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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For those who are from Maryland, DC and VA, I would like to know how's the cleaning business going for you? I'm very interested in starting my own commericial cleaning business. Are there a lot of rules and regulations I should know before I start going after contracts? Are there certain business's I shouldn't go after? Can you recommend an insurance and bond company? Should I apply for a DBE and 8A? Being a newly company, what type of contract should I start trying to obtain with first? My staff will be myself and a friend. Is foreclosure-cleaning big in our area and if so, would you suggest I try to hit that market also? I would love to hear back from you guys about my questions. I do have many more to ask also.
 

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For those who are from Maryland, DC and VA, I would like to know how's the cleaning business going for you? I'm very interested in starting my own commericial cleaning business. Are there a lot of rules and regulations I should know before I start going after contracts? Are there certain business's I shouldn't go after? Can you recommend an insurance and bond company? Should I apply for a DBE and 8A? Being a newly company, what type of contract should I start trying to obtain with first? My staff will be myself and a friend. Is foreclosure-cleaning big in our area and if so, would you suggest I try to hit that market also? I would love to hear back from you guys about my questions. I do have many more to ask also.
I'm from the Metro Washington area and I'll be honest with you. You appear to be looking for a shortcut. You want someone to drop all the anwers into your lap. Sort of like in high school when the student who did not study wanted those who did study to give him all the answers. Life is not that easy.

In business, you need to do research. And research does not come by having all answers handed to you on a silver platter.

Even the easy questions such as bonding companies. You could go to Google and type in "bonding insurance" and get that question answered quickly.

You ask whether or not there are a lot of rules and regulations. That tells me that without doing any digging on your own, you have decided to start a commercial cleaning company, yet have no idea what you are getting into---including the base stuff.

I tell everyone the same thing. Start by doing personal research. Go to Borders Bookstore and pick up a book on how to start a business in Maryland. Meet with a CPA. Read some books about commercial cleaning. You need a wealth of knowledge---far more than a single person can hand to you in one sitting.

You are going about it all wrong. Do your own footwork and come back after you have a base knowledge (at a minimum).
 

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This sounds like a legit person asking for advice. I was once there.

Cat, your response was one that would discourage me from ever returning to this site for any assistance. Google research is often a crazy drive on a road to nowhere, especially if you are new to the business searches.

Lighten up a bit and help folks out and don't assume everyone knows how to find all the answers.

cubedmack, i hope you stick around for other feedback.

suzi g
 

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CubedMack,

Lucky you! You are about to have your long list of questions answered by SuziQ.

Have fun!

P.S. - If my honest response is enough to chase you away from a cleaning board, I can guarantee you that you will not have the stomach to last in the cleaning business (or any business) for over a week.
 

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Hi Cubed
I am unfortunately not in your area, so I can't give you the local advice you are looking for, I hope you find someone who can :thumbup:

Too bad the only person to respond from your area didnt want to offer any friendly advice but as I have read among these boards and others, there are many who are really friendly and helpful

As a new business owner myself, I want to say to you good luck in your venture, there are so many things to learn and apply to your business, everybody does it differently, but you will always find someone who can relate to you

As someone who has done it on a shoestring ( which is an overstatement :D) my biggest advice is get creative with your advertising and marketing and networking

Everyone is a possible contact, be nice and professional to everyone you come across, I have been working on a cross marketing idea that I will post when I get it all set up, I am very optimistic about it because it will be beneficial to me as well as other small businesses. Think about things that you can do for others as they help you advance your business.

As for the regulations and stuff, you gotta find someone local to talk to. Call SBA or contact SCORE ( I think they are nationwide?) Or even just call local agencies, even if you dont call the right department, they will point you in the right direction.

Do read books, specifically on commercial cleaning, but also business books in general, you may get addicted to reading internet boards too, I did, learn from others.

