So Handy

Niche Home Services You Never Knew You Needed

From literal poop scooping to energetic space clearing.

By Ann Karneus

Never suffer the indignity of hanging your own Christmas lights again.

Have you ever needed help with something ridiculously specific at home? Turns out, there’s an expert (or willing task-taker) for just about anything. Herein, a curated list of niche home services to help you never have to lift a figurative finger again.

Outdoor Services

Christmas Light Hanging

Pretty self-explanatory—especially if you plan to avoid joining the 500,000 people each year who are treated for ladder-related injuries. A general handyperson can get the job done, but if you want your house to rival the Griswolds, a professional is the way to go. Local experts like Holiday Spirit Lighting and All Covered Painting can bring your custom light designs to life and even lease the lights to you, so there’s no need to figure out where to store your strands 10 months out of the year.

Poop Scooping

It’s certainly one of the most unfortunate aspects of owning a dog. Now you can schedule services like Pet Butler or Poop 911 for weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, or occasional poop pick-ups. Pricing depends on a variety of factors, including the area you live in, the number of dogs you have, and when the last time your yard was cleaned. They’re also available for dog birthday parties, so you won’t have to deal with the smelly consequences of hosting 10 canines at a Sniffspot. And don’t despair, feline owners—both businesses offer litter box cleaning too.

Stump turned sculpture.

Tree Stump Sculpting

It’s always a shame when a beloved tree in your yard has to be cut down, leaving only a sad stump behind. However, sculptor Tomas Vrba can give your Giving Tree a spruce up, transforming any stump into a work of art. Originally from Slovakia, Vrba was trained in wood carving at a young age. He now resides in Bellingham and collaborates with his clients on the designs, ranging in price from $1,000 to $25,000 depending on the size and complexity of the job. Pro tip: It’s best to leave 12 feet of stump for him to work with.

Vegetable Garden Landscaping

If you’ve always wanted to start a vegetable garden but don’t have quite the right setup for it, hybrid landscaping and gardening firm Greenbank can help jumpstart the whole process. They start with a raised bed design, and then construct one for you in steel, stone, or wood. Next up: an irrigation system curated for the type of crops you want to grow, a soil supply, and full-service planting.

Indoor Services

Tile Designing

Laying down tile is pretty permanent. Thankfully Seattle has no shortage of tile suppliers with designers on hand. Seattle Tile Company, for example, can provide concept sketches and color renderings to help you get a feel for what things will look like IRL.

Seattle Sparkle's Jean Prominski isn't afraid to dig in to help declutter.

Professional Organizing and Energetic Space Clearing

The only thing better than watching Marie Kondo on Netflix is having someone like her help you in reality. Enter certified professional organizer and productivity coach Jean Prominski. Her business Seattle Sparkle offers virtual and in-person sessions to help those who are feeling overwhelmed by their surroundings, or who simply don’t know where to start. Sometimes, Prominski acknowledges, people just need someone to sit next to them as they sort or talk through a sentimental attachment to an object before parting with it. That feeds into the other side of her business: energetic space clearing. Using reiki and a variety of other techniques, she clears negative energy from your home and resets it.

Rug Designing

Buy a rug? Sure. Craft a rug? That's far less common. At Turabi Rug Gallery in Pioneer Square, you can design a custom rug for your home or choose from one of their large cache of floor coverings. Turabi also provides antique rug restoration services out of their facility in Turkey, so your grandmother's rug can finally be returned to its former glory.

Air Conditioning Installation

Only around 53 percent of Washingtonians use air conditioning, so we get this equipment might seem novel to many, but if that 2021 Heat Dome was any indication, times are a changing. Greenwood Heating and Home Services, Brennan Heating and Air Conditioning, and Evergreen Home Heating and Energy are just a few of the AC installer options in the area.   

Careful color curation makes for a harmonious space.

Image: Scott Miller

Color Consulting

Picking out wall colors for your home seems pretty straightforward, but quite a bit of physics goes into it. How levels of light throughout the day will affect the color, how the furniture will complement the walls, and, of course, your personal preferences are all considerations. Emily Lauderback Stewart’s design and renovation company specializes in picking out the perfect colors for your space. Her in-person services (requiring meetings at specific times of day to assess natural lighting and the whole nine yards) can be pricey and not for everyone, however. That’s why she launched Color in Space as an educational entry point into the world of color consultation for the average homeowner. Through this platform, she offers more affordable virtual consulting options and pre-packaged color palettes designed to create harmony within a home.

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