top of page

How to start handyman business

Updated: Aug 10, 2022

Congratulations on deciding to take your 1st step: start your own handyman business! Looking up for this type of article is a major step! “What's the first step?” you might ask. Well there it is - you reading this article! “Do I need any experience to start a handyman business?” you may wonder. “Do I need any handyman license?” “How much money can I really make as a new business?”

We`ll respond to them all here. Regardless of what questions you have or how much expertise you have with starting a business, the proper method for starting a handyman business should always include the same phases.

In this post, we`ll show you how to go through the phases of starting a successful handyman business. By completing these initial stages, you'll be able to create a firm business plan that will undoubtedly provide you with money, flexibility, and happiness.

1.Assess your Skills and Choose Your Services

The first step you should take is to assess your present skills and pick the services you'll offer try to imagine your potential customers and think what will they need. “Don't I need to be able to do everything?” you may be asking. The quick answer is no, you don't. In fact, offering a restricted range of services can result in substantial earnings. You will be rewarded more if you are considered a professional in one area.

For example, think about all of the other handyman-like service businesses out there, such as garage door repair companies, Painting, floor installation, lawn care companies, locksmiths, home security installers, masons, and many more. All of these companies specialize in a certain service and may be quite profitable.. They choose a skill they are good at and built their business as a professional in this area of expertise.

As a handyman, you'll be able to offer a wider range of services than as an electrician, plumber, or HVAC professional. However, you can get started by offering what you know and develop from there.

The first thing you must do is make a list of all the present services you may provide.

You can offer installation of new items or even basic maintenance and repair as many of your clients may just need basic help with small odd jobs. Some services you can offer:

  • Change lightbulbs

  • Painting

  • Changing interior doors

  • Installing base boards

  • Installing floors/carpets

  • Hanging TV`s, Pictures etc

  • Hanging rails for curtains

  • Changing locks

And, the list may go on and on.... You can charge per the hour to help with small repairs around the house.

2.Learn the Handyman Laws in Your State

Starting a small business as a handyman and then discovering you need a contractor's license is one of the most aggravating experiences imaginable. I hope you don't have to learn this lesson the hard way.

Before you get too enthusiastic about the services list you've just constructed, it's time to familiarize yourself with the state's contracting rules (every state is different). You'll need to find out whether certain services are prohibited without a license or what type of license you'll need to provide the service you wish to offer. In many situations, you wont need any special license at all.

For example, in most states, you cant do any electrical, plumbing, or HVAC without a license. Some may put a cup on the amount you can charge per project without a contractor license. That may sound very limiting, but it’s actually totally fine. There are plenty of jobs that fit within those limits – more than enough to run a profitable handyman business.

Although you may get bigger jobs and potentially make more money with a license, not having a license actually may work well for your business model since you will be focused on small repairs and many time those have bigger margins.

You may get a decent idea of your state's regulations by going to the website for your state's contractors board and reading. They usually provide a FAQ area for handymen that covers topics such as minor repairs and maintenance. You can also try calling them or your county and ask over the phone about handyman work licensing requirements.

3.Target Market: Find Your Ideal Customers

Do not take any and all jobs! Not everyone is your customer.

When you start a company as a business owner, one of the first things you need to think about is your company's reputation. If you don't understand this concept and work for anyone , you might lower your prices in order to get work, take on projects that you aren't qualified for, and simply try to satisfy everyone who would hire you. This can end up with bad review and overall slow your growth.

Finally, Never lower your rates to get customers. Design your business around helping a specific type of customer and focus on helping them. Your services simply aren’t a good fit for everybody who needs a repair by a handyman.

Some customers just want the lowest prices or can’t afford to pay a professional rate. Other customers don’t mind paying higher rates as long as you provide good service, this is why reputation is key.

Some customers live forty miles away, while others are just a short five-minute drive away.

Some customers only want the best of the best, and other customers just want the job done so they can move on with their lives.

There is profit to be made with all of these customers, but deciding on the kind of service you want to offer is essential.

Targeting the right customers will have a dramatic impact on both your enjoyment and your profits as a pro handyman.

This is true for any company, and it's even more so for a handyman, plumber, electrician, or contractor since you'll be interacting directly with your consumers.

You'll be happier, they'll be happier, you'll get more referrals and repeat business, and you'll make more money if you're targeting customers that you genuinely like working for and who are prepared to pay a fair price for your services.

Many handymen are dissatisfied financially or emotionally if they try to satisfy everyone - usually both.

By spending some time figuring out who would benefit most from your service and who you actually want to work for, you can avoid this frustration, and your success will be accelerated dramatically.

4.Budgeting: Set Your Pricing