Salary: $20,000 to $40,000
Rates: $60-$150 and more per apartment
Advertising: Contact management companies and apartment owners directly. Advertise in phone books and local newspapers. Contact realtors and leasing agents. Advertise in online and in local classified ads.
To Qualify: Thorough cleaning skills and the ability to paint with professional quality precision.
Equipment: Cell phone, cleaning chemicals and supplies, paint brushes, pans, tape, tarp, rags, broom, mop, vacuum cleaner, sponges and buckets.
Staff: None required; however, as the business grows, additional staff should be considered.
Description: As an apartment prep service, you go in and clean the apartment before the new tenant moves in. Often this service will include washing windows, floors, cabinets, counters, refrigerators/freezers, and vacuuming, painting and light maintenance. Make sure that you price your services accordingly. Think about charging for each job or offer different tiers of service, that included more items. The best thing to do is know how to do light handy work and be able to work quickly. The size of the apartment to be prepared and its state of cleanliness or disrepair are critical factors in determining the time required and the fee you should request.
Essentials: Have high quality cleaning equipment of industrial quality that will withstand the wear and tear of multiple uses and allow you to work efficiently. Think about whether you need extra equipment like a carpet cleaner, power tools, ladder etc. After you have made your initial investment, you need very little else other than to replenish cleaning supplies and maintaining your equipment. Having a cell phone on you at all times is very important as you do not want to miss potential clients calls while you are at work. Also consider working for a large apartment complex with high turnover, or for a corporate housing company as these building are often in need of apartment preparation.
To Succeed: Since this kind of service is very hard work, make sure that you keep yourself physically fit and healthy. Bring good food with you to eat throughout the day, and stay hydrated so that you are not overly fatigued during the day. Many apartments are in need of deep cleaning, so know that being thorough and attentive to details will help build your reputation and repeat business. Make sure you wear cleaning gloves, kneepads and back brace to save your hands, knees and back, and consider wearing overalls or some kind of over garment to protect your clothing.