Welcome To Oilport
Welcome to Oilport, the place where you can find valuable resources on starting a new business. Use Oilport to learn how to start a business, ways to raise capital, up-to-date marketing practices, leadership skills, and much more. Our site includes numerous resources that are designed to help guide new and aspiring entrepreneurs avoid failure and achieve high rates of success. Here at Oilport, we believe that although entrepreneurship and owning a business may involve a tough and challenging road, with the right knowledge, resources, and passion, anyone can succeed. We want to help clear the path and help make business owning easier to understand and easier achieve success. By using our site you will not only gain insights on starting a small business, but you can learn how to start specific businesses that can guide you towards proven money-making opportunities and start ups. Be sure to check out our blog frequently as we strive to keep the site updated with new and useful resources.
These funds belong to you can do not need to be repaid and can be used without conditions and restrictions.
Use debt financing to borrow money that must be repaid. Sources can include loans from financial companies, banks, credit card companies, and friends or family.
In equity financing you sell a share of ownership in your company in exchange for investment money. These funds do not have to be repaid, as investors get to share the success of your business.
CREATE YOUR BUSINESS PLAN
An essential part to any successful business is a business plan. This is a completed document that describes how a business will operate and grow revenues.
Are you fit to be an entrepreneur?
An entrepreneur is someone who sees a potentially profitable opportunity and devises a plan to take the necessary risks to start and operate a business. These people have drive, are creative, and have a strong desire to succeed. They have major goals for their business such as expansion and growth. Some famous examples of hugely successful entrepreneurs include Thomas Edison (General Electric), Henry Ford (Ford Motor Company), Sam Walton (Walmart), John Deere (Deere and Company), and Steve Jobs (Apple).
These entrepreneurs had visions for the future that led to revolutionizing farming, retailing, manufacturing, and technology. Common qualities that these people share, along with other like-minded entrepreneurs are that they all have passion and a strong desire to work hard and see their business succeed. If you are passionate, have a high work ethic, and want to start and grow a business, then you have what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur.
More opportunities for entrepreneurs
Broad socioeconomic trends such as globalization, information technology, and education are supporting and expanding opportunities for entrepreneurs. Here’s how these trends factor in.
● Education: There have been tremendous growth in educational opportunities. You can major in business to become an entrepreneur or you can take one or two entrepreneurship classes, which increases the likelihood that you will either start a business or help someone else start one. But of course you don’t have to be a graduate to start a successful business, for example Facebook, FedEx, and Google were started by college students.
● Information technology: A big boost for entrepreneurs is the huge growth in information technology (IT). As communications and computer technologies merge together, and as they dramatically drop in costs, entrepreneurs are able to access tools that let them compete with large companies. It can help by making work more efficient and quicker, being able to provide customer service immediately and attentively, increasing sales, and projecting professional images.
Reasons people choose entrepreneurship
There are many reasons why people choose to be entrepreneurs. Some want a flexible schedule or freedom to make decisions. Some see a gap in the supply and demand chain and create businesses to fill that gap. Others have financial needs that are met with starting a new business. Regardless of why they have chosen entrepreneurship, there are some common characteristics that all entrepreneurs share.
● They pursue their visions: Entrepreneurs usually start out with an overall idea about how a business idea can be successful. They relentlessly pursue that vision with a passion.
● They are their own boss: Entrepreneurs are free to make all decisions.
● They achieve financial success: Entrepreneurs create wealth and they don’t believe that they can achieve their greatest success by working for someone else. These people have businesses that revolve around a goal of becoming rich or at least profitable.
Irrespective of how the economy performs a home renovation enterprise is always a great way to earn a living. When the economy is doing well most people would rather renovate their homes than buy new ones at exorbitant prices and when it is down most homeowners will try to boost the value of their property through renovations. The advantage of establishing a home renovation business is that you do not have to be an expert in renovations, you can do the business administration, client meetings and hiring of the construction experts to carry out the renovations.
