How Much Do Locksmith Business Owners Make?

You Can Make a Good Living as a Locksmith - Especially as a Business Owner

Although most people underrate locksmiths, their salaries are just below the national average. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), depending on their region and expertise, locksmiths earned an average pay of $46,910 in 2021.

However, the locksmith business is a challenging, competitive field. Even if already established, staying current on technological and real estate trends necessitates constant attention.

Learn how much locksmiths make based on the type of service provided, and how they earn a steady income and attract more customers.

How Much Do Locksmith Business Owners Make – Type of Service Provided

How much locksmiths make depends on the type of service they provide. However, estimates an average locksmith salary of $38,135.

It also depends on your location. As of November 23, 2022, the average locksmith salary in California is $56,560, and $55,983 in New Jersey, which is below the national average.

As a locksmith, you require a variety of skills. You are responsible for your client's business and home security. So, you must know how to install new locks or repair and replace broken ones.

Locksmith Business Owners Can Earn a Good Salary - Especially if They are Good at Operations and Marketing

So, how much do locksmith business owners make?

For starters, locksmithing is among the oldest professions in the world. Ancient Egypt and Babylon used locksmith services to protect valuables from thieves 4000 years ago.

There are three basic types of locksmith services. These includes:

  • Residential locksmith. It is the most common type of business for a locksmith, costing $75 per hour on average. Residential locksmiths repair or replace locks in homes. They work on an emergency basis, usually when a homeowner forgets or cannot locate their key. Because most homeowners install high-security systems, you must have specialized training or experience as a residential locksmith.

Residential Locksmiths Help Homeowners with Locked Doors, Key Replacement and New Lock Installation

  • Commercial locksmith. They work in large buildings and businesses like malls, hospitals, or schools. They charge an average of $200 per hour for business security issues. A commercial locksmith may also charge up to $400 per hour to unlock and install electronic locks or security upgrades. You may also conduct security audits on existing buildings or facilities.
  • Automotive locksmith. These businesses specialize in fixing a car key for a door and ignition. To be able to rekey a car door or ignition, auto locksmiths must be familiar with all makes and models of vehicles. An automotive locksmith may charge up to $225 for these services.

Automotive Locksmiths are Able to Work on the Go to Get Car Owners Back on the Road

  • Access control systems installation. Through an access control system, only authorized personnel can access certain areas of a building via card readers. It is the most lucrative type of locksmith as its charges differ with the access control system.
  • Emergency locksmith. Emergency locksmiths charge $100 to $250 an hour, as they offer their services in times of need. They offer lock picking, rekeying, and key duplication services. As a result, these professionals are highly trained and equipped with all the necessary tools to quickly resolve any lock issue without causing any damage to your property.
  • Mobile locksmith. You can also be one of the locksmiths and use a truck or van as your mobile office. But, ensure that you update your car and locksmith insurance. Furthermore, equip the truck with tools for cutting keys and installing locks. Ensure you brand the van or truck so that when people see it on the road, they can immediately tell it belongs to a locksmith company.

It is important to note that there are different levels of locksmithing: beginner, intermediate, advanced, and master craftsman. Each level charges differently because you must master it before progressing to the next.

Before Associated Locksmiths of America (ALOA) can certify you, the more advanced levels require years of training and practice under the supervision of an experienced mentor.

How To Earn a Steady Income as a Locksmith

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates locksmiths earn $22.55 per hour on average. The top 10% of locksmiths earn more than $60,140 annually, while the bottom 10% earn less than $45,060 annually.

However, as a locksmith business owner, these earnings can vary significantly, and you might use all the profits on overheads.

These tips will help you increase your profit margins as a locksmith and earn a steady income.

Start With the Right Tools

If you want to attract new clients, you need the right tools. These include investing in quality equipment and learning the right skills. An example would be learning to pick smart locks or getting a quality set of lock picks.

Be Prepared for Emergencies

Customers can experience stress when they lose their keys or lock them inside the house. You could lose money and customers if you are not prepared. To avoid this, make sure you have a plan in place for any emergency that may occur in your area. You should also ensure that your employees are adequately trained and prepared in case of an emergency.

Offer Unique Services

Offering one-of-a-kind services is a great way to differentiate yourself from the competition. It could imply providing services unavailable anywhere else in your area or elsewhere. For example, if there are no 24-hour locksmiths in your area, this would be a great way to differentiate yourself from the competition.

Ensure You Are Always Prepared

You never know when you'll receive an emergency call; the last thing you want is to handle it without tools. Your customers will lose trust in your professionalism, thus not contacting you again or, worse, not recommending you to their friends.

So, before starting a job, ensure you have everything you need. You don't want to be searching for tools and parts, or worse, waiting for a delivery. Maintain an inventory of what you have on hand and the cost of replacing it.

Don't Make Promises You Can't Keep

If you don't know when you will complete your locksmith services, don't tell your customers. They might feel upset if their locks are not repaired on time and must wait longer than expected. Instead, give them an estimate of how long their job will take and then inform them if it takes longer than expected. Everyone involved benefits from getting frequent updates on what's going on with their repairs or installation.

