To Rent, Or Not To Rent... That Is The Question


Being a licensed professional in the Salon, Spa and Barber industry leaves you with options galore. Commission, hourly, team based pay and being your own boss as a booth renter. Our industry is rich with choice, yet short sided with what resources work best for you as an individual. Starting out is tough for most as we struggle to build upon the skills we learned in school, learn new tricks of the trade and for most of us, build a base of loyal clientele. Some feel they can come out of school and go straight into a rental or suite situation and make it work. Rarely have we seen this executed successfully and can end once promising careers, quickly.

Having so many options as a hairstylist, barber, nail tech, esthetician and massage therapist is a newer concept in our industry within the last 15 years. Rental has always been available, but not with as many variables and options as there are today. You can chair share, suite share, rent a room, rent by the day, week or go month to month. Renting a chair, suite or space seems so attractive as you can be your own boss and call the shots which is something so many people in any industry desire… freedom. Freedom of choice, scheduling, products, time off, pricing and much more.

For some, renting is the best option as they are educated and skilled in thier craft, have enough clientele, can manage time and money well, know how to navigate taxes and expenses, know how to build if their client list gets too low. There are many rental salons, spas and barbershops in the Kansas City metro area that can help build your clientele and provide resources for renters to stay in business long term.

The appeal of renting a space to be your own boss is very real. The problem with this option is it is not for everyone. If you think renting is for you, take inventory on who you are, what you can realistically accomplish and how much work you want to do. Play out every scenario you can and decide what is most important to you.

Ask yourself:

Can you effectively manage money?

Are you accountable to your existing clientele and are you able to continue to build as time goes on?

Are you a good with time management?

What happens if you want to have children, get injured or sick and can not work for long periods of time?

Are you able to handle inventory and sell retail in a cost-effective manner?

Do you have good enough accounting skills to know how much you would make as a renter vs staying in hourly, team-based or commission jobs?

Do you understand how licensing, insurance and taxes work for renters?

How much work are you willing to do as a renter, can you go all the way and manage a suite or would a conventional rental salon be a better option?

Are you a people person who needs to be around other licensed professionals to keep you learning and stimulated?

Many renters find after some time out of a commission position that they do not have the time or ability to be their own boss. Thinking of going rental? Weigh your options, be realistic, talk with other renters about what it’s like to rent and make sure you have the following to support your lifestyle. Life is good on both sides of the chair, where do you belong?

Susan Wos