Are you interested in starting a painting service from home? If YES, here’s a complete guide to starting a painting business with NO money and no experience.
Okay, so we have provided you an in-depth sample painting service business plan template. We also took it further by analyzing and drafting a sample painting service marketing plan backed up by actionable guerrilla marketing ideas for painting businesses. In this article, we will be considering all the requirements for starting a painting business. So put on your entrepreneurial hat and let’s proceed.
Why Start a Painting Business from home?
If you are looking to start a business that requires pretty low start – up capital, low operational cost, no serious technical skills, a business that is in high demand and with good returns on investment, then you should consider starting a painting business. Truly painting requires no serious technical skills, which is why almost all the painters you come across probably would have learn their trade on the job; no formal education is required to start and run a successful painting business.
Basically, what painters do is to apply paint, special coatings, and wallpaper to various internal as well as external surfaces for protection, cleanliness or beautification. Industry painters over services to a wide range of customers that cut across residential, commercial, industrial and municipal building markets as well as for infrastructure projects like roads, bridges and stadiums et al. Painters are sometimes contracted to paint ships but not automobile and aircrafts etc.
On the average, a standard painting business offer services such as bridge painting, painting of buildings or other structures, paper hanging for the purpose of beautification, spray painting buildings or other structures, wall papering, house / residential painting, rust proofing (excluding automotive), paint and wallpaper removal, and whitewashing. Painting or coating provides two primary functions; decoration and protection.
What Does It Take to Start a Painting Business Successfully?
Despite the fact that the painting business is open to all and sundry; if you are looking to become a painter, then you should brace up for hard work. This is so because painting requires loads of climbing, bending, kneeling, and stretching of hands. You should also be aware that as an industrial painter you must be prepared to work outside, and in dry, and warm weather. Painters that are involved in painting of bridges or high raising buildings may be exposed to extreme heights and risky positions which is why they must be safety conscious at all times.
Over and above, if you consider starting your own painting business from the scratch, then your level of determination and diligence are some of the factors that can determine if you can succeed in your pursuit. The fact is that, there is a large market for painters in the United States and of course all over the globe, positioning, good marketing skills, attention to details, and excellent job delivery will guarantee that you do pretty well as a painter.
Starting a Painting Business from Home – A Complete Guide
- The Painting Industry Overview
Statistics has it that general painting services for houses and apartment buildings was projected to account for 47.6 percent of industry revenue in 2015. With steady increase in residential / housing construction during this period, residential painting services widened as well. In the real sense, the growth of the single-family home market has driven up demand for interior wall painting services.
- Interesting Statistics About the Painting Industry
Just like most business value chain in the construction industry, the painting line of business is also affected whenever there is economic depression. Experts projected that the painting industry will shrink over the next five years and after then it will recover strongly because the housing market will experience a surge during this period. Logically, the industry will experience growth once there is increase in household spending on home improvement.
Statistics also has it that the paints and coatings industry in the United States of America, Western Europe, and Japan is mature and generally show a relationship with the health of the economy of these nations, especially housing, construction, and transportation. It was projected that the overall demand for painting services starting from 2014 to 2019 will experience increase at an average annual rates of 3 percent in the United States of America and at about 1.5–2.5 percent in Western Europe. However, In Japan, the consumption of paints and coatings will experience relatively slow growth during this period; it is projected to grow by 0.5 percent.
The main change that has taken place in the painting and coatings industry during the last 40 years has been as a result of new painting / coating technologies. Close to 45 percent of the coatings produced globally are used to beautify and protect new construction as well as to maintain existing facilities such as residential homes and apartments, public buildings, and plants and factories.
No doubt, the painting industry is one industry that is growing despite the fact that it is an industry that is open for all and sundry; people with little or no formal education. One thing is certain, the painting industry is an evolving one and new technology and approaches are being employed when it comes to delivering standard and safer painting services. The industry can’t be said to be oversaturated simply because there are different areas (niches) a painter can specialize in and if you are good with what you do, then you won’t struggle much to continue to attract clients.
The factors and incentives that encourage entrepreneurs to venture into the painting industry are the ability to get good returns on your investment with minimal risks, low start – up capital and little or no formal education or technical skills. For example, when you secure a contract to paint a facility, the norm is that you will be financially mobilized before executing the contract. People also get encouraged to go into starting their own painting business because on the average it is cost effective to manage the business / workforce.
