How to Launch Your Independent Beauty Business

Renting a booth at a salon can give you the freedom to do your own thing and hone your entrepreneurial skills. But if you really want to succeed, you’ll need more than a hair dryer and a brush.

Here are three things to keep in mind when making the switch from employee to renter:

Understand the pros and cons. When renting a booth, you become a business owner. You make your schedule, choose which services you want to offer, and gain a lot of extra freedom that other salon employees don’t necessarily have. But remember, you also have to buy products, pay rent to the salon owner, book your own appointments, and depending on where you live — obtain a business license.

The salon owner is not responsible for providing you with health insurance benefits. You also need to remember that you won’t get paid on your vacation days; it’s no longer the responsibility of the salon owner. You absolutely must be a very driven person to reach success as a booth renter.

Choose the right location. As they say in the real estate industry, “Location, location, location.” The same goes for booth rentals. After accepting the pros and cons of booth rental, it’s time to decide if you are working at a salon that is a good fit for you. Make sure you find a salon that is well kept, clean, has a friendly positive staff, and is generally an environment you will enjoy being in each day.

Another thing to consider here is whether the rest of the staff has the same high standards as you. Your current clients could be turned away if they arrive for their appointment and see someone leaving after a disappointing salon experience. Don’t be scared to negotiate your contract whether you’re renewing your lease or moving to a new salon.

Make it legal. After finding the right salon, you and the salon owner have to agree on a written contract. This is a requirement for the IRS to recognize you as an independent contractor. It needs to include your monthly lease cost and what you receive for paying that. The contract usually includes your booth station, costs of electricity, phone use policy, and towels, among other things. It also details what the salon owner expects from you, paying taxes, preventing damage to salon property, and holding yourself accountable for any actions that result in losses to the salon.

Don’t be afraid of the contract. It’s great for you because if you realize early on that the salon isn’t a good fit for you, your contract should include a statement that you or the salon owner to cancel the contract with written notice within 30 days from the start. The typical length of a contract is 6 months to a year.

There are plenty of other things to keep in mind when deciding to rent booth space. Start with these three and go for it!

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Michelle Guetersloh

Michelle Guetersloh

Hairstylist Consultant at Michelle My Stylist
For some, hairstyling’s a job. For others, it’s a passion: an innate gift that lights them up and drives them to outperform and overdeliver. Michelle G. is definitely the latter.

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