I have been self-employed since I had Jake 10 years ago. I have always been very business minded and wanted to do a job that also enabled me to be their for my children. I didn’t want to miss school performances and parents evening doing a job that didn’t give me flexibility. I was lucky when the twins were little I worked part-time as a medical secretary and my mum looked after them for me but this job was low paid and not challenging enough for me and I hated answering to a bunch of older ladies who had worked there for years. Being Honest I didn’t fit in I was full of fantastic ideas that didn’t go down to well. When I feel pregnant with Jake I left and worked for a marketing company that I had known on and off for years until he was due.
Marketing is my passion and is what I am good at , I worked in Marketing when I was younger and loved every second and my skills were being wasted working for someone else.
When Jake was 4 months I set myself up on my own. My company runs itself these days and allowed me to run my magazine for 5 years which I have recently given up to focus on my brand and my social media management business.
Being self employed can be incredibly rewarding and it is such a great feeling knowing that you have your own little business and that you are in control of when you choose to work and go on holiday etc.But it’s also hard work as you are ultimately responsible for everything in the early days and take the good with the bad. These days life is incredibly busy and many families just don’t have time for cleaning and ironing. Families want to enjoy their weekends and not be bogged down with cleaning and ironing. So with my passion for cleaning this was an obvious step for me.
How to get started
There are a lot of cleaning companies and self employed cleaners out there so competition is tough but don’t be put off as competition is healthy. Also remember you aren’t going to have an empire overnight its going to take you a while to build up a good customer base and be in the position to employ a few staff members.
Here are my top tips
Have some investment, you don’t need much but the saying you need to spend money to make money is true.
- Choose a good catchy name and slogan.
- Design a simple but effective logo. If you don’t have a budget use platforms like Canva.
- Set up social media pages, Facebook being the most important with a local business but its good to have Twitter to so you can connect with other local business and network with woman’s hour etc and Instagram just to keep the business seen. Some people will search social media before they pick up the phone and its very good to be seen across all 3. Post some good engaging comment and take advantage of the Facebook boost. I love this feature as you can choose who you want to target and where these people live. I spend approx £20.00 a month on this feature and its worth every penny.
- Join local community Facebook groups so you can post any offers. You will probably need to make sure the admin is ok with this first.
- Get some leaflets printed up and then go posting these into areas you would like to work, another good idea is to leave leaflets on local notice boards and in coffee shops. Keep your leaflet simple do not over crowd with information you want them to call you so you can sell your service.
- Join local networking groups, this will mostly be business to business but get your name out there and once people like you and when they need a cleaner they will know where to come.
- Start your business with an offer do a discounted rate for the first month or so or offer a loyalty scheme so you capture repeat business.
- When you first start out, you won’t actually need very much in the way of equipment, so don’t go out and spend a fortune on unnecessary products and eat away at any potential profits.
- You’ll also want to consider whether you want to focus on residential cleaning or commercial cleaning. There is the potential to do both, but you’ll likely need different types of equipment for commercial cleaning than you would for cleaning houses – so give this some thought.
- Do you research. What services are other local companies offering and what are they charging. Phone them make out your interested and asses their level of customer service and check out their social media and websites.
- I brought ironing into mine and the response was huge so consider adding in additional services such as ironing and decluttering.
What you will need
You need to invest in a little money here but it will all be worth it.
- A vehicle so you can get around easily and carry around any equipment. For this you may also want to look at vehicle stickers for advertising when your out and about and to give a more professional look. Remember to keep your branding the same
- A vacuum cleaner – choose something lightweight but with good performance and this is also easy to clean. – My recommendation
- Steam mop – A steam mop will be help with quickness and you know if will lift the dirt easily. – My recommendation
- Mop and Bucket – Not everyone likes steam so make sure you have two solutions to offer. – My recommendation
- Products – Setting up a trade account once you have a few customers in a good option as in the long run buying in bulk will save you money. You don’t need every product but these are my essentials. Try and choose eco-friendly too
- Limescale Remover
- Multi purpose cleaner that can be used on floors and surfaces.
- Furniture polish
- Glass cleaner
- Toilet cleaners
- Bar Keepers Friend – For tackling those problems areas.
- Empty spray bottles – Perfect when buying product in bulk.
- Microfibre cloths in different colours to aviod spreading bacteria.
- Cleaning clothes
- steel wool.
- cleaning caddy
You may also find like I did in the early days that people want you to use their products and their equipment. This is a huge bonus.
We use Numatic for Commercial cleaning.
You might also want to think about getting uniforms for you and any staff you take on in the future This could just be a simple polo shirt with your company logo on. Not only does it make your business look professional, it will also save your normal clothes from being damaged whilst you’re working. Branding clothing is also a great way to get your business name out there. The more people who see your logo the better!
Ask friends and family to help
It can be hard to build up trust when you’re just starting out. Particularly when you’ll be entering homes and businesses. If you can, it’s a great idea to get some friends to try out your service for free and share their reviews. On your Facebook page, you can ask people to leave a review there. It only takes a small number of positive reviews to reassure people that they can trust you.
Your clients will want some reassurance that they’re in safe hands. How will you reimburse them if you accidentally damage anything?
Go for it
Setting up a business isn’t easy but with a positive attitude and mindset you can do this. I do offer one to one sessions where I can advise you and help you so if you are interested then please get in touch and we can arrange an appointment.
Don’t forget you can make money blogging too and this is how I do it. CLICK HERE
Good luck, work hard and watch the benefits roll in.
Lynsey Queen of Clean xoxo
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