Starting a handyman business can be a great option for you if you have the skills, talent, and knowledge. You can work in a variety of settings, meet lots of people, work with your hands, and end every day satisfied that you have helped someone out.
That being said, you can do this work without going into business for yourself. Running a business is rewarding and exciting, but it is also a lot of work. There is paperwork, legalities, angry customers, and several other things that will need your attention. If you work for someone else, much of those tasks can be handled by people up the food chain. However, owning your own business means you can have the freedom to run the business however you choose. You can also claim the profits and reinvest them into the business and employees at your discretion.
Here are some other pros and cons of being a handyman.
Pro: Be Your Own Boss
We have all had disagreements with our bosses. That is what makes owning your own business so inviting. You no longer have to answer to anyone else. You can run your business how you want to run it. Make your own choices about how to handle a project, what materials to use, and how much to charge. You can even decide if a customer is being too rude to discontinue service. Whatever you want to do, you can do it. It is your business and your choice. You can have advisors, but no one can ultimately tell you how to run it.
Con: Everything is Your Responsibility
Of course, being your own boss does come with some negatives. You are responsible for everything. If you do not have work coming your way, then it falls on your shoulders. You are only going to get paid for the work you do, whereas when you are an employee, you get your salary regardless of the work coming in. If you hire an employee to work with you, you will have to manage their payroll and HR issues and make sure that they are producing work that is up to your standards. You will have to accept that being the boss means more responsibility.
Pro: Choose Your Own Jobs
There may be certain jobs that you are not comfortable with or equipped to do properly. If you have bad knees, replacing flooring and carpeting can be painful work. If you run your own business, you can pick and choose what jobs you want to do. You can do smaller, faster jobs, or you can only do larger jobs that pay better and require more work. Whatever you want, you can do it or not. However, remember that if you are too picky, you might find that you run out of jobs. If that happens, you might need to lower your standards.
Con: It Can Be Dangerous
As a handyman, you will be working with power tools and possibly large pieces of equipment. You may find yourself working from heights, and there is always the risk of tripping over something. Being a handyman carries some risk, and you need to be prepared for that. You will get injured in small ways, like cuts and bruises, but you need to protect yourself against injury by taking all necessary precautions. You need to have specific insurance for a handyman that covers you for the risks that people in your profession face every day. This means, for instance, having workers’ compensation in place to protect your employees. You should also have commercial property insurance because there is a very real risk of damaging a clients’ property.
Con: Scheduling Difficulty
Scheduling can be tricky when you are a handyman. If you want to bring in as much revenue as possible, you may have to juggle jobs or work longer hours. If you try to be too selective, you could end up with downtime that is not making you money. If you are well booked, it can be a blessing and curse. What happens if a regular client calls you with an emergency? You should try and do what you can to help them, but you might end up needing to move other scheduled jobs around. In those situations, you might upset your other clients. Over time, you may be able to get the hang of your scheduling, but you will go through some bumps at first.
Pro: Low Startup Costs
Most people who start a handyman business already have the tools. They have been doing these types of jobs within their own homes and others for years in some cases. If you already have the tools and equipment, such as a ladder, you are pretty much good to go. Your startup costs are almost non-existent, other than needing a laptop and some office supplies. You can start making money almost immediately.
Con: Repetitive Work
As a handyman, you might find that you are doing the same types of jobs over and over again. You could be painting bathrooms, fixing toilets, or installing stairway railings. This could get boring since you won’t feel challenged. To avoid this, you can try to diversify the types of jobs you do so that you are never repeating the same things over and over again, even if you are really good at those jobs.
Pro: Meet Lots of People
As a handyman, you get the opportunity to meet lots of people in your community. You will visit different neighborhoods and get to know different people from all walks of life. In some cases, you will develop lasting relationships with customers who will keep calling you and giving you business. In other cases, you may make important business connections that will help you down the road. Never underestimate the power of knowing lots of people in your community. It’s not only profitable, but it’s fun, too.
Con: It Can Be Stressful
As a handyman, you will go into peoples’ homes and fix their problems. The last thing you want to do is make a mistake or make the problem worse than when you started. The other thing to worry about is if you have a deadline. When you are on a job, you can have any number of little issues and problems that can lead to delays. These little hiccups can add up and before you know it you will find yourself rushing to meet a deadline. Rushing can lead to mistakes, which will cause more delays.
Plus, there’s the stress that goes with any business. If you aren’t bringing in customers, then you will struggle to pay your bills. You need to be constantly hustling and turning jobs over so you don’t go through too many dry spells.
If you have the talent and looking to work for yourself, consider starting a handyman business. Sure, there are some drawbacks, but you will find you can make a lot of money doing the type of work you enjoy.