INDIANAPOLIS (WTHR) — During this stay-at-home order, there is one worker families are allowing into their houses: a handyman. If one of your pipes burst, if your refrigerator quits on you, if you have electrical problems or any number of other problems while in self-isolation, who ya gonna call? But for any handyman, keeping himself safe in our new coronavirus world can be especially difficult.
“I actually have three respirator masks, the nitrile gloves, shoe covers and distance,” said Kevin Madsen from “Kevin, Your Handyman.” “I knock on the door, and you open the door and take a couple steps back. I’ll close the door behind me. We've got the bottle of hand sanitizer in the truck. I have the gloves on, come out when I get to the truck, I'll wipe the gloves down and then take those off, throw them away, and then use hand sanitizer on my actual hands.”
“Kevin, Your Handyman” is a true "mom and pop" small business serving central Indiana homes for the last decade. Kevin and Michelle Madsen run it from top to bottom. However, the COVID-19 restrictions have changed their business and lives.
“The state has guidelines as far as what's essential,” Michelle said. “An essential service is something that's required to make the house functional and livable. If you've got a pipe leaking or something like that, then, yeah, that's an essential job.”
But this isn't where the problems start for Kevin and Michelle. Because of the coronavirus, they’re not doing any remodels or what would be considered elective home improvement.
“So, we have nothing in the pipeline because we're not allowed,” Michelle said. “Technically, we're not allowed to go do estimates.”
They ask each prospective client a series of questions to assure they’re entering a safe work environment.
“You actually have to ask people, 'Have you been social distancing yourself?'" Kevin said. “'Have you been exposed? Any family members or close relatives that are sick or have been exposed?' Usually, it goes pretty good, but you have these people that just don't want to answer those questions. If they will not answer the questions or they say there's a good chance I've been been exposed, then we just don't go there.”
It’s all part of being a handyman in 2020.
“We've come to terms with the fact that when we get back to normal, it’s going to be a new normal,” Michelle said. “We both got that mentality where we have to adapt and overcome.”