How to Start a Profitable Handyman Business

Apr 14, 2022 · 8 minutes to read

Happy handyman after a house call

Starting your own handyman business can be an excellent career path if you are skilled in a range of home repair and maintenance jobs. Many homeowners rely on professional handymen to help them do everything from cleaning gutters to installing a new sink. Chances are that your talents are needed in your area.

There are many steps you’ll need to take to start a handyman business. Though these take time and effort, now is not the time to cut corners. A strong foundation can help you build a handyman startup business—and a profitable one at that!

Below are seven steps to guide you as you start a handyman business:

1. Do market research

Local homeowners could likely use your skills and expertise. However, you should still research the need for services in your area before jumping into the market. Understanding who is hiring handymen in your area and your competition could help your business stand out in the crowd.

Market research is a key part of writing a handyman business plan. This document will help guide your business. Business plans typically include your goals, budgets, and advertising strategy in addition to market research.

A Google search of handymen in your area is a good place to begin your research. Are they selling themselves as a “jack of all trades” or focusing on specific skills? Consider shaping your approach to what the market demands and your unique talents.

For example, if your local market is full of generalized handymen, you might focus on a single specialty that you are highly skilled at and turns a good profit. However, if there is a shortage of general handymen in your area, being able to handle a variety of jobs could work to your advantage.

2. Set your prices

While researching the competition, pay attention to how much they are charging. Your rates will partly depend on your training and experience level, but you also want to avoid pricing yourself out of the market by overcharging.

Another thing to consider when setting your hourly rate is how much competition is out there. You may need to lower your rates or offer new customer discounts if many handymen are working in your area. However, if you are the only handyman for miles around, customers may be willing to pay more for your services.

Setting your rates is a balancing act. To turn a profit, you need to factor in the costs of doing business. These can be anything from the tools required to do a job and gas to drive you there to licensing fees and insurance premiums. It may help to have an accountant review your budget and proposed rates to ensure you’re charging enough.

3. Get a handyman license

Many states, counties, and cities require a license to work as a handyman. This is often tied to the types of projects you accept, the amount charged per job, or how much you earn in a year. Other states only require you to register as a handyman with a government department.

Depending on the rules in your area, you may need either a handyman license or a general contractor’s license to work legally. Licensing requirements vary, but you will generally need to pay a fee, show proof of General Liability and/or Workers’ Compensation insurance, complete pre-licensing training, and pass an exam.

4. Collect your tools

If you hope to be a successful handyman, you will need a set of sturdy and reliable tools. Take stock of what you already have and ensure that the basics are covered. This would include a hammer, screwdrivers, wrenches, awls, and other tools you are likely to need for most jobs.

It may be tempting to use your handyman startup as an excuse to buy new specialty tools. But an expensive spending spree could make it harder to turn a profit. Only invest in high-priced specialty tools if you’ll use them frequently. Renting or borrowing them may be cheaper if they’ll only be used once or twice.

5. Make your business official

Registering your business name and getting a business license are important steps for any small business owner. These make you official in the eyes of the law and may provide you with some trademark protections.

When you apply for a business license, you will need to decide on your business structure. Most handymen are considered sole proprietors, which is the simplest structure to register and manage. If you are going into business with someone else, you will need to register as a partnership, limited liability, or corporation. A lawyer or accountant can help you choose the proper structure for your business and explain the tax benefits and obligations that come with each.

6. Protect your business

Once you’ve put in the effort to start a handyman business, you’ll probably want to protect it. Business insurance is one way to do this. Many policies are available to help safeguard what you are building from expensive claims and lawsuits. Certain types of insurance may be required to become licensed, work in your state, or accept contracts from specific clients.

Along with insurance, you may also put steps in place to help prevent complaints, accidents, and injuries. A risk management plan can help you avoid mishaps that could derail your business. This might include a handyman checklist for safely working in a client’s home or a backup plan for if you are too sick or injured to work.

7. Market your business

People can’t hire you if they don’t know you exist! Getting the word out about your new business is the final step in becoming a successful handyman.

There are many ways to market your business. You may have already put some thought into this when drafting your handyman business plan. Using a variety of advertising methods could help you reach the most potential customers. Early efforts might focus on getting listed with Google Maps and in online directories, so you show up in searches. You should also build a website to list your services and create social media profiles to increase your online presence.

Advertising your services on apps, such as Nextdoor, or bidding on jobs through TaskRabbit and similar apps can also get your foot in the door. Once you’re more established, word-of-mouth referrals and reviews could become a great pipeline for new business.

