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Hey, fellow saxonthewebbers! My name's Andrew, and I'm a senior in high school right now in mid-ohio. I've been thinking about what I wanna do with my life, and I think that the way I want to make a living is to own an instrument shop and do repairs and such, maybe teach a few lessons and perform in a few ensembles in my free time. I understand that this would take quite some time and won't just happen after college, but if that's what I want to do, what, in your opinion is the best kind of degree to work toward so that I can learn how to run this shop? Should I major in business, or music, or what? Music repair? Thanks for the help :)
 

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If you're going to run a repair shop you're going to need to know how to repair. If you're going to run a successful repair shop you're going to need to be good at repairing.

The rest is common sense, basic book-keeping and the ability to deal with the general public (that's the hard part).

Regards,
 

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Maybe business studies would help. A lot of skilled art & craft type people are let down by the basics of what to charge and how to make a profit. It wouldn't be a bad idea to learn that side of things before learning about repairs. I don't know of a degree course in repair, but there are a few 'full-time' courses. It's not essential but gives you a good grounding.
 

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The most important thing is your declaration that you want to own a repair shop. Wanting to own a shop is a far different thing than wanting to learn to repair instruments. So don't even bother. To be successful, you need to be a businessman instead. You will only need a general working knowledge of instrument repair that you can pick up from your employees. Just follow the steps below:

First get in good with local school band directors and get them to commit to letting you handle the school's work. Do this first before anything else. Then find a couple of out-of-work music technicians willing to work cheap. Rent a cheap store front somewhere close to the largest school in your area.

Now for the important part. Go to a small local bank that makes small business loans. Show them a business plan that describes how you already have commitments from area schools and you have a well-qualified staff ready to go to work. Take the money from that loan, buy the tooling that your techs need and use the rest to pay the payroll and everything else for the first year while you build your business.

And don't worry if you fail. If you incorporate correctly, the business can always just take bankruptcy but your personal credit is protected. Then you can try something else, like a shoe store, plumbing supply house or pet store. Most of the principles for running those are very similar. Many small-business entrepreneurs try many times until they become successful. :bluewink:
 

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Smart advice from Enviroguy. I have to play devil's advocate here and say that this is an ill-advised idea given several trends: 1) music programs are in severe decline nationally as budgets are cut for Education, 2) instrument repair folks I know rely on selling some retail items to subsidize the repair biz - but that's all gone now as they can't compete with the prices of e-tailers, 3) lastly, instrument private lessons are down as a result of the general economy - there's no way of knowing if this trend will continue when the economy improves. Good luck. -- Rob
 
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