How to Start a Handyman Business
  1. Business

How to Start a Handyman Business

Last Updated on November 18, 2020

If you’re good with your hands and people turn to you for their ‘handyman’ jobs around the house, why not start a handyman business?

Many jobs today are unsecure so millions of people are starting their own businesses. Handyman businesses are always in demand – whether homeowners don’t have the time or the skills, they need someone just like you.

Starting a business that isn’t a ‘fad’ or won’t get replaced by computers and automation is a great way to make money. 

Check out our guide on how to start a handyman business and everything you need to know to make it successful. 

Reasons to Start a Handyman Business

  • You are already good with your hands and help others
  • You own (most) of the tools and materials needed to do a good job
  • The overhead costs are generally low (you don’t need an office and can use your existing materials and car)
  • You can niche down and target a specific market
  • The profit potential is high
  • It’s fun if you enjoy working with your hands and helping others

Most importantly, you don’t need to know how to do everything. Handyman services could mean you specialize in one area (i.e. tile installation) or you do anything and everything. It’s your business, you choose the model. 

How Much Does It Cost to Start a Handyman Business?

Handyman business startup costs are among the lowest costs of any business. If you already own your tools and a car, you’re well on your way, but there are other costs you should consider to start and run a handyman business:

  • Business license up to $1,000

The cost varies by state and business structure. Will you operate as a sole proprietor or an LLC? Filing as an LLC costs more money, but protects your assets. You must also secure a state business license. 

  • Insurance up to $1,000

You need liability insurance. What would happen if you damaged your client’s home or someone got hurt because of your work? Liability insurance protects you financially should anything go awry. 

  • Tools up to $2,000

If you already have a great set of tools, you may not incur any costs. But, if you need to add to your set, it adds to your business costs.

  • Logo and website design up to $2,000

Every business needs a logo today. You can create your own, but if you don’t have the time or skills, hiring out makes sense. You’ll find freelancers offer logo design for a few hundred dollars or professional companies charging thousands of dollars.

  • Website design  up to $2,000

Don’t operate without a website. Even if you market via word-of-mouth, you need somewhere to point people. They want to read about what you offer, what others say, and see your pricing. Like logo design, you could find a freelancer for a few hundred dollars or hire a professional web design company for thousands of dollars.

  • Truck insurance up to $1,000

If you’ll use your truck for business purposes, you may need commercial car insurance. Talk to your insurance provider about this so you have the proper protection should you get in an accident or have any other mishaps. 

  • Miscellaneous costs up to $2,000

A few other costs you may (or may not) incur include:

  • Bank account fees
  • PO Box fees
  • Truck decal costs
  • Uniform costs

How to Get a Handyman License?

When you wonder how to start a successful handyman business, you have to consider the necessary licensing. Many states don’t require a handyman license, but your city or county may require a contractor’s license. Get to know your state, county, and city requirements before starting your business.

If you’ll offer any specialized services, such as HVAC, plumbing, or electric, you may need specific licenses to handle these tasks. Consult your State Board of Contractors. 

Best Way to Advertise a Handyman Business

Word of mouth is your best bet when starting a handyman business. If you’ve already helped friends and family in the past, let them know you’ve started a gig. They’ll probably happily pass along your name.

Handyman services are one of those things most people ask others about. Getting the word out is the key.

Don’t rely on only word-of-mouth, though. Also, try:

  • Creating a website
  • Starting a social media page (Facebook and Instagram are great)
  • Networking within your community
  • Putting up flyers in common areas
  • Ask past customers (even free jobs) for honest reviews on your website and social media
  • Print yard signs and place them in yards when you’re doing handyman work

The Types of Handyman Services

A handyman can be a ‘jack of all trades’ or specialize in certain niches including:

  • Drywall installation
  • Hardwood floor installation
  • Tile installation
  • Bathroom remodels
  • Kitchen remodels
  • Window and door repair
  • Fence and deck repair and replacement
  • Smart home upgrades
  • Basement finishing

Is a Handyman Business Profitable?

Starting a handyman business can be profitable if you take the right steps. 

  • Decide how much you can invest. Set a budget and see how it works with the costs to start a handyman business. Don’t overspend and put yourself in the red before you have your first client.
  • Focus on what you’re good at doing. Don’t think you have to offer every service. If you offer services you can’t do efficiently, it’s a waste of your time and is an opportunity cost for jobs you could have done faster. Choose your niche and stick to it.
  • Decide if ‘large’ jobs are worth it. Sometimes the smaller (and quicker) jobs are more profitable.
  • Work with an accountant. If numbers aren’t your thing, hire a professional to keep your books straight so you can enjoy profits.

Learning how to start a handyman business can be exciting and profitable. Anyone with the right tools (and abilities) can start a business that helps others. Whether you start a part-time business while working your full-time job or you jump right in and focus on your business, there are opportunities for everyone.

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