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NorthumberlandWindowCleanr

7 Months Starting My Story so far! * LOTS of Tips*



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noobwc
On 21/01/2019 at 19:21, NorthumberlandWindowCleanr said:

I am on a well earned day off on a long weekend given it is a little chilly today and work is more or less up to date, I thought I would spend an hour giving my window cleaning “story so far”and some inspiration for other who might be starting out in 2019 ! Hope some experienced folk may pick a few tricks and tips up I have learnt thus far

I used this forum a great deal earlier last year when starting out April/May. Not posting and asking but I read, noted and kept researching reading, reading, noting things down and more reading. Also youtube vids and a couple of FaceBook groups, I have learned EVERYTHING. From not knowing a squeegee from a ladder, in just seven months I have built a business paying me a good wage, with good customers, very little hassles, 98% GoCardless, best equipment and the sky is the limit mentality. If I can do it YOU CAN DO IT !

I started out proper in June 2018 after deciding window cleaning would be a viable business due to its recurring & regular work

In no particular order, general random subjects of what I have learned so far, what I did, in these past seven months. Note the amount of capitalised YOU. Hopefully, it will help YOU build

 

  • Firstly, “Work smarter, NOT harder”

Explains itself, but notice how this is a recurring theme in all of the brain dumpings you read below

  • Remember the 7 P's

Proper, Planning, & Practice, Prevents, Pi$$, Poor, Performance”

Noone is an expert to start with. But YOU have to start.

Always YOU need be taking action, Set and write round targets, achievements, dates, targets, where YOU want to be.

A new customer every day ?

X20 new customers a month ?

Drop x250 leaflets every week? The ball is in YOUR court

"A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step"

Write it down, visualise what YOU want. Tick things off. See you new customers added. Seeing it and believing it every day, YOU are the only person that stops in the way of getting to YOUR targets You set YOURSELF

 

  • BE ACCOUNTABLE – BE HONEST WITH YOURSELF AND YOUR CUSTOMERS

With the best will in the world many generations of window cleaners have got us painted with a pretty bad and unreliable brush. Break the mould, be the one who is different. Have passion in your business. Dont be like the 'other guys' Dont be the stereotypical window cleaner.

Promise a time, BE ON TIME

Schedule a clean, do the clean

Promise a ring back, CALL THEM back

The saying goes, “It is better to be trusted than liked, Under Promise and Over Perform”

Break a promise and be accountable to yourself, Getting into the habit of GOOD habits

  • Work out what your "needed" daily rate is and work towards it, your first step of action is your first step towards getting it

I don't have kids, big mortgage, debts. So I used for sake of simple maths of working towards making £100 per day my goal to work towards. Im was beyond that in under five months, by ME taking action EVERY day

  • Set a minimum price for your job/time/to park up and get out of the van. AND STICK TO IT !

Again for the sake of simple maths and round numbers, I chose £10 per job, even if it a bungalow or a “fronts only” mid-terrace. It is £10. They dont want to pay £10, I dont want the job. Have it printed in black & white on your flyers/business card “Prices FROM £10” As Del Boy said “What Cant Speak, Cant Lie”

I'm up t'north where lots of £4-£5 houses cleaners still

 

  • Don't chase or accept every job/house/bit of work that comes your way.

Set yourself a profile of house YOU want to do. An enquiry from a centre of town mid terrace with bad parking do you really need it ?

Be prepared and happy to turn down and refuse work that doesn't fit the profile YOU wish to work to.

YOU are the one driving the bus, work on your terms. YOU dont need EVERY bit of work that comes in, a bad job, a bad customer. The power of being able to say NO is a very powerful tool

If you try to get on with another local cleaner, pass work his way

 

  • Price the job as you see fit and STICK TO IT

"The price is £13 a month, if you can do it for £10 we have a deal. Sorry no we don't, the price is £13 you have my details if you change your mind"

  • DOMESTIC – COMMERICAL or MIXED ?

