Starting your own handyman business in the US could be a lucrative move – you could charge a respectable $50 to $80 per hour, according to HomeGuide. The work is challenging, interesting, only moderately physically demanding, and doesn’t need you to have an official education. Last, but not least, you could even get your own successful handyman business up and running and thereby be your own boss.
The Local Marketing Center explains everything you need to know about starting a successful handyman business below:
Pick a specialty
Handymen come in all shapes and sizes and do a lot more than general maintenance and repair. That’s why you must choose an area of specialization. It would help you to stand out, be pickier about clients, and thereby charge more for your services. Some services you could specialize in are drywall installation, smart home upgrades, painting, tile installation, and appliance repair. Ideally, this should be something you’re already good at.
Have a business plan
A business plan is like a blueprint for your business. It contains critical details about setting up shop, ranging from funding options and legalities to market research and business goals. With a good business plan, you can nail down exactly what you’ll be doing, who you’ll be doing it for, and how to be profitable.
Gather seed money
Seed money is startup capital. You can use your savings, borrow from family or friends, get a loan, or attempt to apply for a grant. Typically, it’s a good idea to have enough to set up and remain operational for the next 6 to 12 months, until you have a chance to stabilize. Depending on the nature and scope of your business, you can expect to spend $62 to $40,565, reports Starter Story.
You may or may not need insurance. Check your state or territory regulations to be sure. Getting insurance just to be safe isn’t always advisable because it’s not cheap and will significantly eat into your profit margin. You should opt-in if your customers need it or you do risky work.
Licenses, training, and other legalities
There are several legalities to adhere to. You will need an Employer Identification Number (EIN). You, typically, need to register in the local chamber of commerce. Depending on your region, you may need a contractor or handyman license. Finally, it’s a good idea to form an LLC or similar corporation to protect your personal assets from lawsuits. You don’t need formal training to be a handyman – people typically take up apprenticeships or teach themselves.
Consider special equipment
You will need special equipment, depending on the work you’re doing. At the very least, expect to need hand tools, a drilling machine, and a storage box. If you do specialized work, you may need ladders, safety tools, chainsaws, plumbing tools, and more. Free Business Ideas offers a reference list of handyman tools.
Make your life easier with software
Using apps will allow you to automate tasks and save time. For instance, map apps will help you find your clients’ locations quickly and note-taking apps will help you jot down pertinent details. You may need construction estimating software to run your business. This kind of software allows you to calculate material and labor costs, create a schedule for payments for customers, send estimates from job sites conveniently, and send automated reminders through email if a sent estimate hasn’t been approved.
Market for success
Marketing is critical. You need to make your handyman business discoverable through marketing-related efforts. Some ideas are having a business card, setting up a website, registering your business in relevant listings, joining the local chamber of commerce, printing flyers, advertising online, and advertising offline.
Marketing your handyman business on Instagram can be a great way to reach new customers and grow your business. To get started, you’ll need to create an account and start sharing photos and videos of your work. Be sure to use hashtags to reach a wider audience, and don’t forget to tag potential customers in your posts. You can also use this free Instagram story template to give your followers a behind-the-scenes look at your business. Build your story design by choosing a template and adding your own images, graphics, and icons.
Network for multiple reasons
Don’t forget to network. Networking raises your profile; helps you find useful connections like customers and mentors; works as free marketing; and allows you to build a safety net in your local community. Becoming a member of your chamber of commerce is a good way to get started.
While having a handyman business can be challenging and may come at the cost of job security, the advantages may balance it out. Some examples are setting your own schedule, earning a good income, and varied work. Remember to work hard, stay committed, develop your entrepreneurial brain, and market your business to be successful long-term!
This blog was contributed by Courtney Rosenfeld
Image via Unsplash