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Apr 08

Home Repair Expert: Steps that Lead to Certifications and Careers

Becoming a home improvement expert is a great way to have the autonomy of owning your own business without taking on a huge financial risk. Normally called contractors, these are the experts that a homeowner calls when they need a job professionally done. Here are a few steps that you’ll need to take to ensure your chances of success.

Gain Real-World Experience

While it isn’t necessary to know everything there is to know about home repair before going out on your own, you do need a solid grasp on the basics of home repair. One of the best ways to gain this knowledge is by working with an existing contractor. Ideally, you would find one who runs the type of operation you would like to someday have. Then, go to work and learn from this individual, paying attention to how the business actually operates with regards to profit and loss, cash flow and accounts receivable. Treat this like a serious business from day one, and plan on gaining at least two – five years of valuable experience before striking out on your own.

Specialists Earn More Money and have Less Competition

In addition to working for an existing contractor, a very wise choice is to go to school to learn a specialty trade. The type of trade that is always in high demand and will provide year-round work is gaining HVAC certification. Some schools, like HVAC Technical Institute, know that these kind of skills can help build your career right after class is over. HVAC is all about how much certification and specialized knowledge you possess, with the more highly trained individuals earning higher incomes and having less competition than those with lower level certification.

Marketing your Business and Managing its Growth

Have a plan for how you are going to get, and keep customers. Find out who your customer base is. Who needs your services and is willing and able to pay for them? Busy professionals are a great place to start, as they are busy and are more than willing to spend money with a contractor they can trust. Professionals also know lots of others like them, so are an excellent source of referrals. It is a very good idea to join your local Chamber of Commerce and attend networking events to grow your base of influence. Also consider taking a class in business administration. This will help you learn basic accounting skills as well as how to form your business into a corporation. Managing growth is best accomplished by doing absolutely stellar work and being clean and professional. No one wants a contractor who shows up late and leaves a mess. Being the one who stands out because of top quality work and excellent punctuality is the one who will get referrals.

Starting is the Easy Part

Becoming a contractor has a low financial barrier of entry compared to other businesses. You don’t need to lease a building, hire a staff or take out a huge loan. You can get started with a good set of tools and some knowledge. What separates the success stories from the also-rans is that the success stories never stopped learning. They continuously sought ways to further their skill-based knowledge by gaining certifications. Then they learned how to be a smart businessperson, and managed growth by doing quality work and networking with others.

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