Handyman’s services for the elderly catching on | Denton
Caleb Lopez is aware of the fact that for some, a simple household chore can be harmful or even fatal. He is passionate about helping the elderly avoid these situations, as well as the often predatory companies that try to offer their services.
Raised Right Handymen of Denton is his idea, a repair and improvement service specifically aimed at older adults.
“As people get old, these little things get overwhelming,” he said. “People who need help the most are older.”
Lopez, 33, never really planned the deal. It came about by itself, born of his enthusiasm for helping his elderly neighbors and word of mouth.
“I’m still not convinced that I’m really going to do this,” said Lopez. “It’s a little more fantastic than real.”
He had worked in the oil industry for about 15 years doing dangerous but well-paying jobs when he switched to contracted mechanical work.
In December, Lopez was fired from the job where he was concerned about his own mother’s need for help. He started helping her around the house, followed by a couple of older neighbors. Word of mouth soon spread that Lopez was a trustworthy and respectful craftsman, increasing the number of jobs he was requested for.
Business turned serious in March when Lopez found that inquiries had become frequent and consistent. Many of his early customers became repeat customers, and the people he worked for sent more customers on his way.
“Old people are often scammed, so word of mouth has always been the most important referral for me,” Lopez said. “A lot of my clients come from word of mouth.”
His customers ask for help with a variety of tasks, from mowing the lawn to changing door handles to repairing equipment and much more.
Often, Lopez said he found seniors with numerous dangers in their home, such as carpets not pinned down, inadequate lighting, or even gas leaks. Lopez said if there is a security issue he will work for free if necessary.
He also volunteers, when he can, for the nonprofit Hearts for Homes, which offers free home repairs to low-income seniors.
“If I don’t have a business that day, I might as well help people,” said Lopez.
Working with the elderly had a significant impact on Lopez, who says he has seen many of the scary parts of growing old and losing loved ones. As someone who works with many women whose husbands have died, he sees the ease with which people can get into trouble or hoard.
Sometimes these people feel like they can’t ask for help because they are ashamed of their life situation, Lopez said, but he has learned not to judge.
“Some people take it for granted that they can go up to the attic and just see what’s going on,” he said.
This is where his services come into play. Lopez will also do small tasks to help its customers such as: B. Check circuit breaker or replace a lightbulb.
“The pressure of old age – that someone 30 years older than me could die changing a lightbulb – has affected me profoundly,” he said.
Now that he has experience of what he sees as the universal experience of aging, Lopez finds it absurd that there are no more services like his.
“There should be more artisans doing what I do,” he said. “I wish I had more competition. It shouldn’t be a man in a city. “
One of Lopez’s goals is to show that Raised Right’s business model is profitable so that other tradespeople can take care of the elderly.
His long-term plan for business is much bigger. By hiring people in these areas, Lopez hopes to include additional aspects of home repair such as plumbing, electrical and air conditioning repairs in Raised Right.
He hopes his wife, Ellen Lopez, will also get involved as she works towards her license as a nurse and could look after the elderly.
Ultimately, he wants the business to be run entirely on donations so that older adults can get repairs for free.
It’s terrifying to see what can happen to you at a certain age, ”said Caleb Lopez. “Older people still have things they want to do, they want to continue to live comfortably and feel that they can influence the environment around them. It’s depressing, but I don’t think it has to be that way. “