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Did you know the United States has the biggest cleaning business market in the world?

That means there’s a spot for you, no matter how little experience you have. It is important to conduct market research before getting started, and that includes finding an answer to the question, “How much does a cleaning business make?”

Luckily, we’re here to help. Read on to learn everything you need to know.

How Much Does a Cleaning Business Make?

On average, small cleaning businesses should be able to retain a minimum profit margin of 10-20%, after expenses.  A healthy profit margin leads to your cleaning business earning anywhere from $35,000 to $50,000 a year. As your business grows, that number can easily reach $100,000 or more. Ultimately, though, it’s going to depend on how consistent your income stream is, and how well you’re managing your resources.

How can you make sure you’re managing your resources well, though, and how much will it cost you to get started?

How Much Money Do You Need to Start a Cleaning Business?

In most cases, you can expect to pay anywhere from $2,000 to $6,000 to start your cleaning business (the average is around $3,500). There are a few things you’ll need to factor in when calculating your own number, though.


This is the basis of your business. If you don’t have the equipment, you won’t be able to start. Here are a few essentials you’ll need:

  • Vacuum cleaner (with attachments)
  • Container to carry supplies
  • Mop and bucket
  • Duster
  • Broom and dustpan
  • Paper towels
  • Microfiber cloths and/or towels
  • Cleaning brushes
  • Protective gloves
  • Laundry bag
  • Spray bottle
  • Shoe covers
  • Trash bags
  • Cleaning products for each room

This is a great catch-all list to help you get started, but if you have a certain specialty (like carpet cleaning), you’ll need to take the equipment for that into account as well.

Not sure where to start?  Check out the Speed Cleaning Brand of house cleaning supplies.  Be sure to apply to become a PRO and get wholesale pricing.


If you have vans or other transportation, you’ll need to have a budget to maintain those. The costs for upkeep can run you anywhere from $5,000 to $35,000.  Learn why Debbie Sardone recommends NOT owning a fleet.


If you’re not a one-person show when starting out, you’ll need to make room for employees’ pay in your startup costs. The biggest factor that determines this number is your state, and also whether your employees are part-time, full-time, or freelance.

License and Insurance

This is another cost that depends on where you live, along with your company’s structure. Licensing and insuring a sole proprietorship is going to look different from an LLC with multiple employees.

It’s best to conduct thorough research before choosing your business structure, along with getting quotes from multiple insurance agencies before you commit to any. Your total permitting costs, along with business insurance, are going to vary depending on your state.


When you’re building your business, you’ll have more to think about than social media presence. You’ll need to create a website that markets and sells your services, along with a logo that conveys the branding you’d like your business to have.

These things are relatively cheap to create on your own, but if you’d like to hire someone then it’s important to consider that extra cost. You’ll also need to set aside the time to connect with a professional that can help you accomplish your branding goals and create something you and your customers love.

Finding and Retaining Clients

Finding and retaining clients can feel daunting — especially if you’re new to the industry — but it doesn’t have to be. There are a few things you can do to ensure you never bite off more than you can chew.

Start Small

This is the biggest one. Starting with a small number of consistent customers is going to be your biggest advantage when first getting started. You’ll learn to manage and retain these customers, and then you’ll be able to increase your workload as time goes on.

Take to Socials

To find those customers, you should make social profiles for your business. Using platforms like Instagram and Facebook to post business updates and photos of your work, and also to interact with clients is a great place to start.

You can also implement incentive programs to attract customers when you’re ready for it.

If you have a few regulars, consider a referral program for them. Word of mouth is a powerful marketing tool, and people are a lot more trusting of those they know. That means your business starts off in a better place, and your existing customers have a reason to want to find people who can use your services.

What Can Cause Your Business to Fail?

There are a lot of reasons your business could potentially fail, but the biggest is usually due to a lack of planning and poor management. You might be confident in your abilities to effectively run a business, but it’s going to be unnecessarily difficult if you don’t plan things properly. You’re a lot more likely to have knee-jerk reactions or to make impulsive decisions, and that’s never a good sign for your business.

Take the time you need to conduct thorough research on the industry in your area before getting started. You’ll have a solid plan to lean on when things get rough, and you’ll be able to easily tell where things went well or what you can fix next time.

Is Starting a Cleaning Business Right for You?

Starting your own cleaning business can be challenging, but eventually, you’ll begin reaping the rewards of your efforts. With a bit of consistency, research, and an answer to the question, “How much does a cleaning business make?” you’ll have a successful business in no time. Mostly, though, just remember to be patient and not to push yourself too hard.

If you need any help, we’re here. Contact us today to get started with your cleaning business journey.

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