Do Your Research

As new technology or trends emerge in the industry, locksmiths must stay abreast of everything that is going on. Attend classes at local schools or conferences, read books on current trends, watch videos on the internet, or talk with other professionals about what they've learned.

Know Your Locksmith Market

Confirm what your customers want before you do anything else. Are they looking for a locksmith for residential or commercial purposes, or do they want high-security locks installed?

It will help you set up your business with the right tools and equipment for providing those services. Furthermore, you can use this information to determine whether you could employ more locksmiths to cover any gaps.

Get To Know Your Competitors

When you're just starting, it's tempting to focus on getting clients and making money right away. However, if you're not careful, you could burn out quickly or lose money on jobs that aren't profitable enough to keep you going.

That is why it is critical to understand your competition. Knowing what your competition is doing and how they're doing it will help you make better business decisions.

You can find out how much others in your industry charge for services and the quality of their work online. Using the internet, you can also find out what services other businesses offer in your area. By doing this, you will be able to determine whether there is enough demand for another locksmith in the area or, if not, how much competition you can handle. Additionally, you will be able to know how much do locksmith business owners make.

Get To Know Your Customers

In the long run, getting to know the people who use your locksmith services will help you understand their needs and expectations better if you can do this in person. Also, it gives them more confidence in you regarding their security needs.

However, always act professionally regardless of how busy things get or how many people are waiting for your service. You can enjoy a steady income for a long time by keeping clients loyal and keeping them coming back for more.

Get Certified

Certifications can help you learn more about your chosen specialty and improve your skills as a locksmith. These certifications include:

  • ALOA Fundamental Locksmith (AFL). The Associated Locksmiths of America (ALOA) offers this certification and signifies the successful completion of a six-day training program.
  • Registered Locksmith (RL). RLs must complete 12 eight-hour courses offered by the ALOA Continuing Education Program (ACE). To earn official ALOA certification, locksmiths must qualify for either the RL or AFL certification programs.
  • Certified Master Locksmith (CML). It is the highest level of certification for general locksmiths. You must have a Certified Professional Locksmith (CPL) certification and score 70% on an additional nine ALOA courses to become a CML.

What Are the Ways Locksmiths Attract More Customers?

Locksmiths, like any other business, attract customers from various sources. Some of these sources include word-of-mouth and advertising.

Word-of-mouth endorsements are the most effective approach for a locksmith to gain new clientele. When a customer has a pleasant experience and recommends your locksmith company to friends, it creates awareness about your brand and may bring in new clients.

Advertising is another excellent strategy. However, if you are unfamiliar with the procedure, it can be time-consuming and expensive. The trick is to select an advertising channel that reaches your target demographic, such as social media, and to include all relevant keywords. Once you've designed your advertisement, make sure it's clear and straightforward so that people understand what you're offering.

Additionally, you can attract more customers by providing excellent customer service. It means being friendly and responsive as well as providing fast and efficient service.

Also, ensure you have a website with information about your company and reviews from past customers. You can show potential clients what you're all about and provide them with a chance to get to know you better before they hire you. Additionally, the website should provide detailed information about your services and pricing.

Research shows that websites with more product information attract more customers than those without information.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions about locksmiths.

Is locksmithing a profitable side hustle?

If certified, a locksmithing side hustle can be lucrative. As a certified locksmith, you do not have to persuade people to hire your services since it is something they use and need. Additionally, it doesn't require much space or equipment, so you can do it in your free time.

Are locksmith businesses profitable?

Yes, they are. However, business management decisions such as location, pricing policies, and customer service significantly impact how profitable your business is.

How much does a locksmith franchise cost?

You can expect to pay between $50,000 and $150,000 for a locksmith franchise, depending on how much you are willing to invest. Your budget and whether you are a licensed locksmith will determine which franchise name you acquire.

The reason for this is that most well-known locksmith companies prefer franchises with individuals who comply with their vision and values. As a result, they are more expensive than lesser-known locksmith companies.

Are locksmiths in demand?

Yes. The locksmith industry is growing and becoming more lucrative. Unsurprisingly, the smart lock market might grow at a 12% compound annual growth rate by 2026. As technology advances, companies are developing more advanced locking systems as safety concerns grow and home automation increases.

How do locksmiths gain entry?

Before a locksmith can choose how they will gain entry, they determine the kind of door locks first. The locksmith will then attempt to gain entry using a key, lock pick, or drill bit. If you have difficulty gaining access to your home, you should contact a professional with locksmith training because many things can go wrong.

Frank Salvatore

Hey there - I'm Frank Salvatore. I've been helping small businesses - including home services contractors - get more business online for over 17 years.

About Me

Hey there - I'm Frank Salvatore. I've been helping small businesses - including home services contractors - get more business online for over 17 years.

This website is dedicating to helping home services contractors to grow their businesses by implementing effective marketing, systems, and processes. 
Learn More About Me

Related Blog Posts