Starting a Painting Business from Home – Market Research and Feasibility Study
- Demographics and Psychographics
The demographic and psychographic composition of those who need the services of painters cuts across the public sector, the organized private sector (most especially the real estate industry), households, communities and people of different class and from all walks of life.
Below is a list of the people and organizations that need the services of painters;
- Home owners
- The Public sector (public facilities et al)
- Organized private sector (Corporate organizations)
- Property Management Companies
- Real Estate Companies
- Construction Companies
- Estates and Communities
- Religious Centers
- Interior Decors and Facility Makeover Companies
List of Niche ideas Within the Painting Business That You Can Specialize in
When it comes to starting a painting business, there are a couple of niches ideas within the industry that an entrepreneur can choose from. Aside from the existing niches in the painting industry, an entrepreneur who is creative can carve a niche for himself / herself.
Here are some niches / areas that a painter can be specialized in;
- General residential painting
- General nonresidential painting
- Paper hanging and wall covering
- Paint and wallpaper removal
- Construction painting
- Non – building painting
The Level of Competition in the Painting Industry
Surviving in the business world as a painter requires more than, your expertise, knowing how to deliver standard painting or coating jobs but also how to network with key people that matters in the real estate and construction industry; decision makers that can decide who a painting contract is giving to and all that.
One thing is certain; the fact that the any serious minded and hardworking person can become a painter with little or no formal education makes the industry open to all and sundry hence the increase in the level of competition in the industry. So if you are starting your painting business, then you should be ready to compete with professional and non – professional painters.
List of Well – Known Brands in the Painting Industry
Here are some of the leading paint companies in the world and their market value;
- AKZONOBEL – Netherlands ($ 15.053 billion)
- PPG Industries – United States ($ 14.924 billion)
- SHERWIN-WILLIAMS – United States ($ 9.85 billion)
- DUPONT – United States ($ 5.76 billion)
- BASF Denmark ($ 5.187 billion)
- VALSPAR United States ($ 4.165 billion)
- DIAMOND Paint United States ($ 3.968 billion)
- SACAL United Kingdom ($ 3.881 billion)
- NIPPON Paint Japan ($ 3.026 billion)
- RPM Inc United States ($ 3.002 billion)
There is no hard and fast rule when it comes to starting a painting business in the United States of America; it is a business that by all standards is easy to set up. So when you are trying to crack your brain on economic analysis, you should have it at the back of your mind that you may not have need for the services of a business consultant before you can successfully start and run a painting business.
If you are tinkering with starting a painting business in the United States, your concern should not be on how to acquiring an office facility and equipping the facility or hiring staff et al, you should be concerned on how to attract clients and secure mouthwatering painting contracts with construction giants, real estate companies and other players in the industry. This is so because you can successfully run a painting business from your home.
On the average, setting up and running a painting business in the United States can be cost effective simply because you don’t have to maintain an office facility or a large workforce when you don’t have a painting contract to execute.
Is the Painting Business Worth Starting from Scratch or is Buying a Franchise Better?
If you are looking towards starting a painting business, you have only one option and the option is to start the business from the scratch. This is so because there are no franchises for painting business; the nature of the business does not give room for the sale of franchise.
One thing is certain, people are motivated to start business based on various factors and incentives. If you are looking towards building a business that you intend controlling, a business brand that you hope to one day transfer ownership to your children and perhaps also sell shares in future, then starting from the scratch should be your best bet.
Possible Threats and Challenges You Will Face When Starting a Painting Business
The threats and challenges that is likely going to confront a start – up painting business is the fact that they will be competing with already established and recognized painters and also other painting businesses that are likely going to be opened within the same location as yours. You would have to go all out to compete for the available market in the location you choose to set – up your own painting business.
Other threats and challenges that you are likely going to face when you start your painting business are economic downturns which usually affect purchasing powers and also unfavorable government policies. For instance, if the government of your country place embargo on new building construction in the location where your business is situated, it will sure impact negatively on your business.
