Starting a new business in professional organizing can be a very profitable and exciting venture. However, it takes a lot of hard work and dedication to get started. This is why, in today’s article, we’ll teach you how to start a business as a professional organizer in 6 easy steps!
We’ll also break down how to market your new company, provide advice on what services to offer your clients, and give some awesome tips on the type of training you should get. So, if you’re ready to get your clients’ homes in order, keep reading!
Frequently Asked Questions:
How Much Does It Cost to Start a Professional Organizing Business?
Before you can get the ball rolling, you first need to have an idea of the money required to build your business from the ground up. The price of launching a company can depend on a bunch of factors, such as the size of it, the services you want to offer, etc. Generally speaking, though, you’ll need to invest in some basic start-up fees, such as:
- A computer and/or laptop
- A printer
- Telephone line and headset
- Business cards
- A professional business website
It’s typically recommended that you save up at least $15,000-$20,000 before starting operations. However, this number may be higher or lower, depending on how big you want your company to be, whether you want to run it out of your home vs. an office space, etc.
In a recent blog post published by Shopify, they stated that an entrepreneur is likely to spend an average of approximately $40,000 in their first year of business. Now, it’s worth keeping in mind that many of Shopify’s customers are business owners selling and shipping physical products from an online store. As a result, some of the data within this article might not necessarily apply to a professional organizing business owner.
Still, the info they give in this article is definitely worth the read, in our opinion!
Another investment you may want to consider is purchasing business management software that can help you streamline the process a little easier. Depending on whether you plan to offer other types of design services as well, this may extend into purchasing specific design software, too.
Ultimately, how much you wind up spending the start-up costs of your business will largely depend on YOUR specific needs and budget.
How Much Money Can You Make as a Professional Organizer?
Is professional organizing a lucrative business? Will your start-up investments ultimately be worth it?
The answer is a resounding YES!
Here are the average incomes for professional organizers, based on a few example countries:
- United States: Between approx. $25,000 USD to $63,500 USD per year. (Source: ZipRecruiter)
- Canada: Between approx. $35,000 CAD to $67,000 CAD per year. (Source: Glassdoor)
- United Kingdom: Between approx. £18,500 GBP to £24,000 GBP per year. (Source: Salary Expert)
- Australia: Approx. $50 AUD per hour. (Source: Payscale)
It’s important to keep in mind that these are merely averages and estimates, based on what other people have earned over time. You may end up making less or more than them, depending how savvy of a marketer you are, whether you wish to offer additional design services, and whether or not there’s high demand for your services within your specific area.
That said, if you play your cards right early on in this business venture, you could absolutely pull in a hefty profit by the end of your first year!
What Does a Professional Organizing Entrepreneur Do Day-to-Day?
Now that we’ve covered some of the basics, let’s move on to what a professional organizer actually does on a daily basis. In this field, you can expect to be responsible for a variety of tasks and duties, such as:
- Meeting with clients in-person and/or virtually;
- Touring the client’s home and taking measurements/notes;
- Assessing what areas need decluttering/organizing the most;
- Recommending solutions and strategies for improvement;
- Helping to put these plans into action;
- Coordinating with other professionals, such as cleaners, movers, painters, etc.;
- Following up with clients post-organizing to ensure they’re staying on track;
- And more!
As you can see, there’s a lot that goes into being a successful professional organizer. But that said, do you have the passion and drive to make a client’s home (and by extension, their lives) look and feel its best?
If so, then this career path is still the perfect one for you!
How Do I Start a Professional Organizer Business?
We’ll let you in on a little secret: the key to answering this question is to first ask your, “How do I become a certified professional organizer?”
Indeed, this is the single BEST way to start a successful career in this area of the design industry! This is why we recommend enrolling in an online course that specializes in professional organizing. A trustworthy program will teach you everything you need to know to do your job right and launch a thriving company.
Furthermore, completing an accredited online course will arm you with a reputable certification that you can add to your professional resume! We’ll talk more about the type of online professional organizer training you should get a little later on in this article…
How Much Should I Charge for My Services?
There are a lot of factors that go into pricing your professional organizer services. Some of the questions we recommend asking yourself include:
- How long have you been in business?
- What are your qualifications as an organizer?
- How much real-world experience is already under your belt?
- How many clients do you have at the moment?
- Do you also want to offer clients other design services as well, such as interior decorating, home staging, color consulting, etc.?
