Whether you currently work for a cleaning firm or you want a career change, starting a cleaning business is a savvy move. Demand for cleaning services, both in residential and commercial settings has skyrocketed over the last 12 months as everyone has become more conscious than ever of the cleanliness of their home and work environments.
If you’re ready to take the next step, we’ve got the tips you need to create a successful business, even in such a competitive market.
Residential, commercial or specialist
Before you start to advertise your business, you should think about whether you want to clean in the residential or commercial sector, or a specialist one. Not only will this impact on the cost of your services, but it will impact your day-to-day operations and work times, as well as the equipment you need. In residential properties off-the-shelf equipment like dust pans and brushes will suffice, but for commercial and specialist jobs more industrial and bespoke items will be required – which will impact start-up costs.
Your choice of market will likely depend on your existing experience and expertise, but it’s important to do your research to ensure there’s enough of a market. It’s worth bearing in mind that disposable income is rising annually which is meaning more households than ever are hiring domestic help. In fact, millennials are driving this trend, with around 40% of people in this age bracket either already have a cleaner or are actively looking for one.
If you’re setting up a domestic cleaning business it’s often not necessary to have any formal qualifications, although it’s important you have COSHH training as well as some basic understanding of the chemicals you’ll be using and what products should be used on certain surfaces.
If you’re thinking of operating in a commercial or more specialist environment, then a qualification may be required.
Decide what to charge
It’s important that when deciding how much to charge you look at what similar cleaning businesses are charging. You should consider how you charge too. Will it be by the hour, by the job, or a flat rate.
An hourly rate could be a good idea if you’re unsure of how long you’ll be cleaning for, while a flat fee is often preferred by clients as they’ll know exactly how much they need to pay you in advance.
You should also think about how far you’re willing to travel for a job, as well as if the household or place your cleaning will provide cleaning materials, of if you’ll be using your own. All of these factors will have an impact on what you charge.
Make it legal
Whether you’re setting up a cleaning company or you’re registering as self-employed, making it legal is an essential aspect of setting up any business. You’ll need to contact companies house if you’ll be trading as a business, and if you’re going solo, then let HMRC know.
And don’t forget your insurance!