Starting a Painting Business from Home – Legal Matters
- Best legal entity to use for a painting business
When it comes to choosing a legal entity for your business, what you want and the type of business model that you intend building should be some of the factors that should guide your decision. Generally, you have the options of either choosing a general partnership, limited liability Company which is commonly called an LLC, or a sole proprietorship for a business such as painting business.
Ordinarily, sole proprietorship should have been the ideal business structure for a painting business especially if you are just starting out with a moderate start – up capital. But people prefer limited liability Company for obvious reasons. As a matter of fact, if your intention is to grow the business and handle big contracts for government agencies and construction and real estate giants, then choosing sole proprietor is not an option for you. Limited Liability Company, LLC or even general partnership will cut it for you.
For example, setting up an LLC protects you from personal liability. If anything goes wrong in the business, it is only the money that you invested into the limited liability company that will be at risk. It is not so for sole proprietorships and general partnerships. Limited liability companies are simpler and more flexible to operate and you don’t need a board of directors, shareholder meetings and other managerial formalities.
Catchy Business Name ideas Suitable for a Painting Business
When it comes to choosing a name for your painting business, there is no hard and fast rule to follow. Just ensure that you choose a catchy name that can clearly state the nature of business you are into. A good business name is a good marketing tool.
Here are some catchy business name ideas you can choose for your painting company;
- Bobby Cool Professional Painting Services
- All About Painting and Coating Company
- Kerry and Sons Industry Painting Company
- Great Grace Group of Painters
- Multi – Colors Limited
- The Painting Gurus Ltd
- Master’s Brush Painting Company
- Rainbow Group
The Best Insurance Needed for a Painting Business
In the United States and of course in most countries of the world, you can’t operate a business without having some of the basic insurance policies that is required by the industry you want to operate from. So if you are looking towards starting a painting business in the United States, you should create a budget for insurance and perhaps consult an insurance broker to guide you in choosing the best insurance policies for your painting company; it is their duty to help you assess the risks involved in the type of business you intend running and then advice you accordingly. Besides, you will be exposed to risk and hazards if you are going to be involved in industrial painting and the painting of high – rise buildings et al.
Here are some of the basic insurance covers that you should consider purchasing if you want to start your own painting company in the United States of America;
- General insurance
- Health insurance
- Risk Insurance
- Liability insurance
- Workers compensation
- Overhead expense / disability insurance
- Business owner’s policy group insurance
Intellectual Property Protection and Trademark
You do not necessarily need any intellectual property protection or trademark for a business such as painting business. The truth is that, you can successfully run the business without having any cause to challenge anybody in court for trespassing on your intellectual property.
But you can still decide to still file for an intellectual property protection and also register your trademark just for the sake of protecting your logo or any other official business document. You can begin the process by filing an application with the USPTO. Please note that the final approval of your trademark is subjected to the review of attorneys as required by USPTO.
Is Professional Certification Needed to Start a Painting Business?
From a general perspective, you do not have any need for professional certification before you can be allowed to legally start your own painting business in the United States of America, Canada, and Australia and even in Europe. It is a business that is open to both the schooled and the unschooled; both the skilled and the unskilled hence there is no need for a special professional certification.
However, because of the risk professional painters are subjected to especially when they pain bridges and other high – rise structures, it will be to their advantage to pursue professional health and safety certification. If you are able to obtain a professional health and safety certification as a professional painter, it will go a long way to show to your potential customers that you are serious about your business.
List of Legal Documents You Need to Run a Painting Business
The legal documents required for running a painting business is perhaps the basic legal requirements need to run any business in the United States of America simply because of the nature of the business. These are some of the basic legal document requirements needed before you can successfully start and run your own painting business;
- Business and liability insurance
- Tax Payer’s ID
- Certificate of Incorporation
- Business License
- Business Plan
- Non – disclosure Agreement
- Employment Agreement (offer letters)
- Employee’s Handbook (optional)
- Operating Agreement for LLCs
- Insurance Policy
- Contract Document
Writing a Business Plan for your Painting Business
It is important to clearly state that no matter the type of business or size of business you intend starting, it is always a wise decision to first and foremost write a good business plan before taking any action. The truth is that, in order to successfully run a standard painting business, you would need to have a good business plan in place.
Simply put, a business plan is the blue print that is needed to successfully run a business; with a workable business plan in place, you will reduce the trial and error approach of doing business. You will be able to manage your business with purpose and perhaps precision; you will know what to do per time and how to handle challenges and growth.
