Cleaning businesses are often an excellent option for new entrepreneurs entering the market, as there isn’t as much of a risk when it comes to getting the company off the ground. It means that cleaning businesses can often be started with not as much up-front costs as businesses in other industries, allowing you to get to work faster—and start bringing in revenue—quicker than other sectors.
If you’re interested in becoming an entrepreneur without too much capital, you might be interested in learning how to start a cleaning business. One of the best parts about owning a cleaning business is that it gives you the freedom to work on your own or with a small team of employees, along with relatively low overhead and operating costs.
Indeed, often all it takes to start a cleaning business is some hard work, initiative, and know-how when it comes to marketing and licensing. As with any business, though, there are specific steps you should take to ensure that your cleaning business starts off right, and ends up being a profitable venture for you long-term.
How to start a cleaning business step-by-step
Here’s an easy guide to learn how to start a cleaning business:
1. Figure out if you’re a good fit for a cleaning business
The first step in learning how to start a cleaning business is figuring out whether you are a good fit for the industry. While most people handle the cleaning duties at their own homes, that doesn’t necessarily mean that others would feel its up to snuff in their homes.
So, how do you know whether you’d be a good fit for a cleaning business?
One way is to offer your services free of charge to a couple of family members or close friends. Ask these people if you can provide them with all of the services you intend to offer your customers. Then, have these people provide you with brutally honest feedback about your work.
If they love what you did for them at their home, then you know whether you might be a good fit for clients who are strangers to you. If they’re not happy with your work, then maybe a cleaning business isn’t right for you, or you’ll have to improve on to be successful.
If so, don’t worry! There are still many profitable industries you can start a business in.
2. Decide the structure of your company
Do you plan to be the sole operator of your cleaning business and do all the cleaning yourself?
Do you plan on being the owner/operator of the business and hiring workers to do the cleaning for you?
Are you starting the business from scratch, or are you planning to purchase a franchise?
These are all questions that you need to answer before you can move forward with the other steps on how to start a cleaning business. The answer to each of those questions will greatly determine how you proceed with the following steps.
Also, you’ll need to figure out the structure of your company—such as a sole proprietorship or LLC—and officially register your cleaning business.
3. Establish your selling point
Your potential customers are likely to have many choices when it comes to choosing a cleaning company in your area. As a result, you must decide what will separate you from your competition, and then market that specialty to your potential customers.
Are you more affordable than your competition?
Do you provide better services, and if so, how can you prove it?
Are the products you use more environmentally safe than what your competitors use?
Do you include types of cleaning—such as windows, inside ovens, etc.—that your competitors don’t?
4. Decide how much you’ll charge
Establishing a unique selling point is crucial in any business, but especially so when you own a cleaning business.
You’ll also want to research how much you should charge for your services in your area. An excellent way to do this is to figure out what your competitors charge, and then undercut them slightly.
Since you will be a new business in the market, it’s a good idea to offer more affordable prices than your competitors but still provide top-notch services. This will prove to potential customers that you are their best option.
5. Figure out what licenses you’ll need
When you start any business, there are specific licenses you’ll need to operate. You must figure out what particular permits you’ll need to start a cleaning business, and this will depend on where you are located.
Each state has its own rules and regulations when it comes to required licenses. You might need either a cleaning business license or a regular business license, and a surety bond.
6. Come Up with a Plan for Acquiring Clients
In addition to figuring out your pricing and unique selling proposition, you’ll need to come up with a detailed plan on how you’re going to acquire clients. The way to do this will be through an extensive marketing and advertising plan.
This doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll need to spend a lot of money, though. Nowadays, you can make a huge impact and reach a large number of potential customers through social media without spending a lot of money—or even any money at all.
However, you decide to attract new customers, you must establish a solid marketing/advertising plan and be aggressive with it right from the start.
7. Make sure you have the money
While a cleaning business typically doesn’t require the same up-front capital as other industries, you’ll still need to have some finances in place to make sure your business is adequately funded. To do this, you’ll either need to have cash on hand or have a source of funds that you can borrow from, like family, friends, or a financial institution.
Exactly how much you’ll need to start your business will depend on the scale, scope, and size of your business, as well as the structure you decided on.
Some of the up-front costs that you’ll incur—regardless of the structure of your cleaning business—will be licenses, bonds, business formation costs, transportation, supplies, equipment, and marketing.
Cleaning service apps
Cleaning business owners are fortunate today. That’s because there are a lot of apps that are available that can help you start finding clients and get your business’ name out there. Some of the most popular apps, depending on your location, include:
- App Jasmine
If one or more of these apps are available in your area, it’s a great idea to check them out to see if they can help you attract clients for your cleaning business. In addition to these apps, you should also, of course, check out social media apps such as Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
Now you know how to start a cleaning business
Starting a cleaning service business is one of the best ways for new entrepreneurs to enter the market with low overhead and not a lot of up-front money. If you want to learn how to start a cleaning business, following the above seven steps is a great start.
While a cleaning business may have a smaller up-front commitment when it comes to money, there are still things that you’ll need capital for as you grow your business—including marketing, supplies, and equipment. If you require financial help to expand your business, we, at Camino Financial, can help.
We are a finance company that is focused on helping you grow your small business. We offer loans and other business solutions that help you maximize your long-term financial success. Our motto is “No Business Left Behind.” We live up to this by providing simple, easy-to-obtain loans and educational content.