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How to Become a Self-Employed Security Guard


Self-employment has been on the rise for years. From freelancers to independent contractors, more and more people are taking their career into their own hands. If you’re looking for a career in the security industry, you might even be wondering “can a security guard be self-employed”? They absolutely can.

If you think that a career as a guard is right for you, here are the necessary steps for how to be a self-employed security guard.

What Do Self-Employed Security Guards Do?

Self-employed guards have a range of tasks, depending on their client or employer. Some common daily tasks for a guard include:

  • Monitoring a building or premises
  • Controlling who may enter a building or premises
  • Issuing visitor passes
  • Responding to alarms, threats, and emergencies
  • Monitoring an area to prevent shoplifting, fires, or other threats and emergencies
  • Monitoring crossways and other areas with vehicle traffic
  • Driving or guarding trucks delivering expensive equipment or cash to banks and businesses

How To Be a Self-Employed Security Guard?

Typically, a self-employed security guard only needs a high school diploma. However, colleges have often been considered one long networking event, where students should constantly meet with and study alongside all sorts of new people, to jump-start their careers. Working internships and part-time jobs in the security industry also help students learn how to be a self-employed security guard.

Due to the varied nature of the job, guards are typically trained onsite. Depending on the tasks required by their client or employer, they may also need additional training and licenses. For example, guards that need to carry a firearm will need to apply for the proper licenses or permits. This may require taking firearms classes or training. In addtion, if you’ll be driving an armored car for deliveries, you’ll need a driver’s license.

There are also easy-to-follow guides and forms to pay the self-employed security guard tax. Self-employed security guard insurance is also out-of-pocket, unless provided by the employer.

What Are Examples of Self-Employed Security Guard Jobs?

There are plenty of self-employed security guard jobs. This can include working at retail locations such as shopping malls, department stores, big box stores, and small businesses to stop shoplifters and respond to any emergencies. Banks, especially large nationwide banks, typically hire security guards to monitor the premises, prevent theft, and handle any emergencies. Guards working at these locations need sharp focus and a willingness to intervene when someone is suspected of stealing.

Places that require guest passes to enter, such as college campuses, office buildings, or laboratories will also have opportunities for security guards. These guards will be responsible for monitoring who gains access to the premises as well as issuing passes to those allowed to enter temporarily. These guards must also be focused as well as be able to recognize authorized personnel and unauthorized personnel.

Guards that need to drive cars, especially armored cars, are also typically hired by banks, malls, and department stores. These guards must be able to exercise great caution, especially while driving, to ensure that goods and resources are delivered on time and in a safe manner. In addition, any jobs that require handling a gun will also require security guards with good hand-eye coordination and good decision-making skills.

What Job Opportunities Are There for Self-Employed Security Guards?

Self-employed security guards are one of few self-employed groups that have a steady stream of job opportunities. The employment rates for self-employment grow at an average rate, and due to the rarity of a security guard being self-employed (about one percent of security guards are unemployed), smaller businesses that may not want to go through an agency will be more receptive to hiring a self-employed guard.

The unemployment rate of self-employed security guards is also below the national unemployment rate. Only about six percent of reported self-employed guards are unemployed, and was below the national unemployment rate even before the pandemic. This shows that the need for security guards is steady across the country.

The full-time opportunities for how to become a full-time security guard is rather high as well. Three-quarters of guards work full-time, however, self-employed security guard insurance may not always be provided. The self-employed security guard tax may also be taken out of the paycheck, as well as required at the end of the tax year. The industry is also very friendly with people with very little work experience. It’s a good way to begin a steady career in the industry; with enough time, guards can seek out senior security or supervisor positions.

Hopefully this FAQ answers your question “can a security guard be self-employed” and how to become a self-employed security guard.

Related: 

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10 Highest-Paying Unarmed Security Jobs

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Top 10 National Security Jobs

Top 10 Cities for Security Jobs

Top 10 States for Security Careers


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Securitydegreehub.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.