How much can a one man show make?


#1

How much can a one man show make per year cleaning windows? Mostly residential since it typically brings in the bigger buck. 50K, 75K, 100K? One limiting factor too in the northeast is we only have about 30 weeks a year for resi work. Boston Mike maybe you could help me with this question. Thanx everyone.

Henry


#2

Gross or net?

Are you asking how much people actually make or how much they think they could make?

Do you want to know how many hours of work?

Hi Henry! I was just thinking of you today when I read something chemistry-related.


#3

based on what I’ve been making when I work by myself lately and the type of customers we have been focusing on if I work by myself and worked really hard at it I could make 130 k a year


#4

That would be gross. And yes how much they actually would take in for the year. Every dollar. For hours I am thinking a forty hour work week, 8 per day for a young guy. I only do four or five now. Mostly stores with an occasional house.

Also don’t let me fool anyone. Sure I like atoms and molecules. But I have just as much affection for making money as the rest of us.

Henry


#5

Leavingnc that is great. And I totally get you when you say type of customer. That would take specific marketing techniques. But once you seed the marketplace and get about 25 houses, your customers will sell for you. So that specific market will spread on its own. People talk. We just have to find creative ways to help them do that. And with resi work it is all about trust. Total trust.

Henry


#6

I guess I feel like there is a dream world and a real world.

I suppose I’ll get some push-back on this, but there are only so many of the residential customers we can make $150/hour (strictly Window Cleaning) on. If we could clone all of those perfect jobs and fill a year with them, that would be fantastic.

In reality, an 8 hour day often results in 6.5-7 hours of job time. We also lose many days to bad weather.

I would see $120K being the extreme upper end, and it would require almost everything going perfectly for an entire year (including your health).

My personal opinion is that most successful solo ops are capping out closer To $70K.


#7

As @TJGibson8 points out, there are only so many people willing to buy our (luxury) services at our prices. Let’s be honest, a good solo guy is going to be more expensive than the guy running crews.

It’s also hard for the solo guy to find balance. Resi is the prime place to make the bucks, but it’s seasonal for many of us. If you fill your schedule with store front, or dedicate 2-3 days of it, you are limiting the amount of resi you can take on.

I think 100k plus is pretty hard to do if you have very much store front work. To make it to 100K, I believe you need to be in a warmer climate and do far more commercial and resi. One man, even equipped with WFP, can only do so much in a day.


#8

I’m going to have to second that, well said.


#9

I know of several solo ops grossing 150-160k a year and one that topped over 200K!

possibilities abound


#10

Henry: You asked me to chime in and I have to say I don’t really know. I got back into window cleaning when I was 55 so I’m slow. Working solo I’m very happy with $1000 a week because I only work 3/4 days and not every day. It rains and snows I like long weekends. I do all storefronts now no more residential because it’s to dangerous. haha
I like the storefronts…


#12

Realistic for sure but you have to build up a nice customer list first.


#13

To me, this is a better picture of reality.

I think sometimes we take a snapshot of our best day and say, “If I can reproduce this five days per week for 50 weeks, BOOM!”

But that is EXTREMELY hard to do.


#14

That is fantastic.

I know a guy who subs out an empire of WC and PW and probably makes $60-$70K, and he only personally works 2-3 day per MONTH. Crazy, but possible, I suppose.

I think those situations probably take a combination of events, though, and it’s probably quite difficult to build that.


#15

That’s your answer Henry. You know Window Cleaning. Most guys are in the middle. I think?

The guys hitting 100k know what it means to hustle. I’m to old to hustle.


#16

In my area (no snow days) it is completely reasonable for one guy to produce between 100-130k per annum.

The trick here would be to prop up the summer months with low-rise commercial jobs until the seasonal residents with money come down and it starts to rain cash.

Also, keep in mind that 100k doesn’t buy as much in Florida or California as it does in many other places.


#17

First-year solo I did 70k mainly residential storefront while building the commercial accounts in a seasonal climate.

There are many variables with this.

Individual experience, business and trade, Location, Climate, seasonal

I would guess the average solo operation washing windows likely hovers around that $80k-100k range annually by the 3rd year.


#18

Good post Mike.


#19

Realistically with out killing your self you can be at 60-80ka year


#20

I would second that.


#21

Well said. I can relate about the bad weather. We get so much rain that I had to move to a 4 day work week to keep my stress levels down. Now if I have a rainy day, I clean the inside of the house I have scheduled that day. Then I go back on my day off to clean the outside of that house. This has worked really well.