Polish your Success-Start Your Own Furniture Restoration Business

Have you ever been fond of restoring old furniture? Remember the trestle table you purchased or the headboard you picked from the antique market a mile away from your home? Or the broken chair you turned into a unique treehouse? In case you have ever had the thought of how to start a furniture restoration business and if the entrepreneur in you can turn your pastime hobby into a profitable business, then all you shall require is some well-versed carpentry skills, a sharp mind to process, ability to paint or reset a broken chair.

Commencing this business in 2021 has a great chance since the gross profits have been rising through the years and antique restored furniture sells like hot cakes.

 What are the Pros and Cons of the Furniture Restoration Business?

If you are wondering how to start a Furniture restoration business, Shalooka Business Guides acknowledges your needs. To start the business, you need to determine the pros and cons and skills needed to make it a well-flourished business.

Pros of Furniture Restoration Business

  • Starting a furniture restoration business requires a little startup investment. The cost of starting up a restoration business is significantly lower than most businesses.
  • Restoration business has great income potential. Data suggests a rise in this industry over the years leading to high gross margins of as much as 45% which are good to go for this type of business.
  • You get a lot of avenues for professional expansion since the business is quite scalable. The demand for new features and products is ever-growing and will help to reach and interact with different types of customers.
  •  You can decide on how much time you are willing to put in depending on the work. One can always start small, and manage according to their personal interests. 
  • Starting up a furniture restoration business requires a simple business model, making the work simple and coherent.

Cons of Furniture Restoration Business

  • There can be inconsistency in work and sales which can lead to daily income being less stable through the years. Planning your work and budgeting it according to the expenses is the key.
  • If the business requires you to be self-employed, committing time as much as on a 24/7 basis is required to run it effectively and efficiently.
  • With stats showing a growth rate of 45% in recent years, the industry is flourishing with more entrepreneurs joining in leading to tough competition. 
  • A good amount of understanding and analysis is required to set and run the business as work can be stressful and the bar of expectations is already set high.
  • Work can be sluggish for it will involve daily movement and a lot of physical activity as you are ought to be available at places for consumers.

What Tools Do You Need to Start a Furniture Restoration Business?

How to start a furniture restoration business still remains a question without a perfect business idea and tools necessitated for it. But first, after planning, you need to be well-versed in the art of carpentry. Without having the knowledge, one can’t finish refurbishing broken or old pieces of furniture.

This also requires one to be trained in the process of stripping away old paint, sanding, and applying a coat of paint or stain. In some cases, Reupholstering might be required. While you might have some experience with furniture restoration being a hobby, it is better to get off some training before building this new venture. 

Working it at home will require you to check with the zone laws and then get the business registered with a name. The refurnishing will be deafening and might create fumes, making it difficult for you to work in residential areas.

Business structures like a sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC, and corporation will require you to form a legal entity, register for taxes, obtain necessary permits and licenses and get business insurance.

Some specific tools you will require to Refurnish Furniture Hardware are listed below:

  • TSP Cleaner
  • 220 Grit Sandpaper or Synthetic Steel Wool
  •  Oil Based Spray Primer
  • Spray Paint
  • Spray Sealer
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What Are the Basic Setup Costs for a Furniture Restoration business?

How to start a furniture restoration business without the knowledge of costs and expenditures? Well, initially, this will require some amount of setup costs for basic tools and supplies. Most businesses start small before investing in retail businesses and hence turn home into their workplace.

One can expand their business after observing consistent growth since it helps to cut costs and maintain margins. 

  • Working flexibly from home will involve investments of around $3,000.
  • If you wish to work extensively on a large scale with more equipment, the range could go as high as $10,000. 
  • Some common setup costs are also required for specific tools such as ventilation equipment, woodworking tools, upholstery tools, paints, stains, fabrics, etc. 
  • Business permit and licensing fees.

Ongoing expenses include:

  • Marketing and advertising
  • Employee salaries
  • Business insurance [property insurance]
  • Taxes
  • Damages 

How Do You Prepare for Launching a Furniture Business?

