It’s a simple fact that as long as there are people, there will be clothes that need washing.

This inevitable fact has led many people into a steady income by simply helping everyday people accomplish this everyday chore.

While it might seem simple on the surface, there is a lot that goes into running a successful laundry business. It can be quite a cut throat environment competing for those precious laundry coins, so you’ll need a solid laundry business plan before you go making any big moves.

Everyone starting a laundry business will face unique challenges based on their circumstances and location. Although we can’t account for everything, we do have some general advice for any up and coming or would-be laundry business owners.

Get Experience In The Industry (Or Hire Someone Who Has)

Laundry business professionals

The simple truth is that if you have never worked in the laundry business yourself, there is no way you have a complete handle on all of the details.

Even the processes which sound simplest on paper can be confounding to someone with a lack of practical experience. In order to run a laundry business efficiently and effectively, it is best to have firsthand experience guiding your decision making for every facet of your business.

The best way to get this experience is to put in the hours working in the laundry business, allowing you to build experience with the industry.

As ideal as this approach may be, we recognize that this is not an option for everyone. So if you don’t have the time to work in the industry before starting your own laundry business, it’s best to hire someone who has a lot of experience in the industry to serve as a manager or close adviser.

Write Up Your Laundromat Business Plan

Loading a washing machine

At the core of your business should be a well rounded and comprehensive business plan.

While the approach to business plans can vary widely from company to company, there are three core components to any good business plan:

  1. Business Goals: An outline of why your business exists and what it seeks to accomplish.
  2. Methods: Explain in precise detail the methods your business will employ to meet the Business Goals outlined in #1.
  3. Schedule: Carefully define the timeframe in which the Business Goals must be achieved.

As you plan, get as deep into the details as possible! Consider important details such as how many machines you can fit per square foot, the maximum hourly earnings of the machines, the average hourly earnings, and other data which can be used for projections of revenue.

Pick A Location While Visualizing Your Customers And Competition

When it comes to a laundromat, location is everything! Since people have to haul their heavy loads of laundry to you, the ideal location is one which takes minimal work for them to reach.

Keep in mind the nature of the area you plan to do business in. Look at the surrounding businesses and buildings to get an idea of who your clientele might be. If you’re near a hotel, expect travelers. If your neighbor is an apartment complex, expect regular residents. And so on.

Never forget what your customers want to see in a laundromat, and never stop striving to find out what scares your competitors to see in a laundromat.

Acquire The Necessary Permits And Licenses

It’s important to keep your business above board. That’s why getting a variety of permits and licenses to operate a laundromat is a necessary step for everyone hoping to break into the laundry business.

The exact permits and licenses you’ll need to get into business will vary based on your local laws. Consult your local statutes and authorities for up to date information. In some cases, it may be advisable to seek legal counsel to expedite this process.

Get The Equipment That Will Best Service Your Customers

In a modern laundromat, the equipment is the star of the show.

Your customer’s interaction is primarily with your equipment. For completely self-service laundromats with no attendant, your customer’s interaction is entirely with the machinery.

This means that your equipment needs to work -- and it needs to work well. It needs to be intuitive and convenient to use, while getting the job done well every single time.

This might include catering to your audience -- like adding extra large washers for urban areas with huge families. Or installing modern approaches to simplify payments by using apps and smart phones -- techniques which can save your business money as well.

Starting A Laundry Business FAQs

1. How much do I charge per load of laundry?

Make your prices competitive to the local market. In the United States, the average price to wash a load of laundry is around $2.

2. How much do I need to start a laundry business?

The cost of starting a laundromat will vary based on factors such as geography, size of location, type of equipment utilized, staff employed, and a variety of other factors. The cost to build or buy a laundromat in the United States is around $200,000 to $500,000, on average.

3. How much does a laundromat make in a day?

Earnings will vary widely from one laundromat to another. A laundromat’s earnings are determined by how many customers wash their clothes and the total number of machines available. Because space is the limiting factor for the number of machines, larger laundromats have a higher earning potential.