Learning a trade can be an excellent way to make a living, and many trades have a shortage of people, so you’ll likely always find your skills in demand. However, after a few years of working for others, you may be thinking about striking out on your own and starting your own business. This can be a daunting prospect, so here are a few tips to help you get started.

Get yourself insured

One of the most important things for tradespeople to do is to make sure they have insurance before they start working in other peoples’ homes. Getting tradesman insurance ensures that if you accidentally cause damage while carrying out work, or have an accident on-site, you are covered. One of the first things you should do when becoming self-employed is to take out insurance.

Do some market research

As with any new business launch, you should look into the market in the local area. Ask yourself questions such as:

  • Is there much competition locally?
  • Is there enough work to keep you busy full-time?
  • How much do people charge for these services?

This will help you decide firstly, whether it’s worth going it alone, and secondly, how much you can make from this enterprise, which will help you make a budget.

Work out your start-up costs

Another thing to think about is how much it’s going to cost to start your business. A trade business can be relatively expensive to start up, as there are often specialist tools that are needed for the job, plus you’ll need to buy parts for your early jobs, before you have any cashflow coming in. Also, most people in the trades need a van for all their equipment, although this might not be necessary.

Make a spreadsheet of all the things you need, and what they might cost, so you can work out your start-up amount. Don’t forget, you can often get decent tools and vehicles second-hand, which may be a good idea when you’re just starting out.

It’s not always easy to take the plunge and start your own business, especially if you’re someone who hasn’t run your own enterprise before. You should make sure you do your research and see what’s out there before you make any decisions, take stock of what you have and what you need, and get as much help as you can. This will give your business the best possible chance of success.