A home is a collection of many intricate and elaborate components and systems. The inner workings of any one of those are subject to wear and tear from time to time. That’s why maintenance and repair will periodically be necessary based on various reasons. A home connotes a residential building which also houses various other items. This means that the fields of specialization with regards to home repairs are many. This is one type of business endeavour that can be very flexible and can realize huge amounts of money if properly executed. Here’s how you can establish your own business in this domain.
The niche you intend to target will mainly depend on areas of specialization. Plumbing, carpentry, welding, painting, upholstery and electrical issues are some of the many areas of specialization. You can even choose to be an all-rounder provided you have the know-how. As much as it’s more befitting to have professional qualifications in the respective areas of specialization that doesn’t rule out the possibility of having just experience-based expertise. The bottom line is you must embark on this business journey knowing beyond doubt that you can get the job done. That’s critical because your business growth will be reliant on referrals or recommendations born out of excellent service delivery. The other determinant for your niche is whether you want to target high or low-density residential areas. Those aspects will relatively have a bearing on the nature and quality of clients you will likely deal with.
This is guided by how you choose to operate; usually, a home-based and on-call approach is most strategic. This means you’ll be operating from your home i.e. some people can come with items that need maintenance or repair to your house and you fix them there. To augment that you’ll also be on-call i.e. you get called to go do maintenance or repairs in situ. Depending on your trade or area of specialization you’ll need to have an all-inclusive toolbox and other associated tools. The tool requirements may start lean and you can expand as the business grows and as the nature of jobs dictates. You’ll also need to use both digital media and traditional media for marketing. These days there are community radio stations that cover areas you live in and surrounding areas. You can leverage them for marketing your business. You’ll need to invest in producing posters and fliers to put up and spread around. WhatsApp might be the most strategic social media platform to use as most people within your vicinity might not actively be on other platforms. So you must cultivate your contacts by using WhatsApp, SMSes and voice calls. Regardless, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to have social media accounts and a website for the business.
The most convenient thing about this business idea is that you can start and operate alone. This will ensure you have no significant overhead costs and administrative challenges. Some things that won’t be within the confines of your skillset you can always outsource or refer to other people specializing in them. The financial and customer-related issues are areas you can effectively run on your own. You can actually realize some revenue from making such referrals by getting a percentage.
Not much capital is needed to start this business if you already have some of the equipment needed. Money might be needed to buy some more equipment and to do other initial business setup processes. With approximately USD100 (or even less) you can actually start and get into full swing.
Business registration is always a prerequisite. There is a general misconception by people of thinking if you register a business you’ll end up losing money through tax payable to ZIMRA. In most cases, the tax isn’t as draining as people think. There are certain areas of specialization in this business that need certification; that you might have to find out from relevant regulatory authorities or local authorities. It’s wise to approach local authorities before running the business to see if there are things you are required to consider. As a warning, please don’t do repairs or maintenance for specialist areas that are highly technical and out of your grasp. If you don’t adhere to this you might up being sued so be very careful about this. Don’t be embarrassed to indicate if you can’t do a particular job; clients actually respect such honesty rather than you messing things up because you couldn’t admit you can’t do something.
This is a business that you can run full time or you can do part-time. It requires honesty as I said plus it requires excellent customer service. If you do a good job, a client is inclined to spread the word around. Charging hourly rates can be strategic in order to realize revenue but be honest and genuine. You could opt to just charge fixed rates depending on the nature of the job. Just ensure you pay attention to client behaviours as that will guide you on what resonates more with them. I know there are a lot of handymen out there (formally qualified or skilled by virtue of experience). This business is for you; most of you might have been doing this haphazardly so I now urge you to approach it as entrepreneurship. For those of you skilled in these regards and have just been seated looking for a job, why not start this business and liberate yourself financially?