A common challenge that every homeowner faces during home ownership is putting together many things to get the house up and running. Endless things need to be fixed, improved, repaired and changed. And finding time to get them done on time is a course in itself, let alone know the skills to do the job. That is why most homeowners hire handymen to get such work done, especially those that may require more than average DIY knowledge.
People are shifting, repairing, fixing and rearranging stuff every day; so, if you have a well-rounded knowledge of how to fix various things (and if you are seriously thinking to become a self-made entrepreneur), you can consider starting a handyman business. Working as a handyman has several advantages, but the most important one is you will not need a large capital investment to start the business. Your skills are exactly what you need, to start small. The business can pave the way to a great many opportunities; let us begin by telling what you need to start a profitable handyman business.
Step 1: Are You Suitable for the Job?
Ask this question to yourself, “Do I know to fix a wide range of things to pass off as a handyman?” To be a most demanded handyman, you have to know a variety of repair and maintenance skills. There are more than 24 different jobs a handyman can do (listed by Association of Certified Handyman Professionals under their directory), common ones include carpentry, drywall, electrical, flooring, painting, plumbing, roofing, windows and doors, gardening, pressure washing, cleaning, air conditioning, home appliances, and kitchen and bath repairing.
If you want to be a successful handyman, you should be versatile enough to repair faulty appliances and bath wares, paint buildings, fix minor electrical issues and know how to patch-up pipe, all at the same time. You can work either as an independent owner or as a freelancer member working with different crews.
Step 2: Education and Training
No former education is required to be a handyman. However, you should know basic mathematics and communication skills. Handymen must be nifty and nimble to do the job precisely. So, you might as well master the art. If you want to improve your knowledge, you can get yourself enrolled in trade workshop classes that help people learn the basics of carpentry, plumbing, and electricals.
To learn more about the industry before starting your business, you can begin working under a senior person as an apprentice handyman. Working in an experienced crew and learning how to measure and cut tasks and other labor jobs will help you gain hands-on knowledge about the work. Prior experience is especially essential in prevalent fields like plumbing, carpentry, and electrical work. In such a case, you will be regarded as ‘journeyman’ before obtaining a license.
Step 3: Get Your Licence to Business
Start by picking out a name for your business. Make sure your business name is easy to remember, relevant to the industry and is not picked by a local competitor. Register your business and get yourself a business license. You will have to contact your local or state municipal authorities to learn more about the license requirements. Registering your business and obtaining a license is pretty easy; in fact, you can obtain every information and form to be submitted online. It will take 2 to 3 days to complete the process.
Step 4: Buy an Insurance Policy
A simple mistake in repair and maintenance or an oversight during a routine work can cause significant damage to the property/appliance/electronics you are working on or may pose as a potential threat to the homeowner. When you start a business as a handyman, you are deemed responsible for making sure that every task is done properly and checked thoroughly. The law may penalize you if in case you do make an error. A liability insurance coverage will help protect you, your business, your assets, and your family lest you are sued.
A basic liability insurance policy will roughly cost you around $900 per year. You can obtain one from any known insurance policy provider. Getting an insurance policy has an advantage; you can advertise that you are a ‘Licensed and Insured in your State’, which is a great marketing tactic.
Step 5: Get Yourself a Vehicle, Probably a Truck
If you already have a working vehicle, you can avoid buying. But, if you do not own one, you will need to purchase a small truck to carry your tools and equipment to clients’ places. You can lease a truck or buy a refurbished one. Since the purpose of your vehicle is to transport you from one place to another, you don’t need to spend extensively on purchasing an ultra-modern truck. A simple truck that runs good and has solid built should be more than enough to serve the purpose.
You can contact the private seller or work it out with a dealer – the option is all yours. However, make sure you don’t go too cheap on your truck; you don’t want to end up buying a run-down vehicle and get it repaired more often than you repair other stuff as a handyman.
You will be able to purchase a decent second-hand truck for $4000 to $5000, a lot cheaper than purchasing a new vehicle.
Step 6: Buy Your Tool Kit
To start your work as a handyman, you will need to have access to tools and equipment that make your work easy. Before you purchase your toolkit, list the types of services you will like to offer. It is not necessary that you have to provide services in all 24 types of handyman jobs. In fact, we suggest you start with only 10 skills and broaden your service area with time.
Based on your service offerings, your tools and gears will vary. Make sure that you purchase the best quality and make it a one-time solid investment.
Step 7: It’s Time to Market
That’s all you need to start your handyman business. However, the tough part is not getting it all together. But the tough part is marketing your service. Okay, now there are various ways of marketing a handyman business. The most common mediums where you can promote your services include your local church and community center, grocery store, supermarket, laundry store, and relevant hardware shops. You can leave your business cards and few flyers with the shop owners so that they can pass them on to the right customers.
Website for Your Company
We suggest you build a website for your company. You can get a free domain from a web-hosting company for just $3 per month. A significant online presence is something every business is aiming for nowadays. Your business should not be left behind either. You don’t have to build a highly responsive website. You can create a simple, basic page, with relevant information, so that people can find your business on the net.
We, however, suggest that you purchase a domain name that you think people will be Googling for, such as ‘www.handymaninyourcity.com.
Social Media Marketing
The Internet is a massive place for advertising, marketing, and branding today. Use it as much as you can. Stay active on your social media handles. Use relevant hashtags to reach more people; join the homeowner’s community and local groups, and communicate as much as possible.
Another way to set-up your client base is by reaching out to rental property companies in your area and see if they need help in contracting. Rental companies are excellent sources for good clients. You can also set your target on private residences and residential complexes.
Word of mouth is another effective form of advertising. So make sure all of your customers are satisfied at the end. You can pique their interest with promotional offers, seasonal discounts, and free services on the second visit. You can also post your ad on local newspapers and magazines.
Step 8: Scale Your Business – Record Incomes and Expenses
As a business owner, you will have to keep track of each and every income and expense that comes into and from your business. Open a separate bank account for your business so that you do not mix your personal income and expenditure with your business. Make sure you open a savings account for future growth and improvements. Every time you complete a task and get paid, set apart 25% of the profit for tax filing, bonus or for reinvesting, or you can save more to your personal account for better causes. Whatever your purposes are, we suggest that you save from the very beginning.
You may come across many benefits when you start and run your handyman business, such as low start-up cost, an excellent part-time income generator, flexible working hours, incredible profit margin, meager overhead expenses unless you decide to expand, and unlimited growth opportunities in the larger market.
Referrals and word of mouth marketing are more than enough to thrive in this business. You will also get opportunities to work in more prominent sectors, such as real estate and home remodeling.
Have any questions? Shoot them in the comments, and we will be happy to answer.