How to Start a Moving Company
Welcome back to another episode of What's Your Game Plan. In today's episode I’m going to introduce you to a type of business that is booming. With steady growth year over year, this type of business will never go extinct!
Starting a moving company can be a very lucrative business venture. If you have a passion for working with people and you want to make some money doing it, this business idea might be for you.
Step 1 - Get a Business Plan
Globally, the moving service industry is expected to hit $25 billion by 2025 and starting your own moving company is not for the faint of heart. The risks can be great, but so are the profits when you get it right. In order to start a moving company, here’s what you need to do first. If you have no idea how this business is supposed to work, I'd recommend buying a business plan from Fiverr. The plans are super affordable and their people will create a customized business plan for exactly how your business is supposed to work and what you should expect.
Step 2 - Find Suppliers
If you are planning to start a moving company, the next step is to get the right equipment. You’ll need a small van or truck and a bunch of moving supplies. If you don’t have the money, you don’t have to buy a new truck and you can find one by googling “ used moving trucks for sale”. You can see there’s a lot of listings here, make sure you filter it by zip code and find the best deal for your budget.
For the moving supplies, you’re going to need to buy all these items:
Furniture moving equipment
Professional moving dollies
Moving equipment for stairs
Quality packing and shipping boxes
Pink anti-static bubble wrap
Packing tape sealing tape
Heat Shrinkable Wrap
You can find these suppliers by searching the words “buy wholesale moving supplies”. If you want to save time, I’ve already done the research for you. You can buy the moving company vendor list, that way you’ll know exactly where to get the equipment and supplies from.
Step 3 - Register Your Business
Now, when you've got that sorted, it's time to officially register your business. You won't be able to buy wholesale moving supplies or do business until you complete this step. You'll need to register & apply for a federal EIN Number, and form an LLC or Corporation.
Depending on what state you are in, you will likely also need a reseller or retail merchant certificate as well. This allows you to buy products, tax free. I recommend using MyCorporation as they do have a variety of packages to choose from, but their most basic package will get you started right away.
Step 4 - Open a Business Bank Account
Now, since you're going to be getting all this money, you'll need somewhere to put it. It's pretty easy to open a business bank account, but they won't get you set up without having the legal incorporation paperwork and the EIN number that I just spoke about. You can work with a local bank that you’re already using or you can just choose a new one. I personally work with Square. They have small business checking accounts with instance access to your money, no overdraft fees and no minimum balance requirements.
Step 5 - Buy Web Hosting
The next step is to buy web hosting. I always recommend choosing Bluehost because they are the most reliable for new business owners. With their plans, they give you access to 24/7 customer support so you can ask questions at any time, you get a free domain name and a free SSL certificate, so you really can’t beat it.
Step 6 - Find a Website Developer
Once you pay for a plan with Bluehost, you'll get your login credentials. You'll want to save that information and deliver it to the web designer in the next step. If you don't know about Fiverr, it's a company that sells affordable web development and marketing services that get done really quick.
To find a website developer, you just type in what you want in the search bar, and it will reveal tons of people who are willing to help you get a website up in less than 3 days. Once you choose the person you want to work with, give them the Bluehost details and communicate your vision and plans for the new website.
Step 7 - Setup Your Website
Okay, so now you’ve found a web developer, at this step you want to make sure you communicate what should actually be on your moving website. Like in this example, your website should highlight all the services you offer, allow people to get free quotes, and read your reviews. I would suggest you collect the links to three or four moving websites that you like and give these to the web developer to complete your work.
Step 8 - Setup a Merchant Account
While they are working on your new website, you'll need to activate a merchant account for your customers to pay you through. Many businesses use paypal, square or stripe. I personally like Square, they make it super easy for me to accept payments online via my website, through invoicing or over the phone. Once you sign up for Square, give these details to the web designer to complete the payment integration process.
Step 9 - Get Logo & Branding Made
Finally, you'll need to start spreading the word about your business. A good place to start is getting a logo, business cards and marketing materials created. For branding, I recommend 99designs because the process is quick and simple, and you actually get what you want. They don’t only create logos, they can also create your entire brand’s identity. For marketing materials, I really like envato, because they literally have tons of graphics for each and every single kind of business, on demand.
Step 10 - Buy Business Insurance
Since you’re starting a moving business, it’s important to get a policy that covers not only your moving trucks, but also for property damage, and things like workers compensation. I’d recommend you go with a company like Geico who have specific policies just for business owners. They’ll get you a quote and tell you what is and isn’t covered.
Step 11 - Hire People
At this step, you’ll need to hire some actual “movers” to work for you. Many businesses choose to start with part-time or contract help. A good place to start is to create an employer account with Indeed and just list your open positions there. The title of the job you are hiring for is called “mover or laborer”. The rate you pay them depends on your budget and the state minimum wage, but most of these positions pay anywhere from $9.00/hr and up.
Okay, so now that you’re all set up, how will you make money? Here’s what you need to know in order to take a check to the bank. Since you now own a moving company, you can choose from a variety of services to sell. The most popular are local moves, long distance moves, packing services and corporate relocation services. Don’t forget you can also do military moves, which can be a good source of continual business. When you set your prices for these services, make sure you call around and make your prices match the competitors in your local area.
Now, I know you're probably wondering...What's the price tag on this baby? Startup costs for this kind of business are typically around $15,000 to $45,000 and this amount really depends on how big your moving fleet ends up being and how much marketing you’ll need to do in the beginning. After their first year in business, most moving companies will start to gross between $100,000 to $500,000 per year. So, the more efficiently you operate the more money you’ll be able to bring in for yourself and the business at the end of the year.
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Until next time guys, take care!
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About Adella Pasos
This Entrepreneur and Marketing Expert has shared her passion for growing brands from the ground up. She’s worked with Startups, Small Businesses, Fortune 500 Corporations and Entertainment Talent to help them recognize the value of marketing, and give her clients the ability to access their niche market via online, social media, mobile, merchandising, and events.
She hosts the What's Your Game Plan TV show features: Free Expert Advice, and Growth strategies for Business Owners Across the Globe. Access thousands of FREE Tips, Trends & Tools to Move Your Business Forward!