Starting out, I have focused on just doing domestic houses only, no commercials (at present). Since losing one house is not the end of the world, but losing a days pay would be an issue

  • Pick the schedule you wish to work to

I chose to offer monthly (85% core customer base) or bi-monthly (priced at 25% higher). I think the psychology of offering monthly or bi-monthly this sounds better than saying x6 weekly or x12 weekly personally, but that is just my opinion, monthly cleans also link nicely into my next subject

  • GoCardless, Direct Debit sign up is mandatory, not an option. NO GoCardless – NO CLEAN

GoCardless solves on of the oldest & worst pain points of this trade and solves it very well for a tiny cost of the grief and aggregation it takes away - 20p per DD

Since Direct Debits come out monthly in most cases for bills & payments, it makes it an easier sell to the customer, as another recurring monthly bill.  

(quoting a job) "So to confirm Mrs Jones, I will be here to clean once a month, it will be £15 per month paid via Direct Debit.  You'll get a text the night before to let you know I'm coming & to leave the gate open, once I'm done I post you this "we've just cleaned your windows receipt" (hand customer receipt to keep) Any issue you have 5 day window to get in touch for me to resolve it.  If all is good, the Direct Debit leaves your bank 5 days later, just like your Sky or Vodafone bill"

This explains about GoCardless and how it all works, (hands Mrs Jones professionally printed company branded Double side A5)

Where you can, if at all possible get GoCardless get in place prior to first clean. But I tend to do cash or card “n person” on the day of first clean.

ALWAYS try to have the customer there for your “First Clean”. It is as much for YOU to see and judge them as a customer/person. But also for YOU, to sell YOURSELF and YOUR business.

YOU only have ONE chance to make a lasting FIRST impression

"Look the part, image is everything"

Use fivver.com to get someone to design yourself a "brand/image/logo" for yourself & business, your van signage, your clothing(customiseitnow.co.uk) , your custom lanyard (weprintlanyards.com) & ID photo card (photoidcardpeople.com), your professionally printed stationery, leaflets, business cards, compliments slips (vistaprint or instantprint.co.uk).  

When done right ALL branding when on your van, your polo shirt, fleece, ID all aligns & links together that make it so much easier the "sell" the GoCardless sign up as just another part of how YOU do YOUR business, that is often the pain point for others to sell & convert.

It screams professionalism.

Always be working in your uniform when with a customer or potential customer. Be Mr Vanilla – arrive clean shaven, tattoos covered, clean & tidy. You might think your tattoos are FAB a potential customer might judge you as an ex-convict in their mind. ALWAYS be polite, considerate and courteous.

Would you give your bank details up to a someone togged out in sport direct catalogue and trainers?. Probaly not

If you and your van look the part and is a cut above the competition, YOU can have confidence selling your services at a higher price, with a smile on your face

  • ALWAYS go the extra mile to impress on a first clean and do an AMAZING job

but ALWAYS charge accordingly for doing so. You only have one chance to make a 1st impression !

Explain to the customer as "There will be a one-off first clean restoration charge to bring everything back up to gleaming again, as they have not been done in such a long while, this is only due to the extra time, effort, chemicals, pure water used to restore your windows and frames. Your ongoing maintenance cleans every month will then be £15"

By charging this one-off first clean restoration fee, not only are you getting fairly paid for the extra work it also serves as a natural filter to weed out those customers who are really just wanting a one-off clean out of the blue and not interested in an ongoing monthly clean

  • AFTER THE FIRST CLEAN

By doing a superb and awesome job on the first clean restoration, it makes YOUR job SO MUCH EASIER & FASTER upon your return the next month, as nothing ever gets a chance to get really dirty again


First clean out of the way, Explain the GoCardless service in detail BEFORE you leave, offer to answer any questions how it works and leave info leaflets for them to read at their leisure, have an FAQ section on your web page to. Follow up, at the end of the day text from textlocal

#REF: XX NORTH ROAD Hi XXXX, XXXXX your new window cleaner here. Nice to meet you earlier and completing your first clean. As explained, here is the sign up link for the Direct Debit service. All recurring cleans are paid via Direct Debit. Please complete before your next scheduled clean on XX/XX/2019 https://pay.gocardless.com/xxxxxxxxxxxx Regards xxxxxx 07xx xxx xxx www.xxxxxxxxxxx.com

Not signed up to GoCardless in ¾ weeks? a week prior to next months clean, they get from textlocal

