Costs of starting a trade business: joinery is cheapest, plumbers reimbursed fastest

With 40% of construction firms set to make redundancies due to coronavirus, IronmongeryDirect tells us what it uncovered in its research into the costs of tradespeople starting up their own trade businesses.

According to the research, becoming a builder, electrician and plumber are among the most cost-effective routes for people hoping to start their own trade. However, joinery took the top spot, with the estimated cost of starting a joinery trade business starting at just £6,640.

At the other end of the scale stood plumbing, with an average establishment cost of £9,124. This was far ahead of the other three sectors discussed int he research, all of which have anticipated start-up costs under £7,000. The real difference for plumbing, though, were its Accreditation costs. While the other three trades had average Accreditation expenses little over £1,000, plumbers can expect to pay almost £3,500.

The full list of costs can be seen below:

ype of Cost Joiner Builder Electrician Plumber
Accreditation £1,005.00 £1,041.00 £1,005.00 £3,481.00
Trade Association £117.00 £472.80 £585.00 £231.00
Marketing £610.54 £610.54 £610.54 £610.54
Insurance £638.21 £638.21 £638.21 £638.21
Equipment £599.38 £355.97 £361.87 £490.98
Other (storage, van hire, business registration) £3,672.00 £3,672.00 £3,672.00 £3,672.00
Total £6,642 £6,791 £6,873 £9,124

While starting a plumbing trade might now look daunting on paper, we also ought to consider the difference in anticipated earnings, and in turn how quickly initial costs are likely to be recouped.

While joinery and building trades might be the cheapest to set up, initial costs are expected to take an average of nine weeks to pay off, at rates of £150 per day and £160 per day respectively.

Meanwhile, while being the more expensive to establish, electrical and plumbing trade business can expect to pay off their start-up costs within an average of six weeks, at a rate of £245 a day and £347.50 a day apiece – according to IronmongeryDirect.

Speaking on going it alone in trade enterprises, Marco Verdonkschot, Managing Director at IronmongeryDirect and ElectricalDirect, said:

“Many tradespeople will aim to run their own businesses one day, so it’s useful to get an idea of how much it would cost to do so. While these sums can appear quite daunting, most of the expenses will directly improve your service or help you win more work, so are worth the investment in the long run.”

“Owning your own business can be incredibly satisfying, so to help those who are considering going it alone, we’ve compiled a list of tips on how to do so effectively.”