January 19, 2009

Is Angie's list worth it?

I have heard of this website called Angie's List. Its supposed to be a site where people post reviews and get referrals for various service providers in their town. By service providers I mean stuff like auto mechanics, plumbers, movers, etc. It can be difficult to find a good business to work with when you need something fixed around the house or have a car breakdown. You never know going in if you'll get over charged or if they'll do the job well. So it would seem that a site like Angie's list would be a good resource since it would help give you some information on the quality of different services.

The fees seem to vary depending on location. They have a page where you can find the fees.
Roughly it looks like they charge about $50-60 a year or $7 a month give or take. The fees seem high to me. However this cost could easily be offset by one good referral and avoiding one bad experience. The fees may be worth it but it really depends on how good the service is.

On ePinions they have a 2.5 / 5 rating which is not particularly good. Many of the reviewers complain of low quality data and small amounts of reviews. I found this page with a bunch of comments and very mixed reviews with many negative reviews.

I asked around and found out that my Mother in Law had been a member of Angie's list here and she had cancelled it. She was a member when it was free but didn't continue the service after they started charging fees.

Given the reviews I don't think I'll sign up for Angies' list.

I really like the idea and it seems like it could be a good money saver in general. But unless I have a good idea that the service is worth paying for I'm not about to fork over $25-50 to sign up for it. I really wish they had a free trial offer so you could at least see the volume of reviews in your town. Otherwise you're signing up totally blind and I hate pay services like that.

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