Beginner’s Guide on Starting a Painting Business in the United Kingdom

Starting a Painting Business in the United KingdomStarting a painting business has lots of advantages: it has a huge market, low startup costs, and is easy to master. If you have practical skills for decorating with a mind for business, then this venture is ideal for you. This kind of business can earn up to £31,200 per year and has lots of opportunities for growth. If you plan on starting a successful painting business in the United Kingdom, then this guide is for you.

Because starting a venture can be daunting, especially for beginners, we want to help ease your load with this beginner’s guide to the painting business. Here, we lay down the basic information you need to know about the industry, legalities, and particularities in starting a painting business in the UK. And with this guide, you’ll learn that you can do anything with the right information, planning, strategy, and support.


What Is a Painting Business?

Painting businesses offer decorating and painting services to fix, redo, or finish interior or exterior surfaces of business and residential establishments. You must have an eye for color and detail, be creative, and have the knowledge on the management of the business to succeed in this business. Some of the services you could offer are replacing old wallpaper, repairing wall cracks and holes, installation of scaffolding, advising paint selection, and providing general painting works. You can start the business with an office location or even from home.

The painting business is part of the construction industry. Since the 1990s up till now, the sector has had a growing demand, and so there is plenty of painting work to sustain a painting business. Amidst the industry has always struggled because of the scarcity of skilled workers, other factors still push the growth of the industry forward. For example, TV networks covering home makeovers and interior design features boost interest in painting and decorating services.

Moreover, the paint technology has also improved, addressing the safety and environmental concerns the service and the industry pose. The use of web facilities and opportunities also changed the generally low image of painting businesses. Before, businesses offering quality services suffered from the poor results of low-cost-low-quality painting jobs. But now, with technology and the rising expectations, the sector is giving emphasis on providing quality-standard painting services.

The competition in the sector is tight. Some of a starting painting business’s competition will include large painting and decorating companies, construction companies, and local service providers. To ensure success in this business, you have to assess the market where you plan to locate and strategize your operations and marketing to stand out among competitors.


How to Start a Painting Business

Research Your Target Market

In a sector with high competition, it is crucial to have a competitive advantage. One strategy to ensure business differentiation is choosing a niche market. Is there a specific demographic that stands out in getting the highest painting services? Research your locality for existing needs that have yet to be offered by the other painting businesses.

The results of your research should also give you an idea about the amount of demand for particular niches and the customer satisfaction indicators. This information will help you in designing your services, operation, and promotions later on.

Pick Services to Offer

Even while planning, it is helpful to already make a list of the services you want to offer. Outlining them will help you estimate your budget, capacity, and the manpower you need to hire. Some of the painting services you can offer to include the following:

  • Basic painting
  • Special painting
  • Decorating finishes
  • Floor coatings
  • Decorative carpentry
  • Tiling
  • Wall lining and papering
  • Artexing and coving

Estimate Your Service Rate

In pricing your services, you can choose to follow the industry prices or compute the price by marking up your costs. You can charge on an hourly or daily basis, depending on the type of service and the area of the surface to be decorated. Having different pricing schemes is also common, as painting jobs to different customers are really never the same.

Get Insurance

Motor and liability insurance is compulsory in the United Kingdom, so every business owner has to do so. And because painting businesses bear the risk of damaging the client’s home or offices, it’s prudent to obtain large coverage insurance. You can acquire a property, flood, business income, and commercial umbrella insurance.


How to Register a Painting Business in the United Kingdom

To register a painting business in the United Kingdom, you have to first think of what business structure will fit your business goals. You can set up the business as a sole trader, partnership, or limited company. Registering a sole trader or partnership provides easy reporting requirements and taxation. On the other hand, United Kingdom company registration or registering as a limited company means complicated compliance but also getting the protection of the Companies Act.

To register a limited company, you have to apply with the Company House. First, you have to register your business name by filing a DBA (doing business as). In picking a name, ensure that you follow the company name guidelines to avoid issues and delays. It must be unique and not used by any other business. You must not use offensive language and regulated words that require prior authoritative approval before use.

Next, you’ll need to name your shareholders or guarantors and submit their personal details. You’ll have to appoint a company director and secretary who will be responsible for the company accounts and administrative tasks. You’ll also have to register your business location, and afterward, you can check your responsibilities on running the business from home or if you rent a space. Finally, you have to prepare the articles and memorandum of association that show the agreement to form the company and run it.

You can register your company independently by going online or by sending the forms via post. The process costs £12 for the online transaction and £12-£100 depending on urgency. Furthermore, you may also acquire United Kingdom company incorporation services for more convenient company registration. These services usually come in packages, so you get supplemental services in addition to company registration.


Licenses and Permits to Starting a Painting Business in the UK

There are no licenses required to start a painting business in the United Kingdom. However, you still need to observe the legislation that covers painting businesses. In particular, you have to be aware of the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) Regulations relating to paints, varnish, glues, etc. You can also get in touch with your local environmental health office on how these regulations will affect your business.

Furthermore, you’ll need to register as a low-tier waste carrier (in England, Wales, Northern Ireland) or as a transporter of waste (in Scotland). This registration is, so the state knows that your business carries away the wastes you collect in the course of your business. The Environment Agency in England, Natural Resources Wales, the Northern Ireland Environment Agency, and the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) in Scotland govern the waste registration. The registration is renewable at a fee and covers all your waste transporting vehicles.

Moreover, the nature of a painting job means you may put up scaffolds and skips on highways and public places. Doing this needs a skip permit and scaffolding permit. You can acquire these from your local authorities. Certain conditions and responsibilities may be attached to these permits, so make sure you are aware of the details and fine prints.

Lastly, you have to be familiar with the legislation that covers businesses in general. For example, health, safety, and fire legislation set down your responsibilities of reporting accidents at work and having first-aid equipment accessible. Employment regulations cover the responsibilities of the employer regarding pay and pension, sick pay, employment contracts, and discrimination. Finally, you have to be aware of the consumer protection regulations that are set, so businesses trade fairly and provide quality services.


Start a Painting Business With the UK’s Top Corporate Service Provider

Thinking about starting a painting business may seem very simple at first. But as you start all the preparations, the issues will start to pile up and get overwhelming. Fortunately, you don’t have to do it all by yourself because the top corporate service provider in the UK is just within your reach. 3E Accounting is a United Kingdom corporate service provider aiding small and starting entrepreneurs in the requirements to business registration and other processes. With our expert and competent agents, you can be confident that your business registers in time and with no issues.

Contact 3E Accounting today to talk with our professionals about your business startup needs and concerns!

Starting a Painting Business in the United Kingdom