Why Start a Cleaning Business?
Decided that 2016 is finally the year for you start your own cleaning business? You’ve come to the right place!
We’ve put together this comprehensive guide to starting a cleaning business to help you learn the basics about beginning a company, from identifying a target market and writing a business plan through to choosing your cleaning products and marketing your services
Is It Worth Starting a Cleaning Business?
It’s suggested by the British Cleaning Council that the UK’s cleaning industry is currently worth around £12bn, with almost 3 million households spending their wellearned money on well-deserved domestic help each year.
It’s evident that there’s money to be made in starting up a cleaning company.
Despite many families within the UK falling on hard times in recent years, spending a bit of cash each week to have someone do your ironing or clean your kitchen is one of those little luxuries that brighten up the darkest of days. As such, there is and perhaps always will be a demand for cleaning services, so from that perspective there is a reduced risk in starting your own cleaning business.
The Pros of Starting a Cleaning Business
Whilst it may be quite overwhelming to think of all the tasks that need to be completed before you start looking for business, there are also many positives to starting a cleaning company that will have you reaching for the mop and bucket in seconds. Take a look at the following
• Low start-up costs – you can start a cleaning business with very little money. All you need to get started are a few basic cleaning products and the passion to succeed!
• Very few overhead expenses – it’s unlikely that you’ll need to rent or buy premises, buy a company car or pay utility bills, especially in your early days, meaning you can start your business with minimal monetary concerns.
Work from home – with no office, shop floor or warehouse required you can run your business from the comfort of your own home.
• Be your own boss – setting up your own business means that you’ll be working for yourself. You can set your own hours, have total control of expenses and pick and choose the jobs you want to do.
• Flexible working – being self-employed means you can work when’s best for you, whether it’s 7 days a week or mornings only.
• No experience required – starting a cleaning business requires no specific qualifications or certificates. All you need is hard work, determination and the desire to do well.
Cleaning Success Stories
Many people have made their fortune as a result of beginning their own cleaning business – perhaps because it’s so simple and cost-effective to do compared with other business genres. Here are a couple of our favourite tales of soap-fuelled success:
Molly Maid – Molly Maid is one of the most iconic cleaning company brands, recognisable by their iconic pink and blue branding.
Their story began in Ontario, Canada, in 1979 with Chris and Adrienne Stringer. The Stringers believed that busy homeowners would much rather be spending their free time doing activities which are much more enjoyable than cleaning – and the Molly Maid brand was born.
Since 1979 the company has become an international franchise and performs more than 2 million cleans each year around the world.
Its founders, Pete Dowds and Tom Brooks, started the business after failing to find a last-minute cleaner for a house party. Their website and app helps customers to book a cleaning service within a matter of seconds, with next-day appointments available.
Mopp put their success down to their intense, creative marketing techniques. The pair uses a combination of offline marketing, social media and video content to great effect. On their YouTube channel – Mopp TV – the company offer free weekly cleaning tips and work hard to get people involved with the brand for the benefit of the customer.
Since their start-up, the Mopp team now employ 35 people in their London HQ and have more than 1,000 cleaners available for hire.
What Type of Cleaning Business Should I Start?
10 Essential Traits of Cleaning Business Owners
First of all, you need to truly assess whether or not you have the right personal characteristics to start a cleaning business.
Whilst anyone with enough drive can start their own cleaning business, there are certain attributes and skills which, if you possess, will give you an advantage over competitors. You don’t need to have qualifications in cleaning but it does help if you can demonstrate the following:
Perfectionism – cleaning is well-suited to those with an eye for detail and who won’t rest until a job is done ‘just so’. A love for organisation – if you love tidying, organising and re-arranging then cleaning will be a satisfying outlet.
1. 2. Stamina – cleaning involves tough, physical work so it’s important that you’re fit and able to keep up the pace. Lone working – to start with you may be the only person in your company and you’re likely to be cleaning whilst clients are out.
A love for solitude can be beneficial. Not easily bored – some tasks may be repetitive or un-stimulating for the mind so mental stamina is just as important as physical.
3. 4. 5. Trustworthiness – if you’re spending periods of time in someone’s home or office then they must be able to trust you with their possessions and house keys.
What Type of Cleaning Business Should I Start?
Before you can begin to stock up on soap and pick up the polish, your first important decision is to decide what kind of cleaning company you actually want to start. There are 3 main areas that you may want to consider:
Domestic cleaning – this involves cleaning people’s homes and is usually done whilst the client is out of the house. You can work solo or hire a few employees to help you but the jobs are likely to be small and manageable. You might want to specialise in kitchens and bathrooms, focus on vacuuming and dusting or offer other services, such as washing and ironing. The start-up costs for a domestic cleaning business are low and you can often choose whether you use your own products or ask the client to supply them.
Commercial cleaning – this involves cleaning business premises, such as offices and shops, usually outside of working hours when the premises is closed. You’re more likely to need a team to tackle commercial cleaning tasks as the premises can be a lot larger than your average home. Your role in this sort of business could be more managerial and the start-up costs higher if you need to buy specialist cleaning equipment or transport.
Specialised cleaning – this can involve a range of different cleaning tasks depending on what you choose to be your speciality. For example, you may choose to focus on window cleaning, carpeting cleaning, graffiti removal or cleaning cars. The start-up costs for a specialised cleaning company can vary but it’s likely that you’ll need to buy specific cleaning equipment and products. You’ll also need to consider whether you can do the cleaning by hand or if you’ll require machinery