#REF: XX NORTH ROAD Hi XXXX, XXXX your window cleaner here. I have your clean booked in the work diary for next week. All my recurring cleans are paid via Direct Debit. The sign up link for the Direct Debit is https://pay.gocardless.com/xxxxxxxxxxxx Regards xxxxxx 07xx xxx xxx www.xxxxxxxxxxx.com

DD Not in place, by clean date. DONT CLEAN - SKIP

But on day of clean (last ditch effort), drop a compliments slip through door hand written saying “Mr(s) XXX, Sorry but your clean has been missed this month as we notice the Direct Debit was not in place as yet. If you would still like a recurring monthly clean, please sign up before XX/XX/2019 and we will add you to next months work. Regards XXXX “

NO GoCardless sign-up – NO CLEAN. Dump, replace and move on.

YOU have made every effort to offer a professional, reliable & safe payment method to them.

Note the language in the text/slip above, it is not open for discussion or debate how its going to be.

By using textlocal as the delivery vehicle of YOUR message of how YOU do business, it doesn't leave it up for negotiation or changes. Textlocal doesn't give them the option to reply to you or weasel out for good reason, YOU are telling them the terms, how it is and how it will work. The payment option is GoCardless and none negotiable

They don't want to use it. YOU don't want their business

  • "Always be looking to drop the worst of your round"  

YOU want as stress-free a business as possible, ANY job that gives you the slightest amount of grief begin thinking of adding them to the binned list, Just as above you having the best chance to make a great first impression. If the customer doesn't make a great impression on you, trust YOUR gut instincts and judgement. 9/10 they'll be right.

i.e. Dog chit in the garden this month, it WILL be there in months to come.

Cant be arsed to clean up the ladders, kids toys, patio furniture in back garden for you coming to quote, it will ALL be there the month

The exposed property next to busy road, front manky this month, it'll be manky next month.

Cancel your quote appointment last minute, they'll think nothing of cancelling a clean in the same fashion

Cant be arsed to leave gate open for you you 3 strike rule, once benefit of doubt front only half price for half job, second time add to ½ price and added to potential bin list. 3rd time dumped, front onlys again and dumped, deleted, blocked

Snotty or Arsey complaining types of customer, are quick to show their true colours to I have found

Just think of Customers are like buses, they come and go. For each one you lose/drop, there'll be another one along in a minute to replace. Even six months in I have binned a few off already


 

  • Small positive tips for finding nice & reliable gem customers

The offer of a brew, if they offer one now they will offer again in future times to, nice in colder months

They walk with you around the property and speak to you when quoting, they take a small interest in your business/family asking questions

They mention they work most days or normally always out through the day (great, in and out quick job no distractions)

Double Drive, (always space for the van)

No locks, on side gates (customer gets bonus points for)

No gnomes, ornaments, wheely bins stored away, soil lights, no pets (extra bonus points)

Use the length of grass in front garden as a guide, since this is the one chore most people still dont mind doing themseleves. A good clean garden will appreciate ongoing good clean windows. Use grass length as a guide of how house proud they are. The longer the grass, the more they couldnt give a chuff


 

  • Only cleaning properties that best suit how YOU want to work. - HOUSE PROFILING

Again building your round how it suits YOU not the customer. I have not seen this mentioned very often on here but I have chosen to only take on jobs that have "a one van stop, all-round access", again building things on YOUR terms.

It soon began to annoy me doing a mid terrace to then have to repack and move van round into alley to do the rear. So I choose not to quote these sort of properties these days.

Remember again it is YOU driving the bus, you are not in the business to make EVERYONE happy.

YOU work on YOUR terms, not there.

YOU are not being forced to accept every job that comes your way.

I now focus my efforts on getting new builds development, established estates, since they are nearly all cookie cutter "same design" type and council semis with gated sides (quick'n'easy, in'n'out 15mins jobs) ONLY

Terraces no interest, work in town centre not interest, high rise not interest, builders clean not interested

Any job outside of this, sorry I dont wish to do it

You may want a totally compact round on your doorstep, price competitively, and continually canvass same area all year ongoing

If your prepared to travel,work slower and doing higher value bigger houses at one house an hour for £25-£40 get looking on rightmove completed for houses £500,000+ in value in the postcodes you want to hit

  • RESEARCH AND RING BACK POLICY”

Linked in with the last point, YOU are the one driving the bus. Don't be caught on the hop or quoting blind over phone.

