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How to Start a Painting and Decorating Business

silbchris April 25, 2023
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Painting is a bit like marmite. Many people love it, saying it’s therapeutic and satisfying. Others think of it as a frustrating task resulting in stress and anger. This divide creates a great opportunity for avid painters.

Painting is often a time-consuming job that many people would rather avoid. However, if you’re good at it and enjoy the process, a job opportunity could be on the cards.

A painter and decorator does exactly what it says on the tin. But, how do you become a professional painter and decorator? How do you start your own business? Here’s everything you need to know.

Step 1: Look at the market

Before you do anything rash, you need to understand the market you’re entering. How many other painting and decorating companies are in your area? Can your new business compete with the top dogs?

Analysing your competitors will give you a clearer picture of the market you’re entering. You’ll be able to spot any gaps in the market and get a sense of the clients you want to attract. Take a look at your local area. Are there more old or new builds? Are a lot of people renting? All of these questions will help you form a clear vision for your business.

Step 2: Settle your services

After you’ve looked at the market, you can use that knowledge to inform what services you should offer. Existing companies in the area might not offer a particular service, meaning you can swoop in and nab those needy customers.

Decide if you’d like to do interior or exterior painting. Will you offer wallpaper removal services? What about specialised services like staining, deck reconditioning or drywall repairs? Setting out clear services for your company will not only help you create a business plan, but it gives a clear message to the clients you’re trying to impress.

Step 3: Update your knowledge

Now you’ve decided on what services your business will offer, are there any skills you need to improve? Do you need to refresh your knowledge of certain techniques? If so, looking into painting and decorating courses could be a good idea.

There are courses that will help you perfect wallpapering, scraping techniques, patching and sanding. While you might already be knowledgeable about these things, there’s no harm in refreshing your memory. Plus, having a painting and decorating qualification to show on your website, social media accounts, or business cards will give confidence to clients.

Step 4: Register your company

You’ve got a clear understanding of the market, you know your services and all your knowledge is up to date – now it’s time to register your company. You can do this online on the GOV.UK website.

However, before you do that, you need to decide on a name for your business. This might seem easy, but it’s more complicated than you think. You might have the perfect name in mind, but it might already be taken. Carve out some time to google your ideal names to ensure they’re free before registering.

Step 5: Get insurance

This step isn’t very exciting, but it’s necessary. Insurance can be a lifesaver for people in the trades, so don’t overlook it.

There are different insurances for different businesses. Some insurers will even offer specialised insurance for painters and decorators. This will protect your business, alongside the public and your tools. Make sure to spend some time shopping around for the best insurance for your business.

Step 6: Buy your equipment

Now that the groundwork has been laid for your company, you can start building upon your painting and decorating equipment. It’s good to have a range of tools in your inventory so you can provide a number of services. Some tools to consider would be:

  • Rollers
  • Brushes in different sizes
  • Drop cloths
  • Sandpaper
  • Painter’s tape
  • Scrapers
  • Ladders

You might already have some of this equipment, but you need to have a variety as a business owner. However, buying all these tools can become expensive, so include these expenses in your financial plan.

You’re a professional!

With these steps in mind, you’re sure to create a successful painting and decorating company. By getting a clear picture of the market through research, deciding on your services, and updating your knowledge, you’ll be in a good place to start your new business. After that, all that’s left to do is register your company, ensure you’ve got relevant insurance and plenty of tools.

Now, all that’s left is to find some customers. Remember the importance of word of mouth and recommendations. If you do a good job and act professionally, customers will flock to use your services.

Good luck!

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