Broken pipes, overflowing toilets and stopped-up drains must be attended to, no matter what the time of year or the condition of the economy. New construction is being built and needs effective plumbing installation. Individuals who enjoy working with plumbing fixtures, designing water waste systems and pride themselves on being creative enough to fix anything should investigate starting a plumbing business to enjoy steady work and a lucrative income.
Becoming licensed as a plumber involves taking a four-year apprenticeship to gain more than 2,000 hours of on-the-job training in addition to classroom work, graduating from a certified trade school, or applying as an apprentice at an existing plumbing business in order to gain experience. Check with the individual licensing board in your state to make sure you have complied with the exact requirements for licensing and certification to work as a plumber before you attempt to start your own company.
To start your own plumbing business, decide what type of plumbing you will specialize in, such as residential or commercial, and whether you want to focus on projects where you fix what's broken as opposed to jobs where you design and install new systems. Do you want to be the sole contractor in the business, the individual who actually performs the plumbing work? If you are not going to be the main plumber going out on jobs, you will have to find and hire qualified plumbers and get dispatch help in taking orders and scheduling plumbers to go out in the field for assigned jobs. Sometimes it's smart to start with yourself and another assistant, and keep adding qualified plumbers the busier your business gets.
If you learned the plumbing business by working for another company, you may already have customers who know and like your work and you can alert them that you have started your own plumbing business. Otherwise, plan on putting in some time, energy and advertising dollars in order to market your new business.
Price and reliability are two big factors when customers choose a plumber. When starting a plumbing business, it's essential that you can show up within a reasonable amount of time and do a great job of impressing new customers, because word of mouth will help you increase the number of job referrals you receive pretty quickly.
As a new plumbing business, consider joining your local chamber of commerce so you can meet other businesses that could use or refer your services. Consider membership in a trade group such as the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors Association for additional help in marketing your new plumbing business.