photo by Black Diamond Window Works Ltd
Is Washing Windows a Good Side Hustle?
Is your current occupation getting you down? Are you looking to rake in some extra cash on the side to help pay the bills and even make a stash for a nice vacation?
Or, (what we at WCR really want to ask you):
Are you looking to build a profitable business that is scalable, will remain lucrative, and fulfilling for a lifetime built on honesty, integrity, balance, and vigor?
Window cleaning as a side hustle is absolutely doable. Many full-time workers who wish to make some money on the weekends take this up, as the work days can be shorter while the earnings are higher. Just know you’ll be competing against professionals who devote themselves to the trade 100% of the time. But, with more practice and persistence, you could eventually get to their level, become your own boss, and have more control over your life and finances.
If the latter is what sparked a fire within you, then we say welcome and recommend taking the plunge and reading forth!
What we at WCR have learned over the combined decades of window cleaning experience is that this business can be full of depth. So many people, including our own product specialists, have created fruitful, thriving, and prosperous professional window cleaning businesses from the ground up that provide them with so much more than a side gig could have. Many of them have stories similar to yours - they had a full-time job that was making ends meet but leaving them unfulfilled. Or they were fresh out of high school and didn’t have a career path chosen yet. Some were even college graduates who realized they could pave their own way going forward to use those learned skills in order to build something for themselves.
If none of these examples apply to you, don’t worry. Everyone has their own story and is the author of their next chapter. We’re going to guide you toward building a window cleaning business so you can move upward from your full-time job, your many side gigs, or even being unemployed to become your own boss, set your own hours, and reap the benefits of your own honest hard work.
In this week’s Window Cleaner University article, we’re going to talk about how window cleaning can become your next career move and provide all the tools you’ll need to get there with confidence.
Why Window Cleaning?
There are numerous reasons why window cleaning is a great business to begin. Not only is it fulfilling to help beautify people’s homes and businesses, but you help create a healthier environment with cleaner air to breathe, which can become extremely profitable and scalable.
Starting up a window cleaning business can cost you less than $100. You can also get yourself a traditional extension pole which could easily pay for itself in one or two jobs so you can reach windows that are higher up. But truthfully, to start out, all you’ll need are the basic traditional window cleaning tools: a t-bar and mop, a complete squeegee, soap concentrate, and a bucket. Technique, know-how, and practice is what comes next.
WCR has curated these great starter kits, so you don’t have to do any of the guesswork:
For the budget-conscious: Ettore Basic Kit
A good middle-ground: Ettore Cleaning and Dusting Kit
For the committed: Residential Supreme Kit
For those going all-in: Pro Trad Kit
How to Lock-in Technique
Despite YouTubers like SteveO the Window Cleaner making window cleaning look easy, it took him and people like him hundreds of tries before getting to be as advanced as they are now. Learning proper window cleaning technique is one of the most important things you’ll need to know before getting started on other people’s properties. The first thing you’ll want to learn is how to perform a basic straight pull with your squeegee. Before using a squeegee on glass, you’ll want to ensure that it’s wet with soap solution, which you can make in your bucket with just a squeeze of Dawn Dish Detergent and water from your hose.
Using your mop and t-bar, soak-up the solution and saturate the glass with it, including the entire surface area, the corners, and the frame. Once your glass is lubricated, you’ll want to place your squeegee at the very cop in a corner and pull it down using minimal movement yet great focus. Make sure you are breathing evenly and fully, as this can affect your muscles and the tension you’ll hold or release while cleaning.
Once you’ve cleared a section, continue pulling it down until the entire window is done. Then, run the squeegee across the bottom of the frame, and wipe away the remaining liquid with a towel. When practicing, the final step of detailing with a towel is not completely necessary, for you’ll be rewetting the glass over and over again. Look out for things like streaks and blade chatter when the squeegee rubber hops up off the glass and snags on the way down.
Finding the angle that works best for you to get a clean swipe takes practice, but remember: WCR has specialists that are just a phone call away. Ask us any questions you may have at 862-266-0677. As well, practice doing a basic straight pull hundreds of times on a large window until you feel like you have the hang of it. You’ll want to really try to perfect your technique and nail down your own methods before bringing them to a customer.
Another technique you’ll be able to learn to do by hand or by extension pole is fanning. Fanning is going to be more complex to learn than straight-pulling with your squeegee, but once you’re confident with that technique as well, it will allow you to become faster and make cleaning windows easier. Once you gain speed and are able to maintain it without leaving streaks, you’ll have more time to bring your attention to the next task to learn. For fanning windows, you’ll want to begin with your squeegee channel vertically on the glass. Create a rainbow or a hill shape, following the shape with your squeegee. You will go back and forth with this shape pattern until you are able to flatten and “close out” your squeegee pull. For a visual aid, we recommend this video.
Always remember to maintain a comfortable posture and to take breaks when needed. Your health and well-being is vital to get into the habit of prioritizing, especially if you are planning to be in charge of a business.
Who You Can Go to For Help
Window Cleaning Resource is proud to reiterate that we have a team of professionals who can spend quality time with you on the phone, in the chat window in the bottom right-hand corner, and by email. WCR also has an incredible free community page with infinite discussions on all things window cleaning. There, you can make connections, learn tips and tricks, and have support when you need it the most. The advice given for window cleaning and starting your own business is absolutely priceless.
Furthermore, you can subscribe to AWC Magazine. This window cleaner’s magazine has been published for years and has hundreds of issues full of thousands of articles on all-things window cleaning. WCR also has tons of these issues available free to download whenever you wish to educate yourself further.
Once you develop your technique, leave windows streak-free, and increase your speed and agility, you’ll then be able to tackle other aspects of the job, such as screen cleaning, sill cleaning, track cleaning, and cleaning indoors. As you’re practicing around your home, take notes every time to see what you’re struggling with, what you’re improving on, and what is remaining stable (or stagnant if you’re not improving). Then, give a specialist a call to discuss the individual issues you’re having. We’ve got your back!
Where You Can Find Clients
Finding your first clients as a new window cleaner can begin as close to home as your extended family, your next-door neighbor, your local deli, or a nearby car dealership. Utilizing local bulletin boards, social media pages such as Facebook and Instagram, and even creating a TikTok account to show off your squeegee-skills can help attract people to you and allow them to see how great you are. Furthermore, sending out mailers with the help of WCR’s print department can help get your name out to homeowners within a 10 mile radius of your choosing. Contact small businesses nearby that are close to one another, and even place fliers all over your town. Your success is ultimately up to you and the amount of muscle and hustle you put forth. Just remember: no matter how hard it may seem, the ultimate reward is incomparable. Plus, always remember: if you’re feeling stuck, overwhelmed, or hopeless, help is just a phone call away.
You got this!
Still Have Questions?
Don’t sweat it! If there is anything you’re unsure about, want to learn more about, or need advice for, do not hesitate to reach out to us. Window Cleaning Resource is here for you 24/7, with the help of our super-friendly window cleaning experts.
Having owned their own window cleaning business, too, they have tons of information on window cleaning products, business tips, and more, even if you want to talk shop.
This equipment and HUNDREDS more products can be discovered on our fantastic Window Cleaning Resource platforms!
For product reviews, discussions, information, and more:
Check out our informative YouTube Channel
Get advice, share tips, or just talk shop on our Window Cleaning Community Page
Shop professional-grade window cleaning products and more at WCR!
And most importantly - get out there, believe in yourself, work hard, and don’t forget - the rewards of this career are bountiful - so, have fun!
Talk to you soon!
Your friendly professionals at Window Cleaning Resource
Window Cleaning Resource
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