Pros and Cons of Starting a Handyman Business

Starting your own handyman business can be a great step in your career. However, like any business, there are challenges that come with it. Let’s take a quick look at a few of the common pros and cons of starting a handyman business.


There are many benefits to starting your own handyman business. These can be attractive to aspiring business owners looking for more control over their day-to-day schedule and long-term career goals.

  • Start-up costs are typically low if you already own the tools and equipment necessary for the most common handyman jobs.
  • You get to set your own schedule and choose the projects you work on.
  • You can partner with others, such as real estate agents or commercial landlords, to create a steady flow of jobs throughout the year.
  • There’s a high earning potential, even for part-time handymen using their business as a side gig.
  • If you build a successful enough brand, you could create a franchise that generates passive income.


There are also many handyman business challenges you may face as a business owner. Understanding these could help you tackle them head-on and set yourself up for success.

  • You may need to navigate a lot of red tape. Depending on where you work, you may need multiple contractor licenses and/or permits to perform certain projects legally.
  • If something goes wrong, you may be liable and might need to compensate your customer to fix the problem.
  • Work can be seasonal, especially if you focus on a speciality. For example, if you repair air conditioners, you probably won’t be getting much work in winter.
  • Handyman services can be a competitive field, and you could have trouble standing out from the pack.
  • Trade work is often physically demanding, and your health can be impacted by long hours of physical labor.

Though there are many potential handyman business challenges, the pros outweigh the cons for many tradespeople. Despite the roadblocks you may face, starting your own handyman business can be incredibly rewarding and create a great sense of accomplishment.

Starting a successful handyman business

If you decide to start a handyman business, be prepared to put in a lot of time and effort. Building a successful handyman startup isn’t always easy. But it can be a worthwhile experience for those with the skill and dedication to see it through.

Ready to insure your handyman startup? BizInsure can help! Compare handyman insurance quotes from top insurers now.

*As with any insurance, cover will be subject to the terms, conditions and exclusions contained in the policy wording. The information contained on this web page is general only and should not be relied upon as advice.
** This information is a general guide only and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Always check with your local licensing board when getting or renewing your handyman license to ensure you are meeting their current licensing requirements.

Get Free Online Quotes and get coverage instantly

The coverage you need for your business.

Business insurance is divided into different policies. We offer 4 types so it's easy to design the coverage that fits your business.

Professional Liability Insurance

Get a quote

General Liability Insurance

Get a quote

Business Owner’s Policy (BOP)

Get a quote

Workers Compensation Insurance

Get a quote

Let's find

The coverage you need for your business

Professional Liability Insurance

Get a quote

General Liability Insurance

Get a quote

Business Owner’s Policy (BOP)

