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How To Start A Plumbing Business in South Africa (On A Tight Budget)

Plumber Installing a Basin tap

ou’ve found your calling, you’ve got the certification and you’ve registered with the PIRB. You’re ready to go, but you’ve found yourself at the crossroads of plumber and entrepreneur, and you’re only the expert of one of these. It’s one thing to be a great plumber, it’s a whole other thing to start a plumbing business. Don’t worry, we’re going to help you through this by giving you some helpful tricks on how to start a plumbing business, with as minimal expenditure as possible.

#1 Decide What Kind Of Plumbing Company You Want To Be

The first question you need to ask yourself is do you want to build things or do you want to fix things? Are you interested in building new constructions, or do you want to do service and repair work? Do you want to work in residential or commercial plumbing? Figure out what you like most, and pursue that.

#2 Establish Your Business’ Core Values

First thing every new business owner should do is decide what is going to set them apart. So you’re a great plumber, are you always on time? Are you personable? Are you reliable and trustworthy? Establish your core values, and write them down so that you never waver. These are the things that get you referred for your next job, and the next…

#3 Never Stop Learning (Continuous Professional Development)

Ensure that you know plumbing better than your competitors. Study more, learn more, develop more and do more. Build your knowledge by spending just 30 minutes a day learning something new, whether it’s about tools, local laws or a new technique, continuing to grow and develop is what will put you ahead of your competitors.

#4 Build A Network

By word of mouth, social media or advertising in your local supermarket, get the word out there that you are a reputable plumber. Let people know who you are and what you’re doing. You don’t need to hire a billboard, just set up a Facebook page. Ask one or two previous clients to write a review. This establishes you’re real, you’re reliable, and you’re professional.

#5 Build A Bigger Network

Look at networking with other business owners. Building trusted relationships with companies operating in the same area can lead to referrals, for both them and you. Look out for people that you’d like to work with, or who you’d be interested in sharing business with. From estate agents, to carpenters, to mechanics, build a wider network in your area.

#6 Marketing

If you can set aside a small budget, look for small-scale marketing companies that can help get your name out there. If not, don’t worry, there are several tools available to start a plumbing business without investing in a marketing company: social media. As mentioned before, set up a Facebook page. Get friends and family to like and follow you, create a community. If you have a knack for it, look into other avenues like LinkedIn and Youtube. Just make sure you have one reliable place that potential customers can refer to when deciding whether to hire you.

Armed with these 6 tips on how to start a plumbing business, your plumbing certification and your PIRB Registration – you’re all set to go! Get out there and good luck.


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