Home Depot hopes to make billions of dollars by branching out into a new professional services program in three test markets in partnership with Service Master, based in Downer’s Grove, Illinois. According to a report by Home Channel News, Home Depot will be offering lawn, tree and shrub care, landscape installation and maintenance, termite and pest control, plumbing and drain cleaning, upholstery cleaning, and home warranties. These professional services are called the DIFM (do it for me) services, as homeowners turn away from DIY (do it yourself) projects. The professional services are aimed at baby-boomers and older people, who don’t want to do their own work at home. Home Depot says that installed sales and professional services are now being done by “hundreds of thousands of companies with fewer than 10 employees.” Home Depot already offers installation of flooring and carpeting, kitchen and countertops, and other professional services. The partnership with Service Master will move them further onto the terrain of the small companies that now survive on this market. Over the next three years, Home Depot reportedly hopes to more than double its sales in professional services to $8 billion.
Hundreds of thousands of small companies with 10 or fewer workers — these are the small, hometown companies that will suffer as corporations like Home Depot seek to expand their market share and increase the “average ticket” that Home Depot customers purchase at their store. Some citizens groups may appreciate the fact that Home Depot is now planning to get into pest control. For these groups, the “pest” they need “controlled”, is large, orange, and overpopulated.