ALWAYS try be in front of your PC at home with your work diary when you are engaging with new customer on phone

use :

instantstreetview.com

rightmove completed sales

apple maps to view gardens for conservatory potential

A quote call comes in through working day

OK, Thanks I wont be able to quote right now as i'm out working. I have your contact number in my phone. Leave it with me Mrs XX and I will call you back this evening if thats OK, I should be able to give you a quote tonight using my 3D mapping software (sounds posh) at home and schedule a date to visit, can you just text me through the address and postcode please Mrs XXX “ or note the address details if you have pen handy

By getting the address details FIRST you can judge if YOU want to take the job on. It doesn't fit your work profile, call them back (professionalism) “ Mrs XXX sadly, the days we work in your areas are currently full, sorry couldn't be of help this time (refer to other local cleaner you may know if you wish)”

The job does fit your work profile, GREAT you are responding at home, with all your tools & work diary & schedule at fingers, you will have a 90% good idea of house you are dealing with and can give a TBC quote over the phone.

  • CANVASSING & OBTAINING NEW BUSINESS

I have learnt people keep business cards, but will mostly bin flyers.

Trialed just dropping business cards only on a few streets about five months ago and nothing came of it originally at the time, but this past two months I have had four calls from folk on these streets i dropped months back.

Flyers I have found seem to get a a response under x1 week reply from. After that nothing else. So more instant

Also when someone gives you a call ALWAYS ask how they heard about you? So you get to learn what is working and what is not for you

Flyer? recommendation? word of mouth? FB page? local FB group ? saw you van? Google?

  • The BT phone book “name drop” hack

https://www.thephonebook.bt.com/person/

use this to search a potential street you like the look of, add street name add town name, in surname add * which is called a wildcard

https://www.thephonebook.bt.com/Person/PersonSearch/?Surname=*&Location=Newcastle%20Upon%20Tyne&Street=coast%20road

Now on this I know x19 people's “surname / * ”, who is in the BT phone, whos lives on the “Coast Road” in “Newcastle

Mention someone by name can break the ice 🙂

  • Trial different flyers,

make x5 different designs of x500 each in small quantities, and see what works before rather than ordering x25,000 **** ones at once of the same design to save a few bob.

Also ordering small, should the worst happen and your notice a spelling mistake or wrong phone no/email you are not major out of pocket

Note which flyers you drop on what streets/area/postcode. When the work comes in you then know what flyers worked. Always use one type of flyer in one street. So you begin to learn what flyer works and what doesnt

Use googlemaps to print where you are flyer dropping, print the area and use highlighter to colour streets you have done

Use instantstreetview, and virtually walk where you wish to drop BEFORE you set out to check it fits with the house profiles you wish to build your round around or use it to search new areas which have house profiles you would like to work

You quickly learn some flyers work better than others.

Let your customers be YOUR own canvassers, spread the love for you when you do their clean drop them their "weve cleaned ticket" offer them a simple x1 FREE clean for every new customer they send my way. The busy body know it all money saving Queen of the cul de sac has not paid for a clean yet as she keeps finding me work, and we have a joke about it when i call she will pay me one day ! i dont mind. Every new customer is a £120+ minimum pay rise per annum (£10 x12 months) there is no one way single best of getting business, you just need to keep plugging away trying to get business every day by all means possible.

Also just because you have done one street once, don't mean you cant drop there again. People come and go. Renters move out. Folk get new jobs. Retirees move in

One new estate of new builds that are all perfect all round access types that fit my house profile , i leaflet or business card drop there every month, people dont have the memory of what flyers came through their door four months ago. Can you remember which pizza restaurant menu dropped 4 months ago, can you?

Because i want to work this estate i am slowly getting more and more there. The more you are seen in one area, the better chance of work. The more work you get in an area you want to be the more work comes to you, word spreads. The more you are there the more you are seen.

