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Guide rates L.A. home services

Franklin Report ranges from architects to window washers.

October 27, 2002

Can a New Yorker help an Angelo navigate the maze of local home service providers?

Elizabeth Franklin thinks so, having taken on the challenge with her latest Franklin Report, a Zagat-like guide for home improvement services.

Two years ago, the former investment banker launched her first guide for New York after having experienced firsthand the difficulty of finding the right people to renovate her family's Manhattan residence. Last year, Franklin and her staff did another for Chicago.

The new Franklin Report, Los Angeles, is a purple, 362-page paperback directory of high-end home services ranging from architects to window washers. It provides an overview of each entry based on interviews with clients and other research, and rates the providers based on four categories: quality, cost, value and recommendations.

A few entries have symbols of an open folder instead of numeral ratings because the Franklin staff, according to the book's introduction, "did not feel we had enough information to issue a rating, but heard things about the firm."

The book isn't the first guide to local high-end sources for home building, remodeling and redecorating. Two years ago, the Ashley Group publishing house introduced "Los Angeles Home Book: A Comprehensive Hands-On Sourcebook to Building, Remodeling, Decorating, Furnishing and Landscaping a Luxury Home in Los Angeles and Orange County." A second edition was released in March.

The Franklin Report, Los Angeles, (Allgood Press, New York, 2002, $22.50) Web site: www.franklinreport.com.

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