Most small home renovation companies do not make it past 5 years. A majority of entrepreneurs launch a home remodeling business but lack the management skills to run the business. According to this St Louis Kitchen Remodeling company, there are four areas of concern for those who would like to start a home renovation business. The first is the amount of capital required to start and the money you actually possess. The second thing is your level of experience in running a business. The third concern is whether you will be able to put in extra hours in the initial stages to see the business become profitable. Lastly, determine your target market and what particular jobs will you specialize in.
- Business Registration
Come up with a business structure and find a professional lawyer to handle the legal work for you. Ensure you meet all the state requirements. A home renovation business must be registered with an official name by the state. The business will be issued with a special identification number.
The regulations may differ from one state to another however, you must obtain a license to operate. This could be a home renovation license or a general contractor’s license. The licenses will attract certain application and licensing fees.
A renovation business must have some sort of liability insurance or bonding to operate. This is an important and mandatory requirement, therefore, contact an insurance company and find out the kind of insurance products they offer to renovation companies.
- Hire Licensed Contractors
Through the state business department, you can find all the information regarding licensed and qualified electricians, plumbers, ventilation experts, carpenters etc. Ensure that you verify their licenses with the state department of licensing before you hire or subcontract any of them.
Even though the large market share has been taken by the large companies which keep multiplying, there are still opportunities for the small entrepreneurs to succeed not only now but also in the future. This is one of most promising areas for anyone who wishes to become an entrepreneur.
Never doubt yourself when it involves whether or not you could be successful when it involves your professional cleaning service business. Your business can become successful if you put in a strong effort and have a solid will. These guidelines can help you discover how to make your business thrive.
Excellent customer service will often draw customers back to a professional cleaning service business when it comes time to make another purchase. By failing to deliver an exceptional shopping experience with each and every transaction, you leave the door open for your competitors to lure your customers away. Your customers will stay with you if you keep to high customer service standards. The companies that value quality in both their products and services are bound to be your greatest competitors.
Consider a brainstorming session with your workers prior to you make huge decisions. Creating a list of pros and cons could also help you to streamline your planning process. Organize your thoughts, a time-honored method of helping you to see the very best options for your cleaning service agency. You can also talk to a professional cleaning service business development agency if you need help but aren’t certain about what to do next.
Most experts agree that in order to succeed in professional cleaning service business, you need to learn on the job and get some experience in the industry. If you’re looking to become knowledgeable about the world of business, most experts say there’s no better way to learn than personal experience. When you are on the job, you learn things that you wouldn’t otherwise know unless you were on the job firsthand. While reading books on how to run a business may be practical, your true skills will probably be easy to develop if you put in some real-life work.
The professional cleaning service business that gives customers the very best products and services will probably be the cleaning service agency that makes the most profit. You will see a rise in sales and a growth in resources when your cleaning service agency could offer products and services beyond comparison. When you value customer service, and provide it consistently, your customers will thank you by referring their friends. Success will come your way if you constantly strive to be the very best in the industry.
Cleaning service business for your new cleaning service agency may be a little slow while the right customers take time to find you. Persistence, dedication, and real effort are all essential if you ever want your professional cleaning service business to succeed. To establish a profitable cleaning service agency, you need to work toward your long-range goals and patiently build a loyal customer base. When the owner loses focus of growth and expansion in his cleaning service agency, it will usually fail.
There are lots of people and families moving from one town, city or state to the other every once in a while. It is, therefore, a great idea to start a moving business and make a living out of it. However, the moving business just like other businesses has its fair share of challenges, and we are going to explore how to get it up and running.
However, most ambitious entrepreneurs imagine that starting a moving business only requires a truck and some strong muscles. Most of the big names in the moving industry started small and what that means for you is that you can grow your moving business as well to become successful.
The truth of the matter is that there is a lot involved in starting a moving business. Just like any other kind of business it needs a good amount of planning. By adhering to certain rules and regulations in the moving industry, the chances of success for your moving business will be high. Disregarding these rules will lead to losses and eventual failure of your moving business.