Even if your flyer ends up in the trash, if your leaflet is branded right with you, your work gear and work van. Your logo may stick in their mind ? They may see your van again or you out cleaning neighbours

Also a little tip PRIOR to arriving to a scheduled clean on your round, leaflet drop the neighbours BEFORE starting, The rattle of the letter box, the bark of the dog, the sight of things on the mat and then 10 mins later they see you doing Mrs Jones opposite, they have been soft sold the service already and when they see you if interested they are likely to approach you, making it much easier to seal the deal as they have been soft sold already

Whilst not without it problems and 100% perfect, i have trailed doing flyers with £ prices shown and have had a far better up take rate. As someone know what it is going to cost in black and white, also as del boy says "what cant speak, cant lie". If you can back up a cold call door knock with a “here is our price list we work from” its an easier sell/close

You can use rightmove completed house sales https://www.rightmove.co.uk/house-prices.html sort via most recently sold and there you have a fresh list possible customers, that auto updates ever week. Be the early bird that catches the worm and check every week

  • SMILE, BE HAPPY IN YOUR WORK, SAY HELLO!

Happily working on a customers job in your branded company gear, smile be happy you are on a paying job.

You sense a man/woman walking her dog in your side view, due to pass you take a moment to pause to adjust your pole or work belt and make eye contact by accident, just smile, nod, say Hi or a friendly morning. It is making a personal small connection. Just a small thing and you may have them approach you for a job after fido has parked its breakfast a few mins later

  • THE GARAGE DOOR - UPSELL AT THE END, CLOSING

A perfect way to add a few quid to a job. Once the customer has agreed to your price and ongoing services. You can upsell the cleaning of the garage door for £2 more. Garage doors are big in the mind (lots of work, theyre not), the price seems small (£ kerching good value). Agreed to services, but risk looking cheap for an extra £2 ?

So Mrs Jones, that you all sorted on £15 a month for the windows, frames, sills, front & back door. If you'd like, I can do the garage door each month to for an extra £2 ?

Yes? – GREAT 🙂 £15 job – just became a £17 for an extra 2 mins works £180 per yr to £204 per yr

NO – OK no worries, if you ever need it done just let me know or drop me a message, same price if you need it done

  • USE YOUR MOBILE AS A BAROMETER TO HOW WELL YOU ARE DOING YOUR JOB

The less it rings, you knowing you are doing your job right = good work quality.

If it is ringing for new work and new quotes to do you know your marketing or referrals are working

"to buy or to not buy a round"

For my own reasons above, I started from scratch.

I didn't buy a round and it didn't even enter into my head to buy work starting out as you are the one starting out you want to pick and choose the areas you wish to clean, and also aside from retirement or accident/ill health buying a round I would have it my mind why do they wish to sell it if they are earning good coin from it?

If you are buying chit or underpriced work, paying "x1 to x10" clean premium you are going to be pi$$ed off from day one starting out. If you are doing everything on your terms, you get to be in full control of how you build it.

  • Lead Generation.

I used Darren's lead generation service Green Pro Clean and built a round FAST.

Fresh leads were always there EVERY day, regular as clockwork new jobs just waiting to be sealed.

Whilst nothing in life is 100% perfect, there were messers in there, Jobs in chit areas, wouldn't sign up for GoCardless.

But I picked up some real gems and lovely customers who I'm sure will be with me for years and net me in far more than the original lead cost me. 

My closure rate was about 65%, the other didn't fit around how I wanted to work.

Digital lead generation has built around 50% of my round at a cost of around £3k thus far

  • YOU ONLY LIVE ONCE, YOU ONLY HAVE ONE BODY ! A POLE CAN BE REPLACED YOUR BODY CANT – BEST TECH, BEST EQUIPMENT

From my original research and planning, I kept reading the SLX22ft was great for around 95% of jobs and also in back of the van I had a manual clabber hand reel. Great I order the SLX. Worked hard with it starting out but began getting aches, creaks, tiredness, pains in arms and shoulders after four months daily use. I was questioning whether this job was really for me long term. Researched some more and saw top of the range Gardiners Extreme pole were well recommended, seconded by Darren (green pro clean) on a phone call for maintenance cleans

So realised how often, I have the SLX full extended and was only 3 jobs a month. Dropped these three houses and suddenly I dont need a 22ft pole anymore. So adapting my house profile I choose to work on, It then turned to any property that couldn't be done with a Gardiners Extreme 18ft pole doesn't get on the books, again working smarter, not harder and also I can work quick now to. Will I have to say no to people, YES, will I have to turn down three story work YES.