Sorry so long, this was my first post, I read all the new posts but am so busy growing I havent taken the time to post, but felt compelled to encourage you :thumbsup:
 

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I gave Cubed the advice that will keep him in business. Research.

In a business that has 90% failure rate (and I believe it's higher) and as a peson who is in the middle of the trenches and survived my first year on top, I have given him some hard advice---but it's advice that will keep him in business. Do your own research and studying.

Hand holding and coddling won't help.
 

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Hi Cubed! Welcome to the forums!

I am sorry a local business owner isn't willing to offer any assistance than to tell you to "do it yourself". That's a shame because she needed her own mentor at one time too: http://www.cleaningtalk.com/f19/stand-your-prices-1746/index3/#post12517

I recommend finding another person locally who IS willing to help. I was blessed to have my own friendships with local business owners in the cleaning industry. One was kind enough to assume my operations while I took a leave of absence to work on other important projects.

To give you some realistic advice, here's a thread that may help get you started:

http://www.cleaningtalk.com/f19/realistic-advice-great-articles-read-1771/

In that thread you'll see a comment about being positive and chipper. Seems many of us have been admonished for not being nice enough. How ironic!

PLEASE know that your questions are welcome here. :)
 

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Hi Cubed
I am unfortunately not in your area, so I can't give you the local advice you are looking for, I hope you find someone who can :thumbup:

Too bad the only person to respond from your area didnt want to offer any friendly advice but as I have read among these boards and others, there are many who are really friendly and helpful

As a new business owner myself, I want to say to you good luck in your venture, there are so many things to learn and apply to your business, everybody does it differently, but you will always find someone who can relate to you

As someone who has done it on a shoestring ( which is an overstatement :D) my biggest advice is get creative with your advertising and marketing and networking

Everyone is a possible contact, be nice and professional to everyone you come across, I have been working on a cross marketing idea that I will post when I get it all set up, I am very optimistic about it because it will be beneficial to me as well as other small businesses. Think about things that you can do for others as they help you advance your business.

As for the regulations and stuff, you gotta find someone local to talk to. Call SBA or contact SCORE ( I think they are nationwide?) Or even just call local agencies, even if you dont call the right department, they will point you in the right direction.

Do read books, specifically on commercial cleaning, but also business books in general, you may get addicted to reading internet boards too, I did, learn from others.

Sorry so long, this was my first post, I read all the new posts but am so busy growing I havent taken the time to post, but felt compelled to encourage you :thumbsup:
For your first post, it sure was an amazing one! Thanks for joining the boards and for being more positive. I look forward to more of your contributions and/or questions in the future. :D
 

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This sounds like a legit person asking for advice. I was once there.

Cat, your response was one that would discourage me from ever returning to this site for any assistance. Google research is often a crazy drive on a road to nowhere, especially if you are new to the business searches.

Lighten up a bit and help folks out and don't assume everyone knows how to find all the answers.

cubedmack, i hope you stick around for other feedback.

suzi g
I agree with Suzi! Stick around and don't let the boo birds get you down.
 

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Hello, Torrey. Long time, no see. How's your business coming along? I have 90+ clients and have two estimates lined up for Monday. And planning to interview for a new employee on Monday evening.

Well, Cubed is getting plenty of sympathy for the fact that I won't do his research for him, but no one else is researching his answers either. You don't have to live in Maryland to answer those questions. But you have to do some digging, which is what I'm asking Cubed to do.

To clarify

1. I have never "needed" a mentor. I sought out one [after my business was set up] to take advantage of free advice about how much to charge in this area. The only advice I ever sought from him was in prices. At the very beginning, I had plenty of clients but my profit margin was not where I wanted it. He gave me the confidence to raise my prices----and told me to feel free to walk away from anyone who did not want to pay my prices. That's where his "mentorship" helped me.

I believe in mentorship (after you get your business up and running). It's not a mentor's job to answer questions about set up. Meet with an accountant for that and study.

