Don’t have enough money to run your cleaning business? We Ask a House Cleaner ways to make ends meet as a house cleaner without having a full-time job or a part-time job on the side.
If you don’t have enough money at the end of the month and bills to pay, it may be time as a maid to start your own house cleaning company.
Angela Brown, The House Cleaning Guru gives tips on business startup if you don’t have enough money but have a burning desire to succeed.
Starting a new business if you need money is a great way to pay your bills and be a savvy cleaner.
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Listen: Don’t Have Enough Money to Run a Cleaning Business
Watch: Don’t Have Enough Money to Run a Cleaning Business
Hey there, I’m Angela Brown, and this is Ask a House Cleaner. This is a show where you get to ask a house cleaning question, and I get to help you find an answer.
Question: Don’t Have Enough Money to Run a Cleaning Business
Onto today’s question which is from a lady who has several different elements to her question. So I want to copy it here so that I don’t miss anything and we can address those issues one by one.
She says, “Angela, I’m just starting a cleaning business and I’ve got no money. I have a full-time job cleaning a building at our local university. This job pays low, unfortunately. I have a part-time job with another janitorial company that I only get about six hours a week with. So I’m starting to clean houses on the side with the help of a friend. I have my first client now, and I want to know if I should keep this client. She calls herself a bit OCD. My first time cleaning her house was a woman who recommended me. And the client said we missed the baseboards.”
“I will still be going back, but when she asked me what I needed for the baseboards, I told her a long-handed Swiffer. She pulled out a pole with some pad on it. I know that would not work for the grooves in the baseboards, and there’s no way I could dust up high with this thing. How do I tell her what items I need without making her think twice about me?
She buys all her own cleaning equipment because I don’t get paid enough to bring my own with me every time.”
Answer: Don’t Have Enough Money to Run a Cleaning Business
All right, so there are several issues going on here.
The first one is that you have a full-time job at a university. That is, what? 40 hours a week? You also have a part-time job with a janitorial company, which is another six hours a week.
By the time we add in the commute and the travel time back and forth, we’re talking about 50 hours a week. At the end of 50 hours a week, where are you finding time to start your own house cleaning company?
There’s a time management issue that we need to address.
Most Of Your Hours are Low Paying
The second thing that ties into is the money because you said that your full-time job pays low.
If that is the case, we need to cut back on the low paying hours and we need to transition to where there’s more money.
Because right now what you’re trying to do is just add more hours. At the end of a 50 hour week, you’re not going to have the energy you need as a house cleaner. You won’t be able to do a thorough and a dynamic job for a customer when you’re just starting out, or ever.
At 50 hours a week, you’re maxed out in the house cleaning business. It’s physical labor and it’s tough.
Okay, so what we want to do is we want to transition from the low paying jobs to a higher paying job.
You can do this by going to your full-time job and saying, “I would love to cut back on hours here. I have to go get another job somewhere else because I’m not making enough money to pay my bills.”
Then you may want to go over to the janitorial company and say, “Do you have more hours for me?”
Instead of working 40 hours at your university job, maybe the janitorial job will pay you more. And you could transition your 40 hours over there.
If that’s not the case, there is another option. If you feel that there is more money in residential cleaning, cut back on both jobs. Focus on your business. You may have to tell your boss you’re quitting altogether.
Be Upfront and Honest
Now you might have a non-compete with the janitorial company or the university that you work with. If so, you don’t want to pick up any commercial accounts. Because your noncompete will prevent you from doing that.
My suggestion is to be upfront with both of your employers. Every employer understands the pain of an employee who does not have enough money to make their bills.
They Might Have To Let You Go
If the company is not in a financial position to pay you more money, they’re going to have to let you go.
But if you’ve been a great worker, then they have to be loyal to that and they have to respect that, and they have to let you go.
They might just not have any more hours for you. And they might just not be able to pay you any more money. So they need to work with you as you exit and find your own business.
Full Disclosure Leads To Positive Working Relationships
Most house cleaners I found, are more than kind.
They will send business on your way if they can. If they have the extra business, overflow, or somebody cancels, they’ll send it to you.
They will do this if they like you and you leave with full disclosure.
Buying Your Own Supplies
All right, so having said that, there are a couple of other issues about who provides the supplies. I hear you when you say that you cannot afford supplies.
I do recommend that you bring your own supplies because you’re familiar with them. And you know what those supplies are going to do and how they’re going to respond on different surfaces.
Don’t Have Enough Money So I’m Using Customer’s Cleaning Supplies
When you show up and a customer surprises you with new chemicals or whatever, you’re taking a risk.
And so, they need to sign a waiver saying that they are providing the chemicals. And here’s what they’re expecting you to use and on what surfaces.
This way, it gets you off the hook if those chemicals damage one of their surfaces.
Consider Raising Prices
All right, now a mop is not going to damage anybody’s surface, but if it doesn’t do a good job, it’s not going to do a good job.
That’s just wasting both of your time and your customer’s money.
If money is the issue, what we want to do is raise the price on the customer.
This way, you’re making enough money to buy your own supplies. Then you can go out and buy whatever you want.
Don’t Have Enough Money is Good Reason for a Change
The important thing to do is today is to focus on this, you’re switching jobs for a reason. What is the reason?
If it’s time and money, then we need to focus you on an area where you can afford your own supplies.
And you can afford to work the hours you need to work without the wear and tear on your body.
Don’t Have Enough Money – Don’t Have Enough Time
There are only so many hours in a week. And there are only so many physical labor, manual hours that you can put in before your body just crashes.
If you keep adding more hours at a low pay, what you’re doing is you’re breaking down your immune system.
Your body is going to fall apart after a while and it’s going to take you a long time to recover.
Take Care of Yourself
Instead of doing that, we want you to take care of yourself as you go.
I want you to get plenty of sleep every night. Working 50 hours a week, and starting your own business on the side is not going to help you get more rest.
It’s not going to help you rebuild your energy, and it’s not going to serve any of your clients on any of your jobs.
So the first thing you’ve got to do is take care of you. This is a time management and a budgeting issue, so let’s take care of that first.
All righty. That’s my two cents for today and until we meet again, leave the world a cleaner place than when you found it.
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Resources For This Episode
Starting a Business All-In-One for Dummies – http://amzn.to/2C7fQAX
Small Business for Dummies – http://amzn.to/2CtZPIu
Accounting: For Small Businesses Quick Start Guide – Understanding Accounting for Your Sole Proprietorship, Startup, & LLC – http://amzn.to/2Csibtr
Build a Business, not a Job: Grow Your Business & Get Your Life Back – http://amzn.to/2CsieFD
How to Start Your Own House Cleaning Company: Go from start-up to payday in one week – http://amzn.to/2DKtKt8
Permissions To Share
SAVVY CLEANER – House Cleaner Training and Certification
HOUSECLEANING360 – Referral database of the world’s most prominent home service providers and the homeowners they serve.
MY CLEANING CONNECTION – A resource hub for all things house cleaning
SAVVY PERKS – Employee Perks for Small Business Owners