How to Start a Pressure Washing Business

You’ve found the perfect business idea and now you’re ready to take the next step. Starting a business involves more than simply registering it with the state. We have put together this simple guide to starting your pressure washing business. These steps will ensure that your new business is well planned, properly registered, and compliant with the law.

How Does a Pressure Washing Business Work?

Pressure washing is used for properly cleaning the exterior of houses, structures, concrete, buildings, windows, and other areas.

Pressure washing services and pressure washing services are often used interchangeably in relation to commercial and/or industrial needs. Pressure washing involves heating the water first for deeper sanitation. Cold water is often more than enough for the job.

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Who Hires Pressure Washing Experts?

Depending on the target market, customers may be homeowners, vehicle owners, government agencies (needing pressure washing services for highways and other government buildings/structures), and/or commercial owners. Most pressure washing companies do better by offering their services to all types of customers and have workers who are experts at doing certain types of pressure washing. In addition to seeking clients from the general public, it is advisable to obtain long-term contracts for commercial operations.

Examples of these contracts would include maintaining the exteriors of multiple commercial properties owned by the same person or organization or cleaning a fleet of vehicles regularly.

Advantages Of Starting a Pressure Washing Business

Venturing into the pressure washing business is very profitable and has several advantages which include:

1. Very little capital

With $300, you can start this business by buying equipment from social media platforms like Facebook, Craigslist, and other marketplaces.

2. Very low competition

The competition in this business is very low and it has a consistent demand and appreciable results. According to Henry, very few young men are able to shove their sleeves to learn this skill, so he is one of the very few pressure washers in his vicinity.

3. Word of mouth is very effective

Most pressure washing jobs are done in the open, so you’re sure of getting new customers who would have seen you working. Word of mouth works efficiently in marketing pressure washing business because satisfied customers are most likely to share the news with their friends and neighbors. Henry attested to this fact and hinted that he was approached for new contracts by passersby who saw him working in their neighborhood.

4. No running expenses

This business guarantees you a high-profit margin. This is because there is no running or concomitant expenses. The only major thing you’ll spend money on is purchasing the equipment. There are no running expenses once you’re able to acquire the equipment. You can always get free Labour and water supply. If you’re skilled, you will be able to undertake the labor by yourself. More so, water will always be supplied by your clients.

Drawbacks to Starting a Pressure Washing Business

There are concomitant drawbacks in the pressure washing business, same as every other business.

1. It’s physically stressful

Pressure washing is physically stressful because it involves the operation of machines, the use of ladders, and constantly walking around in order to find the right cleaning spots. No doubt, carrying the equipment around is energy-sapping.

2. Unplanned damages

While working, the pressure of the water can damage your client’s items, and you may not even notice that you’ve spoilt something. The bills to replace the items will be on you if you didn’t acquire an insurance policy.

3. Irregular workflow

Once you start up fully, you will discover that many clients undertake home improvement projects once a year. This is why the demand for Pressure washing is seasonal in some places. Henry stated that the stability of his revenue was greatly affected by seasonality. Winter and summer are the high yield period because clients usually undertake their home improvements within those periods.

To Get Started, First Learn the Skills

pressure washing

As you can imagine, consistent practice is the surest way to become a professional. YouTube is a hub of knowledge, you can watch tutorial videos on YouTube and learn all day. Start learning by using a pressure washer by trying out pressure washers in home depot or borrowing a friend’s for a week and using it every day to clean. Try all the different types of surfaces such as:

Your driveway, House, Coating, Car, Table, Mower, Trash can, Grill, Yard, Piece of furniture, Deck, etc.

The initial practice is a foundational step for you to become a professional pressure washer. Some surfaces such as driveways and wood decks can be very challenging to wash, but a quick YouTube search will point you in the right direction.

What Do People Pay For Pressure Washing Service

Some of the most successful companies in this industry have many repeat customers. For simple jobs like pressure washing a car, pressure washing companies charge a flat fee of around $50 to $100, which includes “details.” Detailing is the final job after the pressure cleaning is done. Includes waxing the vehicle and making it look new.

Another pillar of this business is the cleaning of the exterior surfaces of the buildings. Cleaning a vehicle costs about $50 to $100. Washing trucks and boats would be about double that amount.

Pressure Washing Business Startup and Equipment Costs

pressure washing equipments

The main start-up cost is the rental of the equipment and the transportation to convey the equipment to work at the customer’s facility. The transport is usually a van with company advertising painted on the van to attract more customers when the van is running with the pressure washer. You do not need to have a physical facility, such as renting office space or workspace unless you want to offer pressure washing services to vehicles traveling on a major road.