Get a quote

Workers Compensation Insurance

Get a quote

BizInsure has really come through for me on some really hard to place risks. Andrew takes the time to understand the risk and work through how we can make it work, rather than looking for ways to say no. Thank you for your help!
Carlos T.
18:06 16 Mar 23
Very helpful and explanatory on the policy line of the policy
Josua V.
17:30 14 Mar 23
Worked with Tevin. Amazing customer service. Was very patient with me in figuring out the best insurance coverage for business. Thanks Tevin for making it easy.
Faisal O.
16:23 14 Mar 23
No complaints, Always a fast response when a need arises.
Dan F.
13:56 10 Mar 23
Very good information patience was shown. Much help from Kaled, satisfied with the amount of insurance and good coverage. Affordable is what you need with starting a small business until you grow. Old saying is go as you grow.
Jacquelynn W.
21:53 20 Jan 23
Professionals at what they do! easy to navigate and very good people to lead to to the best coverage!
Magnifier 2.
20:37 17 Jan 23
I have been shopping for business liability insurance for several months. I am happy to share that BizInsure ranked #1! The representatives were polite, patient, and empathetic. They accomplished what most companies struggle with achieving: they did what they said they were going to do, they were on time, and they had empathy. They delivered a policy for 25% less than the closest competetor, and even included $50k of cyber security at no additional cost! I only write reviews when I receive exceptional experiences- highly revommended; keep up the great service BizInsure!P.S. I own a professional referral service in Hawai'i and I am going to see if BizInsure offers an affiliate program.Aloha!
John S.
05:51 23 Nov 22
They respond quickly and give you quotes immediately ...
Regean K.
23:55 09 Nov 22
The agent that I spoke to was very experienced and could tell that I was new at this and was very understanding and took the time to explain everything to me.
lotanga J.
00:04 15 Oct 22
Easy to work with and very responsive. Glad to have them as my broker.
Edward G.
18:54 13 Sep 22
We’re very happy with BiInsured LLC. VERY AFFORDABLE
Paul A. F.
19:20 11 Sep 22
Jasmine Q was on the spot professional, she knew where to direct me and explain to me my concerns and request; she delivered my personal information within minutes of me asking policy questions.That young lady is a true ROCK STAT!!!
Shaka 3 Z.
23:09 15 Aug 22
For a small non-profit, the package I was given was affordable. The representative was polite, patient, understanding, and knowledgeable.
Gertrude R.
18:06 15 Aug 22
Asked for a specific venue to be place on our certificate of insurance and it was done within one business day. Yay! Bizinsure!
Melinda S.
17:02 01 Aug 22
The process was fast and easy and the professional staff was very knowledgeable with any questions that I had and ready to help
06:40 31 Mar 22
Friendly agents. Timely replies. Fair pricing. This is a good fit for my business! Thank you, Noah, for all your help.
Beth Anne V.
19:27 28 Mar 22
They are awesome
Tony H.
00:41 07 Jan 22
Noa made sure I had all the information I needed for a first time business owner . He helped me understand what I needed to secure a quality policy and he was super helpful when explaining how the policy would serve its purpose to my company. I was very satisfied and had an Awesome experience, I think people like that make the company look good!
Wayleen O.
04:36 15 Oct 21
I was in need of WC, GL and PL coverages for my business and was able to shop, discuss, confirm and purchase all the coverages in two days! This was a great experience, especially when "Time is Money". Noah Bowman was very professional and knowledgeable. Thanks!
AmeriCreed 1.
15:42 23 Sep 21
19:49 09 Sep 21
Their representative clearly explained different kinds of policies to help me select the one appropriate for my needs and then helped me enroll by phone painlessly. By the end of the call, I had a policy in place.
Dissent D.
22:21 02 Sep 21
Eugene was Awesome!!!!
Lakesha G
17:19 21 Jul 21
Excellent solution for writers and authors professional liability policy as well as coverage for copyright and trademark infringement. Service was prompt and excellent.
18:22 22 Jun 21
Done in less than an hour!
William O.
00:30 02 Jun 21
Efficient, and great value. The agent was able to give us a quote and a new policy in a short period of time. Thank you
Brenda J.
20:30 24 May 21
I had a great experiencing obtaining several of my insurance needs as a landscaping company here in Northern Colorado. BizInsure's team took care of my needs and was very responsive to help with paperwork needed to secure a potential client account!
Arik S.
16:34 10 May 21
Very efficient they were able to help me out with my request promptly....highly recommend this companyI am very happy to have them
Elba P.
18:50 26 Apr 21
I need a help getting errors and omissions insurance along with general liability. Jose was very friendly informative and was very patient with me during the process. He found me some of the best rates for the coverage that I needed. Highly recommend
Casper M.
19:51 20 Apr 21
I had numerous conversations with several business insurance agents over a month's time. I also had several conversations confirming the policy inclusion/exclusions and asked many questions. My BizInsure agent was professional, knowledgeable and most important—detail oriented. Even after having an initial conversation a month earlier he knew and *remembered* all my personal/professional insurance needs. When I asked for additional information on the third call he was able to provide me with details very quickly. He was also VERY patient. That is a big plus in my opinion. It illustrated a high level of respect for my needs. I also found when I called back and asked to talk with the initial agent, the person who answered the call was able to get in contact quickly and my agent responded and returned the call within 5-10 minutes. The transaction was smooth, and I think it's a good sign should I ever need to make a claim. I highly recommend BizInsure.
