How To Begin A Residential Locksmith Business

Installing, maintaining, and picking locks whether mechanical or electronic needs a service to help clients with such matters. Businesses, government, and residential all use some form of locking device to keep the property safe. In 2016 the FBI estimated 7,919,035 property crimes occurred. The need for locks and residential locksmiths remain high.

Residential Locksmith Business

People who have a mechanical inclination, and like working with their hands may like starting a locksmith franchise. Be aware locksmithing needs to offer services 24 hours since a lockout can occur at any time. In the business not only does a person unlock something but they create locks and keys. Other services include installing locks in new construction, changing, or replacing locks in a building beside the emergency services. Now technology has entered the picture with its biometric door locks, or fingerprint access control. So, updating becomes essential as the technology trends in this industry develop.

Starting a Franchise

To start a residential locksmith franchise, it begins by creating a name for it. Each state has a set of naming rules for business. Do a bit of research since business names cannot become duplicated. Each state has a database of registered names. Create a unique name. To run a residential locksmith franchise, consider if the owner, an appointee, or board members will make the decision. A set of owners can run a business. Many states prefer member managed firms in an LLC set up. LLC stands for limited liability company. Find out the rules for applying for an LLC in the state the business will operate and apply. The advantages of an LLC list as it separates personal assets from business assets has pass-through taxation, and owners not responsible for the liabilities or debts of their company.


A residential locksmith franchise can become started in a home. Initial costs for basic equipment lists as less than thousand dollars. Items needed:

  1. Computerized and mechanical picks
  1. Key extractors
  1. Key cutter
  1. Router drills
  1. Hammer designed for locksmiths
  1. Plug spinners
  1. Tension wrench
  1. Electric pick guns

For a full-service full-time residential locksmith business, the initial costs would range from $6000 to $10,000. Full service locksmith franchises include decoders, bypass tool, specialized tools, drill jigs, and guides.

For the First Year

Make a business plan with some goals. Estimate after the initial investment how long it will take to break even. Make certain taxes become registered for at state and federal level. Dedicate a checking account for the business. Determine an accounting system. Check on business insurance and if located inside a city check for additional permits and licenses. Establish a web presence.


Setting up a business LLC can be a daunting task. Take it a moment at a time, and before long the biggest worry becomes how to fit all the clients in.