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How to start a carpentry business in South Africa

Stefan on 1 August 2022
How to start a carpentry business in South Africa

Carpentry businesses provide services to retail stores, assist with construction projects, and any services related to wood crafting.

We have listed easy-to-follow steps to start your own carpentry business.

Step 1: Register your business

Completing a company registration at the CIPC department allows you to trade as a registered business.

Register your company

Step 2: COID letter of good standing

You will receive a letter of good standing from the department of labour after completing a COID registration which is required for contracts or tenders.

Register at COID

Step 3: CSD registration

All companies that would want to apply for contracts or tenders must be registered at the Central Supplier Database (CSD). The CSD department issues MAAA numbers which are used to confirm companies’ information.

Get a CSD MAAA number

Read more: How to get tenders

Step 4: Qualifications

Make sure that all of your carpenters are qualified by completing trade tests or apprenticeships in order to render services as qualified carpenters. A customer can open a case against your company if your carpenters aren’t qualified.

Step 5: Premises

Carpentry businesses should have a dedicated address to complete projects, you can trade from your home address - but we would recommend confirming with your local municipality what noise levels are allowed in your area.

Step 6: Services

Lastly, you would have to confirm what services you would like to offer. It’s important to decide on a main nature of business as most departments prefer companies that only specialize in specific areas. Furniture stores also prefer carpentry companies that only create furniture pieces. 

Here are the most popular carpentry business types:

  1. Rough carpentry (Building structures)
  2. Joister (Flooring)
  3. Framer
  4. Furniture
  5. Roofer

Read more: How to apply for Business Funding in South Africa

Here are a few pro tips to keep in mind when starting your carpentry business:

  • Create a business plan. A business plan will be required by contractors or retail stores looking to sell your products.
  • The CSD department will inform your company of any available tenders.
  • It’s recommended that carpentry businesses apply for business insurance, as COID won’t always cover all of their employees' medical expenses.
  • Most local municipalities and local trade schools offer public workshops that any person can attend to learn more about carpentry and gain insider tips.

Read more: How to create a business plan

Once you have completed all of the steps you will be able to offer carpentry services to businesses and contractors. You will also be able to apply for tenders.