One of the best things about working on as a handyman is that you have the freedom to set your own schedule and rates.
If you live in Utah and are thinking about starting a handyman business, then keep reading to find out how. We will tell you what you need to know.
Doing Handyman work in Utah
Generally speaking, Utah is a handyman friendly state. This means that you are allowed to perform some work even if you do not have a license. You can perform home repairs, maintenance and improvements without a Utah handyman license. But you should keep in mind that there are limitations on the work you can do if you don’t have one.
Most states impose a limitation on the dollar value of the jobs you can do without having obtained a license. If you work in Utah, you can do jobs whose value is up to three thousand dollars ($3,000). But there are also limitations on the type of work that you can do. So, if the work you’ll perform is three thousand dollars or less, you can do it without a license as long as it is not:
- Electrical work.
- Plumbing work.
- HVAC work.
- Alarm system work.
- A job that is considered to significantly impact the public’s health, safety and welfare.
“Work” in these cases can be understood to mean installation, repair or replacement.
Additionally, if the job is over one thousand dollars ($1,000), then there are some extra considerations to take into account. If you’ll be doing a job with a value between one thousand and three thousand dollars, you must:
- File an exemption with the Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing.
- Have the appropriate amount of liability insurance.
- Have workers compensation (if you have people working for you).
Now, when it comes to plumbing, it is possible to do some work in these area, so long as it is minor work, such and fixing toilets, replacing faucets or something along those lines, and not something that requires modifying the pipelines or installing a gas appliance for the first time.
As for electrical work, there are also exceptions to the limitations. You can perform electrical work without a license if it meets the criteria of it being minor electrical work that is incidental to a mechanical or service installation, such as the electrical work required to install a hot tub or a ceiling fan, or to change a light fixture. Just don’t go changing the wiring in the whole house.
Working as a licensed Handyman
But if you have the skill, knowledge or experience necessary to do more than just minor works. You’ll want your business to be fully registered and fully licensed in the state, so you can take on larger projects. This is what you need to do to get your handyman business licensed in Utah:
- Get a contracting license. This can be done by filing an application with the Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing. This license will state that you can legally work as a contractor in the state of Utah. The Division can be reached at:
Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing
160 East 300 South, P. O. Box 146741
Salt Lake City, UT 84114-6741
Or you can go to their website, at: https://dopl.utah.gov/licensing/handyman.html.
- Register the name of your Handyman Business name if it is something different from your own. To do this, you will need to complete the application entitled “Contractor Name Change or Add a DBA”, which can be obtained from the Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing.
- Make sure to also register the name of your business with the state of Utah. This is not the same as registering a “Doing Business As” name on your handyman This lets the appropriate authorities know that you’ll be doing business on a state level. The registration of your business with the state can be done online at the One Stop Business website for Utah.
- Register your business with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The IRS will provide you with an Employer Identification Number. This number is used by them to track your business for tax purposes and you will file taxes using this Employer Identification Number. You can reach the Utah branch of the IRS at:
210 N 1950 W
Salt Lake City, UT 84134
You can also get them by phone at 801-799-6963, or visit their website: IRS.gov.
- You will need to contact your city clerk’s office and register your new business with them. This is required for you to pay city taxes and so that the city is aware that you have a business.
- Buy liability business insurance for contractors. This is very important, as it will protect you and your business and it will give customers the peace of mind of knowing that you are a fully licensed and fully insured handyman. This is something that you can advertise, too, make sure people know about it. Business insurance also prevents you from having to pay out of pocket should you accidentally cause any damage or break something while doing a job, or if anything unexpected happens. In those situations, you will be able to file a claim with your insurance company.
Once you have a fully licensed business, there are other steps to go through to get it started and fully running. You should develop the fees that you’re going to charge customers for your work. You can work out an hourly rate and a rate per job.
You should also advertise your business. You can do this by creating business cards and handing them out to people you meet. You can also advertise online using websites like Facebook and other social networking sites. If your budget allows, you can take out ads in local newspapers.
Once you’ve attracted clients, you will need to prove that you are reliable and that your work is of good quality. People will often rehire someone they’ve had a good experience with, and you are likely to be referred to other potential clients.