Last Updated on July 9, 2021 by Ope Quadri
In the 1990s, only a few people took dry cleaning as a serious job. It was majorly done by the old people who wanted a means of survival. It wasn’t lucrative because at least eight out of ten people did their laundry at home. That has changed as the world continues to evolve.
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Other responsibilities have made dry cleaning to be in high demand. Aside from that, joblessness after graduation among Nigerians has forced more people into the laundry business. And most of them are doing well.
Most people who offer laundry services earn more than some of the bank workers, they make more money than hundreds of school principals or civil servants.
In this guide, as usual, I’ll walk you through the process of setting up a laundry business in Nigeria.
Factors To Consider In Starting a Dry Cleaning Or Laundry Business
In economics, there are factors to consider before citing an industry, some of them apply.
Capital: You need funds to set up a business
Location: Carefully select your location
Marketing: Use social media to spread messages about your services
Human resources: As you expand, employ more hands to get the job done quickly, don’t do it all alone because you want to keep the profit to yourself, you will wear out
Strategy (e.g home delivery): Add home delivery to your service. Pickup clothes from your clients
Delivery Time: deliver on time, don’t delay, don’t let them run after you every time.
Charges: Make your charges competitive
Equipment: Avoid inferior equipment, such could affect your customer. You know the damage a fake starch could cost you?
Business registration: As you grow, endeavor to legally register your business name so that you can have access to some of the SME funding of the government.
Setting Up Low Budget Laundry Business
The good part of the dry cleaning business is that you can kick start it at the comfort of your home if you don’t have the huge capital required for a standard one which usually requires a heavy machine and could gulp up millions of naira.
I’ll also share with you how a student in one of the higher institutions in Osun State started his laundry services with less than N200, 000. You too can do the same.
But first, you need to know the tools needed to provide top-notch service to your customers
Dry cleaning equipment
To start a laundry business, there are some essential tools you can’t do without while there are some you can add as your business expands
Important Dry Cleaning Equipment:
- Washing Machine and dryer
- Ironing Board
- Clothes Drying Rack
- Waste Bin
- Table cloth
- Packaging Nylons
Other you can get as your business grows to include:
- Wall Fan
- Standing fan (OX)
- Customized nylon pack
- Stain Removers
- Tagging Gun
- Sewing kit
- Tagging Paper
- Baking soda
- Tagging Pin
- Laundry Additives
Our forefathers who were called dry cleaners used their hands to wash a mountain of dirty clothes by the riverside. Only a few of them had access to a well. And there is a limitation to the number of clothes they could wash, most times, their family members join in the business to assist.
On a standard commercial level, technology has simplified the washing process. In a matter of a few minutes, you can watch more than 50 clothes with the aid of a washing machine.
What’s the best washing machine for a laundry business?
On a small scale, you can purchase an affordable one like 8KG, but as you expand, 14KG top loader will serve you more effectively.
The top loader has proven to be rugged and has some merits over the front loader. One of such is: you can open the cover and add more clothes while the washing machine is on.
- Sorting of the clothes
- Carefully choose a detergent
- Select a Water Temperature and Cycle on the washing machine
- Load the Washing machine with the clothes and wash
- Load the Dryer.
- Unload the Washing machine
Separate the jeans from the other material. Kids’ wears, which are mostly dirtier should be sorted out of the rest of the other clothes.
Choose a Detergent:
Detergent with cool fragrance should be your choice. Avoid offensive detergent for your business. The major thing is to go for an all-purpose detergent. If you like seek opinion on the best one to use.
Select a Water Temperature and Cycle on the washing machine:
It’s important to know the texture and the quality of the clothes you want to wash, this will guide you to know the water temperature to select. And load the machine.
As pointed out in the number process, don’t soak kids’ dirtier clothes with white. Don’t soak jeans with other clothes. Avoid soaking bleaching material alongside other clothes.
The importance of soaking clothes before washing are: 1) so that little pressure will be required to get cleaner clothes, 2) It makes washing faster 3) Stains remove faster.
Most times, you don’t have to select longer timing if you soaked the clothes. Again, the texture of the clothes should be considered here. After that, you rinse.
At this point, you load the dryer to dry and unload when you get the desired result
Allow some fresh air on the clothes before you proceed to iron.
Folding and packaging
Learn how to fold agbada, shirt, trouser, and other.
Cost of equipment and expenses
Washing Machine: N190,000-N250,000 for 14KG and brand determines the price.
Generator: N118,000 for 2.5KVA; N82,000 for 1.5KVA. Note that the brand determines the price. Some brands of 2.5KVA cost N220,000 or more
Steam Iron: Between N6,000-N15,000. Some sell for as high as N50,000 or more.
Detergents: 2Kg goes N3,000 or more. As you expand, you can go for one of the best detergents for the laundry business which is Tide White Plus Detergent Powder made by Earth Breeze (it is an imported detergent).
Ironing Board: Between N10, 000 to N25, 000
Starch: N3,000- N6,000
Clothes Drying Rack: N10,000 to N15, 000
Waste Bin: N2,500
Packaging Nylons: N2,500 for 200 pieces
Wall Fan: N15,000
Standing fan (OX): 18’ inches goes for N28,000
Stain Removers: 2 litres goes for N5,000
Clothing Garment Tagging Gun Machine: N6,000 or less
Sewing kit: N3,500
Water-resistant tagging paper: N2,500
Baking soda: This is a natural deodorizer and cleanser which gently removes tough smells and stains when added to laundry. This goes for N5,000.
If you do the above calculation very well, you may need at least N500,000 to set up a standard laundry business in Nigeria, however, you can leave out some of the tools you can be improvised and get started with N250k or less
How a student started laundry service in his hostel room
A student in my area started laundry business in the corner of his room with 5KG washing machine which was between N45,000 at the time of purchase, 1.5kva of generator which was just N65,000. He was using his reading table as a pressing board. With other costs, he began with less than N200, 000.
Today, he has a shop, a bigger washing machine, and generator, so the idea is starting small, growing bigger.
How much exactly do you charge per cloth?
One of the marketing strategies common for startups is a competitive price. This also applies in laundry business.
|A pair of trousers||400|
|Atiku (up and down)||700|
The above service charges lead us to the main question: How much I make from a laundry business?
First, the location and quality of your service will be your selling point. Another thing is that men and women are seriously getting busier like never before in a bid to survive and provide for the family.
For instance, an area dominated by bachelors (single men and women) may need the service of a dry cleaner more, most especially in cities like Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt etc.
Let’s assume you charge N400 for a pair of trousers and in a day you washed 10 That is 10 x 400 = N4, 000.
Most times, the trousers come with shirts. Assuming you wash a t-shirt for N350 and you received 10 per day, that is N350X10=N3,500
Senator wear is common among men, which means more business for you, assuming you washed 10 of such in a day by charging N700 per one, that is 10 X N700= N7,000.
You could more beyond you alone can handle. So, lets calculate how much you make per day.
That’s N14,500 per day, N101,500 per week, and N435, 000 per month.
On average, you can make over N300,000 as a laundry business owner in Nigeria after all expenses.
The above income projection isn’t definite and don’t expect to start making this in the first week of your business. Your location and service should speak for you and bring in more clients for you every day.
Know the category of cloth that can be washed together so that you don’t end up spoiling your customers’ clothes.
When washing shirts or other clothes that have buttons, ensure to button them to avoid damages
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