Ready to turn your pressure washing skills into a profitable business? This career is a lucrative trade with plenty of demand. Many professionals in this field make significant revenue as solo entrepreneurs, but without proper planning, it can be challenging to find success.
So, before taking job orders, make sure you have your ducks in a row first. The following tips can help you land gigs, save money, and maximize revenue.
Create Your Business Strategy
Even though power washing houses or vehicles may seem pretty straightforward, if you do your research, you will see there are a couple of details you should have in order before taking your first job.
Specifically, take time to learn about your target market, which services are most popular in your area, and the types of products used to make things sparkly and shiny. If you aren’t familiar with these aspects of running your business, you risk causing serious damage to a customer’s property or not delivering the expected results.
Determine Your Scope of Business
You have a power washer, so that means you can clean anything, right? Wrong. Depending on your work, you may not be prepared or even know how to proceed. Consider focusing on one or two specific job types, like window cleaning or algae removal from house siding. As you gain more experience, or if your work plateaus, add on additional services you’re skilled in, such as paint removal or gutter cleaning.
By focusing on what you’re good at, you can devote more energy to quality and enhance your capabilities for those jobs. This can lead to bigger contracts with larger clients.
Purchasing Your Power Washing Equipment
The first few years of owning a business can be financially stressful. You have to invest quite a bit upfront, so it may be tempting to go with cheap equipment in the beginning. This approach usually isn’t a wise strategy because it could cost you more down the road in maintenance and repair expenses. Quality equipment tends to hold up longer and performs more reliably.
In addition to the quality of your power washing tools, you also need to ensure you buy the right products for the scope of your work. For example, if you’re power washing commercial buildings, you’ll need a lot of hosing and nozzle extenders to reach higher spots on a structure. You also want to ensure your washer has enough PSI to get the job done but also not cause damage to the client’s property.
Remember, getting your work done faster and safely means less time spent on a job. That means more money in your pocket.
Don’t Skimp on Business Insurance
As a pressure washing business owner, you will have a lot of liability on your hands when things go wrong. The reality is that power washing equipment is powerful and can cause significant bodily harm and property damage when a mistake gets made. Most commercial and residential contracts you bid on will require that you have at least a general liability insurance policy, but this is rarely enough and won’t cover every situation that opens your company up to financial risk.
When speaking with an insurance agent about your coverage options, they will likely recommend carrying much of the following depending on your business situation. Learn more here about tailored insurance packages for pressure waching businesses. There are several types of insurance policies to consider:
This coverage is a must-have policy option that defends your pressure washing business against third-party claims. Typical lawsuits that general liability insurance protects your company against include bodily injury, property damage, and/or false advertising accusations.
Many power washing businesses have employees to assist them in completing jobs. If they get injured or sick because of their work, this covers those claims and pays for costs associated with negligence claims against you. Most states require companies with at least one employee to carry this coverage.
Your equipment is the bread and butter of your business. One natural disaster, building fire, or act of vandalism can cost thousands in damages. What if your workspace is destroyed and you lose your equipment, cleaning products, and other supplies? How will you afford to replace it all? Commercial property insurance is designed for this situation, so you can’t pay for replacements out of your pocket.
Business Interruption Coverage
Speaking of insuring against natural catastrophes, when you’re unable to operate your business due to a loss, this coverage pays for the income you would’ve earned during that period. Maintaining your revenue during the recovery period following a devastating fire or destructive hurricane can be the only lifeline keeping your business afloat.
It’s not uncommon to use your personal vehicle to travel to different pressure washing jobs when you first start. However, standard car insurance probably won’t cover using your auto for business purposes like that. Commercial auto policies have higher coverage standards to cover the costs of damaged equipment and company vehicles if an accident occurs.
Professional Liability (E & O)
We’re all human, and mistakes happen. But, power washing is a professional service. General liability won’t be enough when a customer claims you were negligent, accuses you of misrepresenting your services, or you didn’t complete a job as agreed upon. Professional liability insurance handles professional mistakes and will even cover your legal defense and lawsuit settlement costs if you get sued.
Business Owner’s Policy (BOP)
With these coverage possibilities, you may be dreading the thought of juggling multiple policies. Fear not! Many insurers offer a Business Owner’s Policy for pressure washing companies. These are bundled coverages offered at a discounted price compared to purchasing them separately. BOPs usually include general liability, business interruption coverage, and commercial property protection. However, you may be able to have the insurer bundle additional policies for additional savings.
Creating your pressure washing business is an exciting step in creating a profitable career from what you originally thought of as just a side gig. Taking the time to understand the pros and cons of this industry can ensure you establish a sound financial strategy that provides the best service quality for your customers, maximizes your work opportunities, and protects your company assets against avoidable risks. Curious about what business insurance is best for your budding company?