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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all, I'm interested in starting a business with my 19 year old daughter. We've talked about a few different start up ideas but we've settled on commercial cleaning. I'm here to find out, if you had ZERO experience, would you try to start it yourself or start with a Jan-Pro franchise?

We live near near the Saratoga Race Course in upstate NY and we're only 30-40 minutes from the capital, Albany NY.

Our goal is to start this commercial cleaning company slowly so we can first learn the ins and outs of the industry. (we've read countless web pages and have watched hundreds of youtube videos. And we will continue to educate ourselves during the process) Then scale it as quickly as we can comfortably grow, while still working our current jobs. ( I work 45 hrs a week but at 19, she only works 10-20 a week currently)

The income will be used to pay off debt and will be put back into the company. Once I have no debt, or a debt load that is minimal, I'll leave my 6 figure job and grow the company even more. We have 6 month, 1 yr, 5 yr and 10 yr goals for ourselves and the company's revenue.

We'd greatly appreciate your expert opinions and it's nice to know we have people to go to for questions, who have been or are currently, in the trenches!

Thanks in advance!

-Frank & Kaylee-
 

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Frank & Kaylee. I can only speak about my experience with my local Jan-Pro Franchise. I bought into Jan-Pro at the entry level which included 2 accounts and training. I had my own commercial accounts and was doing okay but wanted to break into / get more accounts in the medical field.
Jan-Pro promised/told me they would help me to get more medical accounts and training neither of these ever happened.
Training consisted of sitting in the Jan-Pro office and watching general cleaning dvds and at the end there was a test.
The accounts they offered me were as follows:
2 buildings 1 small building which they forgot to include in the initial walk thru and didn't include in the 1 st payment to me. Jan-Pro Goof #1
which Jan-Pro did re bid and adjusted the monthly and then the account moved to a new location after a few months so Jan-Pro offered me a replacement account--Give them Credit for That.
Be Careful, Read The New Account Specs Carefully: example Jan-Pro told they had an account that was 1 floor office space BUT when we arrived at the account and looked at the specs there were 2 floors of offices not 1.Jan-Pro Goof #2
The Jan-Pro business manager let it slip that he thought Jan-Pro Service Franchisees should earn about $20 per hour--this was time ago.
Jan-pro did offer me some FREE Accounts, they waived all purchase account fees and only charged the monthly franchise fees. But this type of account was few and far between.
Jan-Pro did offer some training in strip & wax flooring and I think carpet cleaning.
Again I did the Jan-Pro ten years ago so perhaps they have changed their training and procedures. And I get it is tempting to possibly step into some accounts and have some income rolling in each month.
The advantage I had previously to Jan-Pro is that I had been in the commercial cleaning business for several years and had a grasp of what what it took me to service __ sq ft per hour. which helped me to walk away from some of the accounts they offered me.
Of the 5 accounts I did for Jan-Pro only 1 was a High profit account. 1 Account moved to a new location (as mentioned above) 2 accounts were moderately profitable and 1 was a low profit account and 1 account I lost because of customer complaints after 1 service day.
So to recap: Jan-Pro Did: Offered me accounts - Paid each month - Followed thur with requested account rate increases - Provided customer service reviews--in some cases - Corrected bidding errors & adjusted monthly payment -- Did provide Business Insurance & Bond which you paid for each month.
Jan-Pro Did Not: offer any medical office account training -- often got the new account specs wrong -- Training in general could have been much better and thorough -- No advice or suggestions on products to use ( my local jan-pro had a products store but closed it)
Remember Jan-pro is in the business to sell franchises and get accounts to sell to franchisees, My opinion, I don't think they approach perspective new accounts to get the highest billing amount but settle to get a lower billable amount to get the account which they sell to you.
My Best Advice... clean an office space 1X or 2X dust the desks & file cabinets & window sills & clean lunch room, vacuum the carpet, mop the floors clean the restroom, clean the blinds and take out the trash & recycle and record how long it takes you to do each task and measure the total space cleaned. Now you have more info and will be better informed when doing a walk thru for a bid.
Brad BD Janitorial
P.S. there have been some web sites pertaining to Lawsuits against Jan-Pro and some other Janitorial Franchisors, so do some searching and best of luck to you and your daughter
 

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Oh and 1 more thing to consider the franchise route. Remember you have to pay taxes on your Jan-Pro income.
so if Jan-pro takes 25% and your estimated income tax bracket is 20% the 55% left over is yours. Then there is State Tax to factor in also which will reduce your 55% even further.
Brad BD Janitorial
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Oh and 1 more thing to consider the franchise route. Remember you have to pay taxes on your Jan-Pro income.
so if Jan-pro takes 25% and your estimated income tax bracket is 20% the 55% left over is yours. Then there is State Tax to factor in also which will reduce your 55% even further.
Brad BD Janitorial
Thanks Brad! The other thought is to use JP as a stepping stone to learn the business and eventually get comfortable with bidding jobs. Once I can bid a job, I feel confident that we could / would venture out on our own and phase out JP.
 

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Hey all, I'm interested in starting a business with my 19 year old daughter. We've talked about a few different start up ideas but we've settled on commercial cleaning. I'm here to find out, if you had ZERO experience, would you try to start it yourself or start with a Jan-Pro franchise?

We live near near the Saratoga Race Course in upstate NY and we're only 30-40 minutes from the capital, Albany NY.

Our goal is to start this commercial cleaning company slowly so we can first learn the ins and outs of the industry. (we've read countless web pages and have watched hundreds of youtube videos. And we will continue to educate ourselves during the process) Then scale it as quickly as we can comfortably grow, while still working our current jobs. ( I work 45 hrs a week but at 19, she only works 10-20 a week currently)

The income will be used to pay off debt and will be put back into the company. Once I have no debt, or a debt load that is minimal, I'll leave my 6 figure job and grow the company even more. We have 6 month, 1 yr, 5 yr and 10 yr goals for ourselves and the company's revenue.

We'd greatly appreciate your expert opinions and it's nice to know we have people to go to for questions, who have been or are currently, in the trenches!

Thanks in advance!

-Frank & Kaylee-
I just read this post. You may want to start by subcontracting work from other companies. Janitorial Franchise companies do not have a good track record. for example You do not own the accounts they assign to you. they normally charge you a new account fee PLUS their regular fees. (I live in Dallas) when you put all their fees together they get 50% and as soon you pay the finders fee off, they will take the account from you and place it with another franchisee. a few years ago almost ALL janitorial companies were involved in a class-action lawsuit. (Google that).

Most of the Janitorial franchise agreements have a No competition clause, which means if you leave and start your own company they can stop you (Not saying they will) but it's possible.
 
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