If you are good with your hands and enjoy helping people, you might be well-suited to serve as a professional locksmith. You can get a lot of personal satisfaction by being the hero that helps people stay safe and secure.
Since locksmithing is a vocational trade, you would need to get the proper training and work hard to pick up experience. In the sections below, the discussion will focus on the steps you would need to become a locksmith. At the end of the process, you might find yourself running your own locksmith company, something that could end up being very financially rewarding.
Locksmith Duties and Salary Potential
Before addressing the steps needed to become a professional locksmith, you might be interested in knowing precisely what locksmiths do. Surely, the earning potential will also be of interest.
Professional locksmiths are needed to handle the following tasks:
- Repair and replace locks
- Open safes and doors so customers can gain access to their assets
- Make replacement and duplicate keys
- Repair and replace car ignition systems
- Repair and install electronic security systems
- Manage detail records
Note: All of these tasks would be applicable to services for homes, commercial properties, and cars.
As for earnings potential, an employed experienced locksmith could make between $0K and $60, depending on their experience and work location. If a locksmith decides to hang their own single in a medium-large city, they could well make upwards of $80K to $100K a year according to salary stats from Locksmith in Aventura.
The Process of Becoming a Professional Locksmith
If you like what you have read so far, gathering information about how to become a locksmith would need to be your focus. With that in mind, here are the steps you need to take.
Step1 – Secure Education and Training
Since locksmithing is listed as a vocational career, you should be able to get access to college courses or a vocational school that teaches locksmithing classes. This would afford you a chance to gather the knowledge you would need related to the responsibilities of a locksmith.
If for any reason you wanted to avoid taking courses, you could always try the hands-on approach. That would require you to approach an experienced locksmith and ask to serve as an apprentice. The time you would spend as an apprentice would set you up to gain permanent employment after a year or so.
Step 2 – Gain Work Experience
Armed with the knowledge needed to work as an employed locksmith, you should be able to gain employment. It’s important that you secure a job because most states require at least one year of hands-on work experience before testing to become a licensed locksmith.
Step 3 – Secure a Locksmith License in Your State
The rules and standards related to the licensing of locksmiths will vary from state to state. It would be your responsibility to find out what the regulations are in your state.
To get a license, there are minimal requirements you will need to fulfill regardless of your state of residence. At a minimum, you would need to do the following:
- Fill out and submit an application
- Take and sufficiently pass a written exam
- Submit a background check
- Go through a fingerprinting process
Again, some states have additional requirements.
Once you secure a license, you become an employable professional locksmith. Hopefully, you’ll be able to secure employment with a good locksmith company. If you so choose, you would be allowed to start your own company.
Step 4 – Pursue Higher Levels of Certification
Since some locksmith employment opportunities might require higher certification levels, you might want to pursue said certifications. The combination of work experience and additional education might be required for any or all of the following common certificates:
- Registered Locksmith
- Certified Registered Locksmith
- Certified Professional Locksmith
- Certified Master Locksmith
Nore: Testing for these certificates will usually require that the prospect pass a written exam with a proficiency of at least 70$.
As a licensed and certified locksmith, the door would be open for you to pursue a lot of interesting job opportunities. Of course, working for an established locksmith company or starting your own company would be viable options. What you might not realize is lots of industries need professional locksmiths. Here is a partial list of the types of opportunities you might want to pursue:
- Working for a government agency, including law enforcement
- Working in a corporate environment that maintains a large motor pool
- Working in the auto sale and resale industry
- Working for a roadside service provider
- Working for a company that focuses on home and commercial security systems