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How Much Can You Earn as a Car Locksmith and How to Become One? Answered!

No one goes into a profession without first finding out if it will be worth the sacrifice of time and effort.

Currently, the debate is still on about how much locksmiths truly make per annum. While some people maintain that locksmithing is a profitable venture, others believe this claim cannot be substantiated because locksmiths offer different services, and service rates differ from state to state. In high income states, locksmiths earn more than their counterparts in low-income states.

But how much do locksmiths earn? Let’s find out.

How Much Can You Earn From Locksmithing?

Several factors determine how much a locksmith can earn from their job. Their location, mode of operation, marketing, and the number of services offered determine how much they earn per annum.

If we were to use the average earnings per year, the average locksmith earns between $30,000-$50,000 per year. So if you are planning a career as a locksmith, this is a start-up income range within the hour. However, if you work to improve and market your skill, you may earn more than this. It is a known fact that locksmiths earn six figures per annum who have broken into the middle class. Many high-earning locksmiths work in big cities where the minimum wage is much higher, and there is an abundance of businesses and property owners.

Factors That Determine How Much Locksmiths Earn

To give you enough insight into car locksmiths' earning potential, let’s review the factors that influence earnings.


The location where a locksmith operates is the biggest factor to consider. If you look at the income scale, car locksmiths that operate in States like California,and New York, and may earn more than locksmiths in Wyoming, Kansas, or Delaware. Locksmiths operating in Buffalo, Miami, and San Francisco will also get paid more on average. In cities like Los Angeles, where drivers own big and expensive cars, they will be willing to pay a premium fee to upgrade the quality of their car security system than car owners driving cars that cost a few thousand dollars.


The services the locksmith offers will also determine his earning potential. Suppose a locksmith offers several services like key cutting, maintenance and repair, Installation of security technology, and more. In that case, he will likely get more jobs than a locksmith that renders only one or two services. Secondly, the kind of specialist service the locksmith offers also matters. If he offers a service that is in short supply, car owners in his location will be willing to pay him more due to less competition.


Experience also influences income potential. Master locksmiths who are self-employed or work in an establishment earn more than their less experienced colleagues. After spending years honing their craft, the industry rewards them for their work one way or the other. A locksmith that runs his own business and has done so for a very long time will amass a large clientele; hence, they will get regular jobs consistently as well as higher-paid clients.


Just like with other skills, locksmiths who own their businesses have to get the word out, and this is why marketing is key. A locksmith that is willing to spend money on online ads will pull in more clients in their locality than one that doesn’t.

Home Service

Whether the locksmith offers a home service or not also matters. It is not uncommon to find locksmiths that have trucks for making home runs. Clients are more likely to hire a locksmith that offers a home service than one that doesn’t. Rather than wait for the customer to tow their cars to their workshop, they can go to them to sort their car locks out.

If you want to earn a good income as a locksmith, you need to consider these factors.

How to Become a Locksmith?

If you want to become a locksmith, you will need to enrol in a training program, and there are reputable trade schools that offer locksmithing as a course. These trade programs last for 3-9 months or even up to a year. During the program, you will be taught the basics of locksmithing and how to handle the tools of the trade. You will also be issued a certificate.

However, it doesn’t end there. After your training, you will have to work as an apprentice under the direct supervision of a master locksmith. This is where most locksmiths improve their skills and learn the most about the trade. Your apprenticeship may take between 1-3 years, as the case may be. At the end of the apprenticeship, you can start your practice or work in a locksmithing company before you branch off to set up your business.

You can make a decent living as a locksmith but be prepared to go through the training and hone your craft.

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