Before indulging in the thought of how to start a furniture restoration business, a creative business idea should be planned. A proper business plan should be drafted and implemented to earn gross profit margins. It involves working on marketing and promotional strategies, research, and building a network.

Market Research

Consumer preference should be kept in mind before launching a new product in the market. Market research allows an organization to:

  • Discover their target market.
  • Make informed decisions for their products.
  • Understanding the needs of their customers will help in forecasting production and sales. 

Research can either be directly conducted by organizations or can be outsourced to agencies.

Business Name and Logo

Branding provides a distinguished identity to a business increasing the business value. A distinctive brand name acquires customers easily and helps build trust in the brand. An exquisite logo will create a visual perception of the brand and its products. The marketing efforts an organization puts are the foundation of the brand name and logo. 

Hence, before starting a furniture restoration business, any businessman will be obliged to put up a creative business name.

Niche selection

Starting a furniture restoration business might seem like a plum job. Our experience shapes our work, and going unprepared for a new venture will invite stress and failure. Adding to the process of how to start a furniture restoration business, choosing a Niche market plays a very important role in the success of a business. Some common Niche markets popular in the Furniture Restoration Industry are

  • Antique furniture restoration.
  • Commercial restoration.
  • Automobile furniture restoration.
  • Residential furniture restoration.

After deciding on a basic niche for your business- whether you want to furnish furniture for home, luxury, or office needs, you need to

  • Conduct market research to know about audience preferences.
  • Know the demands of the target audience.
  • Profitability in the type of furniture you have planned to refurbish.
  • Competitors for the same product in the market.
  • Potential and future prospects of the product.
  • Geographical areas where you plan to sell the product.

You shall find some good ideas on porch.com regarding the furniture business.

Target Market

Target market involves thinking and choosing the correct customer base for the product. Starting a furniture restoration business needs one to reciprocate the factors and type of market to be involved. 

Three steps of choosing a target market require one to strategize, segment, and position its consumer base. The restorers need to decide whether they want to market their services directly to clients or decipher to retail markets.

Create customer profiles based on criteria such as:

  • Income
  • Hobbies
  • Occupation
  • Expenditure on products you wish to sell
  • Choice

After creating profiles, analysis is important to observe and decide which your product will cater to which group of audience.

Restorer while building up his marketing plan and target audience should focus on whether he wishes to export or import the products and handle the costs of additional expenses that come with it.

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To start renovating furniture for profit, restorers should school themselves with certain skills required to run the business single-handedly. If they wish it to be a sole proprietorship and run it on a small scale, then skills such as stripping, sanding, removing the finish, and applying the coat of paint or stain are required, or else learning courses can be taken. 

Reupholstering might be required in some cases. Skills are needed to take safety precautions as well since in some products there is toxic stripping. The skills should be perfect and you need to have an understanding of how the furniture is constructed. The restorer should know how to add a fine finish to the product for it to be sold in the market. For it is not a part-time hobby, but a business in the corporate world.

If you wish it to be a partnership or business, you can hire experienced craftsmen under you to do the job. Hiring skilled craftsmen will add to the ongoing expenses of the business which include salaries, safety, and liabilities as the restorer will have to take care of the safety precautions at work.

How to Source Raw Materials?

Raw materials and tools are the basic prerequisites for any manufacturing or restoration business to start with. Restoration business requires:

  • Purchase of refinishing equipment 
  • Supplies include strippers and sanding tools if you don’t own any. 

Get in contact with:

  • Local or second-hand shops to expensive antique or major furniture stores get in touch with stores to purchase merchandise that isn’t saleable anymore.
  • Friends and freecycle networks can be of use if maintained contacts. It can be a great source since people do have old and waste furniture they don’t use anymore. Every household does keep two-three old furniture items they might not use and are just kept to dump someday.
  • Dumpsters and curbs are great sources to dive into for great old pieces of furniture that can be refurbished. You can easily find dumpsters near apartments or outside the localities, and it will take only some effort to fix up the price and get old items at low rates.
  • Flea Markets can also be a great source to buy and sell items.
  • Garage and estate sales can work out very well if you have the willingness and the determination to wake up at dawn and go for it. This can help in finding inexpensive products thus cutting costs. 

