Business At A Glance
Startup Costs: $2,000 – $10,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Franchises Available? Yes
Online Operation? No
Everybody with a computer knows that moment of panic when the harddrive crashes–and for businesspeople, it usually happens when they’restaring into the eye of a deadline. But if you’re a computer physiciancapable of diagnosing virtual ills and then repairing them, you cantake on the appearance of an angel of mercy as a computer repairspecialist.
You’ll drive out to clients’ homes or offices with yourbriefcase of tools and equipment and heal those sickly computers andprinters. You can also earn tidy revenues with preventivemaintenance–dusting or vacuuming innards and cleaning disk drives on aquarterly or semiannual basis. The advantages to this business are thatit’s recession-proof–businesses need computers to operate, andhome-computer buffs can’t live without their virtual pals, either.
Andsince the computer industry is one of exponential growth, peripheralindustries like computer maintenance and repair are here to stay. As afinal plus, this business is satisfying–people are always appreciativewhen you bring an acutely ill hard drive or printer back to health.You’ll need to have the knowledge and skills of a good computerphysician, including how to change motherboards, repair and replacehard drives, and add memory chips. And you should have a goodcomputer-side manner so you can soothe panicky owners and tactfullyinstill the benefits of good preventive maintenance.
Your clients can be anybody with a computer, both businesses andindividuals. Mail brochures, perhaps with a dentist-type appointmentcard to be filled in, to local businesses. Leave business cards andfliers with computer and software retailers. Place ads in the YellowPages and your local newspaper, and get yourself written up in thepaper. Give talks on computer maintenance to professional and civicorganizations and at local colleges and other adult-education centers.
You’ll need a computer, an inkjet or laser printer, computer tinkeringtools like screwdrivers and miniature vacuums, computer cleaningsupplies, diagnostic software, commonly used parts and referencemanuals. In some states, you’ll need a license and a commercial shop toperform repairs; be sure to check with the business licensingdepartment.