If you’re looking for a low cost, easy to start business that can put money in your pocket right away, then curb address painting may be exactly what you’re looking for. For the price of a few cans of paint and some stencils, you could be making money within hours.
One of the most positive aspects of this business is the fact that you are actually doing a community service and contributing towards the safety of residents by making sure that their house numbers are easily visible from the street. This makes it easy for emergency services to locate an exact address quickly. This point can be used with great success when you’re selling your services.
The first thing you’ll need to do is head down to City Hall and check to see if there are any local bylaws prohibiting you from operating this kind of business. In many municipalities, it’s okay for a homeowner to paint their own numbers on a curb, but to actually operate in a curb sign painting business, you’ll likely need a business license. Additionally, there may be local bylaws prohibiting you from selling your services door-to-door. In some cities, you need a separate peddler’s license for this.
The startup cost for this business is almost negligible. Make sure you purchase a few cans of quick drying spray paint in various colors and possibly a can of reflective paint that can be seen at night with vehicle headlights. You’re likely to get requests for certain colors from homeowners. Just make sure that whatever color you use, there is a contrast between the paint and the cement curb.
Besides paint, the only other item you’ll need is good quality stencils. These can either be cardboard or metal. Try to use the same font for all your work. It just makes it look better from a neighborhood perspective (more uniform).
Additional expenses might include a supply of business cards, licensing fees, and advertising expenses.
This business is custom-made for door-to-door selling. Although you could place newspaper ads and deliver flyers, residents are unlikely to be motivated enough to actually call. It’s a service that people will buy on impulse and face-to-face.
In order to sell the service, you’ve got to have decent people skills. You must have the ability to “sell” yourself within the first few seconds of talking to the homeowner. If you’ve ever done door-to-door sales you know how critical it is to have an effective opening line. Be positive and believe in your product. Project a sense of confidence to your potential customer without being pushy. Smile and be friendly while you introduce yourself and go through the list of benefits.
In this line of work, you’ve got to have a thick skin. There’s no getting around the fact that you’re going to hear the word “No” a lot. In some cases, you may even get a few doors closed in your face. If you’re the type of person that gets frazzled by that kind of behavior, then you may not be cut out for door-to-door sales. The good news is that you’ll develop a thick skin fairly quickly if you stick with it. Keep in mind that in order to get to a “Yes,” you’ve got to get through several No’s first – that is the nature of cold calling sales.
Here’s a tip: After you ring the doorbell, take a few steps back (even if that means going down a step). There is nothing worse than answering the door to a stranger that is right in your face. People tend to get defensive when this happens and it makes your job so much harder. When a home-owner sees that you have enough respect to give them some space, they may be more open to listening to your sales pitch.
The actual process of painting a house number on the curb is very straightforward. Make sure that your paint is quick drying so that you can get to your next house knowing that the paint won’t be smeared by accident or vandalism.
Make sure the stencil is straight, pressed to the cement and that there is equal distance between each number as you go along. Be careful and watch for overspray outside of the stencil area. This is going to make your job look horrible and there’s nothing you can do once the paint hits the concrete. Also, make sure you spray evenly and avoid stopping in one spot. This will create drips and runs that will make a mess of the entire job.
How much can you make?
Although you can make quick money in this business, it’s not really high paying because of the entrance requirements. Anyone can purchase the material needed for $20 and be in business that same day. Additionally, there is really no talent involved other than being able to spray paint at an acceptable level.
If there is any positive side to this, it’s the fact that much of your competition will not have bothered to get the necessary business licenses and will be in danger of being shut down at any time. Additionally, many of these hopeful entrepreneurs will not have the necessary people skills to really engage customers and make the sale. So, as you can see, there’s a little more to this business than simply buying a few supplies and walking the neighborhood.
If you are a great door-to-door salesman with exceptional people skills and you’ve got a high energy level, it’s certainly possible to make several hundred dollars per day in this business. Of course, most of that is going to be profit.
Here is a perfect stencil kit to start: