Many of us have taken up new hobbies during the pandemic. Since we’re all cooped up at home, most new hobbies we developed involved something for the home. For DIY enthusiasts, construction is one of them.
Home services were affected by the pandemic, forcing us to perform repairs without a pro. Some have even gone as far as to make a whole outbuilding by themselves. They bought the raw materials, tools, equipment, and constructed from the ground up.
Normally, the only construction-related task we’d do on our own is tightening screws, installing fixtures, and assembling furniture. But if your DIY skills have significantly improved during the pandemic, you’re probably building some structures now. The question is, should you keep construction as your hobby, or should you turn it into a business?
Challenges in Making Construction a Hobby
Construction can work as a hobby. You’d see many non-professionals on social media nailing construction works. In addition, building things can take your mind away from the stress of daily life. Working from home, for instance, can put a strain on your mind, and unwinding with a toolbox can help calm it down.
If you work in an office, that can stress you out as well, given that the workplace environment isn’t always enriching. With construction as a hobby, you can look forward to going back home and doing something productive instead of indulging in bad habits to de-stress.
However, construction hobbyists can also face challenges. They’re practically amateurs, so their projects aren’t guaranteed to achieve perfect results every time. Their lack of experience and proper training can also affect the way they buy tools and equipment. They may think that buying the most expensive brands is the way to go, when in fact, a construction worker doesn’t need to break the bank to be able to achieve polished work.
Another challenge is having no one to hold liable for injuries. If a DIY-er, say, falls off a ladder while installing a roof, they’d be responsible for their own injuries and treatment. They can’t point fingers at the ladder’s manufacturer because their product has made them fall. The ladder’s manufacturer will only be liable if their product was sold defective, or if they made wrong safety claims. An example for the latter is advertising a ladder as having a specific weight limit, but not actually being able to carry the weight below that limit.
Furthermore, a construction hobbyist can also be a target of misconceptions or promote misconceptions. For example, if they show their skills on social media, their followers might assume that pros are no longer essential for certain repairs or projects. They may attempt to build something on their own, only to end up wasting money and time. Hence, a hobbyist should always issue disclaimers before filming their DIY projects.
Reasons to Start a Construction Company
If your DIY skills are almost reaching the pro level, don’t dismiss the idea of profiting from it. The idea of running a company may be intimidating, but if you’ve got great business skills, you should put them to good use.
As an entrepreneur, you can have access to suppliers of industrial-quality construction equipment. You will no longer be limited to the types of equipment and power tools designed for beginners. You can now use excavators, backhoe loaders, compactors, trenchers, and more.
But of course, you can’t develop your hobby into a business without proper training. Even if self-training has allowed you to pass as a pro, investors may not take a risk on your business if you can’t prove your competency. As such, you need to choose between these three different methods to be a pro in construction:
- Apprenticeship. Find a construction company seeking apprentices, and get experience there in combination with in-class learning.
- Enrolling for post-secondary training. Local colleges, state universities, and technical institutes usually offer courses in construction. Getting a diploma or certificate will boost your credibility in the industry.
- Applying for an entry-level construction job. You wouldn’t learn the comings and goings of the industry without starting from the bottom.
Once you’re ready to be on your own, you can start by offering your services to your neighbors or peers. It will grow your list of experiences and build up your reputation in the market.
But if you’d rather stay as a hobbyist, that’s a brilliant idea, too. You can have more than one passion, after all. What’s more important is doing what you love. Even if you’ve mastered construction, don’t be pressured to sell your services if you don’t want to.