As Northern Ireland emerges from the recession and the housing market shows continuing signs of recovery locally, more and more homeowners are beginning to put money back into their homes, with a recent study by Mintel concluding that two-thirds of local householders plan to do DIY in the year ahead. But with two thirds of people interviewed also claiming to hate DIY and a range of potential further home issues stemming from DIY-gone wrong, local start-up Sortsy is encouraging those planning for home improvements to turn to the locally-developed app to make connections with skilled and reliable local services.
Having launched first with their Home & Garden category, from the palm of your hand, Sortsy matches you with local services in real time, in just a few taps. From fixing a burst pipe to a garden makeover.
“Many people initiate DIY projects with the ethos that doing it yourself is easier than hiring a professional,” said Peter Layland, Co-Founder, Sortsy. “This belief stems from bad experiences with unreliable builders in the past or the assumption that hiring a professional will cost a fortune.” To combat these misconceptions, Layland, a commercial pilot, paired up with Richard Campbell, a leading software developer, to create Sortsy.
“Inspired by my own frustrations in finding a reliable and skilled tradesperson in an urgent situation, I decided that there needed to be a reliable link between tradespeople and consumers that would enable immediate bookings for household emergencies as well as planned projects,” added Peter.
The unique app provides a valuable service to tradespeople as well as consumers, with tradesmen able to find projects in real time, and potential customers given the option to book a tradesperson immediately for a range of jobs, from burst pipes to hanging wallpaper. It is expected to contribute substantially to the growth of local businesses including builders, joiners, handymen, decorators and landscapers, among others.
“Following extensive development, we are incredibly proud of the product we have developed with Sortsy,” said Richard Campbell, Co-Founder, Sortsy. “Subsequent to consumer and trade focus groups and extensive testing and development, Sortsy has grown to offer a unique service that is both intuitive and convenient. For consumers, Sortsy’s app is free to use and offers access to a range of trusted and skilled tradespeople, and for local businesses, it has become easier to generate business, putting them in front of potential customers who in the past would have relied on word of mouth or directory websites.”
“We believe strongly in the relationships that Sortsy will help to build,” added Richard. “Not only will Sortsy offer quick solutions to DIY disasters and last-minute jobs, but it will help to develop relationships between homeowners and local tradespeople. Recruiting the help of a trusted professional has become as much of a quick solution as DIY, but with a much lower risk factor, allowing homeowners to rest assured that the work carried out on their house has been done by the best builders and contractors available.”
Sortsy will launch in Northern Ireland with over 400 trade professionals on its books, with plans to expand to additional industry sectors including health and beauty and lifestyle in the coming months.