How to Create a Laundromat Business Plan

A laundromat business seems straightforward, but writing up a business plan is essential for success. This business plan outlines all the details of operation and forces you to make decisions that fit together perfectly.

When creating a laundromat business plan make sure it covers:

  • The location of your business
  • A SWOT analysis
  • Your target market
  • Your competition
  • What machines, services, and amenities you offer
  • Operating hours and staff considerations
  • Startup and operating costs
  • Financial projections
  • Business milestones

You can use your laundromat business plan for plenty of situations, but it needs to explore the many details related to your business. Keep reading to learn what information you need to hash out, some of your options, and why each section is important for success.

The Location of Your Laundromat

How to Create a Laundromat Business Plan

Start with your location. Unless you are equipped to start a business across the nation, this detail is usually non-negotiable and cannot be swayed by your target market.

Instead, focus on what is available around you and try to find local opportunities that will pay off. College students and renters will have more need for a laundromat than a suburban community.

You should also aim for a safe, well lit location that people will be comfortable visiting. This can affect your operating hours and staffing needs, as well as build your reputation.

Make sure your location of interest has the infrastructure and utilities capable of handling all the laundry equipment, especially at peak operating hours.

Writing a SWOT Analysis

Your SWOT analysis covers:

  • Strengths
  • Weaknesses
  • Opportunities
  • Threats

You dig deeper in later steps, but establishing these details early on helps pave the way for the rest of your business plan.

Strengths are the details that give your laundromat business the best chance to succeed, such as expert knowledge in the field or access to new technology.

Identifying weaknesses is important to keeping your vision clear. If you have strong competition or know of any aspects you will struggle with, list them here.

Opportunities include situations where you might have an underserved market or a location with few competitors.

Threats might be poor press in past endeavors or strong competition.

You need these details to help you create a strong business plan. By creating a frame of strengths and weaknesses, you can flesh out ideas that will fit this mold.

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Your Target Market

Your target market is your ideal customer, and your business plan should map out their:

  • Demographics details (age, gender, income, etc.)
  • Psychographic details (attitude, interests, values, etc.)
  • Needs

Your target market needs to match up with your location, and they create the blueprint you base other decisions off of. It is better to establish your target market early on so you don’t make mismatched decisions that do not serve this customer base.

By establishing your target market, you can better understand who already serves this market, what they respond to, and what they need or expect from your business.

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Your Competition

Your competition is largely based on decision, and you need to determine how fierce it will be in your area. This may not affect your decision to start your business, but your plan needs to acknowledge competition presence.

An analysis of your competition includes:

  • Their location(s)
  • Business hours
  • Peak service times
  • Equipment
  • Amenities
  • Services
  • Pricing
  • Payment options
  • Marketing and promotional tactics
  • Employees

Try to gather customer feedback on how consumers view these details. This helps you notice what works, what doesn’t work, and any needs your competition does not meet. It can help you create a plan that does not waste time overlapping in areas they already dominate.

Machines, Services, and Amenities

Your laundromat relies on the machines you choose to offer. Make sure you do adequate research to choose reliable brands that fit in your budget and work well in your location.

You also need to decide on what time of payments you will accept, including:

  • Coin only
  • Card only
  • A mix of the two

Your payment options affect the convenience of your business and influence your staffing needs. Keep in mind that, while more costly to set up, card options usually provide better flexibility in pricing and adjusting fees.

Laundromats can increase revenue and stand apart from the competition by offering other services and basic amenities, like vending machines for food and laundry supplies or free wifi.

A wash and fold service can make your business more attractive, even to those with appliances in their home. 

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Operating Hours and Staffing

How to Create a Laundromat Business Plan

Before you pin down operating hours in your business plan, consider:

  • When your target market is likely to need your services
  • When your competitors are available
  • What level of security, machinery, and staffing you need to operate these hours

Security systems are great, but keeping staff on site is one of the best ways to keep your business safe. It can also be more dangerous to have physical tender on site during late hours if you plan to be open.

You need staff to cover the responsibilities of:

  • Tending to machines and customers
  • Managing the location
  • Accounting
  • Marketing
  • Security

Many laundromats do fine with minimal staff on hand, but your business plan needs to outline how you plan to approach these roles and keep them fulfilled. You should also show an understanding of how your decision to keep someone on-site or off-site will affect operation.

Startup and Operating Costs

Your business plan needs a section to outline the expected startup and operational costs of your laundromat business.

Before you open your doors, you need to provide funds to cover:

  • Registration
  • Down payments for loans
  • Purchasing equipment and furniture
  • Remodeling expenses
  • Installation costs
  • Municipal fees and permits

Try to pin these down as exact as possible, and do not count on discounted prices. While it is great if you can find a way to buy the machines at a fraction of the cost, sales may end before you get the funding you need.

You should also account for operational costs in any funding requests or plans you make to start. Businesses should be able to cover these costs for a few months without relying on profit.

Examples of what to include are:

  • Utilities
  • Loan payments
  • Rent
  • Insurance
  • Payroll
  • Maintenance
  • Emergency repairs
  • Supplies

You may need to estimate some of these details, but aim for an accurate representation of your situation.

Financial Projections

Your business plan needs to explain the money you expect to make in your first few years of operation. These projections vary based on your expected traffic and the services you offer.

It is beneficial to create smaller projections for the start of your business adventure, such as monthly expectations. Keep in mind that these are likely to change based on your actual outcomes.

Keep track of your actual income and use this information to adjust projections as needed.

Financial projections are especially important when requesting funds from a bank or an investor. By creating realistic projections, you prove that you understand the worth and success of your business and have the ability to repay or build on their investment.

Pricing Strategy

Your pricing strategy influences your projections, but it should also complement the money you expect you need to succeed.

In short, make sure your pricing strategy meets:

  • Your baseline cost to stay in business
  • Your cost to offer amenities
  • What your target market is willing to pay

This should also be similar to what your competition offers, but you need to consider how your business varies. If your machines are more advanced and reliable, don’t think too much about charging a few cents extra.

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Business Milestones

Set up goals in your business plan so you can gauge your success and let investors know what your future plans are. Breaking down success into measurable steps improves morale and helps you keep on the right path.

Your milestones can cover a variety of areas, including:

  • Business development (gathering permits, renting your location, obtaining funding, etc.)
  • Employee development (interviewing and training)
  • Finances (reaching x in sales)

Again, expect to revisit these milestones often. You’ll likely discover that your plans and vision change, and your goals should adjust to reflect these changes.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How Much Insurance Do You Need For Your Accounting and Payroll Business?

How do I determine what legal documents I need for a laundromat business?

The legal documents you need for your laundromat business vary depending on your location per state and municipal requirements. Check with local governments for required permits and licensing.

Are there different types of laundromat business plans?

You should draft different types of business plans for your laundromat to cover personal and professional use. A personal business plan is good for setting the tone of your business and naming goals to work toward, while a professional or financial plan covers funding requests and can be presented to potential partners or investors.

These two plans cover the same aspects but vary in ‌depth of detail.

Are laundromats profitable?

Laundromats have always been a profitable business. While a laundromat has many monthly expenses to cover, most owners report profits around $5,000 to $7,500 each month.-

To learn more on how to plan your own laundromat business click here!

Please note that the contents of this blog are for informational and entertainment purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Any action taken based on the information provided in this blog is solely at your own risk. Additionally, all images used in this blog are generated under the CC0 license of Creative Commons, which means they are free to use for any purpose without attribution.