So if you want to start your own professional painting business, you are required to write a detailed business plan that can pass reality test when it is subjected to it; you should work with the facts, figures and other indices in the industry as it applies to the location you intend starting your painting business.
The whole idea of writing a business plan is not just for the sake of having a business document in place; but a detail guide on how to effectively run your business from the scratch. Your business plan should outline and cover strategies on how you intend to manage your painting business. The rule of thumb in writing a business plan is to try as much as possible to be realistic and never to over project when putting figures on income and profits et al. As a matter of fact, it is safer to underestimate when writing a business plan so that you won’t be so disappointed when reality sets in.
These are the key areas that should be covered in your business plan;
Executive summary and Company’s descriptions: you are expected to write about the concept of your business, descriptions of your company, your company’s vision statement, and mission statement and where your company will be located and amongst other key factors.
Other key components that should not be missing in your professional painting business plan are product offering, SWOT analysis, competitive analysis, marketing and sales analysis / strategies, target market, market goals, pricing, costing and financial projection, publicity and advertising strategy, expansion and growth strategies, budget and start – up capital generation et al.
Detailed Cost Analysis for Starting a Painting Business
As a matter of fact, when it comes to starting a painting business, loads of factors influences the amount that will be required to successful launch the business. Factors like the location you intend starting the business, the type of clients you want to do business with, and of course the state of the economy as at when you intend starting the business.
Irrespective of where you intend starting your painting business, you would be required to fulfill most of the items listed below;
- The Total Fee for Registering the Business in the United States of America – $750.
- Legal expenses for obtaining licenses and permits – $1,300.
- Marketing promotion expenses in the amount of $3,500 and as well as flyer printing (2,000 flyers at $0.04 per copy) for the total amount of $3,580.
- Insurance (general liability, workers’ compensation and property casualty) coverage at a total premium – $2,400.
- Cost for payment of rent for a shop for 12 month at $1.76 per square feet in the total amount of – $52,800 (optional because you can successfully run the business from your home)
- Cost for Shop remodeling – $5,000.
- Other start-up expenses including stationery ($500) and phone and utility deposits – ($2,500).
- Operational cost for the first 3 months (salaries of employees, payments of bills et al) – $10,000
- Cost for painting tools and safety gadgets – $2,000
- The cost for the purchase of furniture and gadgets (Computers, Printers, Telephone, tables and chairs et al) – $4,000.
- The cost of Launching a Website – $600 (for online consignment stores)
- Additional Expenditure (Business cards, Signage, Adverts and Promotions et al): $2,000
Going by the report from the market research and feasibility studies, you would need an estimate of about $10,000 or less to successfully set up a small scale painting business in the United States of America. (It means you will run the business from your home thereby eliminating the cost of renting and maintaining an office facility)
If you want to start a medium scale painting business in the United States of America, you would need nothing less than a hundred thousand dollars ($70,000). (You may have to rent a small office facility or share office with someone)
And if your intention is to start a large scale painting business in the United States of America, then you should look towards generating over a hundred thousand dollars ($100,000) as your start – up capital.
- Financing Your Painting Business
One good thing about painting business is that you can start the business with pretty low start – up capital (money). As a matter of fact, the major expenses that you are expected to carry out is in acquiring painting brushes and other related painting accessories.
But averagely, you would need startup capital to launch a standard painting business since you would need to rent and equip an office and perhaps hire one or more staff. Trust me it can be challenging raising capital to launch a business idea. Your idea must be workable and promising for you to be able to secure finance from financial institutions or from angel investors.
The first thing to put in place before sourcing for start – up capital for your business is to draft a detailed business plan. With a good business plan, you can easily convince investors to invest in your business. The truth is that no bank can give you a loan if you don’t have a good and workable business plan. Besides, investors will not take you seriously if you don’t have a business plan on ground before launching out to source for start – up capital.
There are several options when it comes to raising money to finance a start – up business. Some of the options are;
- Raising money from personal savings and sale of personal stocks
- Raising money from investors and business partners
- Applying for loan from bank
- Pitching your business idea and applying for business grants and seed funding from donor organizations and angel investors
- Sourcing for soft loans from family members and friends.
