Post your Rags to Riches story here | TruckMount Forums #1 Carpet Cleaning Forums

Post your Rags to Riches story here

Ryankettering

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Jan 9, 2013
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Ryan kettering
Hey guys I was just talking to a cleaner on this forum that basically told me he was flat broke... I want to hear your "rags to riches" story to encourage this cleaner and many more. Please post your encouraging story for others to see on this thread.

I personally started carpet cleaning when I was 13. First job. I didn't start my own business until 2005 here in IL. when I started my business I had just graduated highschool and was 17 (I only went to high school for 3 yrs before graduating) my parents were moving to NJ and I stayed in their home for about 3 mths before it was sold and was on my own. How did I start my business? With balls. I had nothing. I started with $300 and made a career out of it. My first equipment would make most of you cringe, but was simply the Electrolux floor pro that I encaped with. I still have that machine and use it.. but mostly for pre-agitation and stairs now, I've picked up a few more along the way as it is a great tool. As they say, "the rest is history". Once some money started to roll in I looked into other advertising, equipment, employees, etc. I still have some of the first clients that I attained by going door to door back in 2005 when starting my business.

Starting on a shoestring is a long hard journey, but if you really don't have any more money to put into it, and no other alternative.. I am here to say "it can be done" Good Luck TMF cleaners.
 

Joseph Rogers

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I'm with Mike. I'm doing better than I have for the past 5 years, but I ain't rich, yet, by any means.
 

emeraldclean

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My story would be too long, and everybody would skip over my post due to length!

I will say I worked for a big outfit in Western Canada from 86-92 . I was 19 when I started.

Made great money , but went through it like water.

Decided to go on my own in the fall of 92.

I started with a Ninja portable and 30k in debt on high interest loans.

Yup, way too long of a story already.

And sooooo much more to tell.

Celebrated 20 years in business last fall!!!

Far from being rich..... But have built up a nice "Nest egg" .

My advice , right from day one put away something every month towards your retirement!

Yup, create one more "expense" for your business.

Too many people put this off until they think they can afford it, or believe their retirement will come from selling their business.
 

Todd the Cleaner

Todd Cottino
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After working for Coit for 17 years I was broke and so far behind on my bills it was not funny. I started the business pretty much broke with all used equipment. I am only a year and a half into owning my own business and by no means am I to the riches yet but I am doing better than I was as an employee. Owning my own business has allowed me to make a little more money so far and I am only working about half as much as I did when I worked for Coit. As the business continues to grow I expect things will only get better.
 

OHIO STEAM

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Richard C. Davidson
I made all my money owning pizza joints, sold them off, started a fundraising company, sold it off, opened an advertising company, sold it off, and now venturing into cc with a 3 van operation that I purchased, going to build it to a 10 van operation and hopefully sell it off as well.

I get bored too easily after the "growth stage" of a business is over with......regardless of the income I have the need to build inside of me.

One thing at least in my opinion that this new fella needs to know, is that regardless of what you do, we are ALL in the advertising business at all points in time. Other than cocaine, I don't know of any product or service that survives and thrives without an awesome marketing person behind it, followed by great closers, and lastly but not leastly, incredible service provider at the end of the circle.
 

RoboShark

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I struggled to make ends meet as an employee in many jobs. Once I started CC I knew that is where I wanted to have my own business. It took 7 years as an employee and a fourth child to compel me go take the plunge. I borrowed $5000 from a private party and $ 3000 more from my father in law ( ouch!).

Now about a year and a half later I have a growing business and am operating debt free. I was fortunate to be able to start with a nice van and strong reliable TM. But there are many ways to get started cheap.

Going on my own was the best thing I ever did and I still can't believe it sometimes. It's a great feeling.
 

OHIO STEAM

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Richard C. Davidson
I struggled to make ends meet as an employee in many jobs. Once I started CC I knew that is where I wanted to have my own business. It took 7 years as an employee and a fourth child to compel me go take the plunge. I borrowed $5000 from a private party and $ 3000 more from my father in law ( ouch!).

Now about a year and a half later I have a growing business and am operating debt free. I was fortunate to be able to start with a nice van and strong reliable TM. But there are many ways to get started cheap.

