There are several ways to work as a barber and therefore several ways that you can earn money. Here are some of the structures available and gives an indication on how much a barber can make.
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You might be employed at a salon and paid an hourly rate. Your salary will then be paid to you on either a weekly or monthly basis.
A barber’s salary will depend on experience and can range from £8 to £12 per hour. This is something that you will agree with the Salon owner at the start of your employment.
A lot of barbers salons will hire you as a self-employed barber. This simply means that you will work on a freelance basis and would need to manage your own financial records and pay your own taxes.
This is done by registering for self-assessment, on the Government website.
A common way for barbers to work is to rent a chair in a Salon. You will pay a fixed (usually weekly) fee to rent a chair. After you have paid this rent, you then keep the rest of the money that you earn. This works well if the salon is a busy one.
The amount that you can charge for a haircut will depend on several factors eg. Salon location and reputation, competitor charges etc. but you could expect to earn £100 – £200 per day. You then need to deduct the cost of renting the chair from this amount.
This structure works best once you have built up a good client base, so you know that you are going to have paying clients to cover the cost of renting the chair.
This is a common structure amongst barbers and enables you to share the revenue from the salon that you work in. For each haircut you complete, you would keep a percentage and the remainder you would pass to the salon.
The potential to earn very much depends on how many haircuts you do in a day, but this method can work well for a barber who is prepared to work hard and contribute to the success of the salon, attracting and retaining clients.
There is obviously a greater potential to earn if you own your own salon once you have developed your experience and client base. However, you also need to consider that you also have the overhead costs of running the salon, staff wages etc.
You can boost your salary as a barber either through earning commission on the sale of hair products which you can offer your clients at their appointment. You can demonstrate which products would suit their needs best and then if they purchase it to take home you can earn between £2 and £3 on each purchase. If you can sell these products across your client base then this can become a great additional income.
Tips are also a great way to boost your earnings. Tips are entirely at the discretion of your clients but if you provide a great service and a great haircut leaving your client happy, they might choose to leave you a tip. The amount is again at the discretion of the client but averages between 5 and 10%.
So, there are plenty of options available and it is worth exploring each one in more detail to find the best structure for you. The London School of Barbering also has a great interview about the earning potential for barbers.