How to start a carpet cleaning business
Lets talk about everything you need to know in order to start a carpet cleaning business and be successful at it. We are going to walk you through how to form your business as well as how to perform the actual trade of carpet cleaning. You are about to learn how to;
- Start your LLC
- Get your EIN
- Open a business bank account
- Get the proper equipment
- Properly clean carpet
Srvcly currently has an online course, “the future pros starter course,” that you can take right now. In the course you will see step by step videos on how to do everything needed to form your new carpet cleaning business. Register now and enroll in the course.
The hardest part of this process is deciding to start your business. Even after watching hours of motivational videos on youtube, you still may feel hesitant. The timing may not feel right, finances may not be in order, or your loved ones may not be on board with your decision. It may even be that you have a good secure job that you must leave in order to start your carpet cleaning business. These are all scary, but also very normal situations for people starting their own business to be in. The saying goes, “If it were easy, everyone would do it.”
The good news is that, you can learn everything you need to know from that decision on. You can learn how to form your business, how to get work coming in, how to close jobs, and how to perform the trade of cleaning carpets. It is important to know that even if you decide to start your carpet cleaning business, you still might fail.
How I started
In 2010 I decided to enter the pool service trade and start my own business. At the time I knew nothing about pools, how they worked, or even how to clean them. I hadn’t even cleaned the pool that I grew up with over the years. I’m telling you, I knew nothing about pools and had no idea how difficult it was to start a business. There were even times I remember saying that, had I known how difficult it was to run a business, I probably never would have started.
I entered the industry as a 1099 contractor working for my parents neighbor that owned his own pool service business. I had just gotten married and with the money from our wedding I bought a 1995 single cab Toyota Tacoma. One day visiting my parents, their neighbor walked over and asked if id be interested in servicing his pools for him. He said my truck would work great and that I could make some good money. Three months later I had my own business and no longer worked for him.
My companies name was Pool Rescuers and after I sold it in 2021 it still operates today. I still remember getting my first client off a craigslist add that I had posted a day or two earlier. In the beginning I did everything myself. I would wake up early every morning service my pools for the day and then finish the day off with a couple repairs. Id then go home and spend some time in the office invoicing out customers and responding to emails.
I quickly started getting to busy for just me and I needed to find help. I started hiring techs and training them on how to service a pool according to my standards. A few more clients, a few more techs, and a few more trucks later I was running my own service crew. I kept learning how business works and kept growing at a healthy rate. After a few solid years of growth I started hiring employees to manage the increasingly busy office.
At the end of my 11 years in business I had 6 full time service techs servicing and repairing 400 pool accounts. I had three office ladies helping my answer phone calls and emails as well as invoicing and receiving payments. I was completely out of the field and had the time to work directly with my service technicians and office staff. This lead me to where I am today, helping you.
Why I am teaching you
Through out my years I have always made an effort to talk to other business owners. Not just other pool service business owners, but also owners from other trades. I realized that aside from the actual trade work, home service business’s are much alike. Many business owners have the same story, have the same desires, have the same struggles, and have the same needs as one another. So I decided to sell my business, the well oiled money making machine I built and help future pros get started in the business.
Over the years I have helped multiple individuals start their own business. I have helped pool pros, carpet cleaners, window cleaners, handyman all start and run their business. To date I still communicate on a regular schedule with most of the pros that I have helped. After repeating this process over and over, I decided to stream line it by creating the future pro starter course. So lets break down the course and get you started.
Form your business
There are three different ways you can get involved in carpet cleaning and start receiving an income from it. You can become a;
- W2 employee
- 1099 contractor
- Company owner
I know you aren’t here to learn how to become a w2 employee so we are going to move directly to becoming a 1099 contractor or a company owner. Both of these are going to require you to set up your own business. The difference is becoming a 1099 contractor is work that is provided to you from other company owners. They have the work and they sub it to you to perform the work. This is a very quick and easy way to get started. Going straight to company owner requires a little more effort and can be hard at the beginning. Company owners typically do work directly for the home owner. This usually requires a large inner circle of friend and family or a strong knowledge of marketing. No matter if you want to be a 1099 contractor a company owner or both, you are going to need to form a Limited Liability Company, also known as a LLC.
File Your LLC
When you file a LLC you create what is called a entity. This entity is not you, you are not it, it is its own thing. In order to protect yourself and your assets from a lost during any litigations it is important to start and operate under a LLC. The cheapest way to file your LLC will be through your states commission corporation. Each state has its own process of how they require you to file your LLC and they also charge different fees depending on which state you are located in.
I have found that the easiest way to file a LLC, no matter what state you are located in, is Legal Zoom. Legal Zoom has step by step instructions on how to file your LLC no matter what state you are filing in. The only bad part of this is that they also charge their own processing fee. Also, they try and upsell you at every step. At the bottom of every page there is a “skip” button. You are just there to file the LLC and I suggest skipping everything else. If you are tight on money and able to figure out how to file the LLC directly though your state, I suggest doing it that way over legal zoom.
Get Your EIN
You need a EIN or tax identification number which is a nine digit number given to you by the IRS in order to identify your business. This combined with your LLC will allow you to open up a business bank account keeping everything separate from your personal information. You can acquire your EIN after filing for your LLC by going to the IRS website during their business hours.
If you choose to file your LLC through Legal Zoom they will ask you if you want to get your EIN while filing and they will charge you. This is not needed as you can file for your EIN for free. Just going to their website and follow the prompts. Its easy to do.
Open Your Bank Account
Now that you have your LLC and EIN it is ready to open up your business bank account. You do not want to use a personal bank account at any time while operating your business. Go into the bank of your choice and get this started. I suggest a checking account for all your customer payments to go into as well as a savings account for your quarterly estimate tax payments to be transferred to. If you are good with credit cards I would also suggest applying for one. I like to put as many expenses as possible on my business credit card for two reasons. It prevents me from separating from my cash until the end of the month and it builds credit within your business.
General Liability Insurance
Before stepping foot onto any property to perform work you need to make sure that you have general liability insurance or GLI. GLI is going to make sure you have the proper coverage incase anything happens to yourself, the property you are working on, or anything else that is on the property. In my opinion this is a must. You can acquire a free quote from Next insurance from the comfort of your own phone. Next caters towards us home service pros and makes it easy to insure our business. They are at times a bit more pricy than your local insurance provider so if you have the time, shop around. Just make sure that you have coverage before you start the work.