Building Ikea Furniture Just Got Way Easier

Photographed by Stephanie Bassos.
As any twentysomething knows, Ikea furniture is a source of great joy (Affordable prices!) and insurmountable frustration. (No human being should ever have to suffer through 45 steps to assemble a bureau.) The latter is where a company like TaskRabbit comes in. Since launching in Boston in 2008, TaskRabbit now provides services to 19 cities. It has solved moving, cleaning, and all sorts of other handyman dilemmas by pairing people with vetted "Taskers" who, as the name suggests, get required tasks done.

Now, the company has rolled out a brand-new component to help you get chores done even sooner and more easily: real-time service. In the past, users have needed to plan and book services ahead of time. But what if you need something done ASAP? Now, you can post a job on the app, get matched with a Tasker in under five minutes, and have your job done in a matter of hours. The company says that over 50% of tasks are posted, accepted, started, and finished in under 90 minutes.

In the past, rates for a service could be as low as $18 per hour. For the new real-time offering, rates can fluctuate based on location and timing, much like those for Uber.

"You still have the option to schedule a task in advance, but we were seeing a demand for more immediate service," says TaskRabbit founder and CEO Leah Busque, who first came up with the idea for the app when she was out of dog food and didn't feel like going out in the cold to buy more. It's moments like those, she thought, when you want to hire someone who can run out for you.

And lest you think the app is only there for very practical, adult purposes, rest assured: You can ask for even the most of obscure services and still find a Tasker up to the, um, task. Busque has hired Taskers to help her plan parties and has seen users request someone to deliver a care package, wait in line for show tickets, and even sew a tuxedo for a rubber chicken (yes, really).

We'll be saving the rubber-chicken tasks for later and sticking to Ikea furniture building for now.

The TaskRabbit app is free in the App Store and Google Play.

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