Want to start your own trade-based business? Whether you’re a brickie, plasterer, carpenter or construction all-rounder, choosing your own working hours and clients is a tempting prospect. Here you can find out when it’s the best time to take the leap.
When you have the right experience
While there’s no hard and fast rule, most tradies who’ve already made the jump would probably recommend waiting until you have some solid experience under your belt. An apprenticeship gives you the chance to learn directly on the tools and can give you an insight to managing clients and suppliers.
But, of course, that’s just the start. Working as a sub- or independent contractor can also add to your business wits. As a sole trader for tax purposes, you learn financial self-reliance, and you’ll learn how other businesses and industries run things.
When you’re financially ready
If you have the right qualifications and experience behind you, you should make sure you have the finances in place to follow through. This means, working out your initial startup costs, including equipment and insurance fees. Doing your revenue and cash flow projections will help you determine whether your business can survive until you’re in the black.
When the market looks good
If you’re a tradie in Australia, chances are you’re in high demand right now. However, additional research into demand in your particular area can’t hurt. Here, it pays to a keep close eye on any potential gaps in the market. You may be able to identify any profitable niches that your services fall into. You should also consider how seasonal peaks might influence demand in your industry throughout the year.
When you’re all set up
Before you start taking on any work, you need to make sure all legal boxes are ticked and that you’re really to roll from an operational perspective. This includes registering your business name, and taking out public liability insurance and other licences you may need in your field. If you’re unsure, check the Australian Business Licence and Information Service (ABLIS). Do you have all the tools you need? Do you have a strong brand presence on- and off-line? Plus, make sure you have the right devices, systems, and software, like QuickBooks Online, to manage the administrative side of things.