Starting A Computer Repair Business

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#1 stayscrisp  Icon User is offline

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Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 28 April 2009 - 03:22 AM

Hey guys

I've recently been really considering a small business in computer repair. it would involve traveling to customers homes to carry out repairs, spyware removal and the like.

How viable would something like this be?

Would a premises be more likely to generate revenue?

Are there any tips from people who have succeeded in this?

Thanks
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Replies To: Starting A Computer Repair Business

#2 bflosabre91  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 28 April 2009 - 05:57 AM

im not really sure how much business that would get. Most people would prob rather take their stuff to best buy rather than having a complete stranger come into their house. I could be wrong, but thats my honest opinion. Theres only one way to find out :)
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#3 stayscrisp  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 28 April 2009 - 07:02 AM

Well actually I've been reading into it quite a lot and a lot of people would rather you came to their house, especially older people who can't lug their computer onto a bus. Some shops can take days and also seem to have a format policy rather than a problem diagnostic one.

You are right though, about only one way to find out :D

Any info on how to get your business legitimately listed and things?
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#4 no2pencil  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 29 April 2009 - 01:10 AM

View Poststayscrisp, on 28 Apr, 2009 - 04:22 AM, said:

Are there any tips from people who have succeeded in this?

You'll want to get an LLC, or operate your company apart from yourself. Not sure what this is called exactly in your country, but in the states if you get sued & you are operating "doing business as", if you're business cannot cover the funds for the lawsuit out of assets, then the courts come after you. Meaning your vehicle, your house, or anything else of value to pay off the lawsuit.

I run a repair shop, but I hardly enjoy going to other people's houses. You never know if it's a setup (Lets jump the computer guy!), if they are going to stiff you on the bill (& it's a pain if they want to pay by credit card when you are at their house, you'll either have to call it in, or use a knuckle buster). Log your millage, again this could just be in the US, but it's tax deductible.

Another reason I don't like to do the repairs in the customers home is in the event of "oh shit!". If you have to look something up, because it's new, or you just need to perform something sudden, you are on the spot & under the gun. As well, I can clean many systems in the same 2 to 3 hours by allowing them all to process at the same time. Going to each house individually, every one gets their own 2 to 3 hours. So I get to hang out in some old woman's living room on my Friday evening... BOOORING! Not to mention, when you are on the road, who's answer the phones? You gonna take cell phone calls on your (paying!) clients time?

I think it's worth it, but it's taken me 5 years to get as far as I have. There is a lot of learning, & a ton of heart-ache that goes into running your own business. But if it's truly what you want to do, don't let anything get in your way from being successful! :)

View Poststayscrisp, on 28 Apr, 2009 - 08:02 AM, said:

Some shops can take days and also seem to have a format policy rather than a problem diagnostic one.

What really sucks is when this has already happened... I've had a few customers come to me not knowing that all of their data was being formatted & the OS reinstalled rather than dealing with the problem. They ask what can be recovered. I hate giving them the bad news.

View Postbflosabre91, on 28 Apr, 2009 - 06:57 AM, said:

Most people would prob rather take their stuff to best buy rather than having a complete stranger come into their house.

You'll find that people would much rather budge on price than anything else. You'll also find that a lot of people have been flat out fucked over by Best Buy, & though willing to buy merchandise from them, actually request for anyone else other than the Geek Squad. Granted no one is going to call me up & tell me a success story that Geek Squad got them all hooked up & they'll never call my way ever, but I've had to clean up my fair share of messes left-over by the Geek Squad. I've seen their "handy work".
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#5 Pwn  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 29 April 2009 - 01:35 PM

I work in IT doing user support, and people know that we know a fair bit about computers, and since we work with them, they are more trusting of us than computer repair shops. We have been known to do jobs on the side for the people we like or who won't take no for an answer. That could be a good way to get your business started, doing freelance work for co-workers, get the word around for a while, granted it may take a couple of years to get a good customer base, but having one when you open your business is worth the time.
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#6 stayscrisp  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 29 April 2009 - 01:49 PM

Quote

What really sucks is when this has already happened... I've had a few customers come to me not knowing that all of their data was being formatted & the OS reinstalled rather than dealing with the problem. They ask what can be recovered. I hate giving them the bad news.