Once you decide to become an entrepreneur you have to learn to make sound business decisions. Getting a startup business up and running needs proper preparation which involves carrying out research, coming up with a business plan and getting the financing for the business. Every industry has unique characteristics and requirements and the same applies to the moving companies.
The following are some of the specific requirements for a moving company:
If you want to get into the moving business you must have the right equipment. Having the right vehicle for moving is the first major step in the moving business. You must look beyond your pickup truck if you want to grow in this business. A proper moving vehicle must be fitted with all the correct gear for moving such as loading ramps, ratchet straps, tie downs etc. Apart from that a moving business needs other kinds of equipment such as boxes, moving blankets, moving pads, dollies, straps, stretch wraps and so much more.
The next thing is to put up a team of qualified people to handle the moving. If you are starting out you may be tempted to do it on your own, however moving is physically demanding and you will certainly need some extra pair of hands. It is not practically possible to move a whole house on your own anyway. Gather your own staff to assist you move bulky or heavy objects safely. Do not take any jobs unless you have already hired someone to assist you in your moving business.
License and Permits
Ensure that you obtain the necessary permits and licenses as required by the state. You want to run a legitimate business which involves moving people’s valuables. Therefore to gain the trust of clients and the state you must prove that you have a responsible business. The license and permit requirements are not the same for every state and could involve written tests to assess your capability of successfully moving valuables from one point to another.
One thing you must be prepared for in the moving business is accidents are bound to happen. You never know, one of your staff may slip while carrying your client’s plasma TV or antique piano and your company shall be held liable for damages. Get a sufficient amount of insurance coverage to cater for liability and damages.
Once you have met these requirements you can launch and grow your moving business!
If you own a small family business, or are self-employed you’re not limited from investing in your retirement, and saving for the future. Many people select to plan for relaxing later in life with the security of retirement benefits through solo 401K plans.
What is a Solo 401K Plan?
A solo 401K plan, also known as an individual 401K, uni-k, or solo k is a retirement plan that is much like a traditional 401K offered by large companies, but is specific to people who are self-employed.
Individual 401k plans come in two versions: Traditional and Roth.
In a traditional plan, you can store money away pre-tax, and will be taxed when you choose to withdraw funds.
With a Roth plan, you can put money away post-tax, and do not have to pay any taxes upon withdrawl.
You don’t have to choose one version or the other, as you can split your contributions over multiple accounts. In both versions of the individual 401K plan, you can borrow funds from the balance you’ve saved.
Who is a Solo 401K Plan For?
The solo k is designed solely for self-employed Americans who operate their business as the sole proprietor. Spouses may also be eligible to contribute if they participate in generating earnings for the business.
What are the Pros?
If you are self-employed and looking for a valuable way to save and contribute to your retirement, the uni-k has many advantages, including:
- Various contribution options
- Flexibility in how much money is contributed each year
- Tax benefits and deductions
- Ability to make contributions into the following year
What are the Cons?
For all the benefits and pros an individual 401K plan has to offer, there are also some disadvantages to this kind of retirement saving strategy.
- The solo 401K is more complicated to set up, and you’ll need the help of professional to get it set up properly
- This type of plan is a bit more expensive to set up and maintain
- There are reporting requirements contingent upon the amount of money in the account
What are the other Options For Small Business Owners?
If your small business is gaining employees, and you wish to extend retirement benefits, the below options are also worth looking into and considering.
- Simple IRA
- SEP IRA
- Defined Benefit Plans
With the help of a good property management company you can increase the value of your investments significantly. This is why many experienced real estate investors often recommend hiring a competent management firm. Here’s a list of some of the best benefits to having a good property manager.
