Whether you are an entrepreneur looking to delve into the handyman service industry and start a lucrative business, or a skills tradesman who wants to monetize your skills, you’ve come to the right place.
In this guide, we will cover all you need to know about starting a handyman business from performing market analysis to deciding on a handyman business model to planning the required finances.
We’ve consulted with experts in the home remodeling industry, and here we’ll walk you through how to start your own handyman business from scratch.
Without further ado, let us get started right away!
Decide on a Handyman Business Model
The term ‘handyman service’, as we know, is an umbrella term that can include various home repair and home remodeling services from light fixture installations, plumbing, painting, deck repairs, upgrades, and even total remodel.
Thus, you can actually start your handyman business in various different business models offering different handyman services. So, the first step you should do is to decide on a handyman business model, and here are some common handyman business models to choose from:
- Jack-of-all-trades model: as the name suggests, you offer all kinds of handyman services based on request. The advantage of this model is that once you’ve got some loyal clients, you can always get jobs year-round. However, getting the required permits and licenses, as well as managing the business can be quite complicated.
- The niche model: you only focus on one or a few specific niches. Thus, you offer in-depth specialization and a specific set of skills. The advantage is that you can charge more for your skills, but you’ll need to properly market your business.
- Cherry-picker: you accept only the jobs you want, based on various factors like seasons, budget, cost-efficiency, and even moods.
- Franchise licensing: this handyman business model is pretty self-explanatory, here you purchase an established handyman business franchise. A great option if you just want to run the business (behind the desk) and don’t want to do the repair yourself. Obviously, you can also take advantage of the established brand’s reputation.
- Part-time: you can make the handyman business your part-time business, for example by doing your repairs on weekend or in the evening. This way, you can keep your job with full benefits if you want.
Aim to Deliver Customer Service Excellence
While the handyman industry is definitely lucrative with a lot of opportunities, the competition is also stiff.
The key in winning this competition is to remember that the handyman business, no matter what business model you decide upon, is a service business at its core. Thus, providing excellent service and ensuring a great customer experience are your main ways of creating a competitive advantage.
You should always aim to deliver the basics of excellent service:
- Appearance: maintain presentable appearance at all costs. Your staff’s uniforms, tools, vehicles, and documents should always be clean. Small things do matter, like wearing shoe covers when you enter your client’s property.
- Always be on time: by showing up on time and finishing the job your time, you are already better than the majority of your competitors. You can improve your service excellence by investing in handyman scheduling and management software like fieldd. fieldd can help your business in implementing advanced scheduling to help you ensure timely delivery for each of your services.
- Communication: always be on top of your game for any communications you make with your clients, whether it’s sending quotes, reminding them about your appointments, sending invoices, and so on. Set yourself apart from your competitors by maintaining impeccable communication. Ask them for feedback about your service and explain every job thoroughly.
Pay Attention To Local Permit Regulations
Different locations might have different regulations regarding licenses or permit requirements to run a handyman business. Some states, for example, might require a permit to run a remodeling business which may overlap with some handyman projects.
In some locations, you might be required to be certified for different handyman services you are going to offer. This is why it’s often more profitable to focus on just one or two specializations in your handyman business.
Double-check with your local tradesmen’s association and department of commerce (if any) to make sure about permit regulations.
Similar to permits, some locations might legally require you to be insured before you can start your handyman business.
However, even if you are not legally required to be insured, it’s best to purchase adequate handyman business insurance policies to help protect your business from future accidents, including but not limited to:
- Workers compensation: if you have employees, workers comp is legally required, and is used to compensate your employees in the event of workplace injury.
- Liability insurance: important to protect your business from damages you may cause to your client’s property during the job.
Marketing Your Handyman Business
No matter what handyman business model you choose, you’ll need to market your business to win your client’s attention. Here are some inexpensive and effective marketing strategies you can try:
- Build a professional-looking and functional handyman service’s website.
- List your business in online business directories and relevant online market places
- Claim and optimize your Google My Business/Google Maps listing
- Ask existing customers to leave positive reviews for your business on Google Maps and other relevant sites. Social proofs are very important in this digital age.
- Network with other contractors and local businesses (i.e. realtors, landscapers). They can help recommend your service to theirs, and you can also promote their services to your clients.
- Cold-calling and going door-to-door to offer your business to commercial buildings still works. While it might seem nerve-wracking at first, it’s definitely worth it.
By following the tips we’ve shared above, you can better plan your handyman business and choose the right handyman business model for you. While the handyman industry is competitive, the secret here is to offer consistent customer service excellence so you can grow your window cleaning business’s customer base and increase your profits.