The current business climate may not be the most ideal to start a business in. At a time when people have been losing their jobs and businesses closing down from the effects of Covid-19, more people have been more about saving than spending funds.
On the other hand, however, people have to survive. For those who have lost their jobs and others facing wage cuts, starting a business – providing it’s a feasible idea – makes sense.
One of the most promising business ideas currently is starting a moving business. The moving industry is one of the few that have not only remained unaffected by the global health pandemic, but also have witnessed a boom, although that has also depended on location.
Movers in NYC, for instance, have enjoyed good business through the pandemic as more and more residents continue to flee the increasingly expensive city, a trend that carries on from about 2018.
Thing is, though, as with every other business idea, you don’t just wake up and decide to launch your own moving company. There are always considerations to keep in mind before taking the leap.
If you’re toying with the idea of starting a local moving company, here are 5 important things you need to keep in mind.
- Your jurisdiction will be limited
By its very definition, a local moving business is an outfit that provides moving services within a defined geographic area, usually within the boundaries of the state the company is based in.
For example, a local mover registered in the State of New York can only [legally] provide moving services within the state of New York – just not outside of the state.
If you need to provide long-distance services that take people out of state, you’ll need to register with the US Department of Transportation as an interstate mover.
Speaking of registration…
- You might need experience in the moving industry
This is an often overlooked factor by people looking to start a moving business. Usually, there will be licensing requirements you’ll be expected to meet when starting a moving company, which vary from state to state.
One of the provisions in some states is that you need to have a certain amount of experience in the moving industry before you can launch a moving business.
For instance, using New York as an example again, anyone looking to start a moving company in the Empire State needs a minimum experience of two years in the moving business, claims that should be supported by tax documents.
- You don’t need lots of capital to get started
Starting a local moving business can be expensive, but thankfully, there are ways you can bring down the startup costs.
For example, instead of spending crazy money on new trucks, you can start with a second-hand truck or start small with a van, and then build yourself up. The downside to starting with a small van is that it limits your opportunities as you’re only equipped to handle smaller moves.
Renting a truck is another option, so explore that idea if you’re low on startup capital.
However, keep in mind that some states also require you to prove you have ample startup capital to cover costs and equipment to run the business. Thus, always check what the laws in you state say before you start investing in the business.
- Consider expanding service offerings
If you’re looking to get into the moving business, don’t restrict yourself to the transportation of belongings only.
Consider expanding your offerings to include other services like storage services (ideal if you have space) or labor-only services (for example, provide packing services or loading and unloading services).
That way, you can open yourself up to more opportunities as opposed to relying only on full moves for business.
As well, you can opt to specialize in a certain niche (for example, provide college moving services) or be a jack-of-all-trades by catering to everyone including residential, office, or commercial clientele, etc.
Develop a business plan and think about the direction you want the company to take.
- Incorporate the business like the professional you are
Ideally, you don’t want to operate as a shoddy outfit but rather, a reputable business anchored firmly in the law. That not only keeps you on the right side of the law, but also makes you credible in the eyes of the customer.
Thus, consult your state’s Secretary of State website to find out what legal requirements are expected of you and then proceed to set up.