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How to start a carpet cleaning business

rob allen

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Often I’m asked “how to start a carpet cleaning business”. How would you answer a person?
 

floorclean

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Mar 31, 2016
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Dale MacDonald
Don’t! (Half joking) with the cost of everything to do the job properly there isn’t enough return on investment. Unless your only planning in encapsulation cleaning.
 

OxiFreshGuy

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Don’t! (Half joking) with the cost of everything to do the job properly there isn’t enough return on investment. Unless your only planning in encapsulation cleaning.
Or you plan on being in business the next 20 years and get your return after trucks are paid off.
 

mrotto

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id first have them do a ride along to see if this is something that they would enjoy doing. If they do, then they need to learn how to run a business. most people forget the second part and just think all you have to do is the cleaning part.
 
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floorclean

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Or you plan on being in business the next 20 years and get your return after trucks are paid off.

I could be wrong but I don’t honestly think in today’s economy one could survive 20 years. Back in my day we could, and many months were we took in $1500 in a month and my costs were well in access of that.
The costs back 30 years ago were much much much lower. We worked a lot harder, mainly because we didn’t either have the equipment or it hadn’t been invented yet. I really wouldn’t wish on anyone starting out to have to work that hard. To spite the fact youth think we had it so easy.
 

kevinj6121

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1st i'd have to agree with "mrotto" do some ride alongs and make sure you like doing this, ride along with a HWE guy and a VLM guy or someone who does both

Then you'll have to decide which method or methods you want to do (lets keep the which method is better out of this)

From here everyones financial situation is going to be different
Some may have the money to invest and some may not

Depending on ones financial situation the plans will differ some
But you have to have a business plan either way and there's a lot to take into consideration
 

SkylinePrints

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I've started several businesses over the years in different industries. I have worked in senior leadership for others. The one thing that is consistent with every successful business is a plan or roadmap of goals.

So... my number 1 advice is to build a plan which includes several phases.
  1. Concept - define what industry you want to explore and why
  2. Research - not just Google, but actually research the industry. Talk to people inside and outside the industry.
    1. Try to determine the need of the customers. Define how you can set yourself apart.
    2. Talk to vendors to explore what options for chemicals, equipment, etc... are available and required to achieve your goal.
  3. If you are still interested after step 1 and 2, write a BUSINESS PLAN
    1. layout in detail your goals, costs, goals (financial projections and overall business)
    2. define the market you are targeting
    3. define the unmet need you identified to set yourself apart
    4. define your solution to the need
This business plan is your bible. In my experience, the better job you do laying out an actionable plan and following it, the greater chance you have for success.

Ever watch the show Shark Tank? Why do you think the venture capitalist are so interested in the person's business plan? not the product, not the idea, the PLAN. anything can be marketed or sold w a well-defined plan.

If you arent willing to spend the time doing a true business plan and you want to wing it, ... good luck. There's a reason most small businesses fail in a short time and according to the SBA, it's from lack of proper planning.

Anyway, that's where I would start with someone who asked. If they are still interested, then we could move to the next phase.
 
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OxiFreshGuy

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I could be wrong but I don’t honestly think in today’s economy one could survive 20 years. Back in my day we could, and many months were we took in $1500 in a month and my costs were well in access of that.
The costs back 30 years ago were much much much lower. We worked a lot harder, mainly because we didn’t either have the equipment or it hadn’t been invented yet. I really wouldn’t wish on anyone starting out to have to work that hard. To spite the fact youth think we had it so easy.
What do you mean cant survive 20 years ?
 

PistolPete

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Any service based business is essentially the same.
When you're starting out, you're in the marketing business.
Doing the work, whatever it is, is easy.
Getting the work is what separates winners from losers.
 

Toughjobs

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It might to help to have the "Gift of Gab" somewhere in that list or you could bench 300lbs and have washboard abs too.
 

Toughjobs

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I hope someone would have experience too before they started a company. I couldn't tell you how many idiots it takes to screw in a lightbulb because I honestly can't count that high. LOL