How To Start Up A Handyman Business

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Kerrie Hanafin started A Woman's Touch in , a company that boasts a team of highly qualified tradeswomen. An interest and basic knowledge of the different trades are important factors when thinking of starting your business. While there are no specific qualifications required, it is helpful if you are familiar with all aspects of the trade, from painting and plastering to plumbing and carpentry. Central to the handyman concept is that no job is too small, and so a willingness to offer all services is beneficial.

Customers will not come back if you refuse the small jobs like changing their light bulb, therefore if you are prepared to do any job, however big or small, you will stand yourself in good stead to be called upon again. He believes that the key to success is to offer as wide a range of services as possible. Perhaps most crucial is your attitude and behaviour towards customers; being friendly and approachable is fundamental to build and maintain trust between you and your clients.

People want to be able to rely on you, and so honesty and dependability are invaluable qualities when dealing with customers. Chris Gilbey established his own handyman company Bitsbobsandoddjobs in , and affirms the importance of building solid relationships with clients. I think we are unique in the way we deal with people, and most of our business comes through word-of-mouth, so it is essential to gain peoples' trust.

How To Start a Profitable Handyman Business

Ready to get started? Find out everything you need to know about how to start your own business here. You need to decide the scope of your business early on. That is not to say that you can't add further services to your list at a later date, but its important to set out boundaries of the types of jobs you will do.

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The handyman industry is incredibly broad, and services can range from the simplest of tasks such as changing a light bulb, to fitting a new bathroom or even completely renovating a house. Some of the more complex jobs require specific training and qualifications, as well as industry authorisation, which can limit the scale of services you offer. Nevertheless, it is beneficial to lay out clearly what you are offering so that customers can make an informed decision on whether to hire you. Starting up any business requires a good degree of planning and preparation.

While it may seem fairly straightforward, setting up a handyman company is no different. Kerrie Hanafin suggests talking to people in the area to find out what they would look for in a handyman business. Researching your locality and main competition can really help to establish your place in the market. Sorting out your pricing is also essential at the early stages, so find out your competitors' prices to get an idea of what you could charge. A unique and memorable name for you company is fundamental.

Chris Gilbey, from Bitsbobsandoddjobs, stresses that coming up with a good name can really help with branding your business, so it's worth dedicating time to this. Experience is probably the most valuable tool. There is nothing better than going out and gaining practical skills and know-how. Chris Gilbey from Bitsbobsandoddjobs spent time as an apprentice for a building company, which has helped enormously with setting up on his own.

There are no specific certificates or training required for starting up as a handyman. However, if you want to be able to offer a full range of services, it is worth getting certified with certain regulatory bodies. The NICEIC is the organisation that authorises the electrical industry, and if you intend on carrying out any new electrical wiring, this is vital.

For work relating to gas engineering, it is important to register yourself on the Gas Safe index. There are a variety of credible courses that can help you acquire the more complex skills. Kerrie Hanafin from A Woman's Touch recommends taking a few short courses in each trade. You can find courses for one or two weeks which will give you enough confidence and knowledge to be able to offer your services in that trade. You will need to think about registering for VAT. If your turnover hasn't crossed the registration threshold, you can still voluntarily register for VAT, because it may be beneficial to you, however, it is not required.

If you are planning on sub-contracting some of your work to other servicemen, you need to register with the Construction Industry Scheme CIS. As a contractor, you will need to check your workers are registered with HM Revenue and Customs. Reputation, reputation, reputation.

Shakespeare's famous quotation from Othello rings true throughout all trade industries, and is fundamental for securing a solid customer base. As service providers, keeping your customers satisfied should always be your number one priority, because one unhappy customer could be catastrophic for your business.

Basic rules apply, so a respect for other people's homes is paramount, as is a friendly and approachable manner. Word-of-mouth accounts for a huge proportion of new business, and recommendations are gold dust in this industry, therefore being helpful and going that extra mile can really help you build a reputable and trustworthy enterprise.

How to Start a Successful Handyman Business

Advertising and marketing are good ways to promote your business and to generate commerce. You probably have a long list of things you could do — write them all down. Now go through the list and for each one ask yourself two questions: 1 do I want to spend my days doing this? And 2 do I need a license to do this? At the end of this exercise, you should have a list of jobs you want to do and can do legally.

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Image credit: Fancycrave. Take a minute to think about who you do want to work for. The sky is the limit here. Now that you have the perfect name in mind, register it with your state. There are a few different ways to do this, and will vary by state, so spend some time researching what works best for you. You will also need to register your business with the IRS and state revenue office. You may also need a business license — separate from any of your trade licenses — just to set up shop. As you work your way through all this bureaucracy, remember that, if you do it properly now, you will seldom have to think about these issues again.

You already know your chosen business name is also available as a website, so go ahead now and buy the domain name. More about your website later. You will also need a business bank account possibly with a credit card attached and phone number. It might be reasonable to use your personal phone as your business phone, but it is definitely not reasonable to share a bank account, so set up a new one.

Now is also the time to get yourself some insurance. Every reputable handyman has insurance. Image credit: Pictures of Money, Flickr. Remember, you are a businessman first.

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Get yourself some accounting software now — before you have any money or expenses — and familiarize yourself with its basic operations. If you understand now what kind of paper trail your software will need, you will save yourself hours of time recreating it later. Your accounting software will also be invaluable when tax season rolls around. Image credit: FirmBee, Pixabay. A moderately used small truck or even a minivan will give you space to haul tools around without breaking the bank. Image credit: User:Mattes, Wikimedia. Remember the list you made of jobs you wanted to do?

You probably have a few but still need to acquire others.