Starting a painting company is simple, get a paint brush, ladder, bucket, and a truck and you now have a professional painting company. Sounds simple right? Well that is one way to look at it but painting is an art, craft, skill, and trade that takes years to acquire and starting your own painting company takes more than calling yourself a painter cause you own a brush and a truck. If you hang out here I will walk you through some of the simple steps it takes to start and run a legitimate painting company.
You do not necessarily have to be a painter or have painting skills to start a painting company but it does help. What is important is understanding how to operate a company according to local rules and regulations and what key business practices to follow. When starting any business it is very important to have some for of insurance that protects you from unforeseen accidents that could legally ruin you financially. Insurance protects you in case you burn a customers house down, drop a ladder on their new Bentley, or accidentally break their custom cooktop. Believe me, these things happen just follow the news.
Insurance is part of doing business and an expense you should not go without paying from the moment you step on a clients property. Smart prospective clients will ask for your insurance before you start any work for them. It is rare but it protects both parties. Simple liability insurance is one form but you can even get so specific as to get overspray insurance. One painter I personally know would have saved the financial expense of detailing 200 cars after getting overspray on them in downtown Boise while painting a parking garage. After getting insurance you need to look into local rules and regulations on whether you need to be licensed or registered as a painter in you area.
In Boise Idaho you do not need a license to operate a painting company. There are no rules or regulations that require you to have any form of certification of qualification either. There is one rule that is kinda of odd and that is being a registered contractor in the State. You simply pay a $25 fee and fill out a one page form so the State can keep track of you. The piece of paper you receive is meaningless but if you fail to do so it is a crime. Check your local regulations. Not necessary but highly recommended is joining you local Better Business Bureau and or Chamber of Commerce.
Joining organizations like these begins to establish your credibility and show you are willing to hold your business to the high standards that the organization requires. They require a fee but in 18 years of operating a painting company I directly received work from these memberships that covered the fees. There are other important ways of establishing credibility and building prospective client trust like having a webpage, Facebook page, being on Angie's List to name a few. This begins to get into marketing and social media marking which I will talk about later. Now you have insurance, you obtained your license, joined the Better Business Bureau so lets get a business card and vehicle logo.