The Mailbag Volume 6: Answering some common questions about the cleaning business…

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by Tom Watson on June 18, 2017

I’ve been peppered with questions lately so I thought it would be a good idea for another edition of ‘The Mailbag”.

This is the sixth time I’ve done this format (Vol 1, Vol 2, Vol 3, Vol 4 and Vol 5) over the last few years, and each time I briefly address some questions I get via email. Let’s get started.

Common Questions about the Cleaning Business

I’m about to hire my first employee, how I do handle payroll? Help, I don’t know what I’m doing!

I remember how scared I was about “doing payroll” when I first started. All I ever heard about was horror stories about how if you mess up, it takes hours on the phone to get it straightened out. So I asked my accountant, who said just check out ADP.

I did and the rest is history! For a small monthly fee they did all the financial reporting and cut the check to my employees. All I had to do was keep track of how many hours each person worked, and ADP did the rest. It really is THAT SIMPLE.

Should I invest in a business line for my company? I’m new and I don’t want to put out a lot of cash.

When I was new I made the mistake (in hindsight) of signing up for a business line through one of the major providers. I had installation costs, a new set of phones for my office AND a multi-year agreement. This added up to a lot of money! Now I simply use RingCentral. I can’t rave about this company enough.

It’s an absolutely awesome company that is the clear leader in its field. Too may features to list, but my favorite is the phone app. I installed it and now when my personal phone rings, it routes my business calls to my cell. It rings differently to let me know “it’s business”.

If I miss the call, I can call them back with my personal phone BUT it shows up on their end as my BUSINESS LINE. This way I don’t give out my personal cell number! It also has call attendant and tons of other features, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND RingCentral.

I’m new and just started marketing my services. How do I hire employees for cleaning accounts I don’t have yet? 

Awesome question! This is really a rather easy issue to address. You simply don’t hire anyone UNTIL you get hired. Once hired, you generally have one or two weeks BEFORE you actually start cleaning the account (remember, the old company needs to be fired). Sometimes you may even have more time than that! This gives you plenty of time to find someone to perform the cleaning.

What’s the best vacuum for my cleaning business?

I can’t tell you how many times I get asked this question. While there is no “one perfect vacuum” for every given situation, for the vast majority of accounts the Sanitaire SC785AT is my recommendation. I wrote about why the Sanitaire SC785AT is my favorite vacuum some time ago.

How did you keep track of income and expenses?

In the “very beginning” I actually used an accounting ledger (this is the one I used) that kept me on track with the basics. I just had a checkbook and I tracked the checks I wrote and the income that came in. Real simple! After that I traded up to Quickbooks software, which I used for the rest of my career.

If you liked this post, you can subscribe to our Cleaning 4 Profit RSS feed. If you are looking for a step by step blueprint that will show you how to start your own cleaning business, then check out my Cleaning Business Training Manuals. If you need a great website or would like to upgrade what you already have then you may want to take a look at my Cleaning Business Website Packages.

Please note: I may be an affiliate for products that I recommend. If you purchase any items through my links odds are I’ll earn a commission of some kind. I only recommend products and services that I have used or think may be useful to those starting or operating a cleaning business.

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