Updated November 2, 2020:

Starting a security company in Texas begins with applying for a license from the Texas Department of Public Safety - Private Security Bureau, which is in charge of regulating Texas security industries.

Things to Consider When Starting a Security Company

For a private investigation company to operate, it must have a Class A license. If your security company will interact with guard services, alarm systems, courier services, armed guards, locksmith services, or closed-circuit television systems, an application must be made for a Class B Security Contractor License.

Apply for a Class C license if your security company will deal with private investigation contractors and security contractors. A Class T is necessary if you have plans to operate a telematics company. Class D combines Class B with a security contractor. It can take 6 to 8 weeks for the application to be processed and the license issued. Once issued, the license must be renewed on an annual basis.

When hiring employees, it's important that you ensure each person is registered by the Texas Private Security Bureau before they are officially hired. Registration for each employee must be renewed on a yearly basis.

In the United States, you cannot operate a business without having some of the basic types of insurance coverage required by the type of industry you are operating within. Some types of insurance coverage to consider include:

  • General insurance.
  • Health insurance.
  • Liability insurance.
  • Overhead expense liability insurance.
  • Payment protection insurance.
  • Risk insurance.
  • Workers compensation.

Security industries are highly regulated. For those considering starting a private security company, it's recommended that international security certifications be acquired. Having the certifications provides a level of trust to your team and your company. Some of the professional certifications that should be considered for you and your staff include:

  • Certified Information System Security Professional (CISSP).
  • Certified Security Compliance Specialist (CSCS).
  • Certified Security Project Manager (CSPM).
  • Cisco Certified Security Professional (CCSP).
  • Global Industrial Cyber Security Professional (GICSP). Check how an UpCounsel Cybersecurity Attorney can help you.
  • Industrial Security Professional Certification (ISP).

Challenges Involved in Starting a Security Company

A private security company is subject to challenges and even threats from government policies as well as a downturn in the economy. Both can result in a setback to the company. Another challenge you may face is another well-established security company moving into an area where you have established a business.

Surviving in the business world when challenges present themselves requires that you have more than expertise in drawing up security contracts for clients. You must also know how to create and participate in a network with key people who will help promote a successful business plan.

For smaller security startups, a good way to start out and build the business and its reputation is by focusing on providing security services to households, estates, communities, hospitals, hotels, event planners, and schools. You can later take on the challenge of big security contracts for government agencies and corporations.

Security Company Business Plan

A business plan is needed to run any company successfully. It is a blueprint that will enable you to operate the business with potentially fewer mistakes. With it, managing the business with purpose and precision, handling challenges, maintaining time management, and focusing on growth and expansion will be easier.

Elements of your business plan should include:

  • An outline of the strategies you plan to implement to manage and grow the company.
  • These would include publicity, advertising, expansion, and growth strategies.
  • The business concept.
  • A description of the company.
  • A vision statement.
  • A mission statement.
  • Business location.
  • Selling franchise opportunities, if applicable.
  • The intention of opening additional business outlets in other U.S. cities or internationally.
  • Business analysis to include marketing, sales, SWOT, and competitive analysis.
  • Products and services offered.
  • Target market
  • Market goals.
  • Pricing.
  • Budget.
  • Startup capital generation.

Basic Startup Costs

Several expenses must be considered when launching a private security company. It is important that you do research, feasibility studies, and market surveys to gauge the costs before drawing up a budget and considering sourcing for funding your business. A few of the estimated basic costs include:

  • Incorporation fee in the U.S.: $750.
  • Suitable facility rental space: $50,000.
  • Office equipment, including phones and electronics: $15,000.
  • Cost of security equipment, such as uniforms, metal detectors, and pepper spray: $25,000.
  • The cost to launch a company website: $700.
  • Additional expenditures, such as signage, advertisements, and business cards: $2,500.
  • Miscellaneous: $1,000.

If you need help with starting a security company in Texas, you can post your legal need on UpCounsel's marketplace. UpCounsel accepts only the top 5 percent of lawyers to its site. Lawyers on UpCounsel come from law schools such as Harvard Law and Yale Law and average 14 years of legal experience including work with or on behalf of companies like Google, Menlo Ventures, and Airbnb.