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How to set up your own cleaning business

If you’ve always had a knack for cleaning, and are looking to start your own business, you might have thought about starting your own cleaning business before. While the cleaning industry is very competitive, it’s comparably easy to set up your own cleaning business, and a third of all cleaning business are owned and run by the same person.

Of course, first and foremost you need to make sure that your cleaning skills are up to scratch. Once you’ve got that sorted, it’s time to focus on the next steps on your way to becoming a successful cleaning business owner.

What kind of cleaning business are you looking to set up?

The first decision you need to make is what kind of cleaning business you would like to set up. If you’re looking to start a domestic cleaning business, you won’t need any staff or training courses when you first start off – you will clean houses and flats, often by yourself in the beginning.

If you’re looking to start an office cleaning business, on the other hand, you will often need to have a team of people to manage and send to the various jobs, and get the necessary qualifications. You could also specialise in green cleaning, or window cleaning, or cleaning after an event – it depends on what your interests are. Don’t worry if you want to start small with a classic domestic cleaning business, you can always expand later on.

Operating your cleaning business

Next, it’s time to get practical, and figure out whether you are going to operate your business from home (this is recommended for domestic cleaning businesses at first, since all arrangements can be made via phone) or whether you will rent office space.

You will also have to establish if you are going to invest in cleaning tools or use whatever the client has available at home first. In the beginning, it might be easier to use the clients’ cleaning equipment so you don’t have to invest too much in the first couple of weeks.

You will then have to set prices, figure out transportation, and see what other cleaning businesses you’re up against in your area. And don’t underestimate your work wear – since you want your customers to trust you with cleaning their home or offices, you want to look neat and clean yourself. It’s also important to be knowledgeable, particularly if clients ask questions, so swot up on your cleaning tips before you start talking to potential clients.

Counting the costs

Make sure your accounting skills are up to date – you need to have a system in place to keep track of invoices, expenses, and taxes, which often involves some basic understanding of accounting software. Luckily, there are plenty of free online courses to teach you everything you need to know.

Cleaning businesses generally involve working in someone’s home or their office. Getting a criminal record check to prove that you're trustworthy can go a long way when it comes to building relationships with your clients.

How to promote your cleaning business

In general, happy customers are the best kind of promotion – if your costumers are happy with your services, they will be more than happy to recommend you to their friends and acquaintances. Another way of promoting your business is to publish adverts in newspapers and magazines or hand out leaflets. Luckily, in the digital age, business owners don’t have to rely on expensive adverts and word of mouth to make their business a success.

It’s well worth learning about social media in order to make the most out of Twitter, Facebook, and co. – a strong internet presence can really make a difference. You don’t even necessarily need to set up a website. A Facebook page where your customers can share their stories and review your business, and a Twitter account for you to keep the world up to date, makes your business friendlier, more approachable, and more accountable. Make sure to keep up to date with your social media accounts, and respond to any enquiries, comments, and especially complaints, as soon as possible.

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