Do you want to know how to start a cleaning business from scratch?
In this blog post, you will learn everything you need to know about launching your own cleaning business, what skills and qualifications are required, and how to price your services.
Decide what services you’re offering
First, you need to consider the type of cleaning services you are offering. There are many different types of cleaning products or services you can offer such as:
- residential cleaning,
- office cleaning,
- industrial cleaning, and
- carpet cleaning.
You need to decide which type of cleaning services you will offer so that you can focus your marketing efforts on that specific area.
You also need to think about the location of your business. You want to make sure you choose a location that is easy for your customers to find.
You also need to think about the size of the business. If you are just starting, you may want to keep your business small to start with and then expand as you gain more customers.
It is also important to consider the legal aspects of starting a cleaning business.
You will need to:
- register your business with the local government,
- obtain any necessary licenses and permits, and
- ensure that you are compliant with all relevant laws and regulations.
Finally, you need to consider your budget. Launching a cleaning business from scratch can be quite expensive, so you must plan carefully and have a budget before you start.
Benefits of Starting a Cleaning Business
There are many benefits to starting your own cleaning business.
Cleaning service is profitable!
Cleaning is an evergreen industry and there is always a need for cleaning services, making it a very profitable service if you take into account and control your costs.
Ensure that your quotes build in enough margin to guarantee you a profit by thinking about:
- Transportation costs: You’ll probably have to travel around to client sites. Consider the wear and tear of your vehicle, fuel costs and other running costs like tax and insurance.
- Material costs: If you use your own cleaning products and equipment, be sure to factor in the costs or purchase / replacement.
- Administrative costs: You’ll be spending time managing you business doing important tasks like responding to quote requests, sending invoices and managing your staff. Time is money so be sure to factor in your admin time when pricing your services.
Low barrier to entry
Secondly, it can be a great way to make a living, as there are no qualifications or experience required to start a cleaning business. You can start on your own and grow your business as you gain more customers.
Provide services of value
Thirdly, starting a cleaning business can be very rewarding. You will be providing a valuable service to people who need it and you will be able to take pride in the work that you do.
Gain financial freedom
It can be a great way to gain some financial freedom as you can work as much or as little as you want.
Finally, it provides a large amount of flexibility, with many cleaning companies being able to set their working hours.
You can find out more about the pros and cons of starting your own cleaning business here.
What Equipment Do You Need to Start a Cleaning Business?
When starting a cleaning business, you need to make sure you have the right equipment.
You will need a range of cleaning supplies such as:
- vacuum cleaners,
- cloths, and
- other cleaning tools.
You will also need a reliable vehicle to transport your equipment to different locations.
It’s a good idea to research available products thoroughly, often industrial products offer more cleaning power and are cheaper in bulk.
For some types of cleaning services, you may also need to purchase specialised cleaning equipment such as steam cleaners or carpet cleaning machines.
You will also need to make sure you have the right insurance in place to protect yourself, your equipment and your business.
What skills do I need to start a cleaning business?
You do not need any formal qualifications to start a cleaning business, but certain skills will be beneficial.
Firstly, you need to have good customer service skills as you will be dealing with customers daily. You also need to be able to work independently and have good organisational skills.
You need to have good communication skills as you will be talking to customers and other professionals in the industry.
You also need to have basic cleaning skills so that you can provide a high-quality service to your customers.
Finally, you need to be reliable and punctual as your customers will expect you to show up on time.
Develop a marketing strategy for your cleaning business
Once you have set up your business, you need to develop a marketing strategy to attract customers.
Start by creating a website to showcase your services and display your pricing structure. Ensure your website is SEO (Search engine optimised) so that it appears high on the search engine results page.
SEO is based on what your customers search for in your local area. So create keywords and ensure the wording on your website matches as closely as possible. This will help you get better positions on search engines.
It’s essential to sign up for a Google Business Profile. So that you appear in local searches for cleaning companies. When people need anything, the typical process is to ‘Google’ it.
This is a great way to funnel a lot of local searches through to your company. Over time your customers can leave reviews on your Google My Business page and catch new leads that way.
Having a consistent social media presence is essential to reaching new clients and keeping existing customers up to date with any new services or offers.
Ensure you respond quickly to any engagement on social media. How you interact with people online can persuade new customers or change opinions from poor reviews.
Social media post ideas:
- Create social media posts around before and after pics of your cleaning services
- Create time-lapse videos of your cleaning process, using different products
- Showcase your best cleaning tips
You can also use traditional methods of marketing such as flyers and posters to promote your business in your local area.
