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Starting a House Cleaning Business

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Author:Terje Brooks

The steps are not particularly complicated to starting a house cleaning service and it is going to be easier if you already enjoy cleaning. You could offer services including tending indoor plants; servicing floors through vacuuming or steam cleaning carpets; cleaning windows, indoors, and out; general housework and maintenance; and helping people get their homes organized.

Grow Your Profits

All businesses, the cleaning industry included, begin with their first customer or contract. And if you don't want to work full time, or if you already work full time, your house cleaning business can supplement the income you are already earning. As you grow your loyal customer base, the business will eventually grow and you can naturally grow into full time work, or you could look to win a larger contract or client that could sustain your business. You need to know where to canvass for new clients, so try some of these areas:

* Your local neighborhood

* Approaching the manager or concierge of apartment buildings, as they may require such services

* Homes on the market need cleaning for viewing, so approach some real estate businesses

* People that run their own small business, as they may be short on time for domestic cares

Potential Problems

A lot of the same business principles used for any other kind of business will apply to your cleaning service. You need to consider the law and legal requirements, and make sure you are covered for liability. It may take time to get all your procedures and equipment in place at the beginning, but you do need to be conscious of some specific matters before you begin.

* Find out how much insurance and liability coverage is likely to cost you.

* You may need to have your business listed with local or state establishments.

* Consult with your accountant so you are clear on pricing, fees you should charge, and tax obligations.

* You will be handling cleaning chemicals, which need to be stored and cared for specifically, so make sure you know the requirements.

When You Begin

In the beginning stages of your business, you will likely have only a few good clients, and you may not need to work full time. The best way to build a loyal customer base is to get referrals from current satisfied clients and encourage people to pass the word, as well as investing in some marketing and advertising. There are some low cost methods you can use to advertise your presence. Place a classified in the newspaper. Make it less than 25 words and plan for it to run over the weekend. When you can see this is building your customer base, it might pay to advertise under the business section of the newspaper or consider actually running your own small advertisement in the paper.

Meeting people will be the most valuable way of gaining loyal customers. Make the most of each social situation to give out business cards and test the waters for potential clients. When asking for referrals, offer a bonus or small gift for those that will refer you on to others, or perhaps give them a discount voucher as a thank you. A good way to distribute fliers is to attach them to doors. Stuffing them in letterboxes or elsewhere, you run the risk of the wind stealing them. As a result, you may be fined. You could also join forces with a larger cleaning company. Sometimes larger corporations are prepared to contract out to independent service providers so they can handle larger volumes of business.

You can begin your own cleaning business without too many headaches. It will be important to act professionally when communicating with your clients, and to offer service for hours that will be convenient to your customers. As long as you follow these two general rules of thumb, referrals to new clients will be a natural progression.

Author SIG

Terje Brooks has written articles online for many years. He likes to write about home, family, and other topics. You may check out his front load washing machines homepage, which contains portable clothes washer tips as well as lots of other relevant tips and information.

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