The difference between an 18ft extreme and 22ft SLX is like night and day difference. Use an 18ftExtreme for a maintenance clean, then do the same with a 22ftSLX its like tossing the caber literally

So with my day to day pole upgraded, I conclude the body pains must also comes from the manual wheeling hose several times a day. Next purchase PowerupHD electric reel

Next, lets look how a few more grams could be saved on day to day set up. Carbon fibre gooseneck added and extreme brush heads. More pole weight improvements again. By doing these three lots of upgrades, it allows me to worker faster, longer, with less effort not harder.

I can now do more jobs in a day = £more cash, as such thus far has not costs me ANYTHING ! Which leads me to my next point of discussion, £ money

  • MAKE MONEY WORK SMARTER, NOT HARDER - GET THE BEST EQUIPMENT 0%

if you haven't already sign, up for noddle or clearscore and check your credit file.

At a glance it will give you an idea how much of a credit risk you are. It will give you credit cards and your eligibility % of how likely you are to be accepted. If you always pay your bills on time and in good standing there are many option for 0% on purchases for XX of months.

https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/credit-cards/best-0-credit-cards/

Whilst I have the cash in the bank there, why spend a grand when I dont need to. I saw I was pre-approved & eligible for a 28 month 0% on purchases Virgin Money card

So I have chose to spilt this cost of

Powerup HD Reel = £492

18ft Extreme Pole & carbon extras = £585

£1077 divided over 2 years/24 months for sake of round numbers = just £44.87 per month

OR equivalent of just x4 cleans a month to be using rolls royce top of the range equipment

Not eligible for a 0% of purchases card, look to see if you can get a balance transfer for 0% for a few years, usually costs is just 3% of balance transferred

  • Facebook ads/boosted posts

Not without its problems and messers. But I found uptake rate on paid for ads and boosted posts MUCH better than using local for sale boards/services.

Keep trailing different photos/images and text on a x24 hour £5 boosted post/ad.  some work some don't, trail & error.

When sorting the chosen target interest for the post, I have found using 'gardening' as an interest tends to get folk with very house proud and clean well maintained properties.

Facebook local groups have brought me either the worst of the worst customers or also some total gems. Very hit or miss. Using these forsale boards/ local services groups also leaves you WIDE OPEN for random comments “ooohh he quoted me and he was dead dear him “, competition under cutters “i'll do it for £4”

Your local reputation can be easily tarnished & then be visible to a large number of local people VERY EASILY be warned and you will have little control on policing it & the comments
Use how a customer responds to your messages as a filter into what they are really like.

Avoid single mothers like the plague, worst of the worst.

Bad spelling/grammar, misspelling words, txt spk. adding xxxxxxxxxx kisses to everything, calling people hun/dear, use of Instagram filters/animal ears/glasses in their pics etc ALL red flags to watch for

When they message you a quick look of their Facebook profile you can usually judge what someone is like pretty quick.

Also get off FaceBook messenger ASAP as you've closed the deal. This closes one avenue of them trying to cancel a clean

  • LISTEN” FOR POTENTIAL £ MONEY “RED FLAGS”

Can you leave until after the 30th when I get paid = I dont have a pot to pi$$ in the bank currently until the 30th

My JSA/Universal Credit goes in on a Tuesday, a Tuesday would be lovely thanks = I dont have a pot to pi$$ in the bank currently until Tuesday

Oooohh thats dear , my last cleaner was £x” = I dont value a good reliable service and am not prepared to pay for it

The perfect customer you want is the one who doesn't mention the price/pay day date/day of clean

  • "don't be afraid to travel when starting out"

Your postcode +10 miles AND or /20 mins travel time in ANY direction is what I used.

My first six months I have been here there and everywhere.

Cleaning, quoting as an when work/queries came in. Now, this past month I have had my first major reshuffle of work and squeezed down working x5 days out of x7 down to, x11 working days in a month to complete, an average of x13 cleans per day.

What was previously random and scattered work all around this +10 miles radius of home, now it has made itself into a workable round with jobs now close to each other.

