Can you believe this


Translation: “I can’t budget my income.” Or possibly, “I’m not quite to the point of earning as much as I need for the year during the busy season.”

I can relate to both scenarios :smirk:


Plus 1. I hung onto my storefronts for a long time out of fear. It’s not like I had all that many, but there was a sense of security somehow, that I at least had x$ I could “count on” each month. Truth is, I haven’t missed them a bit. And I couldn’t even count on that income consistently, since a lot of my storefronts were in a summer tourism town and more than a couple would discontinue service during the winter months. The route just got in the way of scheduling better paying residential during the summer months.

I have exactly one storefront that I kept mostly just for fun, since it’s 5 minutes from my house, and is easy to do on my day off. The owners are well connected with the community and have a flow of wealthy customers, so the references and visibility pay dividends in residential work.

If winter cash flow is really that much of concern, I would suggest raising prices, analyzing the budget to see if you’re being too spendy during the busy season, and possibly branching out into more lucrative seasonal work, like snow removal.

On the other hand, some guys actually prefer route work. More power to them :+1:t2:



I meant I need income into the business to start advertising for residential. I initially told the wife I could start this very cheap. I purchased all of my stuff from my career income, started the LLC, got my venders license which is required in Ohio. I started my business bank account which required 100$ down out of my career income. I am nearing 1000$ invested and I have not made a single dollar yet. Match that up with the struggle at the fire department, bringing home a new baby. Needless to say I am a little terrified to ask the boss if I can spend money on marketing material. As of now I have about 18$ in my business account. Really from this point forward I want the business to fund my equipment, marketing and any other expenses that arise within the company. I think I am going to try and convince the wife that I really need to buy decent residential fliers. I just am afraid of work being a issue and not getting a return on my money.


lol your right on half. I have zero income to budget from the business. Today I have earned 0$ within my business. We are phenomenal at budgeting our regular full time income. We are debt free because of budgeting. I just need income within the business to further invest in marketing the business.


Marketing material can be as simple as printer ink and printer paper. Do four flyers per sheet of paper times 100 sheets = 400 fliers. You may be surprised at the results.



Marketing and sales are the life blood of your business and your future as a business owner.

Don’t be afraid to invest in your future.

Get out there and make it happen NOW, busy season for window cleaning and pressure washing industry is upon us.


@cruzzer3 you can buy cheap business cards, and go door to door at houses. I had better results with that than door hangers, though you may have different results. Also I have most of my resi from storefront. Now i am transitioning into midrise with a wfp, but door to door with a sales pitch helped me to get some fast cash when I first started. In my area, people want to see a trustworthy face, and are more willing to invest when they realize i am a solo operator/small business. You could try it for a 2- 3 days off and see how it works for you.


learn too network network network and network

just finished a four story hotel all because of a referral.

ive done plenty of work for people i meet out in town. wear your uniform shirts everywhere get a small one made for you baby and take the newborn out cha ching


Your the boss, spend your hard earned money!

You need to spend money to make money. I have spent tons of career money and I give back from business money. Spend the career cash, go get 2 residential jobs and pay yourself back.


“Don’t let money run your life, let money help you run your life better.”

  • John Rampton, CEO of Due.


I can respect your wanting to keep to your word. But realistically, starting any business for under $5k is cheap.

At a certain point, I remember going door to door in nicer neighborhoods with nothing more than my business cards, a smile, and a short pitch. I don’t think I even had lettering on the vehicle or my shirt. But I pulled in work with that method. Most of the money went to pay past due bills, but with some of it I bought decent shop-printed fliers, and then eventually when we weren’t so close to the bone, I was able to get some big magnets for the vehicle and embroidered polos. Those made me a little more confident in pitching more work, and eventually I no longer found myself going door to door.

On a different line of thought: have you setup your page on Google Places(/business/local/whatever they’re calling it this week) yet? How bout Yelp and all the free directories?
Your own website?

I’d estimate that 80% of new customers find us online. The rest are word of mouth or seeing our vehicle.


I wish more people were upfront and honest about the actual investment to start a business…

So many wanna be “stars” in this business, trying to convince people you can start a window cleaning business with 50 or 100 bucks.

It’s always a substantial investment, starting a business. My first year in business, I put every dime earned, back into my business, besides my initial investment that I made buying tools, license and insurance, and marketing.

Your initial investment was to form the “vehicle” known as your business.
Now you need to put “gas” in the gas tank, known as marketing.

My advice would be IF you are going to invest in marketing, either have a pro write it for you OR show your marketing copy to the guys here to critique it. You want to have good copy going out, to maximize your results. Otherwise that could turn into a bad investment at a critical stage in your growth.


Yup. I was about $25k deep when we got started.


i did…


our first start up was $1500 still running

2nd close too $10k but running strong since it’s already established.

look up dave ramsey and some of the leaders he recommends. many salesbooks and podcasts available. tons of great info.

nothing wrong with buildin up slowly. i jumped in with both feet on both occasions for us


I suppose you can see it that way.

But you couldn’t possibly have had everything in place to be a legitimate business.

I guess we could start a “grocery store” selling groceries out of the trunk of a car, but most of the world wouldn’t consider it a legit business.


but thats not apples to apples. you can’t start a restaurant on $50 but you can get everything you need to clean a basic window, therefore you can offer the service, therefore you are a business.


I think it’s VERY apples to apples…

So, for 50 bucks, you are getting ALL your basic equipment and supplies, a business license, and buying insurance?
Yeah, I don’t think so. Let alone any room for marketing.

I understand a shoestring budget. That’s not one of them.

Starting off on the right foot and being legit takes more than 50 bucks in ANY business.

I could build a model rocket and call myself a rocket scientist if I wanted to, but that doesn’t make me one.


while these will be needed for a larger business and a good idea they ARE NOT REQUIRED to start a business in my town. we’ve been over this before, you cannot impose your preferences on the legitimacy of another business. In my city you are not required to buy a business license until you are making $400 a month. It is easy to start with $50 worth of equipment and wait until you’ve made that $400 to purchase other things such as a business license and grow from there. Yes if you do not have insurance you are taking the liability on personally but it does not illegitimate the fact that you are a business.


Legitimacy and legality are different. If the law doesn’t require it, one is free to make their own choice on the matter. As @leavingnc stated, the individual then takes the risk if they do not carry.

We are in an “industry” that has little to no regulations, aside from what one’s state may dictate regarding businesses. We aren’t wiring buildings, running pipe, affecting structure. There is no exam. There is no college course. There is not even a Window Cleaning shop offered at any vocational school.

We want so badly to distinguish ourselves from the mythical Bucket Bob, when really maybe he is simply a figment of our subconscious speaking the truth to us from within from the very start. Once we acknowledge that truth, we can begin searching for the true reasons for being legit.