HVAC is a huge industry valued at USD $149.80 billion in 2022 and is projected to grow to USD $215.23 by 2029. This signifies tremendous progress in the sector. Therefore, if you plan to set foot in the HVAC industry and start your own HVAC company, it is a great time to begin.
The reasons for the growth of the HVAC industry can be attributed to the increase in the construction of commercial and residential buildings, as well as temperature fluctuations due to global warming that lead to the rise in demand for HVAC systems.
This article on “How to start an HVAC business” will help you chalk out various strategies that may assist you to excel in your HVAC business.
Before jumping into various strategies and plans, the very first thing that one must ask these questions yourself
1. Do you really want to start your own HVAC business? In most cases, the answer is definitely going to be a Yes (that is what landed you on this article).
2. What motivated you to step into the HVAC industry?
3. Are you committed to remain in the HVAC business for long?”
Once you have firm answers to the questions and are dedicated enough to start your own HVAC company, you will only be left with some regulatory hoops to leap through before you start a heating and cooling business of your own.
This article discusses everything that you need to know about turning your HVAC skills into a profitable HVAC business. Follow the mentioned strategies to firm your hold in the HVAC sector and start minting money like an HVAC business tycoon.
1. Map out an HVAC Business Plan
The hardest part of any process is always the beginning, and the same goes for starting an HVAC business. Investing a little time and effort into defining your business plan can make a lot of difference. Your business plan is the blueprint of your HVAC company, as it serves as a proof of the achievability of your business. Writing and implementing your business plan will set you on the right path and make it easier for you to stay there for the longest stretch of time.
Your business plan should involve setting practical business goals, projecting revenue estimates, conducting complete research to know the target market, the number of commercial and residential buildings in the target area, what your competitors charge, the variety of HVAC services you plan to offer, and more.
During the planning stage, you must also determine your working hours, service areas, working conditions, and whether you will cater to emergency repair calls or not.
Once you have laid down your business plan, the next step would be to estimate costs and profit in order to start a profitable HVAC business.
2. Estimate the Cost of Starting an HVAC Business
The next step would be to map out the startup cost for an HVAC business which would vary depending upon the range of services your firm plans to offer. For your knowledge, reports estimate that the average cost of starting an HVAC business ranges between $2000 and $10,000.
The cost estimates can hit $100,000 depending upon whether you already have a suitable working space, a vehicle large enough to carry your equipment, general HVAC tools and supplies, etc.
Other than that, you must also consider unrelated expenses such as licensing fees, employee insurance, purchase of safety equipment, branding, and marketing materials.
Therefore, it is crucial to figure out if you have enough budget to start an HVAC company of your own or if you need investors to help you in your endeavour.
You can discuss the startup costs with your financial advisor, who can help you determine whether you need a loan; if yes, then how much. He can also enlighten you about whether to start part-time or full-time and help you take the best action before you begin your HVAC business.
3. Earn Required Degree, Certification and Licence
Before starting an HVAC business, ensure that you own the required degree and certification because state and local governments enforce strict requirements to ensure that the HVAC technicians are qualified. You can get certified by going to an authorized school or college.
Different HVAC certifications include four types of EPA (Environment Protection Agency) certifications:
EPA Certification Type I – Covers servicing Small Appliances
EPA Certification Type II – Covers servicing or disposing of High-pressure equipment
EPA Certification Type III – Covers servicing or disposing of High-pressure equipment
Universal EPA Certificate – covers servicing or disposing of all kinds of equipment
Depending upon the country or the state, you might also require an HVAC license based on the type of work that is involved. Your HVAC license influences whether you can work both in commercial as well as residential buildings or only in residential buildings.
4. Set up Brand Name and Brand Logo
Once the HVAC business plan is set up and the expenses have been determined, the next step would be to come up with an intelligent brand name and brand logo.
Brand Name: The brand name becomes an identification of your HVAC company in the future; therefore, it is essential to choose your brand name wisely. It should signify and relate to your business and its goals. Try to choose a name that is short, simple, and easy to remember.
Brand Logo: Brand logo and brand name go hand-in-hand. While deciding on a logo for your business, you should consider that it is easy to read and attractive to look at. Your logo should convey your company’s professionalism. While deciding on a logo, keep in mind that it should look good on your company’s website, on technicians’ t-shirts and helmets, and on your office building. Your brand logo and brand name should help your business to attract customers.
5. Create an HVAC Company Website
Setting up a website for your HVAC company is very crucial before you start your HVAC business. Your website acts as a platform where your customers can find more details about your company. The HVAC website design for your company should glue the visitors to your website and must persuade them to convert. Your HVAC website should mention NAP information which includes your HVAC Company Name, Address, and Phone Number.
Along with your HVAC company website, you should create your business email that must include your company’s URL and also set up a professional voicemail to add that extra element of professionalism to your HVAC business.
6. Register your HVAC Business
It is advised to register your business right from the beginning to build a legal and legitimate HVAC company. Registering your HVAC business is typically an inexpensive task. Relative to your area, you might only require to fill out some paperwork in order to get your business registered.
7. Choose a Suitable Legal Business Entity
A legal business entity or business structure refers to a formal organization established to conduct a specific business. Your business entity determines the documents that you need to file, your liabilities, taxes and the business registration process.