  • ALTHOUGH YOU ARE SELF EMPLOYED TREAT IT LIKE A JOB

You would work 9-5 in a normal office job, be working the same hours if not more on your own business

you reap what you sew. The more you work at it the more you will be rewarded

You are done by 1pm on day, that gives you x4 hours to go chapping doors,

First clean scheduled for 10am, arrive at 9am and leaflet drop the street/area around


In closing,
My current position a few days over seven months in, 160 customers, 157 on GoCardless.
All jobs are one van-stop, all round access.
Bringing in just under £2k a month, ALL work is priced £10 or higher

The average price per job is £13.85  (not fantastic but im up t'north! and there are still lots of "£4 a semi" cleaners here)
To be at this position after seven months I am in a pretty happy spot and pleased with my results so far.

I'm nobody really special or talented so if I can do it I think anyone could!

I am bringing a half decent wage and still have plenty of scope to improve next year
Still lots to learn, still lots of customers to find, still lots of things to try, still have lots of neigbours doors to wrap in the new year, still have lots of new build estates to leaflet drop in 2019

Hope you have enjoy my random brain droppings


 



Amazing stuff man from a fellow north east windy 🙂 only a few months old my self and i have landed on my feet 😛

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johnny bravo

gocardless take 2p  per pound,      or £2  max if high amount.     im still getting customers to sign up,   this is a big bonus for us  as it does save  on fuel.  especially when they are not in.     Bacs also   but with this theres always some you have to remind continuously.

im going to get some flyers printed stating our main online payment will be gocardless . only for those who keep forgetting..   its a bonus when they do pay as its double or triple amounts. 

I wish I was 20 years younger .  never had so much work.    gets to you when 50+    a bit more tireing out all day.

 

have a son sitting on his ar.e  all day.       window  cleaning  is not good enough for him,    pure lazy.    

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P4dstar
4 hours ago, johnny bravo said:

have a son sitting on his ar.e  all day.       window  cleaning  is not good enough for him,    pure lazy.

He's probably the wrong generation for a bit of hard work mate. My boy used to come out with me on the odd Saturday but I ended up firing him a couple of months back. Jeremy Corbyn has got him and his mates believing everything should be paid for them and wealth should be shared equally regardless of how hard people do or do not work 🙄

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noobwc
Just now, P4dstar said:

He's probably the wrong generation for a bit of hard work mate. My boy used to come out with me on the odd Saturday but I ended up firing him a couple of months back. Jeremy Corbyn has got him and his mates believing everything should be paid for them and wealth should be shared equally regardless of how hard people do or do not work 🙄

Savage!! i bet that went down well "Your fired" - son "i'm telling mam" lol 

even people my age(27) are well lazy they want nice things but haven't got the get up and go to go out and earn it, window cleaning is easy quick money (imo)

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P4dstar
13 minutes ago, noobwc said:

Savage!! i bet that went down well "Your fired" - son "i'm telling mam" lol 

even people my age(27) are well lazy they want nice things but haven't got the get up and go to go out and earn it, window cleaning is easy quick money (imo)

It is easy money but they don't want it mate. My boy is only 17 and an A student to be fair to him. That doesn't change that his entire generation are being taught that things should be handed to them. They have them all believing that things like socialism are the way forward and that those ideas could actually work. IMO they should teach them that you only get one shot at life and to play the hand you're dealt!

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Incheck

 i’m very impressed with what you’ve achieved. 

Just one thing to this

1. Don’t judge a book by it’s cover (i’m referring to the part about single mothers) there are plenty of single mothers out there who can hold their own. Some of them are minted, run businesses from home, have very high up corporate jobs etc. some people also have a lot of income simply off dicorce settlements. Even if they appear to be single there is often someone else in the picture who may well be helping them out financially. 

Regarding the part about text speech yes i agree with you there. I also expect people to have manners. I’ve had texts before saying “need a quote for gutters” and thats it, no “hi, my name is, please or thank you”

 

 

 

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Tuffers
20 minutes ago, Incheck said:

 i’m very impressed with what you’ve achieved. 

Just one thing to this

1. Don’t judge a book by it’s cover (i’m referring to the part about single mothers) there are plenty of single mothers out there who can hold their own. Some of them are minted, run businesses from home, have very high up corporate jobs etc. some people also have a lot of income simply off dicorce settlements. Even if they appear to be single there is often someone else in the picture who may well be helping them out financially. 

