So you want to Start a Window Installation and Replacement Business? You’ve probably noticed that many of the windows in your home need replacing. The aluminum frame has started to corrode, the glass has become foggy with age, and those hinges are creaking out their last few squeaks. You can live without new windows for another year or two, but given the choice, you’d like to replace them now. The first thought that comes to mind is that this would be a perfect opportunity to start your own window installation business. Start that business; after all, there are lots of people who need windows replaced! But wait… Starting a Window Installation and Replacement Business sounds great in theory, But hang on… there’s more to starting a window business than you might think. There are some facts every potential business owner should know before taking the plunge into the exciting but complex world of windows and doors.
Follow these actions to start a window installation and repair business:
Before starting a business-
It’s important to understand everything you’ll need to do before, during, and after the installation process. These steps should be followed before starting a business.
Create a Business Plan:
The first step in Start a Window Installation and Replacement Business is to create a business plan. This will help you stay on track while starting your business, and assure customers (and yourself) that the Window Installation and Replacement Business delivers on its promises.
Conduct your research:
Your business plan will be more effective if you thoroughly research the market. That means knowing what you’re up against. Start by compiling a list of competitors in your area, and find out how they advertise their window installation services. You can also look at websites like Angie’s List, HomeAdvisor, etc.
Look for a business mentor:
It’s a good idea to start a windows installation business with the help of an experienced business owner. Look for someone willing to mentor you through your business process, providing guidance, support, and advice as the business goes from dream to reality.
Complete your training:
Start your business with the right training, skills, and know-how to get started on the best foot possible. Look into related courses offered by local community colleges or vocational schools; many of them offer valuable knowledge on business that can help you be successful.
Your company’s name:
Create a name that is an accurate representation of the window installation and replacement business you are starting. To do this, determine what separates you from your competition in terms of customer service, quality products, or technical knowledge. Make sure your branding strategy targets your audience with each visual element you choose including color scheme, fonts, logos, etc.
Take the Following Step:
After completing such steps as creating a business plan, training and branding your window installation and replacement company it is time to take the following phase:
- Understand Your Startup Expenses and Break-Even Point: Start a Window Installation and Replacement Business is not for the faint of heart. You will be spending money to make money, but you should understand your startup expenses and break-even point before starting your business. Don’t start a business without knowing what it will take to get the doors open! Also, better research on the established brands first and see how they manage their budget and expenses. You can contact them and set up a meeting as well. Brands like Omega Windows and Doors, Toronto Doors and Windows, Delco Window Replacement, EuroSeal Windows, etc. is ideal example to research for understanding the market status better.
- Create a business bank account and a credit card: To start a business, you must build credit. A business bank account can be used to create lines of credit for inventory, equipment purchases, materials, advertising, etc. Use this card for any company-related expenditures only.
- Fill out your tax forms: Contact your State and Federal government to see which tax forms you need to fill out as a business owner. You will need to use the Employer Identification Number (EIN) given by the IRS; this number will be used for all future filings with those agencies.
- Create a business accounting system: Your business accounting system should include a ledger, accounts payable and receivable, inventory ledgers, payroll (if applicable), and more. You can start this on paper by recording all expenses as they come up; as your company becomes more established you can move to an electronic system such as Quickbooks.
- Purchase commercial insurance: You may need insurance to cover yourself or your company in case an accident happens or damages occur while working on a client’s property. This can vary depending on your business type. You will also need to check out the workers’ compensation laws of your state.
- Obtain all required permits and licenses: Contact your State’s occupational licensing division to see which licenses you will need to start your company. These will vary depending on what services you offer and where you operate. You may also need to complete a business license application for your city if it applies; this license is generally done through the County Clerk’s office.
- Create a list of equipment and materials: You will need some equipment to start a windows installation business; this includes ladders, scaffolding, drills, power washers, etc. Your local hardware store can help you get what you need; they may also give discounts to new business owners. Purchase all necessary window supplies as well to get everything you need to bid on your first job.
- Hire the Right People: The success of your business hinges on more than just you. You’ll need to hire competent employees who are knowledgeable about windows and replacement procedures, and able to be good representatives of your business. Keep in mind that it’s often best to start with just one or two new hires until you get a feel for how your business is running.
- Advertising and branding: Now that you have a name, logo, and colors to represent your business, it’s time to spread the word! Word of mouth or referrals works well in the beginning. Make sure you get signage at your place of operation and a sign for your truck if applicable. Choose a website hosting service and get a website up; make sure this site is professional and informative. You may need to purchase additional services such as Search Engine Optimization (SEO) or pay-per-click (PPC) advertising depending on what you choose.
- Make a company website: Your website is the face of your company. You can make a free website with sites such as Wix, Weebly, or Squarespace. Make sure it has all of your contact information and a service page that highlights the windows and doors you offer.
- Suppliers: Your local supplier will provide the materials needed for your installations; this includes windows, replacement parts, trim pieces, etc. You can also source these items online through big box stores like Home Depot or Lowe’s if they do not have an exclusive deal with your local supplier.
- Contract and checklist creation: You need to have a clear process outlined for all of your jobs. Make sure you get the client’s information, details about the job itself, and any special instructions ahead of time in writing (this can be done on a website or by email). Make copies of this document, give one to the client and use it as a checklist when performing installations.
- Understand Competition: This step may seem like common sense, but you will want to understand your direct competitors so that you know your strengths and their weaknesses. You can use this information for campaigns or bid packages; knowledge of what makes them good at their jobs will help you find where they are lacking so you can fill them.
- Excellent Marketing and Sales Execution: Marketing is the most important part of your business. Marketing will help grow your company, even if you’re just starting. If you don’t have enough customers to support your windows installation business, no one else will either. Make sure you can identify and target your customer base effectively through advertising, branding, promotions, social media, and more.
- Quality of installation: You are the face of your company; you must be fully capable of performing all installation tasks to quality standards. If you don’t know how to install windows or doors, make sure you can hire someone who can before you get too involved in sales and marketing.
- When issues arise: Every job is going to have issues at some point. Make sure you and your employees are equipped to handle any issues that come up quickly and effectively, whether they’re big or small! You also have to make sure that you have an in-house warranty in place in case anything goes wrong after installation.
- Developing your company’s reputation: As you probably know, the first thing people will do when looking for a new windows installation company checks on Google. Make sure you have a strong online presence and promote your accomplishments! Sometimes, even negative publicity can be good PR as long as you respond to complaints on social media or customer review sites in a professional manner.