Choosing an Ideal Location for Your Painting Business
In starting a painting business, it is very important to be strategic with the location you chose to pitch your tent. It is important to note that painters are in high demand in places where massive construction jobs are ongoing and also in places where you can easily find property management companies, property development companies, interior decors / facility makeover professionals and construction companies.
Aside from the points stated above, these are some of the factors that you should also consider before choosing a location for your painting business;
- The demography of the location
- The purchasing power of the residence of the location
- Accessibility of the location
- The numbers of painters in the location
- The local laws and regulations in the community / state
- The nature of construction and real estate activities within the location
Starting a Painting Business – Technical & Manpower Details
Generally, there are no technical requirements for starting a painting business aside from the fact that you might want to acquire you might want to buy a CRM software application to help you manage your customer base; to inform them whenever you a dishing out a promo (painting for half the price in Christmas, Thanksgiving and Holiday seasons et al) and to keep in touch with them.
As regard renting or leasing a shop, your financial capacity should influence your choice. If you have the required finance, it is to your advantage to acquire a property or lease a facility to be used as you office; it usually gives you the freedom to design the facility the way you want to it to be. But if you are low on cash, then you don’t have any option other than to rent a facility or operate from your home or share office with someone or rent a virtual office.
Usually, a small painting company would have the owner (chief painter) and one or more assistant (could be trainee painters or professional painters as well). But if you intend operating a standard – large scale painting company, then you should look towards hiring a office manager, business development officer, office assistant, 5 or more full time professional painters and perhaps a company truck driver (for moving workers, equipment and supplies such as ladders, painting brushes, scrappers, safety gadgets, paints and fillers et al to sites). On the average, you would need about 5 to 15 employees to operate a standard painting company in the United States of America.
The Services Process Involved in the Professional Painting Industry
The services process involved in the professional painting industry depends on the niches or the services the painting company offers. On the average, the process starts with biding or submitting proposal for a painting / coating contract, once the contract is won, then it is expected for the entire contract document to be signed and advance payment made as required.
Once the payment has been sorted out, then the painting company is expected to deploy professional painters and equipment and supplies as required to execute the job.
Over and above, it is the practice for professional painting companies to first access the risk involved and the nature of job they are to do before billing the organization that requested for their services. Most often than not, if the contract involves painting of bridges or high – rise building, the bills would usually increase because of the high risk involved in climbing and also the equipment such as gathers et al that would be used in executing the job.
Starting a Painting Business – The Marketing Plan
- Marketing Ideas and Strategies for a Painting Business
Professional painting business is not a business that you have to retail products which is why you must do all you can go after available opportunities or to maximize any opportunity that comes your way.
So when you are drafting your marketing ideas and strategies for your professional painting company, make sure that you create a compelling personal and company’s profile which must include the high profile jobs that you have executed in time past. The truth is that if you have been able to work for big – time clients such as government agencies, big corporation et al, it will definitely give you leverage in the market place when you bid for contracts.
Here are some of the platforms you can utilize to market your professional painting company;
- Advertise your business in relevant real estate magazines, TV and radio station and also make yourself available for related talk shows and interactive sessions on TV and Radios)
- List your business on local directories / yellow pages (both online and offline)
- Attend real estate related expos, seminars, and business fairs et al
- Leverage on the internet to promote your business
- Join local chambers of commerce around you with the main aim of networking and marketing your professional painting company.
- Introduce your business by sending introductory letters alongside your brochure to all the corporate organizations, community leaders, schools, hospitals, hotels and government offices in your target area.
- Promptness in bidding for contracts
- Create different packages for different category of clients in order to work with their budgets.
- Engage in direct marketing, referral marketing and also email marketing.
Possible Competitive Strategies for Winning your Competitors in a Painting Industry
When it comes to competing as a professional painter that is just starting the business, you must be proactive; you should not wait for people who need painters to come looking for you, you should go after them. For instance, one of the easiest ways of securing painting contracts is to ensure that you go to construction sites and try as much as possible to bid or submit quotations that are usually below the average in the painting industry in your location. With that couple with your compelling company’s profile, some building contractors would want to try you out.
