There is always a need for handyman service in any state, and Florida is no exception. Starting a handyman business in the Sunshine State has its advantages, and some of the most appealing are the freedom to be your own boss and the ability to create your own working schedule. This type of business allows you to use your hands to create something new, fix something up or improve on what’s already there.
That being said, if you want to work as a handyman in Florida, there are several things that you should know regarding licensing and starting a handyman business in Florida. Here’s what you need to know.
First and foremost, you need to consider buying an insurance policy for your small business that can help protect your handyman business from losses and liabilities that can arise from operating your handyman business. This is especially important if you work in an area where there are many risks to consider such as working with heights or above ground level, using chemicals and power tools, and much more. Before you start your handyman business, contact an insurance agent in Florida who is familiar with this type of industry to find out what you need to get the proper amount of coverage. You’ll want to have all of it before you begin working on jobs for people. While the state of Florida doesn’t mandate insurance, it protects you from the unexpected and is highly recommended.
Types of Licenses
There are several different types of licenses in Florida that you might need to apply for if you want to work as a handyman. For example, anything involving painting or flooring within your residence does not require any license. However, certain things do require some licensing, such as working on electrical wiring and using machinery. There are two types of licenses that you can get from Florida: the certified contractor license and the registered contractor license. Fees for both certifications vary and will be provided to you directly by the state.
Qualifying for a License
If you’re looking to qualify for a license, you can begin by contacting your city or county office. These are the governing bodies that issue licenses throughout Florida. They will tell you of any qualifications needed to get one which may include having no criminal history or drug problems, being capable of taking on large projects, and more.
Typically, a handyman license only requires having a high-school diploma and knowledge of home service work. While the skills typically vary on the job, you may need to demonstrate expertise on the following:
- Tile repair,
- Drywall repair,
- Exterior and interior painting,
- Lighting installation,
- Flooring installation.
Transitioning from a general contractor to a handyman requires some on-the-job experience. This is because your tasks may vary depending on what you’re hired for. Because there are so many areas to focus on, it’s hard to know exactly what you will need skills until you start working with customers. That’s why it’s recommended you work under another licensed contractor. Obtaining a license is just the first step, the best way to get hands-on experience is by working for another licensed handyman in Florida and learning everything you can before venturing out on your own. This may require that you work for free or low cost to gain the needed skills and knowledge ahead of time. This will not only help you to become a knowledgeable handyman, but it will also help you be more qualified as well.
Becoming a licensed contractor in Florida means that you’ll need to take an exam and pass it in order to become a qualified handyman. Generally, the test can be taken at any time and is designed to assess your home improvement and customer service knowledge. The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation typically administers the licensing exam. As there are no prerequisites to take the test, you can focus on studying all your handyman topics. While it’s not required that you study from a specific book or take any classes, it will be helpful to have some background knowledge before taking the exam.
Becoming a handyman is a great and profitable business idea. Although there are certain things you need to do to get a license, it’s not necessarily difficult and can be obtained from the state of Florida after applying.
Just keep in mind that this certification does not come overnight and that you’ll need to work under another licensed contractor for a while first to fully understand how it all works. This means you’ll likely have to do some free or low-cost work until you feel confident enough to start on your own.