Yup I have a few friends who have had this happen, now they no better and just give it to me. I don't really mind this and I'm not gonna charge my friends :)

The local computer shop in my town charges over 60 for a reinstall, that's nearly $90 for putting a disc in a computer and letting it do the rest, granted there might be some driver searching to be done if they (like a lot of people) discarded there driver discs but that's a lot of money. I want in on it haha!

I see your company does RRoD repairs that's cool, do you get a lot of takers? I fixed mine not long ago :)

Quote

I work in IT doing user support, and people know that we know a fair bit about computers, and since we work with them, they are more trusting of us than computer repair shops. We have been known to do jobs on the side for the people we like or who won't take no for an answer. That could be a good way to get your business started, doing freelance work for co-workers, get the word around for a while, granted it may take a couple of years to get a good customer base, but having one when you open your business is worth the time.


Well I basically do that already really, I think everyone remotely adept at computers gets roped into doing things like this from time to time, I have lost count of how often I had to sort out peoples wireless internet :rolleyes:
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#7 no2pencil  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 29 April 2009 - 01:56 PM

View Poststayscrisp, on 29 Apr, 2009 - 02:49 PM, said:

I see your company does RRoD repairs that's cool, do you get a lot of takers? I fixed mine not long ago :)

At 1st, but then it died off. Have not gotten any in for a while.
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#8 stayscrisp  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 29 April 2009 - 02:22 PM

Hmmm....would you think it was still worth having though? or advertising?

I'm actually training to be a game programmer but I need something else as its so unbelievably competitive.
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#9 no2pencil  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 29 April 2009 - 02:48 PM

View Poststayscrisp, on 29 Apr, 2009 - 03:22 PM, said:

Hmmm....would you think it was still worth having though? or advertising?

Assuming you mean RRoD as 'it', absolutely. Things come & go. I was about to give up the iPod repair all together, & that same day I got a call from a guy whom wanted six repaired!

As long as it's a service that you can generate an income from, that's worth your time in doing the service, & you have a good plan B in the event of catastrophic failure, then it's a service worth having.
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#10 firebolt  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 01 May 2009 - 06:08 AM

How much do you have already? Advertising is a lot already and setting up transportation and maybe a HQ for the business will add to it, quite a bit of money.
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#11 stayscrisp  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 19 May 2009 - 02:19 PM

I just completed my second RRoD Xbox 360 fix, I kind of knew how to do it from research and doing my own but now I have tested it twice and succeeded. Just thought i'd say :)

This post has been edited by stayscrisp: 19 May 2009 - 02:20 PM

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#12 no2pencil  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 19 May 2009 - 02:21 PM

Make sure that you test it for a few hours :) Nothing makes a customer more mad than having a repair fail within the 1st few hours of getting it back.

Congrats! I've always felt that seeing a happy customer that you've helped out, handing their equipment back to them, seeing how much they appreciate the repair, is much more rewarding for the soul than any bonus from a 9-5 job.
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#13 stayscrisp  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 19 May 2009 - 04:26 PM

Yeah :)

It can be a little hit and miss when tightening the heatsinks, pretty sensitive those Xboxes. Well its been running for 3 hours straight now and hasn't crashed so I'm feeling pretty safe. Mine hasn't crashed since I fixed it.

Its a pretty quick fix really :)
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#14 no2pencil  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 19 May 2009 - 07:00 PM

Of the ones we've done, one has come back, as well as my own was a garbage shoot. It's funny, I have 3 360's in my living room (counting my own) & only one game. At least I was able to pick up GTA IV as a tax write off. I mean, I've got to test them with something...
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#15 no2pencil  Icon User is offline

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Re: Starting A Computer Repair Business

Posted 23 May 2009 - 06:24 PM

stayscrisp : Don't ever do business with your friends.

I'm 0 for 3. Trust me on this one. No matter how badly they want to help, no matter how much help they intend to offer. Don't do it. It isn't worth the added stress.
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