When you think of home repairs, you probably think of guys with tool belts, dirt and mess, and lots of hassle. But finding a contractor to complete the job can be a daunting and frightening task on its own. Understanding what’s a fair price and handling the negotiations with the contractor also introduces a whole new level of hassle.

The one thing you probably don’t think about is the way getting your floor fixed or replacing your AC system is impacting the environment. For most people, the only green they’re thinking about is all the green cash they will have to pay for the necessary repairs. Fortunately, there’s ServiceWhale to help you out. The service wants to make it easy to fix your house. Specifically, the service is a marketplace of sorts where you can easily find quotes for whatever you need repaired from a number of different contractors.

It’s easy to imagine how helpful this would be for people who aren’t particularly handy around the house and who don’t know how much it costs for typical home repairs. Beyond that, who has time to shop around for a contractor, making tons of phone calls and negotiating a fair price while your roof is leaking or your sink is clogged up.

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You can even use the service to negotiate with the contractor to lower the price of the job and bring it in line with your budget. The service uses technology to streamline what would normally be a real pain. So far, so good – technology helping make people’s lives easier.

However, ServiceWhale also discovered a surprisingly green benefit from their service. The creators understood that the platform cut down a lot of the travel that takes place before the work ever started. Contractors were constantly traveling to potential job sites to assess the site and provide an estimate. Since ServiceWhale sidesteps much of that process with its platform it was able to cut down significantly on the trips that contractors made to potential clients, significantly cutting the use of gas and emissions that would have resulted from all that travel.

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“The ability of ServiceWhale to generate prices without the need for visits of contractors resulted in time saved, miles saved, fuel economy, and CO2 emission savings. The effects go even deeper with reduction of vehicle amortization, less traffic, decreased number of parking spots needed, and even saving trees, since there is no need to print quotes or contracts,” said ServiceWhale Founder, Dmitri Saveliev. “ServiceWhale provides homeowners and contractors with all tools necessary to complete a deal online, without the construction tools of course. Those savings are significant to the environment from a direct correlation with ServiceWhale.” As a side note: it’s a good idea to create a punch list for construction projects to ensure the contractor has met all of your specifications and requirements.

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The site created a fun dashboard that helps you understand how much they’ve helped contractors and homeowners save. It shows how many miles, fuel, and CO2 emissions are saved by contractors using the service.

“The savings to the environment was a happy side effect that we foresaw early on. But as we began to scale we saw the real results of what we were accomplishing,” Saveliev added. “On any given day, we save over 12,000 hours combined for homeowners and contractors. This is 3,600 miles a day that no longer need to be driven! In a week that is nearly 50,000 miles! That means less oil, fewer repairs, and overall savings on materials.”

I think this is an interesting way of looking at the potential benefits of the service and also provides an example that other companies can follow. Everyone knows that technology holds tremendous benefits to save time and money. But the potential that this efficiency has to benefit the environment hasn’t been fully explored.


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