Contact your state’s cosmetology board or licensing department to learn the requirements and fees for obtaining a barber shop permit. For example, in the state of Texas, a barber shop must have at least one sink, wash basin, or hand sanitizer for every three chairs or stations. Obtain your business license and sales tax permit.
Contact the American Barber Association (ABA) to get assistance in developing a business plan. The ABA has the most experience in starting and expanding barbershops that any organization in the United States. The ABA has details on operating costs, start-up costs, advertising costs, staff requirements, anticipated clientele and how you intend to compete. Create a competitive pricing list to determine what type of profits you can expect and how much you can afford to spend on your rent. Generally, your rent should not exceed 10 percent of your projected gross revenues.
Scout out potential locations for your business. Moving into a location that has already been zoned for barbering will significantly reduce your workload and eliminate the need for building permits or zoning approval. Busy barber shops may have a waiting period between clients. Look for a location in a shopping center or near other businesses that your clientele frequent. Contact a commercial broker to show you vacancies. Be sure to thoroughly research your broker and ensure that he understands your business needs. Again, the ABA can assist you in this part of the process
Hire an attorney to review the details of the lease agreement, such as the landlord’s responsibility with repairs, expansion potential, early lease termination clauses and what happens if an adjacent business moves out. Hire an accountant to learn the tax requirements for hiring an independent contractor or an employee.
Get your shop inspection ready. Purchase salon insurance (the ABA can assist you with this). Equip your facility with adequate equipment, supplies and cleaning products. Address all public safety, licensing and sanitation regulations. Then contact your health department to set up an inspection.
Hire well-groomed, licensed barbers. If your barbers are members of the ABA or have ABA certifications that would be great to. If hiring contractors, ensure that they have liability insurance coverage. Develop a dress code policy for your employees.
To build up business, offer discounts to your existing clientele for customer referrals. Host a grand opening. Submit press releases. Get your barbershop listed in local directories. Start a website for your shop. Compete by creating a friendly and inviting atmosphere. Offer complimentary coffee. If your clientele is mostly male, install a high-definition television and tune it to ESPN or the latest game.
Items you will need
- Business plan
- Hair care supplies
- Shop license
- Business license
- Sales tax permit