So it is important to choose your legal business entity wisely. HVAC businesses can choose from the following business entities:
Sole Proprietorship: It makes no legal distinction between the business and the owner. It is the most common type of legal structure for small businesses. All the income goes to the owner – who is liable for losses, debts, and for paying taxes.
LLC: Limited Liability Corporation offers limited liability protection to the owners who are not personally liable for debts. LLCs also provide flexibility in taxation the business owners.
C Corp: Under this business entity, the owner(s) are not liable for the company debts. Owners generate profits through shareholders and the texas are paid by the corporation.
S Corp: It is a special kind of business structure that chooses to avoid double taxation by electing to pass corporate income, losses, deductions, and credits through to its shareholders for tax purposes, avoiding double taxation.
For HVAC Companies, LLC is the most suitable legal business entity that is easy to form and offers liability protection and pass-through taxation.
8. Choose a Niche Area
If you want to flourish your HVAC business, it is advisable to choose a niche area in the HVAC industry, something that you and your team are best at. For example, you can choose between:
- HVAC repairs and maintenance
- Replacement of HVAC installations
- Air conditioning system installations
- Furnace installations
- Air filters and air duct installations
These are a few ideas that can help you to choose the niche for your business. You must conduct complete niche research before stepping into the HVAC industry.
9. Decide on your HVAC Service Charges
Correctly pricing your HVAC services is very important to achieve profitability in the HVAC business. The HVAC charges vary depending upon several factors like the area you are serving, the requirement of the work, etc. There are two kinds of pricing models that can be applied – flat rate pricing and hourly rates or time and materials pricing.
The majority of successful HVAC companies use flat-rate pricing. The advantage of using flat rates is that the customers already know how much the whole service is going to charge them. On the other hand, in the case of hourly rates, the customers keep counting the hours, worrying about the addition to the bill as the number of hours increases.
Apart from that, flat rates encourage the technicians to complete more jobs in a single day, which results in increased revenue.
10. Market your HVAC Business
What is seen is sold; therefore, marketing your HVAC business is important to make more people aware of your business. If you do not follow the latest strategies to market your HVAC business, you might struggle to find leads as the industry is power-packed with heavy competition. Therefore, as an HVAC company, your goal should be to reach as many potential customers as possible, especially people in your neighbourhood.
You can follow mentioned marketing strategies to spread the news of your newly launched HVAC business:
- Word of mouth: One way is to deliver high-quality work; if you do so, your customers will be your free advertisers and will refer your business to their acquaintances, family and friends.
- Market Brochures: Distribute print ads and marketing brochures of your HVAC Company to commercial and residential buildings throughout the town and the city where your company is located.
- Online Advertisement: Be where your potential customers are and advertise your new heating, ventilation, air conditioning repair, and maintenance business on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, LinkedIn, etc., to attract consumers.
- Conventional Marketing: Don’t overlook traditional marketing methods like radio ads, newspapers, and local TV advertisements.
- SEO for HVAC Contractors– Strategic SEO strategies can land your business in the organic search results of Google and help attract leads and wider audiences.
- HVAC Company Website: Create an HVAC website for your company that clearly mentions your NAP information – company name, address, phone number, and also your official email. Customers click on the website to learn more about the business, and if your HVAC business does not have a website, then you might miss out on valuable leads.
- Business Directories: List your business in online directories like Yellow Pages and Angi (formerly known as Angie’s List) to help customers find your HVAC company.
11. Choose a prime location for your HVAC business.
A suitable location plays an essential role in the success of any HVAC company. Additionally, your business’s geographical location also affects your legal requirements and taxes. There are some key elements that you must consider while renting or buying a commercial space for your heating and cooling business:
- Prime location with easy access and transportation facilities
- Ready-to-use space with little or no renovations
- The number of HVAC companies in the area and their reputation
- The demand for HVAC services in the area
12. Open a Business Bank Account
It is important to create a separate bank account for your HVAC business. It will help you to make a distinction between personal and business expenses. Implementing this can save you a lot of trouble in the future. A separate bank account can also be valuable to easily calculate the expenditure, growth, profit, and revenue of your business.
13. Hire Technicians and Grow Your Team
As your HVAC business flourishes, you will need a dedicated team of workers to fill in for various roles:
- HVAC technicians – for repair, maintenance, and installation services
- Human Resources Manager – for recruiting employees
- Sales and Marketing Officer – for generating leads and obtaining new clients by building relationships with contractors and homeowners.
- Customer service representatives – for maintaining relationships with the clients and exceptional customer service
- Marketing Lead – for SEO strategies, social media, content and other marketing approaches.
You can recruit employees by posting job openings on popular platforms such as LinkedIn, Indeed, Glassdoor, or ZipRecruiter.
14. Get a Business Insurance
Don’t skip on the business insurance even if you feel it is costing you extra money. Insuranes can provide essential protection against various risks and accidents. It can cover liabilities, worker’s compensation, equipment damage, and safeguard your business from unforeseen events.
Starting an HVAC business can be exciting but requires exceptional planning and intense decision-making. From conducting thorough market research and estimating the costs to securing necessary licenses and building a skilled team, each aspect plays a vital role in the journey of starting your HVAC company. By following the discussed strategies outlined in this guide, you can lay a strong foundation for your HVAC business.
With the right direction, hard work, and commitment to excellence, your HVAC business can reach the pinnacle of success.