How to Start a Profitable Cleaning Business with Minimum Hassle

Cleaning the Van de Graaff Accelerator, Triangle Universities Nuclear Laboratory, ca. 1950s

There is a subtle trick to running a successful cleaning business. It might be easy to launch a company – but not so easy to keep up with it. The key to staying on top? Make sure your quality of your service stays high, despite the increased demand.  Naturally, all you really need is individual perseverance to make it a profitable business.

But let’s start at the beginning. How do you launch a cleaning business? The process can be a lot easier than starting a company in another sector. The reason for this is the relatively low initial investment you’ll need. You can start working by yourself without additional employees. And, you don’t necessarily need a fixed office location. You just need to start building a customer base – and to keep them satisfied with your work.

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Before anything, you need to make an initial and quite important decision – will you focus on residential or commercial cleaning? With consumer cleaning services, you can choose specializations such as maid services, carpet cleaning or window cleaning. With commercial cleaning, your work will usually focus on janitorial services.

Depending on the kind of cleaning you would like to develop and your operating location, the steps you need to take to establish your business might vary. However, all new businesses will share a few common components. Here, we’ve listed the main things you’ll need to consider to start a profitable cleaning business.


money vaccum

Image Attribution : Free Digital Images

Many people turn to their own savings to kickstart their cleaning business. Others turn to family and friends for support, seek out business partners or even take advantage of  government programs.

Whichever possibility you choose to pursue, you are likely to be able to obtain the necessary financing with relative ease. This step will likely not be an obstacle, as the launching of a cleaning business usually does not need a huge starting investment.


One of the elements that makes starting a cleaning business so easy is that you don’t necessarily need an office location, at least not immediately. In many cases you can be home-based, which can save you a lot of resources during the difficult first months of establishing and securing your business.

However, you need to check all the requirements of the area in which you are based. In some cases, there can be restrictions on home-based businesses because of considerations such as noise and traffic. Make sure you comply before you begin work.

Once your finances allow it, moving on to a commercial location will bring you many positive advantages. Not only will it change the image of your business for the better, but it will give you room to expand your staff. Getting out of your home and renting a real office for your employees will make your company appear more stable and reliable.

The legal side of things

As with starting any new business, you will have to get licensed in order to operate legally as a cleaning company.

The most important documents you will have to obtain are a business license, a fire department permit for storing hazardous chemicals, air and water pollution control permit, sign permit (in some cases), state licenses and sales tax certificate.

Getting bonded

Many businesses, such as construction companies and auto dealers, are required to obtain a surety bond during the licensing process. Although there is no such requirement for the cleaning businesses, having a fidelity bond can open many new doors.

Many clients might not choose a cleaning company that does not have a fidelity bond. The fidelity bond acts as a guarantee for the client in case of property loss. Obtaining a cleaning company bond is not complicated, as there are no credit checks.


Attracting and keeping your customers will depend greatly on your cleaning performance. That’s why you should not forget about the company image you are building with all of your  marketing materials and actual service experience.


From your printed materials to the outer appearance of your service car, every detail matters in the eyes of your current and potential customers. The most important criterion, of course, is the quality of the service you offer. Providing a constant level of satisfying cleaning services is what will make it or break it for your cleaning business.

In any case, before you start your cleaning business, consider the nature of the work, which might be quite physically demanding. If you are prepared for hard but financially rewarding work, the cleaning business can be a really lucrative opportunity.

If you are up to the challenge, you can launch your business quite quickly. Get your cleaning and janitorial bond soon to make sure your current or future clients see you as a reliable choice. Good luck in your endeavor!

Eric is the Chief Marketing Officer of JW Surety Bonds. With years of experience in the surety industry, he is also a contributing author to the surety bond blog. He has held a range of different roles within the surety industry, from agent assistant to bond issuer, which gives him a unique insider perspective on surety related topics.

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