Starting A Home Renovation Business Overview And Resources
If you have an eye for home improvement, enjoy demolition and construction work, and have excellent project management and business skills, then a business in home renovations is something to consider.
An essential function in this business is to transform existing homes into something appealing with improved functionality and is better than the homeowner expected.
There are many hidden issues in the home renovation business because you won’t be able to see certain problem areas until you tear down the old construction.
Another issue is you have to be accurate when you give a quote. You need to account for the unseen, or you will have a lot of unhappy customers and potential lawsuits.
In addition to the unseen, when giving a quote, it’s not money alone, it’s a deadline as well. You are better off taking more time and finishing early to account for the unseen than promise a two-week job and end up finishing after four weeks.
Plan correctly, create beautiful renovations at affordable prices, and become very successful with this type of business.
Skill Set and Traits:
- An eye for design
- The ability to schedule labor and projects
- Safely tearing down old construction
- Building new additions
- Excellent people skills
- Project management skills.
- Common Business Skills.
- General labor
- Floor and tile specialists
- Structural engineers
- Common staff positions needed to run some businesses
Hours of Operation:
Working hours are usually 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., but keep in mind you will run into days when you are running behind and you may need to work more hours.
Equipment and Supplies:
- Pickup truck & trailer
- Power tools — Drill/driver, circular saw, routers, jigsaw, reciprocating saw, miter saw, portable table saw, sanders, portable planer
- Electric generator
- Air compressor and accessories
- Pneumatic nail gun
- Pneumatic staple gun
- Hand saws
- Tool belts, tool chests, and a variety of portable toolboxes
- Measuring Tapes
- Laser Tape Measure
- Speed square
- Framing square
- Carpentry pencils, chalk, and crayons
- Hammers — framing, finishing
- Utility knives
- Retractable chalk line
- Pliers, vise grips, and wrenches and socket sets
- A variety of levels
- Laser Level
- A variety of chisels
- A variety of lights and flashlights
- A large supply of nuts, bolts, nails, drill bits, saws, sandpaper, glue, screws, etc.
- Pry bars and nail pullers
- A variety of clamps
- Ladders of various sizes
- Extension cords of various sizes
- PPE — gloves, steel toe shoes, safety goggles, hard hats, sanding and fiberglass respirators.
- Clean tools — Magnet wheel, brooms, waste bins, heavy-duty garbage bags, wet/dry vacuum
- Pickaxe, shovels, rakes, wheelbarrow
- Various hand tools
- Specialized tools will be needed once your business takes off.
Monthly Expenses to Consider:
- If running out of your home, you won’t have a lot of monthly expenses other than your wages, fuel, maintenance, and repairs. On the other hand, if you have an office, you will have added expenses, such as utilities and lease or mortgage payments.
- List of Monthly Business Expenses
- Country, states, and provinces have different laws — you will need to check with state/provincial and local governments to ensure you have the correct licensing. For business licenses, we have a wealth of information on our page for licenses and permits
- The best type of marketing you can do is word-of-mouth in your area. In order to have good word-of-mouth, you need to do extraordinary renovations.
- To get your business started, you may need to do a few small jobs for no profit. Even better, find a project where you could renovate for public use — this way, you contribute to society and you will get free press and radio exposure, which works better than advertising.
- You could do a radio show or a monthly column for renovation tips for homeowners. This type of exposure will build trust, authority, and expertise as a home renovator.
- Create deals with local suppliers that sell the material you use. For example, here is a “no money involved” joint venture — You will use their materials, and they will send you customers that need installation. Deals are not easy to make — in order for them to work, both parties must benefit. Also, keep in mind you won’t strike a deal with every supplier, but you only need one to get started.
- Give free quotes. People that want a quote aren’t usually just wasting time — they want the work done, but they probably just want to see if it’s affordable.
- Create an alliance with a lender so that you can help your customers acquire credit so they can have monthly payments. You probably want to get a low-interest rate provider for customers with good credit, and you’ll want to deal with a lender that provides high-interest, high-risk loans for people who have bad credit.
Pros and Cons:
- Allows you to unleash your creativity.
- Can be highly profitable when you give accurate quotes.
- Is a stable industry with little room for change in the foreseeable future.
- You can be your own boss.
- There are unseen issues behind old construction that won’t show up until the old construction is torn down.
- A lot of older houses have mold and asbestos that needs a specialist to come and remove the unsafe material. This costs time and money.
- Deadlines are hard to keep with unseen circumstances.
- Staying on budget is difficult with unseen circumstances.
- The weather conditions affect your work.
Profitability and Revenue Considerations:
Your profitability depends on how accurate your quotes are, the type of jobs you take, and if you are doing the job yourself or getting help.