should be aware of before you sign up here. Specifically, the site penalizes contractors for showing up late or having to cancel appointments — even if the reason for the cancellation is that the job was misrepresented. Learn more about Handy here.


Nextdoor is officially a neighborhood social media site that’s used for everything from trying to find your lost dog to reporting local crimes. However, it’s a great place for local contractors to find work through referrals. If you have a satisfied customer in your neighborhood, ask if he or she would be willing to post a recommendation for you here. While the site does charge for advertising, this is different and, at least for the moment, is free. Want details about Nextdoor?

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