Starting up your cleaning business like any other business gives you built-in-job security. In every street, some offices and homes need regular cleaning. In Florida, professional cleaning services account for 30% of the cleaning industry. Small scale cleaning businesses account for the remaining 70 per cent of the market.
Starting a cleaning business in Florida
The rules and guidelines for starting a cleaning business in Florida are the norms in the US. With minimal investment, you can build a profitable business model. It is an excellent work from home opportunity. There are six steps to start a profitable cleaning business in Florida.
Step 1: Draw up a Cleaning Business Plan
Every successful business has, at its foundation, the business plan. It is the document that outlines what the business is about and how the business intends to run. The business plan will contain the following:
- The business name of the cleaning business
- The goals and objectives of the cleaning business
- The marketing strategies for the business
- The earning estimate for the cleaning business
Many people think the business plan is a technical document. The business plan does not have to contain confusing or complicated details.
The best business plans are clear and precise. It is a road map to keep you on track and ensure your cleaning business achieves success.
You have to reassess the business plan for your cleaning business at least twice a year. Doing this, you may discover some adjustments to reflect the reality of the business.
A well-written business plan is an asset for you. If you need to secure a loan, banks and other financial institutions will ask for it. Your loan request is more likely to get approval if you have a clear business plan with detailed steps.
Step 2: The Registration of Your Cleaning Business
All businesses in Florida must register with the Department of Revenue. Failure to register your cleaning business can result in costly legal actions. Florida does not issue a specific license for cleaning businesses. A business license is enough to cover you. Note that the requirements differ from place to place.
At registration, you have to choose what type of business you want to operate. The options include corporation, a limited liability company (LLC), sole proprietorship and partnership. If you are the only of the business, then the sole proprietorship is for you. Corporations and LLCs are for individuals who want to establish large businesses. Partnership and Sole Proprietorship are for those who want to run small businesses.
You will need to get an Employer Identification Number (EIN). Get it from the Internal Revenue Service for your tax records. The unique nine digits are unique to your business. From the IRS website, you can get the number by filling the application form. It is the EIN you will use to fill your taxes and open your business bank account(s).
Registration for sales tax is compulsory in Florida if you have commercial clients. An exemption exists for residential buildings. This tax is necessary to charge your clients a sales tax on your service.
Step 3: Insurance and Bonding
The next step is the obtaining of insurance cover and bonding for your business. Select the insurance policy that best suits your cleaning business needs. Insurance policies you to look at include the commercial liability, property, worker’s compensation, business owners policy for cleaning professionals and commercial auto insurance. Insurance is an added advantage in the market. Clients like working with cleaning services that have insurance.
Obtaining a surety bond for your business is not a rule for most cleaning businesses in Florida. A surety bond boosts your credibility and assures your client that your business is legitimate. It protects the customer. Since it is not a rule, it can give you that extra edge among your competitors.
Step 4: Buying of Cleaning Equipment and Supplies
The equipment you need to run a cleaning business is like those you use in your home. They include dusters, dustpan, brooms, wet mops with bucket press, window cleaners, dust mops, gloves, cleaning sponges, microfiber cloths, trash-collecting receptacle and buckets. Others include paper towels; toilet bowl brush, dust mask, cleaning cart, vacuum cleaners, spray bottles, dusting rags, multipurpose cleaner, scraper and thrash bags.
For residential cleaning businesses, some homeowners may provide all the equipment you need. Some even insist you use theirs at the expense of your cleaning tools. But, for most jobs, expect to supply all the cleaning supplies and equipment needed.
Step 5: Marketing Your Business
This step is crucial. The reason you started the cleaning business is to make money. You cannot make money without marketing your cleaning business to prospective clients. Also, you don’t need to spend a lot on marketing and advertising your cleaning business.
If you haven’t gotten a logo or slogan for your cleaning business, now is the time to get it. For as low as $5 to $10 per design, you can get a freelancer on Upwork or Fiverr to design your logo, business cards and other publicity needs.
Step 6: Work Smart To Succeed
After doing the previous five steps, it is time to get your business up and running. You need a client base to work with and building it can take you time. Research your target market and competitors. Find out the cleaning services your target market needs and offer it. Also, research your competitors, find out what they are doing right to attract clients. Try and improve or provide a more attractive cleaning package.
The requirements in Florida are like other states in the United States. You have to register with the Department of Revenue. Get an EIN from the Internal Revenue Service. Register for sales tax when cleaning non-residential buildings. An insurance cover can also boost your clientage. Buying quality cleaning supplies improves your job quality. Remember, the key to succeeding is smart work. Be your marketer and utilise all other marketing mediums.