Going on my own was the best thing I ever did and I still can't believe it sometimes. It's a great feeling.

Always better to be an owner than an employee....

Job= J.O.B. = Just Over Broke. Employers only pay what they have to typically to keep a staff, anything in excess of that they want for themselves, and justifiably so.

So many people are in the mindset that they don't want to start a business out of fear of failure, not ever thinking that one wrong move, one new manager above them, or any random move in a company means you are out of a job in 3 seconds or less........being an employee is no longer any more secure than doing your own thing.

Gone are the days of getting hired at General Motors, Ford, or any big company, putting in a days work in exchange for a good paycheck, and knowing that you have a job for life.

Having 4 kids has to be an incredible motivator ! I hope you make a fortune this year Robert !
 

Spazznout

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Always better to be an owner than an employee....

Job= J.O.B. = Just Over Broke. Employers only pay what they have to typically to keep a staff, anything in excess of that they want for themselves, and justifiably so.

So many people are in the mindset that they don't want to start a business out of fear of failure, not ever thinking that one wrong move, one new manager above them, or any random move in a company means you are out of a job in 3 seconds or less........being an employee is no longer any more secure than doing your own thing.

Gone are the days of getting hired at General Motors, Ford, or any big company, putting in a days work in exchange for a good paycheck, and knowing that you have a job for life.

Having 4 kids has to be an incredible motivator ! I hope you make a fortune this year Robert !


I agree.

Where in Ohio do you operate Richard???
 

Tron

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Aug 3, 2010
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I don't have a rags to riches story. I have a very low income family upbringing to a upper middle class level income story.

Lots of hard work and long nights. Tons of exciting days full of rewarding feelings and pay, many tear filled angry, upset, agitated days wondering if it would end up working out.
But weather it be good fortune, hard work or a mixture of all, everything has always gotten better and more rewarding every step of the way.
Things just seem to always work out and timing be just right with some patience.

You definitely grow by just staying in business, if you have a quality product worth repurchasing and referring.

Run lean and mean.
 

MD'z Floors & More

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After working for Coit for 17 years I was broke and so far behind on my bills it was not funny. I started the business pretty much broke with all used equipment. I am only a year and a half into owning my own business and by no means am I to the riches yet but I am doing better than I was as an employee. Owning my own business has allowed me to make a little more money so far and I am only working about half as much as I did when I worked for Coit. As the business continues to grow I expect things will only get better.

How was it working for coit & what kind of truckmounts do they run?
 

jaymark

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The richest man I personally know is worth $600 million but his dad started that business so that doesn't count, though he did take the business from a small company to international business with plants in China, Germany, Brazil and California. I wont name the business but most of you will use his products everytime you go out to eat.

The two rags to richest people I know are my Uncle and my former HVAC boss. Neither went to college, both had children prior to marriage, and both started with nothing. Each story is extremely long, but extremely fascinating. What makes it even more interesting is, both stories are fundamentally different. One built a business that now have 40 trucks and 60 employees, the other has only a few employees and focuses on rentals and subcontractors.


The common theme of both stories is extremely hard work, a great personality, and understanding and using financial tools provided through owning a business to your advantage. If you can make 100K a year, live on 50 and invest the rest into the business or real estate. Only buy toys with cash, ect.
 

Todd the Cleaner

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How was it working for coit & what kind of truckmounts do they run?
I really enjoyed my time there. It helps that I love the work but they were a good company to work for too. When I left they had 5 truckmounts, 2 were ACE 860's and the other 3 were old Prochems that had been rebuilt several times.
 
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OHIO STEAM

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The richest man I personally know is worth $600 million but his dad started that business so that doesn't count, though he did take the business from a small company to international business with plants in China, Germany, Brazil and California. I wont name the business but most of you will use his products everytime you go out to eat.

The two rags to richest people I know are my Uncle and my former HVAC boss. Neither went to college, both had children prior to marriage, and both started with nothing. Each story is extremely long, but extremely fascinating. What makes it even more interesting is, both stories are fundamentally different. One built a business that now have 40 trucks and 60 employees, the other has only a few employees and focuses on rentals and subcontractors.


