Cleaning businesses have increased in popularity over the last few years. The sector gets a lot of attention for many reasons, mainly how easy it is to start. In addition, we see social media influencers share their favourite cleaning tips or shots from unusual cleanup jobs, which adds to the allure of this profession. 

But is starting a cleaning business a good idea in reality? Find out:

  • Is starting a cleaning business a good idea?
  • What are the advantages of a cleaning business?
  • What are the downsides to owning a cleaning business?
  • How can I make financial management easier?

Is starting a cleaning business a good idea?

Starting a cleaning business can be a great idea for several reasons. 

Easy to set up

Cleaning businesses belong to one of the easier types to set up by yourself. Generally, when thinking about starting a business, you’re faced with a mountain of questions like:

  • Do I need to rent a space to work? 
  • Do I need to hire staff? 
  • How am I going to gather the funds to kickstart the business? 
  • Do I need to buy stock or materials, or how will I create a product or service? 

But, when starting a cleaning business, you don’t need to worry about any of these things. Beyond the standard tasks of starting any business (registering, insurance, branding, and so on), all you need are cleaning supplies and maybe a car to get started.

Low start-up costs

Because of how easy a cleaning business is to set up, you won’t have many startup costs to pay when starting your own cleaning business. Instead, you can begin cleaning peoples’ houses using products you already own and your vehicle to get around. Learn more about using your personal car for work.

More freedom and control

Running your own business gives you more control over your schedule and income. Being self-employed means you decide when you work, what clients you’ll clean for and how much to charge. 

Once you become more experienced and build a name for yourself, you can increase the prices to generate more income. It’s important to consider how to inform clients of a price increase delicately to maintain those good relationships.

Many niches to choose from

You also have a few different options for the type of cleaning jobs you want to do. For example, you can work solely for households (domestically) or progress onto:

  • Business cleans
  • Medical cleaning
  • End of tenancy cleans
  • Crime scene cleanups

Bear in mind that some areas require more planning and money to start. For example, medical or crime scene cleanups are more complex than domestic cleaning. Among other things, you’ll need a bigger budget to cover additional costs, such as:

  • Purchasing specialist cleaning equipment
  • Potential hiring of staff to help you complete the jobs 
  • Protective gear, such as gloves, biohazard suits, rubber boots, and so on.

Downsides to owning a cleaning company

As with any business, some aspects aren’t as easy and enjoyable. 

Unsociable hours

Running your own cleaning business means you might end up working lots of hours to get it off the ground. In addition, some clients might require you to work evenings and weekends. For example, business cleaning could result in unsociable hours since you’ll clean the offices when everyone has gone home. 

It’s all on you

Sometimes unforeseen circumstances may force you to cancel on clients. To avoid losing money or customers, include an “In case of emergency” clause in your contract. This could state you have the right to reschedule in case something happens.

In addition, if you become unwell and unable to work or take time off for emergencies or a holiday, being self-employed may result in missing out on sick pay or holiday pay. So, you might want to take out income insurance to cover you if you can’t work.

Difficult customers

Dealing with unhappy customers and their complaints is always tricky, especially when you’re a business owner. Running your own business means you have no one else to support you. 

It’s also essential to set your boundaries with your clients to avoid confusion. Make sure your contact clearly states what tasks you’ll do and not, and what you expect from your clients. For example, if your job is to only hoover and wipe down surfaces, you don’t want to spend ages picking up clothes and dirty dishes to clear the space. 

Many responsibilities

Being self-employed directs all financial responsibility to you. Alongside your cleaning duties, you must also manage your bookkeeping and file a Self Assessment tax return when it’s due. 

You also need to budget for purchasing supplies, paying your bills, wage, insurance costs, and so on. On top of that, you’re responsible for booking and managing jobs to ensure you can fit everything in. That’s a lot to think about!

So, is starting a cleaning business a good idea?

As you can see, there are both advantages and drawbacks to starting a cleaning company. While a cleaning business is relatively easy to start, it’s crucial to ensure that it’s the right approach for you and your circumstances. 

Clean up your financial management with Countingup

As with any business, it’s crucial to keep your finances in good shape from day one and separate your business and personal transactions to avoid confusion and unnecessary paperwork. Luckily, keeping your finances in order is easy when using the Countingup app.

Countingup helps you manage your bookkeeping, accounting, taxes, and other financial admin with confidence and minimal effort. The app is easy for anyone to understand and use, and has lots of features available at your fingertips, mainly:

  • Business current account: Countingup is a unique two-in-one business account and accounting software that enables you to manage all your financial admin from one platform.
  • Accept and make payments with ease: Signing up gives you an account number, sort code, and a MasterCard contactless debit card to make payments easy.
  • Invoice on the go: You can create unlimited customised invoices and send them on the go with a few taps on your phone. The system alerts you when a client pays and automatically attach the payment to the relevant invoice to keep things organised.
  • Tax estimates: These are available all year round to help you calculate how much to set aside.

Find out more here.