The answer to this question really boils down to one main thing: capital. However, when it comes to the details of how to start a restoration company, you need a lot more than just cash. All the money in the world cannot make up for not knowing how to spend it strategically or knowing when to finance or pay cash. So, if you’re wondering how to become a restoration contractor and start your own business, here are the basics of what you need to get started.
Experience and Qualifications
This might be the least expensive item on the list, but that depends on the value you place on time. Learning the right skills and gaining experience may take years to accomplish. If you already have enough experience in various roles in this field, then you’re already off on the right track.
You may also require specific certifications, which vary at the state and county level. Check with your local government to verify. Most professionals recommend The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification for those who want formal training.
Equipment and Tools
Restoration is a hands-on job that requires professional-grade tools to ensure you never skimp on quality for your customers. Investing in the best in the industry can help you save your money later on. These pieces of equipment tend to last longer and deliver successful results and client referrals. Because we believe that investing in quality equipment leads to prosperous businesses, we offer easy financing for your restoration equipment.
Another great opportunity comes from buying premium equipment used. Here are some of the most common items that you may need to start a restoration company:
- Commercial van or work truck
- Centrifugal fans or air movers
- Moisture meters
- Air scrubbers
You need a strategy to overcome the distrust potential customers may at first have of a new business, no matter how many years of experience you may already have. Ideally, you have a business plan in place. This document helps you to articulate your objectives for the business as well as crunch some numbers. You can then come up with pricing plans and marketing strategies to complement these. If you are new to the geographic area, this may include networking and community outreach programs.
When entrepreneurs first enter any field of business, they often feel tempted to offer all types of services. This may seem like the best way to ensure you can capture as much of the market as possible. The truth is that companies who specialize tend to perform better. Focus on what you’re good at and branch out into the rest later. Even within the restoration industry there are niches such as carpet restoration or wall damage repair. If you have solid experience in all areas, then consider specializing in either residential or commercial restoration to start off.
When doing smaller residential jobs, it is possible to run your restoration company without any employees. However, if you offer emergency services and want a larger clientele, you will need to hire workers. Former colleagues are a great place to start as you have firsthand knowledge of their work ethics and whether or not this will fit with your business.
Some companies also try to boost their bottom line by using subcontractors. This actually cuts into profits. The more work you can keep in-house, the more money you save on paying another company’s markups. This translates into better prices for your customers, which they will appreciate. That said, it’s a good idea to take on subcontract work for other large companies. It is important to remember that your employees will be a representation of your company, and are often on the main contributors to referrals.
These items are just the very beginning of learning how to start a water restoration business. The rest will come from experience as well as your knowledge of the industry. If possible, reach out to a mentor in another geographic market or attend available workshops and tradeshows. You can learn a lot from those who have been in the business for a longer period of time.
When it comes to capital, not everyone has a large sum of money waiting around to invest. At Aztec Financial, we provide equipment financing, fleet sales, and used equipment sales to start you off on the right track. Contact us for more information at 800-644-9537.