The primary thing that I get from the local man whom I called my mentor is clients. He owns a million dollar a year business and cannot take on every client that comes his way so he actually sends the ones who are not a good "fit" to me and visa versa. But I need to make it clear that I never "needed" a mentor.

2. I would advise folks to go to my thread that I wrote prior to getting into this business. It is titled "You cannot start a business for $100"...or something similar to that. I was not yet in business but as I stand here, I can tell you that everything I wrote in that article has come to pass. Why was I able to write that article with such conviction?

Simple. I had done extensive research. Extensive.

3. No, I won't be doing anyone's homework on their behalf. Every question that Cubed asked is readily available to him after he searches it out and looks it up. I have never asked the local guy any questions of that sort. He and I have discussed two topics: Money and the transfer of clients to each other. My business was up and running by the time I found the local man.

Cubed, I have given you the best advice you will ever receive. Do extensive research. The bible says "study to show thyself approved". And I'd advise you to meet with your accountant this tax season if you are serious. He or she will give you details about setting up a business in terms of LLC or corporation. I cannot give you that information. Your accountant or lawyer needs to advise you. Preferably an accountant because it's cheaper or free advice.

You are not looking at just anybody here. I am a person who started a business 12 months ago and now the business is flying. I'm turning away clients! I know what I'm talking about. 90%+ of new maid services fail. Studying will at least put you in a position where you have a better chance of success.

At least I responded to Cubed with some good avice: Study. I notice that no other person from the DC/MD area bothered to even respond. Fact is, no one is going to do Cubed research for him for those types of questions. That's Cubed's job.

Clearly I have no problems helping new business owners. I have an entire blog set up specifically for that purpose and Theresa allows me to write articles here. But I don't answer the base questions about "set up". A serious individual would do that for himself/herself.

Blessings to you!
 

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Cat,

Welcome back.

New members...I'd like you to meet Cat! You can count on her to be consistent. LOL

I make it no secret that I am not running a maid service at the moment and don't pretend that I am. I find it funny you asked...

I posted this the other day:
http://www.cleaningtalk.com/f14/update-i-am-still-out-business-but-keeping-busy-2407/#post13311

When I am not busy helping the general masses in the cleaning industry with helpful posts, I spend my time helping others in the public as much as I can. It's how I like to spend my valuable time...being a contributor. I don't recall having to ask anyone for permission to participate here, do you?

While there may not be a mass of responses from anyone in the OP's metro area, you were the only one not willing to answer any questions. Why not start with reassurance if you weren't willing to provide answers? It goes a long way when you pass it to others and is part of the purpose of message boards.

I hope you have a wonderful day. I am going to assume you are at church this beautiful Sunday morning and won't be able to respond for a few hours...but I wish you well until we speak again.
 

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Church does not start until 11:00 a.m. and it's 9:15 so I'm home for at least another 40 minutes.

Yes, I'm consistent because through my consistency, I have achieved at least part of what I planned. Why become inconsistent when consistency is working for me?

You say I was not willing to provide answers? I disagree. I gave him the best answer anyone ever could. Go to local libraries and bookstores and study. Meet during tax season with an accountant and get free advice (at any other time of the year, the accountant may charge).

Do I plan to take the time to research the answers that Cubed asked? No. He needs to do that for himself.

If anyone else plans to do research on his behalf, great. I won't be doing it. But I have a ton of articles available for FREE to anyone who has started their business and need help.
 

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So you've never had to modify your business at any time because you did it right in the first place? You didn't ask for help at any time and expected a modicum of courtesy when people replied?

I just noticed the time. Let us pray. :)
 

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I would like to thank everyone who responded with positive information. Despite what Cat said, I am not looking for someone to hand everything to me. I have been doing my research for the past 3 months. I just wanted to make sure I was going into the right direction. You can never stop asking enough questions about this business.....Right?
 

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Cubed,

Welcome back. :clap:

I agree that you can never ask enough questions in this business. NO ONE knows it all, no matter what they may say.

