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Are You Ready to Start Your Own Decorating Business?

You’ve got your qualifications and gained some valuable experience. It’s time to take your passion for painting and decorating to new heights. Starting any new business is a daunting prospect. It can be difficult to know if it’s the right time and most importantly if you’re well and truly ready to make the leap.

Well, fear not. If you’re procrastinating about whether you are really ready to start your own business in the decorating industry, we’re here to help. Here are some questions to ask yourself and preparations you’ll need to make in order to feel properly prepped and confident in your abilities.

Calculating costs

Have you got the funds to cover your startup costs?

One key factor in whether you’re ready to start your business is if you’ve got the funds to purchase all the necessary tools and equipment. You’ll also need a reliable van with enough space to fit all your kit.

Don’t attempt to start your business if you won’t have all the tools you need to do a professional job. It’s far better to delay starting your business until you can fund all the initial startup costs. Become a member of the Dulux Decorator Centre and you can get discounted prices on premium quality business supplies and tools for professional painters and decorators.

It’s also important to calculate whether you can survive on your initial salary. Before taking the plunge, you might want to build up a few clients so you know you’ve got some business to kick start things.

Training and skills

If you are thinking about going it alone, the chances are, you’ve been involved in the trade for a while already or have already undertaken necessary training. But is there anything more you can do to give yourself a competitive edge? Consider what core services you want to offer. Are there any additional courses that might be worth going on to boost your business? It’s useful to be able to work with different materials and tools.

No matter how experienced you are, in this industry, there are always new skills you can learn. The Dulux Academy offers courses in four main areas that can help enhance your business, Product, Application and Innovation, Sustainability, Colour & Design and Business Management. You might have all the skills you need to start up as a painter and decorator, but learning more about business management just might give you an edge over your competitors.

Do you want to be a jack of all trades or a master of one?

It’s completely up to you. Before you launch your business, consider whether there is a specific area you can become a leading expert in. Research the latest trends in the industry to see what’s in demand. It can be useful to have a range of skills so that you are able to tackle most jobs that come your way, instead of having to turn down work. What will your business USP be? Have you spent some time thinking about what will differentiate you from the competition?

Commercial or residential

Another thing to consider is whether you want to work in commercial or residential painting and decorating. As you’re probably well aware, there are benefits and drawbacks to both. Residential jobs may pay less, but might be easier to obtain and there are fewer hoops to jump through. If you enjoy delivering a personal service then maybe working with customers in their homes is a better career path.


Before you begin your new business venture, consider whether you’ve got some essential contacts who can help you on your journey. Even if you’ve got years of experience, it can be useful to have someone reliable to bounce ideas off and talk through problems with. Is there anyone you can use as a business mentor? Perhaps someone who has already started their own business or knows the industry well?

You’ll also want to build up a network of prospective clients. Have you considered how you will get new business? Will you have enough clients to get your business off the ground? Before you start your business, lay the groundwork and build up as many useful contacts and leads as you can.

Are you ready to give your business all your time and energy?

You may have seen the harsh statistics stating that around 50% of business start-ups fail in the first three years of business. This is a reminder of just how hard you have to work. You have to be ready to give it your all. Ask yourself:

Do I have the time to run my own business?

Do I have the passion and dedication to give this 110%?

Will I be able to work long hours to get the business off the ground?

Am I ready to overcome any hurdles that get in my way?

Can you cope with everything the job might throw at you?

Becoming self-employed requires more than just a love of the job. A huge amount of blood, sweat and tears is needed to drum up business and consistently deliver first-class jobs.

Hopefully, after ready all of the above, you’re in a better position to know whether you are truly ready or not. If you’re not quite ready, that’s OK. Holding off for a few months and getting off to a better start might just save your business in the long run.

Here at Dulux, we offer a variety of courses to help painters and decorators to improve their trade. This could be the final step you need to take before starting your own business. Take a look at our range of courses and download our prospectus here.

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Dulux Decorator Centre
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