Are you ready to leave your apprenticeship and begin your own private plumbing practice? When you feel it’s time to venture out and become your own boss, it’s important to know where to begin when starting your own business. That’s why we’re here to help. To get you started, we outlined some tips and advice about what you should know before starting your very own plumbing business.
Funding Your Startup
One of the most difficult and stressful steps to starting your own plumbing practice is funding. Most Americans don’t have $30,000 in the bank to fund their own business. If you want to apply for a small business loan, you need to make sure you have a reputable credit score. Having a good credit score will show banks you’re trustworthy and won’t tack on a high-interest rate on your loan.
Along with applying for a small business loan, you can also try these funding tactics:
- Crowdfunding: Through crowdfunding, you can propose your business plan and accept donations from anyone to help you get started.
- Friends & Family: While those close to us are most likely not millionaires, friends and family are always willing to throw in some cash for their loved ones to follow their dreams.
- Angel Investors: Find people willing to invest in your company and get your new business up and running.
Starting your new plumbing business will cost a lot of money. However, investing in technology will save you time and money in the long run. Check out our suggested list of software to incorporate into your new business:
- Finance Software: With a plumbing background, you may not feel 100% knowledgeable on how to handle finances. Use plumbing business accounting software to crunch your numbers while you satisfy your customers
- Customer Relationship Management Systems (CRM): A CRM system is a must-have when it comes to running an efficient business. CRM software allows you to analyze your sales data, trends, customer purchases, and create rewards systems and marketing campaigns
- The Cloud: Cloud hosting is the new wave for storing data. Say goodbye to cluttered offices and endless piles of records and receipts. Cloud hosting services allow you to securely store every important document in organized folders.
Find Your Niche
You can’t wake up one day and say, “Hey, I’m going to open a business today!” While we all wish it was this easy, starting a business requires a ton of work. An important step on your way to becoming your own boss is to do your research. Conduct market research to find where local plumbers fail to provide service. Tap into these areas to start your business and provide service.
Aside from finding gaps in the market, you need to be unique. Why? Because every plumbing company will be able to fix a faulty pipe and leaking faucet. Specializing in a specific type of plumbing, such as environmentally friendly plumbing to make houses and companies greener, will set you apart from your competition. It will also allow you to increase your efficiency by focusing on a specific area of plumbing.
Expect your plumbing business to welcome a visit by good ole’ Uncle Sam. Opening a business comes with mounds of legal work. From obtaining permits, building codes, training certificates, and taxes, there’s a lot to handle. Before you start your plumbing business, consult with legal and accounting professionals to ensure you’re complying with Big Brother. If you’re low in finances, hire freelance professionals that work at lower rates to help you file all of this paperwork!
Global connectedness has never been more prevalent. Social media connects people anywhere, anytime. With this, business marketing has changed dramatically. Take advantage of free social media platforms and grow your local plumbing business! Schedule posts on your social media platforms of recent jobs you completed, customer testimonials, and reviews to spread your brand’s story.
Create a Business Card
Business cards are an easy and affordable way to get your plumbing business off the ground running. Create a unique business card that has useful information on how to contact you, your hours of operation, and a sleek logo. To grow your customer loyalty, turn your business card into a punch card, where customers can get free plumbing work for minor fixes and repairs. Many local businesses also support each other with business card walls! Walk through your town and see where you can post your card or flyer to promote awareness.
Before starting your plumbing business, you need to do your research. With hidden costs like taxes and inventory expenses, as well as understanding the market, you need to be fully prepared before you open the doors to your new shop. With these handy dandy tips, you’ll be able to get the water running in no time!