Poetic F.
21:00 07 Apr 21
The rep was extremely helpful actually lowered my quote and made sure I was covered to fit my needs with my growing business! 5star!!
Franklin B.
19:04 16 Mar 21
Excellent service and prices.
Cassiopée V L.
23:13 09 Mar 21
Mr. Daniel Scott was very responsive to my professional needs.
Stephanie W.
17:38 18 Feb 21
Eugene deserves a raise! First time purchasing insurance and he made the process so simple for me. His patience and attention to detail left me feeling confident in my decision to choose BizInsure. Gracias Eugene!
Esined P.
23:32 17 Feb 21
The customer service provided by Jose was outstanding. He explained everything in a very clear/logical way and answered all of my questions. After providing all the information to obtain general liability insurance, Jose sent me the declaration page of the insurance for review. All of the information matched what I provided over the phone and there were no typos. The next day I called back to purchase the insurance which was easy and fast. Overall, my experience with BizInsure including the customer service by Jose exceeded my expectations.
Joe W.
03:29 12 Dec 20
Hiscox/BizInsure made getting Liability Insurance very easy and reasonable.I expected it to be a long and complicated process and it was a nice surprise that they made it so uncomplicated. Thank you. Lisa
Lisa W.
21:51 24 Nov 20
Eugene was incredible. I called 4 other brokers before him who were impossible to get any help.
rhonda H.
23:26 12 Nov 20
Very quick to get in touch with you and good with follow up. Had some trouble retrieving my quote to log into my account initially but Daniel assisted me and the changes were made to get me into my account. Great value for the money.
Fran S.
16:34 20 Sep 20
Very happy to be insured with this company. Professional, Timely, very helpful. Thank you Juan, you made it so much easier for me to understand.
Aileen D.
19:55 15 Sep 20
This company responded when I needed them to respond while facing a deadline. They are an excellent choice for business Insurance.
Michele H.
01:52 12 Sep 20
Jose Quintero took such great care of me and was very patient explained everything I did not understand and got me set up quickly. Fabulous customer service
Christina R.
02:41 27 Aug 20
I can't say enough good things about Daniel Santos kind and effective communication skills as an insurance agent. Daniel was so pleasant, friendly and efficient with helping me obtain insurance as a teacher. If I were to give Daniel a grade, he has earned an At . He made the process easy to understand, it was far easier than what I anticipated. Nancy S.
Nancy S.
00:47 26 Aug 20
I was in need of professional liability insurance for my sole proprietorship. A friend referred me. Everythng was quick and simple and AFFORDABLE!
hope J.
20:31 25 Aug 20
If you need Private Home Care Provider insurance for your company, BizInsure, LLC can get it for you!
Pamela C.
16:45 24 Aug 20
Great and fast service!!!! The representative was very professional!!!!
Tanya S.
19:51 14 Jul 20
I was tryi9ng to find commercial liability insurance for my new comp-any and BizInsure was easy to use and very affordable which is great for me as a new business.
Jimmy S.
19:01 14 Jul 20
Great service insurance prices are great for professionals looking to get insurance for businesses....
Rhonda G.
22:34 22 Jun 20
The provided very professional service and made the process easy.
Paul R.
21:51 04 Jun 20
Bradley Hoyle from the Biz Insure team was excellent to work with. Everything was quick and smooth. Great service, much appreciated!
Kristene S.
02:03 04 Jun 20
Anthony Spencer was great!! Very quick response time!! He was very Professional! I would suggest him because he helped me find a affordable rate and explained all the technicalities..
Fre H.
16:38 28 May 20
I was referred to Bizinsure by a industry trade group that I am a member of. It was easy to get a quote online and then received excellent customer service from Bradley H. to complete my policy purchase over the phone. I have shared this company information now with other business owners for their policy needs.
Dawn T.
22:11 08 May 20
This company was very precise with explaining services and made sure I chose the right business insurance coverage, great customer service at purchasing.
Nekeisha B.
01:30 05 May 20
Jasmine Q
14:31 02 Dec 19
Trish is the most patient, professional and understanding insurance agent I’ve ever worked with. Trish has taken care of all my business insurance needs for the last couple years. I am really happy that I found an insurance agent that I know will take care of me & all of my concerns. I feel like a valued customer & I appreciate the great customer service that I get every time!!THANK YOU!
Dr. Youssef C. A.
17:21 14 Nov 18
Tricia helped me get insurance for my business. The task of obtaining a quote was really starting to frustrate me until I was referred to BizInsure through a different agency. Tricia got me a quote fast, and even took a down payment over the phone and issued the proof of insurance the same day. a+ service, would do it again in a heartbeat!! Thank you!!
Josh M.
18:07 22 Jun 18
BizInsure was a great find! I did not have to fill out applications, and Tricia was able to quote and bind business insurance for me within half an hour.
Allison Y.
17:28 21 Jun 18
Started doing business again and needed a policy fast. Ramez was reasonable, helpful and the rates are OK. Buyer beware? Sure, for me it turned out OK this time. Worth a call.
Mark W.
23:42 13 Nov 17
Great customer service. I've been very inpressed with my dedicated representative that had helped me navegate my insurence needs. Thanks so much!
Graham B.
22:12 23 Jun 17

Popular Searches

Google Rating
Based on 89 reviews