One thing is certain, if you are able to deliver excellent job, you are likely not going to struggle to convince the building contractor to give you a painting contract whenever the opportunity arise in future. If the building contractor is highly satisfied with your job output, he’s likely going to refer / introduce you to other building contractors and that might just be the break you need as a professional painter.
Lastly, ensure that your organization is well positioned and if possible form strategic partnership with other key stakeholders in the real estate / construction industry; it will sure give you competitive advantage over your competitions.
Possible Ways to Increase Customer Retention for a Painting Business
When it comes to business, no matter the industry that you choose to pitch your tent in, one of the easiest ways to increase customers’ retention and perhaps to attract new customers is to satisfy your customers always. If your customers are satisfied with your services delivery, they can hardly source for alternative service provider or products.
Statistics has it that one of the major reasons why customers source for alternative service provider or product is when there is a drop in quality. Another reason is poor customer service.
If you can continue to improve on the quality or your services and your customer service delivery, then you won’t struggle to maintain your loyal customers.
Part of what you need to do to achieve this is to ensure that you visit the sites where you carry out painting job to be sure the painting comes out nice and the customer is satisfy. When it comes to managing your customers and building loyal clientele base, you should purchase a customized CRM software. With a customized CRM system you can easily stay in touch with your clients (you can carry out quick survey, you can introduce new products and prices to them without any hitch, you can felicitate with them on their birthdays and other anniversaries, you can send bulk sms and customized e – mails and above all you can easily receive compliant and feedback from them).
Discuss strategies to Boost your Brand Awareness and Create a Corporate identity
When it comes to creating brand identity for a professional painting business, the caliber of clients you have worked for and the nature of painting contracts you have handled in time past is always a major brand booster.
It is pretty important to work with your consultants to help you map out publicity and advertising strategies that will help you walk your way into the heart of your target market. First and foremost, you should ensure that your brand is visible and well communicated which is why you should make provisions to work with different class of people in the society. All your publicity materials and jingles should be done by some of the best hands in the industry.
Below are the platforms you should leverage on to boost your brand awareness and create a corporate identity for your professional painting company;
- Introduce your business by sending introductory letters alongside your brochure to all the corporate organizations, community leaders, schools, hospitals, hotels and government offices in your target area.
- Advertise your business in relevant real estate magazines and websites
- List your business on local directories / yellow pages (both online and offline)
- Promote your business on local TV stations and radio stations.
- Attend relevant real estate expos, seminars, and business fairs with the aim of creating awareness and promoting your brand
- Engage in direct email marketing
- Leverage on the internet (social media platforms and your official websites) to promote your business
- Ensures that your workers wear your branded shirts at all times during working hours and also make sure you brand all your company’s official vans, trucks and cars et al.
Creating a Suppliers / Distribution Network for your Painting Business
If you are professional painter, must often than not, when you are awarded a contract, it is your responsibility to select the best colors that suits the building or facility to be painted and also to purchase all the needed supplies such as paints, fillers and masking taps et al that are needed to execute the job.
In view of that, you are supposed to have a robust business relationship with some of the leading paint manufacturing companies in your country so as to facilitate easy supply of paints when needed. If you live in the United States, you can form strategic marketing alliance with paint manufacturing companies such as PPG industries, SHERWIN Williams United States, RPM Inc. United States, VALSPAR United States, DUPONT United States and Diamond Paints United States. It will make it easier for you to get free flow of supplies at a cheaper rate, perhaps on credit whenever you place demand.
Tips for Running a Painting Business Successfully
The truth is that, irrespective of the kind of business you run, your ability to get all the members of your team on same page at all times is one of the keys you need to successfully run the organization.
As the chief executive officer or Chief Painter of a professional painting company, it is you responsibility to give direction to the business. Part of what you need to do is to ensure that you create time for office meetings; a time where challenges, feedbacks, projections and relevant issues are discussed. The meetings could be daily, once in a week, twice a week or once in a month. The bottom line is that there should be consistent meetings in your organization.
Carrying out appraisals on a regular basis and training your employees will help you run your organization effectively. Encourage your employees to pursue relevant safety certifications; it will help your organization’s profile and of course it will help the individuals. You can choose to fully or partially sponsor some of the certifications.
Lastly, you should keep your doors open for suggestions from members of your team and your clients. It is very important to reward excellent performance in your organization; it will go a long way to encourage healthy competition in your organization.