7 Power Tools To Never Leave The Shop Without

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by Dan Perry on January 28, 2015

Are you just starting your handyman business and wondering which tools you need to carry with you?

Unfortunately, there isn’t a simple answer.  It pretty much just depends on the services you offer.  As I’ve said before, just because you’re a handyman doesn’t mean you have to know how to do everything or even be prepared for everything.

Spend some time deciding on the services that you will provide and then get the tools required for those services.  Or, even better, just buy tools as you need them.  That’s what I did.

Eventually, you’ll get your tool situation dialed in to fit your style.

Personally, I have a minimalist approach to the tools I carry with me to keep things simple.  If I don’t need to cut mitered edges, I won’t bring a chop saw.  If I’m not going to do a lot of cutting or benchwork, I leave the sawhorses at home.  This not only eliminates the need to tow a trailer, but helps keep my truck clean and organized.

However, there are certain tools that I use often enough to where they have a permanent home in my truck.  Here are the 7 power tools that I never leave the shop without. Read more…

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In this blog post I’m going to share a simple, but rarely implemented strategy to get re-inspired, boost your motivation, and help you get more done while enjoying the process.

Recently, I took 3 straight weeks off to just evaluate, think, and strategize.  That’s right, I didn’t work, answer my phone, or even worry about what wasn’t getting done.  And I have to say, it was the best thing I’ve done for myself and business in a long, long, time. Read more…

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Need help with your bookkeeping or accounting?

Good news!  In this episode, I interview Randal DeHart, the leading expert in outsourced construction bookkeeping and accounting services for small construction companies across the USA.

And, Randal isn’t just an accountant, he’s also a former plumbing contractor with 20 years of experience.  So, not only does he understand handyman businesses from a accounting perspective, he understands it from the contractor’s perspective.

Randal’s been involved in the construction industry pretty much since he was born as his dad was a contractor.  After going to school to become an accountant, he decided, like many of us, that he didn’t want to work in an office.  So, he changed his direction and set out to become a plumber.

After very successfully starting, growing, and selling his plumbing company, he got back into accounting and now does it full time, focusing solely on helping contractors, handyman, and other tradesman grow their businesses through an intelligent and strategic approach.

I’m honored to have Randal on the show and I’ve personally gained a lot of highly valuable business knowledge from him.

Here’s what we discuss in this episode: Read more…

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Are you stuck competing with cheap labor?  Are you struggling to generate a healthy profit because there are so many other handymen who are willing to do the same job for less?  Are you afraid that your bids are too high?

A while back, I wrote a blog post and discussed a simple tile repair where I made $225.  After publishing this post, I got an e-mail from one of my readers who said “There is no way I could charge that much in L.A.  There are too many illegal immigrants here to compete with.  Here, that job would only bring about $50.”

At the time of getting this e-mail, I thought he could be right.  Maybe I’m just in a better area that is less competitive for price and that’s why I’m able to charge more.  Maybe some areas just won’t support a high-end handyman.

However, I’ve realized since that this is not the case at all.  If fact, it doesn’t matter where you live, there will always be cheap labor to contend with.  There will always be somebody who is willing to do a job for less.  To the reader who wrote me this e-mail and to countless other handymen and contractors, this would appear as a pricing problem.

But, this isn’t a pricing problem at all, it’s a marketing problem.  Here’s why. Read more…

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Are you still on the fence with whether or not a handyman business can actually work?  Or, are you hesitant to get started?  If so, you’re going to get inspired by this episode where I share a great interview with brand new Australian handyman business owner, Justin Terrill.

This is the first time I’ve had a handyman on the show who is just getting started, and it turned out amazing.

Justin started his handyman business only a couple of months ago and is already booked out two weeks in advance while charging a premium for his services.  He was previously a teacher, when he realized that he enjoyed working with his hands much more.  So, he put his skills that he learned from working on a farm to good use and got started with his handyman business in Sydney, Australia.

I got in touch with Justin when he contacted me to thank me for helping him get started.  As a member of the Handyman Web Academy and a reader of this blog, he took action on the knowledge that he learned and has had amazing results.

It was inspiring to talk with Justin, and even though he’s just getting started, I learned a lot from him.  Whether you are just getting started or have been in business for a while, Justin’s got some great insights to share.

Here’s what we cover in this episode: Read more…

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Ever since I’ve started my handyman business, I’ve pretty much operated entirely from my phone, only using my desktop for monthly accounting and marketing purposes.

