When we go into business for ourselves, we want to be sure that our income will cover our expenses–those we plan for and those that pup up, unexpectedly–and that we will actually make money. This is a reasonable concern for the laundromat business as it is for any business.
Let’s take a look at operating costs. While this won’t be a comprehensive discussion, covering every expense you may encounter, we’ll certainly touch upon the major items you are wise to consider before making a final decision to buy or build a laundromat.
Fixed Costs: Month-to-month expenses that won’t change are your rent or mortgage payments, along with your insurance payments. Those will be your biggest monthly bills, but you can easily budget for them; they will be the same every month. This is true regardless of the season or the amount of business you do.
Of course, utilities and commercial real costs vary depending on where you are in the United States, and even from town to town. Do your due diligence before making final decisions regarding these expenses.
Equipment: You can’t own and operate a laundromat without washers and dryers, right? While it may be tempting to purchase or keep older machines, especially if you are assuming ownership of an existing laundromat, it may make more financial sense to buy new, if your individual circumstances allow it.
Utilities: Newer, industrial-quality washers and dryers are more energy efficient. This means you’ll save money on your monthly utilities, including water, gas and electric bills. With energy-efficient machines, you can expect your utility bills to average about 18-25 percent of your monthly gross expenses. If you have older models of equipment, it’s likely you need to budget as much as 30 percent of monthly gross costs to cover utilities.
Maintenance: Further, newer machines will require less maintenance as they will come with warranties. That means fewer costly repairs that you need to scrape up money to cover. Equipment never breaks down at an ideal time; there is never a good time for your laundromat to be out of commission. A machine needing repair, even for a day or two, is not making you money.
When a customer needs to do laundry, they aren’t going to bend to your schedule. They may choose a different facility and never come back. Also, word about a laundromat with out-of-service machines is going to make its way around the neighborhood.
A Cost-Effective Solution to Keep Customers Happy and Your Books in the Black!
An easy and efficient way to track machine usage and gross income is by installing the ShinePay payment system in your laundromat. More and more laundromats are moving away from coin-operated washers and dryers, which means owners are spending less on labor because there’s no need to empty coin boxes or taking trips to the bank to make deposits.
Moreover, the ShinePay app is great for your customers! They don’t need to bring cash or get change. It’s safer and easier to do laundry at laundromats that use this technology. It’s a win-win for you and your customers!
When you are considering opening a business, it’s completely understandable that you are focused on costs–all costs add up. In fact, if you weren’t thinking about dollars and cents you may want to rethink this investment. However, to paraphrase a cliché: Don’t be penny wise and dollar foolish. The least expensive option upfront may end up costing you more in the long run.
Whether it’s choosing to use older washers and dryers, or opting for a cashless payment system like ShinePay, it is absolutely true that making smart investments upfront may save you big money. And, like everything else, you’ll soon learn, doing it right the first time will make you a successful laundromat business owner.