- Are you planning to launch your business with a team, or on your own?
- If the former, how experienced are your staff/team members when it comes to professional organizing and other areas of home design?
- Do you want to specialize in a niche, such as working with hoarders, preparing clients to move (or helping them move in), etc.?
- How much time does each client take up per month, or per year?
- How profitable is the organizing industry within your specific area right now?
Once you’re done brainstorming these questions, you can better determine how much money it’d cost you to run your company over a set period of time (e.g. the first year, years 2-5, etc.). This article by The Balance Small Business provides even more info on properly pricing your services, so we recommend giving it a read.
What Type(s) of Services Do I Want to Offer My Clients?
When building a professional organizing business, it’s important to decide which services you want to offer your clients. For example, will you be specializing in assisting hoarding situations? Moves? Specific rooms of the home?
You don’t have to limit yourself to one area of the professional organizing spectrum! In fact, many organizers offer a variety of services. Either way, it’s important to choose the services that you’re most comfortable with – and that you know you can deliver on successfully.
Here are just some of the services you can offer your customers:
- Residential organizing
- Organization for specific areas of the home (e.g. kitchens, closets, bedrooms, etc.)
- Business organizing
- Paper and filing management
- Time management
- Life coaching
- Photo/memorabilia organizing
- Move-in and move-out services
- Organization for specific target demographics (i.e. hoarders, children, senior citizens, special needs clients, etc.)
Not to mention, if you’re trained and knowledgeable in other types of home design, too, you can also offer those services as part of your business as well! Some examples can include:
- Interior decorating
- Home staging
- Feng Shui design
- Color consulting
- Aging in Place design
- Virtual design
- Floral arrangements
- Landscape design
Fun Fact: Did you know that QC Design School offers internationally-recognized training in ALL of the above services? It’s true! Learn about our full list of self-paced, online courses here!
Alright, now that we’ve answered some of the most popular FAQs, let’s look at the 6 steps involved in starting a business as a professional organizer from scratch!
Step One: Get Trained and Certified as a Professional Organizer!
First thing’s first, you’re going to need a proper education. In fact, we’d even argue that getting professionally certified is the single BEST way to become a professional organizer and achieve success!
When it comes to obtaining a solid, reliable education, there’s no better option than to enroll in an accredited, internationally-recognized school! QC Design School, for instance, offers a self-paced, online Professional Organizing Course that you can complete right from the comfort of home in as little as 3-6 months!
The beauty of this course is that it isn’t only geared towards those already working within the design industry, who are looking to upskill or add additional services to their company. Rather, they’ve been carefully crafted for entrepreneurs who want to start their own business and break out into the world of professional design, too.
This means that regardless of your skill level or past experience, you’ll absolutely benefit from the knowledge and expertise offered in QC’s Professional Organizing! Not to mention, once you’ve completed this program, you’ll become a globally-recognized Advanced International Organizing Professional (AIOP) and have a certification to add to your resume as well.
How awesome is that?!
Want to learn even more about QC Design School’s wildly popular Professional Organizing Course? Check out our full course page here!
Step Two: Figure Out What You Want Your Business to Look Like!
Once you’ve gotten your education under your belt, it’s time to start thinking about what you want your business to actually look like. For example, how will you structure it? How much money are you willing to invest in getting it started up and running smoothly? Do you eventually want to hire on fellow team members/staff, etc.?
Now is also a great time to self-reflect! Grab a pen and paper, and brainstorm the following questions:
- What kind of professional organizing/design services do I want to provide to my clients?
- How willing am I to work evenings and/or weekends?
- Do I have enough money saved up to both get this business started and support myself while I’m in the beginning stages?
- How much money do I need vs. how much do I ideally want to make?
- How many hours am I willing to work per week, month, and year?
- Do I want to provide additional design services as well?
- What are my short-term and long-term goals for my professional organizer business (i.e., what do you want it to look like a few years down the road)?
Your Business Name and Brand
During this step, you’ll also want to start coming up with ideas for your business’s name! This can be fun and stressful at the same time, so don’t worry if it feels like a bit of a struggle at first. One option at your disposal is to try out an online business name generator. There are all sorts of decent ones out there that, if nothing else, can at least help you get the creative gears turning!
(And once you’ve chosen your company name, don’t forget to get it legally registered. This way, no one else can steal it from you!)
Lastly, you’ll also want to figure out your company’s brand. How do you want people to perceive you and your business? Are there any colors you’d like associated with your company? What kind of vibe(s) are you going for (i.e., fun, posh, modern, etc.)?