When it comes to managing customers, quoting jobs, taking notes, tracking payments, taking credit cards, or scheduling, it’s all done on this amazing little device they call an iPhone.

No paper what. so. ever.  I like it that way.  And, the best part is that all of this software is so cheap that anybody can use it.  For example, the main App I use to run my business only set me back $12.99. (now it’s only $5.99)

I love technology, and as it turns out, my customers enjoy it as well.  I recently received a positive review from a customer and one thing she mentioned was that she liked how I was tech savvy.

Not only does this technology save me some serious paperwork headaches, it adds value to the customer and makes my business more efficient.

So, if you’re still walking around with a notepad, a schedule book, and a rolex of your customers, it’s time to upgrade.  Here’s how to do it for practically no cost. Read more…

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When I started my handyman business 3 years ago, I didn’t look like the typical handyman.  I didn’t have much experience, I didn’t have a reputation to help spread the word, and I looked like I was 18.

Let’s just say customers weren’t sprinting to their phones in a mad dash to call me.

That’s why I knew I’d have to go through extra steps to make myself look professional.  I had to find a way to look like I was actually an established business.  Otherwise, what reason would a customer have to even trust me?

So, I spent some time branding my business.  I did all the things necessary to make it appear as if I’d been doing this for a while.  I went out of my way to differentiate myself from other handymen.

As it turns out, overcompensating for my weakness ended up helping my business tremendously.

Not only did the extra time branding my business convince customers I was worth hiring, but it increased my perceived value in their minds.

The fact that I looked like I was a kid didn’t matter anymore.  I presented myself as if I had my shit together, and that was enough to convince them to at least give me a shot.

Of course, haveing a pretty logo designed and putting on a uniform didn’t get me customers by itself.  I still had to put effort into generating leads.  But it certainly helped close the deal on many occassions and it continues to do so.

That’s why in this podcast, I discuss the power of branding and tips for creating your brand.  Whether you are just getting started or have been in business for a while, a great brand can take your business to the next level. Read more…

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Four Reasons You Don’t Have Enough Customers

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by Dan Perry on October 9, 2014

You’re great at what you do, why don’t you have enough customers?  Is it lack of demand?

Probably not.

From my experience, there are a LOT of homeowners looking for a good handyman.

Frankly, I’m surprised at how often I find customers who say “It’s so hard to find good help.” or “I was so happy to find somebody that offered the services you offer that I can actually trust.”

It’s like there aren’t enough handymen or something.

But, I doubt that is the case.  I know there are plenty of handymen out there that would love to connect with these customers.  I get e-mails from them every week asking me how.

So, If you’re wondering why your phone isn’t blowing up with eager leads, you may be making one of these four marketing mistakes. Read more…

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Have you ever thought about becoming a franchisee?

If so, you’re going to love this Interview.

In this episode of the Handyman Startup podcast, I talk with Linda Stanfield, owner of Benjamin Franking Plumbing in Chandler, Arizona.

Linda has worked with her husband to grow their own Benjamin Franklin Plumbing and has had a lot of success doing it.  She’s also a great person who is interested in improving the home service industry and is willing to share what she’s learned to help others.

With over 15 years as a business owner, Linda has a lot of valuable lessons to teach and it was a pleasure having her on the show.

Regardless of whether you are buying a plumbing franchise, or starting a handyman business, the insights that Linda shares are extremely valuable.

Here are some of the topics we cover in this episode:

  • How the home service industry is changing and what you need to do to adapt.
  • The secret to giving amazing service.
  • Benefits of becoming a franchisee.
  • What to consider when purchasing a franchise.
  • The power of simply wearing a uniform.
  • The importance of learning your financials.
  • The key metrics to focus on in your business.

Read more…

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Last spring, I took a camping trip to Yosemite National Park, which was probably the coolest place I’ve ever been.

While hiking to the top of Yosemite Falls, I came across a guy who owned a window installation company in Washington State.  Let’s call him Cliff for the sake of this story.

I always try to learn from other contractors so I took this opportunity to ask Cliff some questions about his business.

I was immediately hooked.  Here was somebody I could learn from.  He had 30 years of window contracting experience with 15 years as the business owner.

I was drawn to Cliff’s confidence as well as his level of experience.  You could tell he had shit figured out.  The fact that he was in Yosemite with his family gave him points in my book.

At the time, I was struggling with pricing my services and always questioning whether I was too cheap or too expensive.  So, as I followed him up the steep mountain trail I asked him how he determined his pricing.   Read more…

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