Supply House Times

Sears Helps Homeowners Hire Repairmen Online

February 13, 2009
Homeowners name their price for repairs through Sears’ ServiceLive.com.

Sears Holdings today announced the beta launch of ServiceLive.com, an online services marketplace where homeowners can name their price for home improvements and repairs. By combining the successful auction capabilities used by sites in other categories with proprietary ServiceLive technology and processes, the site was designed to improve the home services experience for both homeowners and service providers.

“ServiceLive.com is going to change the way people hire services for their homes,” announced George Coll, president of ServiceLive. ”We have created a marketplace that puts the homeowner back in the driver’s seat by allowing them to name the terms and manage the process completely online. It benefits service providers as well by creating job opportunities and enabling speedy payment.”

ServiceLive was founded in 2007 as a wholly owned subsidiary of Sears Holdings. It has spent the last year recruiting and conducting background checks on service providers across the country ― from handymen and home electronics pros to plumbers and computer experts.  

Here’s how it works: Users review and select pre-screened service providers in their area, and then describe a repair or improvement project in detail, including the price they want to pay and desired appointment time. The project is then routed to selected providers after the user uploads funds to his or her ServiceLive account. The first provider to accept the terms electronically wins the project. After a project is completed to satisfaction, the user pays and rates the provider online.

A recent Sears survey of homeowners found that more than 71 percent say that the upkeep, repair, maintenance and improvement of their homes are “more frustrating than making their mortgage payments.” Nearly nine in 10 (89 percent) said they have homes that need work, but almost half of this group (44 percent) haven’t started the work because “they don’t think that they can afford it.”

“In today’s economy, everyone is keeping an eye on spending, so it’s more important than ever to maintain your home to prevent future, more expensive repairs,” said Coll. “ServiceLive.com offers users a way to take care of their homes at a price they can afford, while giving service providers a way to supplement their business.”

Currently, thousands of ServiceLive-approved providers are available to hire through the online marketplace. A special launch promotion will waive the $10 posting fee for all orders through Feb. 28.

For more information, visit www.ServiceLive.com or call 888/549-0640.

Source: Sears Holdings Corp.