Setting up a man and van business
With the recession biting and economic climate looking bleak on the job front. Why not try and set yourself up as a self employed man and van service. Start working for yourself making a living undertaking small removals and local deliveries.
A man and van services offers an alternative service to the public. Making it cheaper to move belongings and furniture instead of them having to hire a van with all the additional costs involved. In the UK at the moment with the price of fuel and labour it can be quiet expensive. It will also save you breaking your back when you could have someone else doing all the lifting and carrying.
Buy a van and get the phone ringing.
The first part of this process is buying a van which can be very tricky. You do not want to buy a banger you will be surprised how easy it can be to waste your money on the wrong vehicle. There are some unscrupulous people out there willing to take your money. Beware when searching for a van that has had the clock turned back and has done a lot more mileage than it appears. This means you will be paying out for expensive repairs. Starting yourself up as self employed is the easy part. What takes a little extra effort and time is turning you and your van into a thriving little removal business.
1. Build the right business, this may sound apparent but you need to target the right clients. Are you going to target the domestic market which is traditional for a man and van or are you going to target office and businesses with courier work. A man and vans market is light removals and furniture jobs as well as deliveries to household addresses. A courier takes parcels and consignments to business addresses. As it stands, both markets are busy and there is more demand for man and van work and also more competition. So be prepared to work hard for your piece of this work.
2. Decide on the right van for you, try to buy a good second hand van outright if possible. This will save you paying out on a loan and having the added pressure of this overhead. The ideal model vehicle used for a man and van servicing the domestic market is a luton box van.
Vans for moving
This can be with or without a tail lift it will make it easier to unload and load if you’re just one man and with a van. If you’re aiming at the courier market a transit style normal van is more practical when doing courier work. Appearances matter more and you will have to buy a newer van which will obviously cost more money. Whichever way you choose to go, getting your van signed up is essential for advertising. Signage on your van will broadcast your service as you drive round and a good spot for parking up is a must.
3. Customers will phone round for quotes. So quote accurately and consistently. Be competitively priced and do not price your self out of the job. Try and offer good value for money and be helpful and flexible. Lots of work will come your way by recommendation if customers are confident in your service. Compared with someone going to the job and just being unpleasant. The service you offer should be a better option than the customer doing it themselves. Most don’t want to hire the van collect and drop off, pay petrol, load and unload the belongings around themselves and the stairs can be a killer.
Getting the word out
4. Advertising yourself get business cards and flyers printed up and positioned in supermarkets and furniture shops notice boards. Pop flyers through letterboxes. Get your self listed on the online man and van websites usually for a small annual fee. You can go tot he expense of having a website like this one man and van net built. This advertising medium is very competitive and you would have to pay to promote your site on the search engines.
5. You can think of lots of ways to generate work but if you give an incredible service once you’ve get work, make sure you do a high-quality job, as there is nothing better than word of mouth and reputation. Be punctual, trustworthy, reliable, professional, and friendly the customers always right remember moving furniture will come better with experience try not to damage or scratch walls use blankets and treat customer’s belongings like your own.
Get registered with HMRC
6. Once you decide on starting your own man and van small removals service you will have to let HMRC know you are becoming self employed. You will have to keep your accounts in order this means keeping receipts and logging incoming and outgoing monies.
7. You will also need satisfactory insurance to cover your clients’ belongings. There is an insurance policy called “goods in transit” which will cover items in your van up to a certain amount. Discuss this with your insurance broker you may have to look into public liability insurance as well.
So if you are dreaming being self employed, sit down and count the costs. Do you have what it takes to make this dream a reality, or will the disadvantages of being your own boss threaten to swallow up that business of yours? You could even expand to Spanish moves. Have the satisfaction of being your own boss and if you stay prepared and determined you should be able to get to the top. When your man and van service is in much demand with full bookings.