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The locksmith industry is a fairly substantial industry in the UK and because of this there are many Locksmith Training schools who can help you qualify and start on a new career path or move into a new area of locksmithing with a few short locksmith training courses.
When looking to start out in the locksmith industry and make a living from what you do, there are really only 2 routes you can take. You can train to become a residential locksmith or you can train to become an auto locksmith.
Both of the above routes are very valid routes and with a little hard work, and lots of hours practicing you can succeed in the locksmith industry following either.
When looking to decide which route to take, you must really way up the pros and cons of both options. I whilst writing this am a locksmith with many years experience in both automotive and domestic locksmithing and I followed the domestic route when I started out. Later I progressed in to the automotive industry and since then further on to safes, electronic locks, Access control etc etc.
The Domestic Locksmith Route
When entering a new industry or starting out on a new career path, you have to look at the cost involved in setting up in that industry and the amount of work involved in setting up in that industry. You then need to look at how much work is available in that industry and whether or not the marketing and advertising in that industry will be cost effective and bring in a profit from the work you do.
The locksmithing industry is a very profitable industry and if you follow the correct path, train with the right people and contact the right companies after you qualify, then you will succeed and make a very good living.
TIP 1: When you have qualified there are some very good companies you could look into doing business with. Extreme Locks Ltd are a company who help a lot of locksmiths starting out, by giving them huge amounts of work with little to no cost to the locksmith at all. anyone wanting work who can’t afford an advertising budget should contact these guys. The Boss is called Carl.
TIP 2: In addition to them, there is also a company called Call YODA who can be found at www.callyoda.com this company provides calls in the locksmith industry at a similar price to what you would pay from google for a single click on your website. So with these if you sign up to 10 calls a month, your guaranteed a minimum of ten calls every month which should result in jobs. If you go down the cost per click route, you are guaranteed ten people will click you ad, but may never call you.
TIP 3: If you need a really professional looking website, which you will when you start trading as a locksmith because nearly all work now comes from the internet, then we recommend going to www.mjmartin.co.uk for that site as this person has the largest number of locksmith and auto locksmith sites in the UK and for auto locksmith in some areas his websites take up the full page on Google
It is much easier to start out in the domestic locksmith industry and make a living than it is in the auto. When starting out in the domestic locksmith industry you first need to find a reputable company who are going to train you very well and put you in contact with the best locksmith trade suppliers in the UK so you can buy the best quality locks at the best price. I use www.thelockshopuk.com for my domestic locksmith supplies as they are much cheaper than anyone else for the exact same stock.
Secondly you need to look at the cost of the courses, the duration of the courses and whether you can fit them around your daily life. For this you should call the number above and we will discuss all the locksmith training courses currently available with you and find the best course for you at the best time for you.
After this comes the tools and stock. Most of this can be gotten from the training school you attend, but don’t buy on the day you may get a much better deal on tools online and stock well I would use the company above.
Next you have to consider the marketing and the competition in that industry to ensure you have enough of an advertising budget in place to enable you to start getting the phones ringing and get out to make some money. The companies mentioned above can help with this and if you have no money after buying your stock and tools and paying for training, then Extreme Locks are a god send.
Once this has all been done and you are set up with a little van on your drive, maybe £1000 in tools and £1500 in stock, you re ready to start breaking into houses and getting paid for it. Unfortunately most people don’t get locked out of their homes or get broken into between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday, so you should expect to work some strange hours, at least in the beginning when our first starting out.
Remember people want value a smile and a great service. When they call a locksmith they are usually stressed and need the help of someone who can help them and make them feel at ease. There are companies out there who use sub standard stock and offer to break into clients premises and replace there locks for ridiculously cheap amounts. Remember if there is no profit in the job your not making a living your working for the sake of working and it really isn’t sustainable. The best way is charge a fair price for and excellent service, make the customer feel safe and at ease, then give them a full detailed invoice with a break down of the costs and point out the guarantees. These people will use you again, not the idiot who changed a lock at 2am on a Friday night for them for next to nothing, but the lock now sticks and doesn’t work very well because its made of aluminium rather than solid brass.
The Auto Locksmith Route
Like I said above this route to becoming an auto locksmith in the locksmith industry is much harder than becoming a domestic locksmith first. the reasons for this are:
To name a few. So when looking to join the locksmith industry from the outside in, you are probably much better off starting as a domestic locksmith, unless time and money don’t matter.
In the auto locksmith industry you first need to start training to pick vehicle locks. This is a very simple process once you understand it and master the feel of the locks. After mastering this you will then need to purchase a software called Instacode. This is the industry standard software used for decoding locks that have more pins in the ignition than in the door for example. If you pick open a 2004 Vauxhall Zafira it will only have 7 wafers in the door, but ten in the ignition. If you only have a 7 pin pick you will need a way to decode the lock and work out the rest of the cuts for the wafers in the ignition. Thats what Instacode does.
So you can pick open the car lock easy and gain access to the vehicle. You have a copy of Instacode on your laptop or Instacode live on your mobile phone so you can decode the lock. Next you need to pick and decode a lock after learning how to decode one in your training course and then cut a new key for that lock on your key cutting machine.
So to recap you can pick locks, you have Instacode, you can decode locks and you have purchased a key cutting machine and plenty of key blacks for cars. At this point you can start making a little money from the auto locksmith industry by picking open car locks when people have locked the car keys inside and by repairing snapped car key blades by picking and decoding the lock, then replacing the blade.
Once you are at this level, you then need to move on to making full car keys with transponders inside that are programmed to start the vehicle. This is where auto locksmithing starts to get very complicated and the auto locksmith training courses will help you master this. But in brief I will point out how it all works for you.
Basically the way the car key system works after we have cut the key is that there is a very small glass or carbon chip inside the key (TIP: these are different for all vehicle but a descent list can be found at www.mjmartin.co.uk/transponders.php provided for free by the same guy who builds great ranking websites.) which is referred to as the transponder chip. This chip stores a fixed which is sent to the cars immobiliser when the key is inserted into the ignition and turned. If you look round the key hole of most vehicle ignitions there is a black plastic ring which works like an arial and talks to the key when it is inserted into the ignition and turned.
Without this chip the immobiliser won’t let the vehicle start and car is basically useless and this is when an auto locksmith is needed urgently.
I hope this article has helped you to decide which way you want to proceed in the locksmith industry when you start your training. All that is left to do is call us and get your self booked into one of our locksmith or auto locksmith courses which will get you started in this amazing industry in no time at all.