5 Steps to Starting Your Own Furniture Painting Business

Thinking about starting a home based biz?

If you're the creative type and have been considering starting your own home based business or side biz, then furniture painting and reselling may be for you!

Painting furniture can be a profitable and enjoyable business and it is one of my top suggestions for creative entrepreneurs for 3 main reasons:

  1. There is low overhead to get started. Starting a furniture painting business can be done with little up front investment. A few hundred dollars is a reasonable budget, but you could actually start with less than $100 if you're resourceful!
  2. Little training or up front skills are required.While having some painting experience is always a good thing, anyone can paint. This means that with minimal training (tons of good Youtube videos out there!) you can be making $$$ selling furniture in no time.
  3. You can work where and when you want. One of my favorite things about this business is how easy it is to adapt it to your everyday life. I started my painting biz after the birth of my 3rd son and built it with 3 little kiddos underfoot. I still squeeze painting into naptimes, after bed, and while the kids play outside. They love to "help" and it's a great way to teach them some business skills at the same time!

Step #1: Getting Started

Getting your painting business off the ground is a fairly straight forward process. I recommend focusing your time and attention in 3 main areas.

  1. Research: The starting stage is the perfect time to do research to gain invaluable knowledge. Educational and free content abounds on the internet including blog posts and you tube videos. Things you will want to research include paint styles you like, brands of paint you will want to try, as well as how-to videos on painting techniques and prep.
  2. Business Basics: Once you commit to starting a painting business there are a few business basics you'll want to take care of so you get started on the right track. These include things like deciding on a name for your business {something simple and memorable is best), getting a business license, and registering your business online for sales tax and income tax.
  3. Online Presence: Building your online business presence is an important step in setting yourself up for future success. This can be done simply by creating  a facebook under your new business name. I recommend starting an Instagram account to gain followers as well. Begin adding content to these pages as soon as you can. Ask family and friends to follow you and ask questions about what they like, what styles they prefer, and their favorite colors for furniture. Market research gives you valuable insight and builds an engaged audience for when it is time to sell!

Step #2: Buy Supplies

Hopefully you followed step #1 and took some time to research the paint brand that you will be using as you move forward! While you can choose to use big-box store brands, finding a specialty paint that you love and connect with sets you apart from your competition and often delivers a superior finished product.

When investing in supplies you will need some basics to get started. I recommend buying a few neutral colors of paint as they are often quick sellers. Purchase the best brush your budget allows up front as this be an investment that you will get your money out of in the long run! You will also need to pick up some painting tape as well as some medium and fine grit sandpaper.

In addition to your basics there are some other supplies that will make your job easier. Rags or old towels for clean ups. a razor blade for getting paint off of glass, drop cloths or old sheets to protect your floors, and a small foam roller for rolling large surfaces.

While it might seem like a lot, you can easily purchase the supplies you need to get started for under $100.

Step #3: Finding Furniture to Paint

Once you've gathered your supplies it's time to find your first piece to paint! Starting with a smaller piece is a good way to gain confidence. End tables, night stands, coffee tables, and small bookcases are great pieces to choose for your first piece.

Finding affordable pieces of furniture to paint is essential to your success. You need to find pieces that allow you to sell them for a profit, so getting them at a deal is a must! 

One easy tip is to "shop" your house first to see if there is any extra furniture that you could paint and not miss if it sold. This is a great way to get some practice and once it sells it will give you the money you need to invest into another piece. 

Thrift stores, yard sales, and resale shops are some of my favorite places to look for pieces to paint. Just remember to buy the best quality you can afford and don't be afraid to negotiate!

Step #4: Get to Painting

Now that you've found the perfect piece, it's time to get started painting! It's important to do the correct prep work before you start slinging paint so be sure to revisit your research and take the time to do it right!

Two coats of paint are usually all it takes to ensure a smooth finish, but if you are painting a darker piece white or light grey it may take 3 or more coats. Be patient and do your best work, your reputation is being built and you want to be proud of your piece!

Step #5: Make that $$$-Time to Sell!

Now comes the fun part...time to sell your first piece!! If you followed the steps above you should have a small following on social media already in place. Now is the time to take some amazing pics of your piece (good lighting, clean backdrop), pop on a price that will knock their socks off (you want to offer amazing value from the get-go), and be sure to mention the limited availability (it's a 1-of-a-kind!). 

Hopefully you will get an offer in a day or two, but if not, don't get discouraged! Hop onto Facebook Marketplace and list your new piece. A lot of clients use this as their only selling platform and get great results!


Next Steps: Rinse and Repeat

Congratulations! You have now made your first sale and are officially in business! Time to take that hard-earned cash and celebrate right?

Not so fast!

Now is the time to do it all over again! Celebrate a little and take the rest of that $$$ straight to your favorite vendor and invest in another piece to start the process again. Follow this system again and again and before you know it, you'll be known as the "go-to gal" in your area for creating amazing pieces with great value and you'll have a nice little chunk of change in the bank!

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