I have my own in home business and find it very rewarding. I don’t really advertise except for my website and my profile here. I have gotten many long term clients from simply word-of-mouth, and other long-term clients through being found here on IDEA. Having an on-line presence with a website and Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc. is helpful for marketing/professional purposes as well (better than flyers and more reach).
I also teach fitness classes and train at my local Rec so I have a core group of clients there as well. In addition, I do some community outreach with the local early childhood PTA program here. That has been a wonderful way for others to know about my services. So, having a presence in your community may help you expand your services.
The in-home business can be hard. Travel is not bad, but does take up time. Rates are up to you, your experience, and the going rate in your area. Business cards are always a necessity to have on hand–you never know who you will meet and inspire.
Best of luck, and I hope this helps!
In my opinion if you are going to have an in-home PT business then you should have experience in the following:
In the business part (unless you hire people to do these for you):
-Administration (taxes, licensing, hiring/firing employees, computer skills, proper forms, etc.)
-Manage your travelling costs and time in order to be efficient
-Become a leader and a team player especially if you are going to have others working for you
In the fitness/training part:
-Know how to utilize your environment
-Be able to adapt
-Stay on top of every new trend that pops up in the industry
-Keep up with your continuing education
-Have the ability and knowledge to train multiple clients and with multiple medical conditions, limitations and goals
-Develop your skills as a group instructor as well (this is important if you want to expose yourself to a large number of people so you can grow your clientele base)
-Have the ability to transport equipment needed for the training
I might be forgetting a couple but all of these above are very important to have some kind of experience if you are going to start or have a in-home PT business. Now some of the advantages and pitfalls of in-home training:
-You are the master of your own schedule
-You don’t have to spend all at the same location
-You can make more money
-You meet many interesting people
-Flexibility (in many areas)
-You can help people who do not feel comfortable going to the gym
-You can train people who don’t have much time in their hands
-You can reach clients in many areas around your town
-You can market your services to larger area and amount of people than if you were working out of one location
-You can have a positive impact on a larger number of people
-There is no one to blame other than yourself if you don’t succeed
-Time costly because of travel time between clients
-Wear and tear on your car (if you are using one)
-If you don’t like to network you will have hard time to make it
-If you are not flexible you will not make it
-Sometimes going to other peoples’ houses might not always be the best experience for you (for various reasons). Always be prepared for the unexpected
-Finding parking can be frustrating and expensive
-If you don’t like to work alone this is not for you
-You might have a large competition in your area
I hope this helps.
You have received great answers from Harris and Christine.
For me, personally, in-home training is only one segment of my fitness business, about 15% of my training hours. It was pretty easy for me to get started because I had been doing group-ex and small group personal training for a while and had people who knew me and my teaching style. I made just a couple of inquiries to former group-ex members if they were interested in training, and it built from there.
My biggest challenge is own schedule. Fortunately, I use it to my advantage. I have very limited hours (school hours) and I train moms who have the same limited hours and live within 2 miles of me. If someone wants to train with me and lives more than 2 miles away, which costs me time, my rates go up by $15 to $20 an hour because the travel time loses clients. When clients are stacked efficiently within my training radius, I can do a 9:30, an 11, and a 12:30 and still have time for my own breakfast, lunch, and paperwork between the start and the end of school. It took me a while to be firm and not bend to others’ schedules. Want to train with me? Great! In order for us to make it work, here are the times I can train…
The positive and negative aspects of in-home training are covered pretty well above. I like the parts of Nancy’s answer on it being just a part of what she does. I too will go to clients’ homes and I do charge for travel as well. I also have a studio. And I work out of a few clinics in the area. I occasionally get requests from health centers and businesses to create programs as well. There are not too many scenarios that would be out of the question, but I can only do so much. I don’t sacrifice my personal time or my own fitness time. Money pays the bills, but it has never bought me happiness.