While millions of Millennials and Gen Z’ers are busy lining up for college, they’re neglecting the fact that specialized trades like locksmithing can also provide a lucrative income without the student loan debt.
The bottom line figure depends on several factors, which we’ll cover in this mini-guide.
How Do Locksmiths Make Money?
Before we dive into dollar amounts, it’s essential to understand precisely how locksmiths make money. The obvious services are helping people when they get locked out of their homes or cars, replacing locks, and making keys. But that’s not all a locksmith can offer.
Many locksmiths can do a variety of work, from replacing window glass to putting doors back on their hinges. They work with safes of all sorts, gates, and welding. They have clients that come into their offices, and they also make in-person visits to homes and businesses.
Locksmiths are a wealth of knowledge and require multiple skills to make it in the business. They’re required to know about making keys, rekeying locks, installing locks and deadbolts, working with safes, and duplicating keys. They not only need to understand how various types of locks work but also be able to recommend lock and key services to their customers.
But before you can make money as a locksmith, you need to earn your certification (more on this in a moment).
How Much Do Locksmiths Make?
With the right products and services at the correct prices, a locksmith salary can range from minimum wage up to $100,000 or more. The actual amount will depend on a few factors:
First, your role and experience in the company. If you’re starting in the business, you can expect to make around minimum wage. An experienced technician will usually average $18 to $20 per hour. If you are a business owner, you could be earning $60,000 or more annually.
Geography also has a lot to do with your earnings. For example, a locksmith in Philadelphia will likely make more money than a locksmith in a small town.
As the business owner, your earnings are contingent on your ability to price your services, collect money, and market yourself. Business owners wear many hats, and being the locksmith-in-chief is no different. Many locksmiths are one-person shows, so it’s completely doable to do everything yourself. However, you may find that outsourcing things like marketing and bookkeeping can help you be more profitable. It frees up your time to focus on your business without also having to master other skills.
If you’re starting as a business owner, you may want to hold off hiring any help until you have some customers that can justify the expense. Profitability isn’t just about having customers, but also being smart with business expenditures.
How to Become a Locksmith
Are you interested in becoming a locksmith? The income can provide a comfortable living, plus it’s a lot cheaper to get your certification than it is to go to a traditional college.
Before you can work alone, you’ll need a combination of hands-on experience and classroom training. You can find a locksmith training school near you to learn more about costs and requirements.
Once you receive your certification, there’s nothing that should stop you from enjoying a long, profitable career.