Derecho inspires Huxley teen to start handyman business


HUXLEY, Iowa — A teenager from Huxley was inspired to start his own business after the derecho swept through Iowa last year.

Elisha Haan is the owner of the handyman service called Haan Services LLC. He realized there was a big opportunity for a business like his after the big storm.

“I was working for another guy cutting trees down. I was doing a whole bunch for him, and I learned a lot, then the derecho hit, and there were all kinds of tree work. I was working all the time, so I figured why do this for somebody else when I can do it for myself and make more money?” said Haan.

Haan wants to get more young people interested in pursuing trades as a career.

“I think as far as living goes, the trades have a huge role in our economy, and there are not enough people going into them,” Haan said.

In January, Haan’s business became official. His father is a co-owner, his sister does the office work, and he has two field workers. His father believed in his son’s entrepreneurial abilities.

“Starting from scratch, you need your family to help, so we’re all working as a team to try to launch this business,” said Blake Haan.

While Haan has the support of his family, he has big dreams for the future of his company.

“I’d like to see 100 [to] 200 employees in a couple of years. That would be awesome, I couldn’t be happier. But what we have now, which is small, I’d like to see us go quite a bit bigger,” Haan said.

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