Better quality tenants
During the tenants screening process, it is possible to rent your property to a bad tenant. Though you can certainly get them out of your home, it can be a long process and it is best to not accept them from the beginning. The process of a thorough screening can result in tenants who:
- Rent for longer periods of time
- Pay rent on time
- Do less wear and tear on the property
- Are likely to cause fewer problems
With the help of an experience property management firm, you can quickly find real facts about potential candidates and use that information to analyze for warning signs. You help protect yourself from rental scams that target owners and lawsuits that claim discrimination due to inconsistent screenings by having a management firm process the screening for you. This makes it significantly beneficial, as you are shielding yourself from scams, lawsuits, and bad tenants.
Fewer legal problems
Experienced landlords know that it can take just one bad tenant to cause major financial and legal problems. Competent property management firms are knowledgeable and up-to-date with landlord-tenant laws, so having one will make sure you won’t be vulnerable to potential lawsuits. Though each state has their own laws, some federal laws cover:
- Safety conditions of property
- Tenant screening
- Terminating leases
- Lease addendums
- Rent collection
- Handling security deposits
With the help of a property management company you can avoid lawsuits that can cost you time and cause anguish.
Less vacant properties
There are three critical tasks that a property manager can help you with. These can affect the amount of time it takes to have your vacancies filled. These tasks include:
- Preparing and improving your property for renters
- By making suggestions and overseeing cosmetic renovations, a property manager is able to maximize revenue
- Calculating the best rent rate
- You can be stuck waiting if the rent is too high, and you will lose money every month if the rent it too low. You will need to acquire data on the local market and on similarly sold properties, as well as use of rental rate tools.
- Marketing your property effectively. Experience management firms understand how to market effectively, which can draw a large pool of candidates in a short amount of time. Also, they can usually negotiate low advertising rates because of their volume.
Higher retention rates
A high tenant turnover rate can have a serious impact on revenue. The process of turning over a property can involve painting walls, changing locks, cleaning thoroughly, and possibly doing small repairs and getting new carpet. It also includes all the effort it takes to market, show, screen, and set in a new tenant.
By making sure your tenants are well cared for and happy, you can avert this expense and time consuming process. With the help of a good property management firm, you can have access to updated and tested retention policies that can help maximize the length of stays by happy tenants. The whole process requires a consistent and effective systematic approach which good management companies have.
Low cost of repair and maintenance
An important part to owning property is keeping up with repairs and maintenance because it can keep your tenants happy and it can protect the value of your investment. With the aid of a property management company you will be able to access their maintenance staff. You will also be able to access their network of licensed contractors who will usually have good pricing and perform high quality work. The firm may be able to get discounts on volumes of the work, which translates to more savings. They are also knowledgeable of maintenance issues and are usually capable of supervising the work.
So there they are, some of the best reasons to hire a good property management firm. Remember that with the help of such a company you can expect to have better quality tenants, fewer legal problems, less vacancies, higher retention rates, and lower costs of repair and maintenance. Use a property management company for significant benefits.
The goal of real estate investment is to allow investors to spend their money so they could have it grow and have more money in the future. Essentially, the amount of profit you make has to exceed the risks that come along with investing in property such as taxes, utilities, and insurance. If you understand this, you can start to conceptualize how to be successful with real estate investment.
The basic model of successful investing is to purchase properties, avoid bankruptcy, and generate enough rent to purchase even more real estate. If you are thinking about getting into real estate investing then you can use this guide to help you understand about real estate investing opportunities and where you should consider starting.
Four ways to make money with real estate investing
- Real estate appreciation. In this strategy, the value of the property increases as a result of real estate market changes, the area of your property becoming busier, or property upgrades. If you consider real estate appreciation, know that it is riskier than our next strategy.
- Cash flow income. Cash flow income results when you purchase real estate to operate it and create a stream of cash that comes from rent. Rent is the money that is paid to you by a tenant in order for them to use your property for a period of time. Common sources of cash flow incomes may come from rental houses, apartment buildings, car washes, office buildings and more.
- Real estate related income. This strategy usually involves “specialists” in the industry of real estate such as brokers. Real estate related income may also come from real estate management businesses who run the day-today operations of a piece of property in exchange for a percentage of the rents. For example, a hotel company who takes care of the day-to-day operations such as mowing the lawn, hiring maids, running the front desk, and washing the towels receives 6% of the hotel’s sales.
