How Much Money Can You Make?

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by Tom Watson on March 9, 2011

I get asked how much money can you earn in the cleaning business nearly everyday.

I’m not really surprised by that, after all money makes the world go round as they say.

The answer to this question lies in many factors, and I will be unable to touch upon all of them in this post, but I’ll do my best.

This is how the process will work. I’ll provide a few brief case studies here to clue you in on what you could expect to earn from some accounts once you learn the ropes.  

Each example listed is from an account that we have currently or have had in our career. To figure out what you would earn you’ll just need to figure out how many cleaning accounts you wish to accumulate. So far this is simple huh?

Before I begin, keep in mind that this is only an overview on the topic. I will not be providing any square footage numbers, contract specs, wage details or other information. That would just complicate things, and I like to keep things simple.

In each case study I’m going to include the account frequency, time it takes to clean each visit and the monthly income. You can draw your own conclusions from there.

In addition to what I just mentioned, keep the following in mind as well…

  1. We’ve been in business for a while and know what to look for.
  2. We have a well thought out and efficient cleaning system.
  3. The cleaning times discussed are AFTER spending a few weeks on the job.
  4. We hustle. Enough said.
  5. You may do better than these numbers.
  6. You may do worse than these numbers.
  7. I have accounts with better margins.
  8. I have accounts with worse margins.

Now that we got that out of the way…lets begin!

Case study 
1 X per week cleaning. 1 hour to clean per visit. We charge $410.00 per month.

Case study
5 X per week cleaning. 3 hours to clean per visit. We charge $1,500.00 per month.

Case study
4 X per week cleaning. 2 hours to clean per visit. We charge $1,400.00 per month.

Case study
5 X per week cleaning. 1.5 hours to clean per visit. We charge $550.00 per month.

Case study
1 X per week cleaning. 2.5 hours to clean per visit. We charge $530.00 per month.

Case study
5 X per week cleaning. 3.25 hours to clean per visit. We charge $1,800.00 per month.

Case study
1 X per week cleaning. 1.25 hours per to clean per visit. We charge $275.00 per month.

The one constant thread that runs through the majority of these case studies is this. We clean the accounts much faster than we originally planned for. This is because of a combination of several factors.

The first one is we work hard to come up with an attack plan that gets us done. Then you need to factor in that some customers are neater than expected, thus reducing our work load.

Next up is the fact that some offices are very dusty, while others never seem to get all that bad. This “dust factor” directly affects the time spent on a given job. Lastly, sometimes I just over estimate how long it will take to clean the facility. The bidding process is not an exact science, so you generally will not be “spot on” all the time.

I think you now have an idea of what you can expect to earn once you get started yourself. By knowing this, it opens your eyes a bit to see what’s possible in this business. It also gives you something to shoot for.

To zero in a little better on what you would like to make in the cleaning business you just need to determine how many accounts you would like to have. To be even more accurate you also need to decide if you will be performing the cleaning, or will your staff handle that. 

For some perspective, I peaked at 72 cleaning accounts. Many of these accounts had multiple locations that needed to be cleaned. This kept me quite busy of course. But the great thing about this business is you don’t need all that many accounts to live a nice lifestyle.

While I went all the way to 72 customers, you can have a real nice lifestyle with only 15 to 20 accounts if you choose your customers carefully. Once you get started, you’ll become an expert in no time flat.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 Tom Watson January 29, 2017 at 1:40 pm

Charge the customer at least TWICE what you pay your staff. So whatever the going rate is to clean, the customer gets charged AT LEAST twice as much.

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