There are several ways to learn how to be a handyman, from self-education around the house to professional training and apprenticing. Many handymen have special training in a few trades such as electrical engineering or plumbing, but develop personal interest in other pursuits such as house painting or automotive repair. Mechanical aptitude is a good skill to have in order to do the job, and even if the project is not in his or her area of expertise, he or she will often take it on for the learning experience.
One way to be a handyman is to enroll in vocational classes at a local college or training center. Many degrees can be earned with fewer than two years of study, and graduates often find work immediately. These classes are usually taught by established professionals who can offer real-world insight and guidance. Courses may include some hands-on repair work as well as examinations of building codes and certification requirements. Graduates of one course may also decide to cross-train in other vocational fields.
If your goals don't include professional certification, quite often a local community education center will offer mini-courses on common home repairs. These short classes may introduce you to the different tools needed to perform a wide range of home repairs. Some home improvement centers will also offer public classes on household repairs or the latest advances in tools and building materials. These retail outlets also offer a wide assortment of do-it-yourself books.
Another way to learn how to be a handyman is to volunteer with a charitable organization, such as Habitat for Humanity, that does home building and repairs. Licensed professionals in all aspects of home construction perform the work covered by the building permit, but volunteers do much of the support work. If you're looking for a well-rounded education, you can work with an electrician one day and a plumber the next. As the project draws to a close, you could help install carpeting or put a final coat of paint on the exterior. Volunteer projects are a good way to experience all of the aspects of the job without the need to be certified.