- Income from ancillary real estate investment. Ancillary real estate investment involves purchasing something like a laundry facility for an apartment building or a vending machine for a building. For some investments, this can particularly generate a large amount of profit.
Considering where to begin with real estate investing
There are many ways to begin real estate investing. If you make a property purchase, you can take out a mortgage against a property by using debt. This is an attractive option to investors as it allows them to buy properties that they couldn’t otherwise afford, but it can be very risky because payments and interest expenses can cause you to go bankrupt if the market begins to fall. For risk management it is advisable to not use your name in the purchase of real estate. You will instead use special legal entities such as limited liability companies to hold your real estate investments. In doing so you are protecting your personal assets in the case that your investment fails or there is an accident that reults in a lawsuit.
Well this concludes my guide to getting started with real estate investing. If you in fact want to get started with investing in property, remember the 4 ways you can make money with real estate investments and choose the best strategy that would work for you.
Interested in starting a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) business? Use this guide to help you learn what it takes to start an HVAC business and make it successful.
Overview and business considerations
The two main tasks of a certified HVAC business owner include installation and service. The installation of an HVAC system involves installing the units both in and outside of a building as well as running the ductwork. Services involve identifying problems with older HVAC systems and fixing them. A few things to consider if you plan to start an HVAC business.
- Choose to start your business at your home or from a rented shop. It can save you money by starting from your home, but it is not legal in all cities.
- Decide on whether to specialize in a type of HVAC. You may specialize in commercial or residential systems
- Consider specializing in different systems such as geothermal heating systems or heating pumps, which can you give you a competitive edge over your competitors.
- Consider HVAC franchises such as One Hour Heating and Air, which provide name recognition and a system that is proven to work.
Tasks of HVAC businesses
Tasks for HVAC businesses are the same whether you plan on operating by yourself or with contractors. Here is a list of tasks that are required for this type of business. Business tasks:
- Prepare invoices for clients
- Set up contracts
- Schedule installation and service calls
- Prepare employee schedule
- Set up supplier contracts
- Be up-to-date with business licenses, certifications,and insurances
- Keep tax record
Advertisement and industry tasks:
- Knowledgable of HVAC systems
- Work diagnostic tools
- Install main units
- Install ductwork
- Create custom ductwork builds
- Oder equipment and supplies
- Service old models
- Stay current with new technologies
As a new startup, you can single-handedly run an HVAC business. Once your business becomes successful, you will probably need to hire:
- Licensed crew
- General office administration
- Sales crew
Some of the skills requirements include diagnosing HVAC equipment, installing an HVAC, and troubleshooting.
Obtaining a business license
In order to obtain an HVAC license and practice contracted services in your local area, you need to have HVAC training at an accredited school. Regional requirements may vary, but most service technicians are required to have two to four years of HVAC training and obtain a license before they are able to practice their services. At this point you will also need to apply for a business license. The approximate cost of an HVAC start up is estimated to be between $2000 and $10,000, though purchasing a working van and large inventory amounts can make start up costs a lot higher.
Equipment and supplies
Here is a list of needed equipments and supplies for start ups:
- Vehicle (van or truck) to carry supplies and equipments
- Meters, gauges, and other equipment to test HVAC systems
- Hand tools such as hammers, wire strippers, pliers, etc.
- Special tools including duct knives, duct staplers, and valve core removal tools
- Tape for air and electrical ducts
- Safety equipments such as dust mask, glasses, gloves, etc.
Here is a list of supplemental equipments which can be helpful once you get your business off the ground and running.
- Software for HVAC
- Backup units for HVAC
To see all of the monthly expenses of an HVAC business, check out this list of expenses to consider:
- Vehicle costs such as insurance, fuel, maintenance, etc.