The basic expenses to start this business include:

  • Leasing pressure washer equipment and water tanks $2,000 down and $700 per month for the equivalent of $25,000 worth of equipment.
  • Alternatively, you can purchase pressure washing equipment for a larger down payment (which would save you money in the long run). Pressure washers range from a few hundred dollars to more than $15,000. Consider what type of pressure washer you need to start your business.
  • Leasing of a commercial van that is equipped with pressure washing equipment: $450 per month.
  • Gasoline and vehicle maintenance $250 per month
  • Advertising (flyers and business cards): $200 per month

You’ll need good credit to get the equipment and truck leases, a few thousand dollars to get you started with a down payment, plus enough to pay the lease payments for the first six months while you find customers. You can easily start this business with less than $10,000 in cash and finance the rest with credit. Your goals will be to generate $2,000 or more per month in paid jobs in order to create a sustainable business endeavor.

Licensing and Insurance

As with licenses and permits, your business needs insurance to operate safely and legally. Business insurance protects the financial well-being of your business in the event of a covered loss.

Every business has its own risks and some insurance policies are designed to suit such risks.  If you’re unsure of the types of risks your business may face, start with General Liability Insurance. This is the most common coverage small businesses need, making it a great place to start your business.

Another notable insurance policy that many businesses need is workers’ compensation insurance. If your business will have employees, your state will most likely require you to have workers’ compensation coverage.

Failure to obtain the necessary permits and licenses can result in heavy fines, or even cause your business to close.

 How much can you charge customers?

Pressure washing homes and commercial properties are very lucrative. You can charge by the square footage of exterior surfaces that are cleaned.

Home Advisor gives some examples of the price range for pressure washing a house. A typical homeowner will spend between $184 and $380 for a power wash of the house and its exterior surfaces.

These are some of the usual prices:

  • Exterior siding on a house: $100 to $300
  • Car ticket – $80 to $200
  • Terrace or patio – $250 to $500

Commercial properties pay $0.25 to $1.50 per square foot of exterior floor space. Higher rates are charged for multi-story buildings and include the rental cost of scaffolding or window washing equipment needed to reach the higher levels.

Cleaning a vehicle costs about $50 to $100. Washing trucks and boats would be about double that amount.

How much profit can a pressure washing company generate?

If you keep your equipment usage level high, you can expect to earn at least 100% of the amount you pay for your equipment lease per month. For example, if the monthly lease payments on a truck and equipment plus insurance are around $1,200, then you should be earning at least $2,400 per month as your minimum goal. If your main clients are homeowners, you will need to do 3-4 jobs per week to meet this minimum.

Marketing A Pressure Washing Service

The best promotion comes from word of mouth which happens naturally when you delight customers with the work you do. A campaign using handouts is also a good idea. Offering discounts to regular customers helps build a stable business. Scotrevealed that offering a commission to related businesses, such as an auto repair shop or landscaping company, for bringing customers is another great way to increase business. You can also undertake Facebook marketing by opening a Facebook page. Another efficient marketing step is to open a website and navigate your business on Google my business so you would get clients within and outside of your vicinity.

Managing A Pressure Washing Business

A clear plan is essential to success as an entrepreneur. It will help you map out the details of your business and uncover some unknowns. Recording your various expenses and sources of income is critical to understanding the financial performance of your business. Keeping accurate and itemized accounts also greatly simplify your annual tax return. Scot says that he uses jobber for invoicing and other financial records.

You will certainly have regular jobs once you grow in the business; hence, you should consider the scheduling of activities and contracts. Joist software will help in scheduling and planning of day to day activities.

Don’t fail to open a business bank account. This separates your personal assets from your business assets, which are necessary for the protection of personal assets.

It also makes filing taxes and accounting easy.

Alternatives To Starting A Pressure Washing Business

Pressure washing is a great side hustle for adding more bucks to your bank account because it requires little or no capital for start-up. Below are some of the alternative side hustles that you can use as an alternative to the pressure washing business.

  • Mobile Detailing
  • House Cleaning
  • Pet Waste Removal
  • Window Cleaning

Commercial and industrial pressure washing and power washing services are highly effective for extraction of grease, sand, and rubber, Stripping of paint or removal of graffiti, Elimination of mold formation, Removal of chemical residues and other contaminants, and creating a clean, healthy and safe environment and Deep disinfection.

Customers are naturally attracted to high-quality service and low prices. This is another place where word of mouth is extremely valuable. Satisfied customers will stick around and recommend your services to others.

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