Chimney sweeping- you mean people still do that?
That is one of the first questions I get when I tell people that I am a chimney sweep in 2016 America. “I thought burning wood was outlawed? I didn’t know there were still people who use their fireplaces!” These are a few of the questions and comments that I get. There are many answers out there to the question of how to start a business. In this article we will deal with the trade of chimney sweeping in the United States and Canada. There are increasing amounts of regulations and consumer expectations that modern business owners have to deal with.
Pros of a Chimney Sweep Small Home Business
- The startup costs for a chimney sweeping business is small. It will run you about$27,288 to $87,009 for a protected territory and your initial equipment and supplies package. For a limited time, Midtown Chimney Sweeps Franchising, LLC is offering two franchises for the price of one for up to a total of eight franchises (four that are purchased and four that are free).
- The risks are high for homeowners who attempt to do it themselves or forego chimney cleaning services, so ongoing demand for this profession is relatively certain.
- The Hearth Patio and Barbecue Association published that in just 12 months over 1 million wood, pellet, and gas fired appliances were shipped in the USA alone. Each of these requires annual maintenance by a certified technician!
- The chimney sweeping business is associated with heating- people need to have heat to live. This business may be old but it is certainly not going anywhere soon!
Cons of a Chimney Sweep Home Business
- Improper exposure to soot may lead to higher risk of prostate, and lung cancer. There are many comfortable breathing masks available for the modern sweep.
- Liability issues, such as a fire that occurs in a chimney that has passed inspection, are a fact of life.
- Self-promotion requires constant effort, because the first few years your business may feel very season until you build a customer base. However, once a clientele is established a repeat or referral business will grow nicely.
List of Things You Need to Get Started in a Chimney Sweep Home Business
- Training at a quality Chimney Sweep University
- Initial tools and equipment package of a special soot vacuum, live scan video camera, rotary cleaning rods, and the correct ladders.
- Chimney maintenance and light repair products such as crown protectants, and chimney caps.
- Safety equipment, including half mask respirator, gloves and uniform.
- Marketing materials for in-home sales, business cards, vehicle wrap and a strong digital footprint on the web.
- An invoice and quotes tracking software to track where you have been and what you have done and who has paid
- Marketing ROI calculator that tells you where your customers are coming from and where they may come from again