- Rent for office and/or shop
- Answering phone service
- Tools And equipment
- Operating costs and supplies
All of this is required in order to successfully own, operate, and manage an HVAC business. So if you are indeed interested in starting your own HVAC business, use this guide to make sure you understand how the business works and how to be successful.
It can take a lot of time and effort to gain the skills needed to clean professionally, but to some people the job can be easy and enjoyable because they do not have to commit any personal investment and can simply take pride in doing an excellent job. If you are thinking about starting your own cleaning business, then in order to be successful you need to be physically fit, be okay with dirty work, and have the patience to slowly build up your client base, which you can start by marketing your services to family, friends, and others.
Are you suitable for a cleaning business?
Before you actually start a cleaning business, you need to make sure you are cut out for the job. Cleaning professionally is strenuous, a lot of work, and requires you to be in good physical condition as you need to do repetitive actions for long periods of time as well as kneel down, reach up, and bend over. Other qualities that make you suitable include the following.
- Good office skills and basic accounting skills
- Good communication skills
- Able and willing to build customer relations
- Cleared criminal history
- Have backup money saved up (if you plan on leaving your day job)
Planning your business
If you decide to start a cleaning business, the first step is to plan your business. Here are some of the things to consider.
- What type of cleaning service are you developing?
- Will you be cleaning general homes or have more specialized services such as cleaning with green products, open home cleaning, removing smoke, party cleaning, etc.
- Do you plan on offering multiple types of cleaning?
- Does your business plan on using its own products or on using the client’s products?
- Where is the area you plan to operate in?
- What are your transportation options?
- What do you plan on charging?
After researching and coming up with a solid plan, you will need to set up your accounting system. You then need to install an accounting software which allow your business to keep track of expenses, invoices, sales tax, etc. At this point you will need to find out how much to charge for your services. You may decide to charge by the hour, by the room, or a flat rate per square foot or per house. Be sure to take into account the number of occupants, pets, and contents of the house, and remember that no two houses are the same. It can take a while to gain the experience needed to create an efficient cleaning system.
After deciding on a reasonable rate, next would be to secure insurance bonding for your business. Having insurance guarantees some back-up for you and your services and reassures your clients.
The next step in the process of starting a cleaning business is choosing the supplies and products your business will use. It may be best to buy from a wholesaler as you can save money. Here are some things you should consider when making buying choices:
- Try to use non-toxic cleaning products that are naturally made. This is a particularly strong selling point as there are many people who have children and pets who are concerned for their health and safety.
- Try to use only trusted brands. It is much easier to sell as products that your client may have heard of.
- Customers do prefer that you bring your own cleaning supplies. Though some will have special cleaners in which you will use.
- Generally you will be using your client’s vacuum cleaner, and you will not have to carry your own from house to house.
Marketing and advertising
After completing your business plan and acquiring the necessary supplies, you will need to begin developing your brand in order to market your services. You will need to decide on an image to use for branding purposes or you can create a logo. You will include this on all of your advertising and on your website. Now if you don’t have a website, then you should strongly consider investing in one as the internet is mainly where prospective clients will be able to find you.
Creating a website for your business shows that you are serious about your business and allows you to present your credentials, service offerings, promise, etc. Afterwards you will need to secure some advertising for your business which will help your services be recognized. Here are some good advertising strategies:
- Try advertising in your local paper.
- Try using your vehicle. You can place your business name and contact information on your car for a great way to advertise.
- Try designing and printing flyers. You can hang flyers at businesses such as bakeries, restaurants, hairdressers, laundromats, grocery stores, etc. You can also place flyers on cars that are parked at local businesses and go door-to-door
- Try creating door hangers. Door hangers may be more effective than flyers or junk mail that can be quickly thrown away.
- Make sure you claim your business with google so that people can find your cleaning service page online.
If you are indeed deciding to start professionally cleaning, be sure that you are the right fit for the job and that you are knowledgeable about how the business works. Remember that in order to be successful you need to plan your business accordingly, get the necessary supplies, and perform the proper marketing and advertising.