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How to start a demolition company

Updated March 23, 2017

Demolition is an easy way to break into the construction industry, as it requires little training, no certifications and very few tools. Instead, the work requires a good deal of physical strength and common sense. Demolition work, at any level, can be risky and may involve handling hazardous materials. You will need to know safety regulations, building codes and environmental regulations beforfe starting your demolition company.

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  1. Learn your state and county regulations, building codes, safety regulations, inspection requirements and disposal methods for all hazardous materials. The Environmental Protection Agency and the National Demolition Association have developed a training program that will easily get you up-to-speed on the latest industry regulations. Call (202) 343-9290 or visit the EPA's site for details.

  2. Contact your licensing department to apply for a contractor's license, if required by your state. Also, obtain a business license. If you intend to take on employees, you should incorporate or form a limited liability company and then register with your Secretary of State. Contact a surety bond agent and liability insurance provider versed in demolition work. Generally, a demolition contractor must obtain permits before each job and adhere to all state requirements during and after the demolition. To obtain demolition permits, contractors must be licensed and may be required to be bonded.

  3. Research possible markets for any salvaged glass, metal and other lucrative materials. Selling salvaged materials is a great way to supplement your income.

  4. Secure a storage facility or commercial space in which to store any materials that will be resold.

  5. Invest in tools for pulling, prying and conducting minor and major demolition work, as well as hard hats, dumpsters and recycling storage bins for recycling paper, glass and plastic, if required by your state. Buy a truck, if necessary.

  6. Rent wrecking equipment that is costly or used infrequently. Establish a relationship with a local equipment supplier who owns enough equipment to ensure that you can rent as soon as you need to.

  7. Establish relationships with other contractors who will have use for your services. Target residential customers via Craigslist.org, with flyers posted around town and via online directories.

  8. Tip

    As your business expands, consider obtaining certification with the Institute of Hazardous Materials Management, to help you compete and to demonstrate your commitment to safety and the environment.

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Things You'll Need

  • Liability insurance
  • Knowledge of building codes
  • Contractor's license

About the Author

Shanika Chapman has been writing business-related articles since 2009. She holds a Bachelor of Science in social science from the University of Maryland University College. Chapman also served for four years in the Air Force and has run a successful business since 2008.

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