Not forgetting, you can use local business directories to list your business and make it easier for potential customers to find you.
Employing cleaning staff
If you are looking to expand your business and take on more customers, you may need to consider employing staff.
It is essential to make sure you have the right people in place to provide a high-quality service to your customers.
Look for employees who have experience in the cleaning industry and who can provide excellent service.
Make sure that your workforce has the necessary qualifications and that your business is covered by insurance. Ensure that they are adequately trained and familiar with how to operate the tools correctly.
One way of ensuring you have the right team around you is to onboard them correctly. This will help reduce staff turnover and create happier employees.
See our post on the employee onboarding process, so you don’t miss a beat!
How to Price Your Cleaning Services
When pricing your cleaning services, you need to make sure you are charging a fair price that reflects the quality of the service you are providing.
You also need to consider the local market and make sure your prices are competitive.
By researching the prices of other cleaning services in your area and adjusting your prices accordingly.
It’s important to take into account any additional costs such as transportation, insurance, and equipment.
Ensure that you are making a profit after all of these costs have been taken into account.
Usually, cleaning companies charge an hourly rate or look at fixed-term contracts with larger customers.
What should I charge?
The amount you charge for your cleaning services will depend on the type of services you are offering, the location of your business, and the size of the job. As well as the local market.
Starting your own cleaning business how much to charge UK
For improved customer relationships, a good strategy is to offer discounts for regular customers or larger jobs. On average, you can expect to charge an average hourly rate of between £10-£25 for a cleaner. For one-off cleans or intense cleaning services, this can increase to £25-£30. (Based on the average cleaning prices during February 2023)
How much to charge for house cleaning per hour?
The amount you charge for house cleaning per hour will depend on the type of services you are offering and the size of the job.
As a general rule, you can charge between £15 and £25 per hour for basic house cleaning services. You may want to charge more for larger jobs or more specialised services such as deep cleaning or carpet cleaning. The more specialised the cleaning the more you can charge for instance the typical rate for a car valet clean is £60-£100.
How to structure your cleaning business?
When starting a cleaning business, you need to decide on the structure of your business. You can either operate as a sole trader or set up a limited company. If you are a sole trader, you will be the sole proprietor of the business and will be personally liable for any debts or losses.
If you set up a limited company, you will be protected from personal liability and will be able to raise funds more easily. You will also need to decide on the legal structure of your business, such as a partnership or limited liability company.
What insurance will your cleaning business need?
When starting a cleaning business, you need to make sure you have the right insurance in place to protect yourself and your business. This covers
- Public liability insurance covers any claims related to injury or damage caused by your business.
- Professional indemnity insurance, to cover any losses related to mistakes or negligence on your part.
- Employers liability insurance if you are employing staff. It is important to make sure you have the right insurance in place to protect yourself and your business.
You can find out more about the types of insurance needed for a cleaning business here.
Invoice cleaning jobs and manage your cash flow
Once you have started your cleaning business, you need to make sure you are managing your cash flow properly.
invoice your customers promptly and make sure you are getting paid on time. While also keeping track of your expenses and ensuring you are staying within your budget.
Using software for documentation
Online invoicing software can be used to make invoicing and payments easier. Document Management software helps you to create and track Quotes, Proposals, Contracts, Onboarding forms and much more. Software like Docflite even allows you to link documents to your favourite Accounting and CRM apps.
Learn how to manage your cleaning business and client relationships through software.
When running your own cleaning business, managing your business and client relationships can be difficult.
That’s why using the DocFlite system ensures you are providing a high-quality service to your customers and building relationships with them. Stressing over staying organised and keeping track of your finances is redundant when we have a purpose-built tool that does it all for you.
Your documentation of quotes, invoices, onboarding documents, SLA and e-signatures will be a breeze. Find out how to complete these processes through the cleaning client onboarding process.
Conclusion- How to start a cleaning business from scratch
Starting your own cleaning business from scratch can be a daunting task. But with the right knowledge and resources, you can launch your own cleaning business that can be profitable and successful.
In this blog post, we have discussed everything you need to know about how to start a cleaning business from scratch, what skills and qualifications are required, and how to price your services.
If you’re still undecided on whether to bite the bullet and start a business, read our post on the pros and cons of starting a cleaning business here.
We hope this article has been helpful and that it has given you the confidence to start your own cleaning business. Good luck!