In this guide you will learn everything you need to know about how to start a cleaning business with no money.
Starting a cleaning business can be an inexpensive way to become a really lucrative business owner. There will always be homes that need cleaning, and it’s a job people are eager to hand off. If you decide to do the work yourself your upfront investment can be next to nothing.
You’ll need to follow the laws in your area to legally practice business. At the very least, this usually means you’ll have to register your business. Also, you’ll need to buy essential cleaning supplies like:
10 Things you can do to start a cleaning business with no money
1. Target the right clients
Residential cleaning, where you’re cleaning houses, is an easier business to get into than commercial cleaning. Large janitorial companies dominate the market that cleans commercial business, and cleaning at this scale requires equipment and labour hours that demand a large starting budget.
2. Do the cleaning yourself
In the beginning, doing all of the cleaning yourself is an obvious way to eliminate costs associated with hiring someone else to clean for you. You can schedule cleaning jobs around your full time job, on weekends or in the evenings depending on your schedule.
By taking it slow, you can focus on quality cleaning rather than relying on low prices to build your client list. Cleaning yourself also allows you to ease into your new business, taking the pressure off finding a long list of customers right away to keep employees busy.
At a certain point you’ll feel it’s time to leave your current job to grow your cleaning business full time, and soon after you may decide to hire your first employee. These will be exciting steps that can follow your original plan to handle cleaning jobs yourself.
3. Create a simple uniform
There’s no need to buy a fancy uniform featuring your logo when you’re starting out. A simple dress code of all black, or dark pants and a colored tee shirt will be just fine. The key is to be consistent with your uniform. If your clients see you in the same look each time you interact, your professional image will have a much better impact than if you were to show up to their homes in different clothes each time.
4. Ask your friends and family for business
To get your first customers, reach out to your circle of friends, letting them know you’ve started a cleaning business if they or anyone they know is interested in giving you a shot. Once you’ve cleaned someone’s home, let them know you’re looking for new clients. You can even offer them a discount off their next clean if they refer a friend. Word of mouth is a great customer generation tool, so be sure your service is excellent to keep your customers excited about your business.
5. Customize your cleaning services
Remember that your customers hire you to make their lives easier, and you can ensure your customers are satisfied by tailoring your service to their needs. Ask them what they’re looking for from a cleaning service. Maybe they’re looking for help straightening up or want someone to spend extra time vacuuming all of the pet hair off the floor. They might appreciate small touches like elegantly folded toilet paper ends.
Taking the time to discuss these details with your client can make or break your customer relationship, and set you apart from the competition.
6. Build your brand
Attention to detail, a consistent uniform and client tailored cleaning services contribute to a strong and trusted brand. Getting your company values on paper will help you communicate to your customers what they can expect from your business, and how you’re different from the competition. Maybe you’re committed to using environmentally friendly products, believe in customized experiences, or promise to be on time every time. Take some time to write down your businesses values and remember to let your clients know what sets you apart from other companies.
7. Create your companies name and logo
Once you know what your business values are you'll want to come up with a business name and develop a logo. You might choose a name that plays off your values (e.g., incorporating the word ‘green’), or you may choose to let your creative side come up with something catchy.
Having a designer create a logo for your business also adds to your professional look. Add it to your quotes, invoices, and receipts and you’ll look like a professional cleaner from the start.
8. Free tech-savvy tips
Set up a Facebook page - Setting up a Facebook page for your business is a free way to establish an online presence. Go a step further and claim the social media handles for your business name on Twitter, Instagram, and any other key sites, so that you have them ready if and when you decide to use them.
Create a GMail account - Create an email address with email@example.com so that you have a professional communication channel with your customers, and none of your business communication gets lost in your personal emails.
Set up your voicemail - Change your cell phones voicemail greeting to work for your business.
Our bidding calculator can be accessed easily for a quick quote. Simply input a square footage or a time to clean per visit. Then put in how many days a week, your employee cost and the calculator does the rest. You’ll be able to add your own percentage or dollar requirement for profit to arrive at how much you want to charge your client. Getting and keeping your janitorial jobs profitable is the name of the game and this innovative feature is a bonus tool that can help in a practical and measurable way. Click here to access our free cleaning bid calculator.
We have developed a unique system for cleaning companies. This system has been tested and proven over the past 10 years to ensure your complete satisfaction. JaniBid was developed to help cleaning business owners streamline their processes and grow. These systems include initial walk through, proposals, sales, contracts, hiring, scheduling, check in and check outs, invoicing and more. This software has saved business owners hundreds of hours of time and headaches, allowing them to focus on what's most important, their Business.
Our FREE cleaning software plan gives you access to: