For years, people have been building and investing in Laundromats and benefiting from their laundry business store’s success. Here are a few of the top reasons people choose to invest in Laundromats:
- the desire to own a business with low startup costs
- a straightforward business model
- reasonable operational costs
- a high return on investment
- tax benefits
For over 54 years, the Metropolitan Laundry Machinery Sales, Inc. team has been helping customers in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and Delaware establish themselves in the laundry industry and achieve their goals of successful Laundromat ownership. As a commercial laundry equipment distributor in the Northeast, we have shared our knowledge and experience with over 2,000 customers to help them understand the industry and learn how to navigate all aspects of the investment process.
Find a Commercial Laundry Distributor to Partner With
Developing a relationship with a commercial laundry equipment distributor who services and understands your area is a necessity. You want a team who will gain perspective of your interests and knows the area you are looking in. Our knowledgeable sales team will provide you with specific real estate demographics and facts, what the utility costs look like in a particular area, and your tax advantages. Look for a partner with an established history of success, someone who is willing to invest the time in getting to know you as a business owner and has the experience you need to get started on the right path.
Find the Right Location
Location is everything for your Laundromat business. Marc R., a multi Laundromat owner, and operator in the New York metropolitan area advises conducting a demographic study of the areas you are looking to open a store. He states, “knowing the population within a square mile of your store of those who do laundry outside of their home is an important factor to consider.” He also encourages “looking at the competition around you and making note of the quality and quantity of these stores.” Together, we can decide whether or not a potential Laundromat location is right for you. We peel away the layers of an existing Laundromat or vacant space you are interested in buying so you know exactly what’s involved before you commit to the property. After all, we want your business to thrive for years to come.
The condition and number of other Laundromats in one concentrated area is also a big indicator as to whether or not a store is necessary in that area”. Marc’s final advice to anyone looking for a location to open a Laundromat is to look for a space with plenty of parking. In his experience, his customers drive over 30 minutes to use his stores because they like the convenience and safety of the parking lots. These factors are ones our team will thoroughly go through with you to make an educated decision on whether a location for a Laundromat is viable.
What to Look for When Buying an Existing Laundromat
Finding the perfect location is part of the investor process. Sealing the deal on that location takes finesse, and our professional laundry experts are here to assist you with navigating the process of acquiring that space. Cliff Ross, VP of Sales at Metropolitan Laundry Machinery Sales, Inc., encourages first-time investors working directly with the seller of an existing Laundromat to “get verifiable numbers for income and expenses.” Cliff also points out to buyers to pay attention to all the existing equipment, find out how many employees are working at the store, what types of laundry services are offered, and the purchase terms.
Commercial Laundry Equipment
When we say to pay attention to the equipment, we encourage you to look at the age and condition of the washers, tumblers, and water heater. Your commercial laundry equipment is your bread and butter. If outdated and not working efficiently, this could significantly affect your income, especially if the competition has newer, modern equipment down the road. Therefore, you will want to consider your options for replacing the equipment. The condition of the laundry equipment is something to factor in when evaluating the cost for the business.
History of the Building and Store Lease
Cliff says, “look at the terms of the store’s lease.” If the seller rents the building, determine how many years are left on the lease. We always encourage buyers to ensure they aren’t buying a Laundromat when the store only has one year left on a lease for the space. If you are also purchasing the building, you want to be sure you look into the history of the building as well. Look at the condition of the property for any structural and environmental issues. If you find any structural damages, address these immediately before going any further. If the building has pre-existing damage, it could be why the seller is motivated to sell his store. We can assist with helping negotiate the terms and purchase price for your future Laundromat. Our team has a lot of experience understanding building history and can help you formulate and ask the right questions.
When we talk about services a Laundromat provides, the most popular are wash-dry-fold and pick up/delivery. That means any laundry you take in and your attendant’s service generates income. Be sure to look at this service’s revenue and evaluate whether it is profitable and/or necessary. Maybe the store has a significant drop-off laundry business and requires your attendants to complete the wash-dry-fold services. We see this as a profitable source of income for you – and so does the seller. Be aware you could be paying a premium for a Laundromat that earns higher profits from drop-off wash-dry-fold services. Be sure to educate yourself on any additional overhead costs that help the store operate. All of this should be detailed in the income reports.
Details of the Sale
Did you decide early on the laundry equipment is in good condition and there would be no need to replace it? Did you know from the start you would be changing the equipment and have the layout for your future store already mapped out? When thinking about a new store, we always encourage our customers to create a well-rounded store. Technologically advanced equipment featuring efficient wash and dry cycles, touch screen interface featuring multi-language options, easy-to-use laundry card payment kiosks, and soap dispensers are why customers are attracted to a Laundromat. And when you provide customers with comfortable Laundromat seating, snack and beverage vending machines, and an entertainment area to relax and unwind, you have created a safe and welcoming environment for customers to do their laundry. Creating a customer experience while doing laundry is a win-win for your business.
Work With an Experienced Sales Team
When someone is thinking about investing in an existing Laundromat or building one from the ground up, we encourage them to talk with one of our experienced sales team members. We offer customers expert advice and get them to ask the right questions so they can make an educated decision on whether or not the store in question is the right one to invest in. If you or someone you know is thinking of investing in the laundry industry but are not sure where to turn, call Metropolitan Laundry Machinery Sales. We will provide insight into our industry and provide you with honesty, reliable advice, and professionalism. You can reach us at 1 (866) 448-7134 or you can request a quote from Metropolitan Laundry Machinery Sales. We would love to talk!