The common theme of both stories is extremely hard work, a great personality, and understanding and using financial tools provided through owning a business to your advantage. If you can make 100K a year, live on 50 and invest the rest into the business or real estate. Only buy toys with cash, ect.

I know several people like this in my life, and I can tell you what I have learned from each of them.

1) If you are not happy with nothing, you will not be happy with "everything". So many people chase finance in their lives only to achieve it and realize that it was nothing to chase. They end up wealthy but "empty" inside. One of the reasons we see celebrity types achieve what many would consider TOTAL SUCCESS, Jim Belushi, etc, and that un-ful-filled thing inside of them drives them to drugs or alcohol, etc, to feel that which they should have felt all along the way.......they are too focused on the way up to realize that in life, ONLY people matter, those that we allow into our lives, and those that allow us into theirs.......quality of life should not be based on finance...... Don't believe me ? Go spend a week in Fiji, amongst their population, which are some of the happiest people on Earth........and most have nothing other than each other, they welcome you like family, with no want or desire for your spending abilities, they will welcome you into their home and not accept any compensation....they only want to know you, and for you to know them.

2) Don't buy things that depreciate, or that don't produce income for you or your business. I used to buy a new car every 6 months or so and take a beating on it, never paid any attention to it really. One of my wealthy buddies showed me that he would buy a 500 series or even a Ferrari, keep it around for a year or so and sell it off, and it PAID HIM, he bought them cheap, kept them for sale and drove around in them till he got nearly market value for them. He still got that feeling that we all want of "BUYING", but anytime he did so, he made it earn money for him......to see him in his big body Benz, and think about how it literally cost him nothing to own planted seeds deep in my head and I now do the same for nearly anything I purchase that is not business related. Buy a few Harley's around Christmas time, when they have been sitting in garage for a few months and someone's focus is buying gifts........hold them for a few months and by March, early April each year make a few k each on them ;)

3) Saving money isn't how any of them create wealth, every single one of them own "assets" that either appreciate in value or hold value and can be turned into liquid at any time, only one of them isn't terrified of an economic meltdown that will at some point in our lives make currency as we know it worthless.....I'm not so much doom and gloom, but to be diverse is I am certain smart investment.
 

Tron

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If you can make 100K a year, live on 50 and invest the rest into the business or real estate. Only buy toys with cash, ect.
Amen to that!

The few most successful men I know also never went to college. However the many men I know who have steady well paying JOBS did go and far outweigh the hamster wheel of life.
 

RoboShark

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Always better to be an owner than an employee....

Job= J.O.B. = Just Over Broke. Employers only pay what they have to typically to keep a staff, anything in excess of that they want for themselves, and justifiably so.

So many people are in the mindset that they don't want to start a business out of fear of failure, not ever thinking that one wrong move, one new manager above them, or any random move in a company means you are out of a job in 3 seconds or less........being an employee is no longer any more secure than doing your own thing.

Gone are the days of getting hired at General Motors, Ford, or any big company, putting in a days work in exchange for a good paycheck, and knowing that you have a job for life.

Having 4 kids has to be an incredible motivator ! I hope you make a fortune this year Robert !
Thanks. I appreciate the encouragement. I have very high hopes for this year and things are finally starting to warm up and calls are coming in.
 

Deron06

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I did not have a good role model since my father left when I was a young child and I barely ever saw him. My mother didn't like females and viewed them as parasites. I got my first piece of a$$ in my late teens but it snowballed from there as I began a glorious cycle of bedding gorgeous young women. Sure, there were a few dry spells here and there, as well as a handful of pound-grade stock that slipped past the gate, but the older and wiser I got, the shorter these dry spells became. By the time I was in my early 30's I had hit my stride and my skill level was so polished that women who tried to leave me, inevitably came back every time, groping for my superlative services and who the hell could blame them?

Why is everybody else talking about carpet cleaning?

What??? .............................. What?.....................


P.S. My best score was 3 at one time. The three were all friends and crashed at my house after a night out at a dance club. Afterward, a conversation degenerated quite wonderfully to my advantage and all hell broke loose. Was it good, you ask? Would it be good if you ordered one ProChem Everest 650 and they delivered 3?