How to Set Up Your Price Structure?

  • The business model for the restoration business is a very lenient and straight process:
  • The restorer buys old furniture, refurbished it, and sells it to the client at a price fixed by him. 
  • Since furniture restoration isn’t a very high-paying venture, but specialization in a particular type can lead one to earn high profits in this industry.
  • The exact amount a restorer will charge will be based upon the size of the item, the complexity, the cost of refurbishing, and the other expenses.
  • While the restorer might want to start it as a side business as he turns it from his hobby to a business, he might not earn a high amount of profit in the first year. It is advised to turn it into the main income after you have established yourself in the market.

Do you Need an Office?

Since most people consider it as a hobby turned business, a major advantage of this type of business is that it can take place from a home workshop as well. If it’s a small-scale business and only one person is the sole owner, no rented space is required. This can help save money on expenses like rent/ lease, making it easier to cut costs and build clientele in the initial stages of the business. Another advantage of working from home is that there will be less daily movement and physical activity. A person working from home will have to pay some ventilation costs for safety measures.

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If you have planned for a large-scale business and are still planning on how to start a furniture restoration business, you will have to rent out or purchase a place to work out the refurnishing. 

Finance Arrangement

One major advantage of starting a furniture restoration business is that the cost is quite economical for small-scale businesses. However, for the business to be run on a large scale, it requires more finance which can be arranged from either personal savings (if any) or taking bank or private loans, IPO, or investing in shares and debentures.

Do you Need to Hire?

  • Hiring craftsmen or employees depends upon the size of the business- small-scale and large-scale companies. 
  • Businesses need to look out for people to set up business accounting, and craftsmen to refurnish old or antique items. Business accounting is a necessary step since recording expenses and incomes will sum up the financial performance. This also helps in compiling taxes. 
  • While hiring employees, businesses also require to look out for various expenses- salaries, paid time off, and unemployment insurance.

What Could be the Possible Hurdles in the Furniture Restoration Business?

The solution to the question, “How to start a Furniture Restoration Business” is incomplete without talking about the possible hurdles that could come your way while you turn your hobby of renovating furniture for profit; into a part-time income or a business. Entrepreneurs may face some logistical hurdles while planning and implementing the business plan. One might face some internal and external struggles and may exhaust himself during working for the success of his business. But well, not giving up and being consistent with what you love is the key to success.

  • It involves running a race where you put constant efforts to outshine your competitors and earn more profit margins than them.
  • The corporate world involves uncertainty and instability in terms of the market situation. There is a constant shift in the demand and supply resulting in uncertain income, 
  • Labor cost is another internal problem when it comes to how much it costs to start a furniture restoration business. During situations, where there is a shortage of Labour, the costs might increase adding up to another hurdle.
  • A self-employed person who is renovating furniture for profit might find the tools as expensive.
  • Starting a furniture restoration business might seem a fun job but it is a demanding job that requires you to spare time and work on a 24-hour basis.

Conclusion: How to Start a Furniture Restoration Business in 2021?

Starting a furniture restoration business might involve a simple setup process to add up to its benefit, but in the end, it’s all about how much revenue one can generate through this investment. The investment although has a great potential to turn profitable but being a demanding job will require a lot of time to be put in. Skills and tools being the prerequisite things if utilized effectively will help sail through effectively.

By following our guide on how to start a furniture restoration business, you will be able to get a clear view of how to get started with. Starting by building up a business plan, conducting market research, setting up a niche market, reaching out to the target audience, and arranging the sources of finance will help you get ahead in the field. Remember not to give up and be consistent in the field if you really have some interest in it.


  1. How much does it cost to start a furniture restoration business?

The cost of starting up a furniture restoration business is quite economical for small-scale businesses. Initial investments go as around $3000 for small-scale businesses and $10000 for large-scale businesses.

  1. Does a furniture restoration business have enough income potential?

Yes, the furniture restoration business has great income potential as it is part of a rising industry. The gross profit margins have been growing rapidly over the years.