I have always said that the only dumb question is the one you fail to ask.

I believe you have done your homework. You knew what questions to ask in the first place didn't you? ;) They were typical questions that most anyone entering the business may ask. There's no fault in doing that at all.

I am glad you weren't discouraged and came back to continue the conversation. Most people wouldn't make it that far...so you are off to a great start!
 

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Despite what Cat said, I am not looking for someone to hand everything to me.

Hello, Cubed:
You asked the following specific questions:

1. Are there a lot of rules and regulations I should know before I start going after contracts?

2. Are there certain business's I shouldn't go after?

3. Can you recommend an insurance and bond company?

4. Should I apply for a DBE and 8A?

5. Being a newly company, what type of contract should I start trying to obtain with first?

6. Is foreclosure-cleaning big in our area and if so, would you suggest I try to hit that market also?

No one (myself included) has answered those specific questions. If positive words are what you wanted, then great. But you had specific questions.

I was honest enough to admit to you that I'm not willing to do the research necessary to answer those specific questions and I indicated that you should read, go to Borders Bookstore and pick up the book about how to start a business in Maryland and do personal research.

To date, your questions remain unanswered. And likewise, I stand by my original advice to you. Read, research, find meet with an accountant. Best regards to you!
 

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Forgive me if I am totally NOT seeing the whole picture. But going back to the original query, legitimate questions were asked to assist a new forum member. Point blank, can you help me out a bit?

from CAT...Well, Cubed is getting plenty of sympathy for the fact that I won't do his research for him, but no one else is researching his answers either. You don't have to live in Maryland to answer those questions. But you have to do some digging, which is what I'm asking Cubed to do.

No one has specifically asked you to do any research. Just a request to answer a few point blank questions is all I read into the original post.

from CAT...Cubed, I have given you the best advice you will ever receive. Do extensive research. The bible says "study to show thyself approved". Leave the Bible and your "thumping" out of this...very distasteful and inappropriate.

Cubed, I believe you have done the appropriate research. Sorry we weren't all supportive from the beginning.

Cat's response to my original post. I chose to not acknowledge it...so rude.

CubedMack,

Lucky you! You are about to have your long list of questions answered by SuziQ.

Have fun!

P.S. - If my honest response is enough to chase you away from a cleaning board, I can guarantee you that you will not have the stomach to last in the cleaning business (or any business) for over a week.


sigh,:sick:
 

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I would like to thank everyone who responded with positive information. Despite what Cat said, I am not looking for someone to hand everything to me. I have been doing my research for the past 3 months. I just wanted to make sure I was going into the right direction. You can never stop asking enough questions about this business.....Right?

You are right on the spot! Keep doing your research and stay focused on the direction you deem appropriate. Please keep asking questions..as Torrey said, the only dumb one is the one NOT asked!

The best to you and stay with us for the long term.

suzi g
 

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This thread is nothing short of hilarious comedy. And I'm a bible thumper? Thanks for the compliment! I appreciate that.

Cubed, have you notice that in spite of the hysteria, "comfort", etc......no one did your research for you?

My last comment and then I'll leave them to enjoy themselves. My original advice stands. Do your research because no one (including the women on this thread) is going to do it for you.
 

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I would like to thank everyone who responded with positive information. Despite what Cat said, I am not looking for someone to hand everything to me. I have been doing my research for the past 3 months. I just wanted to make sure I was going into the right direction. You can never stop asking enough questions about this business.....Right?
I believe that cubedmack's post confirms that his research has been accomplished. Three months does not equate to doing "nothing" and asking for "free advice". Questions regarding "what if's" are always appropriate.

Hysteria? comfort? The 'hilarious comedy' reference is "hilarious". No hysteria, not comedic, no one is offering comfort...merely advice.

Leave the bible out of this. Not everyone is comfortable with throwing religion into everything. The thumping comment was not a compliment...DUH...just a comment...

suzi g
 
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