We recommend doing plenty of research on this. This way, you can figure out what would work well with your target audience! The key is to find something that you feel comfortable with, that also allows you to stand out from your local competitors.
Step Three: Come Up With a Plan for Your Professional Organizer Business!
By this stage, you’ve got your education under your belt and have decided what kind of business you want to start up. Furthermore, you’ve figured out how it’ll be branded.
As such, it’s now time for step three: putting your business plan together!
A high-quality business plan will help you outline all of the important details about your company and include the services you’ll offer, how you’ll market yourself, and what your expenses and revenue will be. Plus, it’ll also help you determine who your target audience is.
A good way to approach your business plan is to think of it as a roadmap. When properly executed, it can help you figure out what your next steps should be along the way. Plus, banks and other financial institutions often require a business plan from anyone looking to take out a loan for their business. This means you can also think of it as the blueprints for your company, too!
Never written a business plan before? No problem! There are lots of great online resources (such as this one) that can help you get started!
Step Four: Build Your Business Website and Social Media Presence!
Once you’ve completed step three, it’s time to develop your official website and social media channels! This is where you’ll be able to showcase all of your amazing work for the world to see – as well as give potential clients a little taste of what they can expect from you.
If you’ve never put together a professional website before, or run social media channels for a business, we offer some truly EXCELLENT tips in this blog article that’ll help you do these things, as well as find new clients!
Above all else, the key is to make sure that both your website and social media accounts are up-to-date, always. Moreover, they should always reflect the brand that you worked so hard on in the last step.
Step Five: Establish How You’ll Get Clients and Market Your Professional Organizing Business!
By this point, it’s time to think about how you’ll actually get customers. How will people know that you’re a professional organizer – and even more importantly, that they should hire YOU for their next big shindig?
Furthermore, what kind of marketing materials will you need to create (i.e. a website, business cards, online ad marketing, social media profiles, etc.)? How often will you need to update these things? Are there any other ways for you to get your name out there?
One business-savvy way to kick things off is by creating a list of potential referral partners or affiliates. Do some research and compile a list of color consultants, painters, interior designers, interior decorators, home stagers, moving companies, and other design service providers in your area that might be interested in working together. You can also see if you can meet with these businesses in-person, to discuss how you can help each other out!
When it comes to getting your business seen, it’s also worth knowing right away that online marketing will be your BEST FRIEND. After all, that’s the entire point of a website and social media presence!
Establishing a budget for your marketing efforts is always a smart idea, too. Start this by asking yourself how frequently you’ll be able to put money aside for advertising. From there, try to answer these additional questions:
- How much do you have available each month and each quarter?
- How can this allotted amount help get people interested in what you’re offering?
- What do you know about Search Engine Optimization (a.k.a. SEO)? Are you willing to learn about it, and put in the efforts required to maintain a high-ranking for your company?
- What sort of online marketing are you interested in maximizing? (I.e. paid ads on Google and/or social media, email campaigns, monthly newsletters, etc.)
- Are you interested in creating a marketing budget at the start of each new year, so you have time to plan ahead?
Step Six: Start Networking and Getting Real-World Experience as a Professional Organizer!
Last (but certainly not least), it’s time to start networking and getting hands-on experience in the real world of design. Luckily, there are all sorts of ways you can put your skills to practice, such as:
- Attending industry events, conferences, and meetups.
- Participating in online forums and/or communities related to home design and professional organizing.
- Volunteering your time with local charities or non-profit organizations.
- Offering free professional organizing consultations (and even services) to friends or family in need of them.
- Collaborating with other industry experts in a stylized photoshoot, etc.
The more you put yourself out there, the more people will know about your business – and the better your chances will be of landing some wonderful clients! Also, don’t forget to network with other professional organizers in your area, too. Sure, they’re technically you’re “competition”. But the fact is, there’s always room for more than one organizer in the design industry.
If anything, you’ll quickly come to realize that ALL of your fellow designers will make for some of the greatest friends (and allies) as you navigate life as a business owner!
We hope this article has been helpful, and has outlined how YOU can start a business from scratch as a professional organizer. Just remember to be patient, do your research, and more than anything, have fun.
As the saying goes: “Rome wasn’t built in a day”. Neither, too, shall your business be! But so long as you follow this 6-step process, you’ll be seeing success in no time!