Regarding the part about text speech yes i agree with you there. I also expect people to have manners. I’ve had texts before saying “need a quote for gutters” and thats it, no “hi, my name is, please or thank you”

 

 

 

 

Single mothers in social housing who sit out the front all day smoke rollies and wearing a dressing gown? Best customer you can have in my eyes 🙄

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P4dstar
24 minutes ago, Incheck said:

 i’m very impressed with what you’ve achieved. 

Just one thing to this

1. Don’t judge a book by it’s cover (i’m referring to the part about single mothers) there are plenty of single mothers out there who can hold their own. Some of them are minted, run businesses from home, have very high up corporate jobs etc. some people also have a lot of income simply off dicorce settlements. Even if they appear to be single there is often someone else in the picture who may well be helping them out financially. 

Regarding the part about text speech yes i agree with you there. I also expect people to have manners. I’ve had texts before saying “need a quote for gutters” and thats it, no “hi, my name is, please or thank you”

I don't necessarily agree with everything Northumberland has put. I think it's just his personal take on how he runs his business. I have a few ''single mothers'' on the round and I can think of some that you would categorise under 🔔🔚 too. I did some this week, bunch of 2 bed houses at £12 each every 8 weeks. All together and 6 of them done in just over an hour so a good little earner. One of them will pay in 8 weeks time the night before the next clean is due 🙄

 

7 minutes ago, Tuffers said:

Single mothers in social housing who sit out the front all day smoke rollies and wearing a dressing gown? Best customer you can have in my eyes 🙄

At least you can ask for a light 🤣

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Incheck
9 minutes ago, Tuffers said:

 

Single mothers in social housing who sit out the front all day smoke rollies and wearing a dressing gown? Best customer you can have in my eyes 🙄

It happens at all social levels dude. A while ago i made the mistake of agreeing to a knocked down price on a FSG. While we worked the Lady was chain smoking and drinking glasses of what i believe was wine all the way through the job

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Part Timer
3 hours ago, P4dstar said:

He's probably the wrong generation for a bit of hard work mate. My boy used to come out with me on the odd Saturday but I ended up firing him a couple of months back. Jeremy Corbyn has got him and his mates believing everything should be paid for them and wealth should be shared equally regardless of how hard people do or do not work 🙄

As soon as people realise that a degree is not the be all and end all is the day we will struggle to earn good money.

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NorthumberlandWindowCleanr
Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Incheck said:

 Just one thing to this

1. Don’t judge a book by it’s cover (i’m referring to the part about single mothers) there are plenty of single mothers out there who can hold their own. Some of them are minted, run businesses from home, have very high up corporate jobs etc. some people also have a lot of income simply off dicorce settlements. Even if they appear to be single there is often someone else in the picture who may well be helping them out financially. 

Feel free to take them on, as you see fit. each to there own.

My post was just to say that the worst of the worst worst customers i have had experienced thus far, are single mothers.

Simple question, 

1. pay your window cleaner what you owe?

2. OR ............feed Chanettle Mercedes Clymaidia Smith and her two sisters to six fathers ?

........................and i think you know the answer.............

 

Delete from your hard wired part of your head that says part you might get your leg over or "she just met the wrong guy" etc 

 

Bottom line, they think of No1 and their brood. you are chit on their jimmy choos (copies) and will ALWAYS look after No1

 

Note, bounced DD from "this week" on  a bi-monthly semi @ just £14. single mother even on gocardless agreed priced, first clean done in jan, text alert night prior, receipt dropped. STILL the DD bounces for no funds..................no sorry, she has had her "bank account scammed" yeah right.l  Same reason why she couldn't afford a pooppa-scooppa for the back garden either to clean the chit away 

IMG_4229.JPG

Edited by NorthumberlandWindowCleanr

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Iron Giant

Agree with @Incheck  yes socially things have changed but you can't tar all single mothers with the same brush I have all kinds of people rip me off in the last 19 years if I avoided every type of client based on the ones that ripped me off I wouldn't have a business. 

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P4dstar
8 hours ago, Part Timer said:

As soon as people realise that a degree is not the be all and end all is the day we will struggle to earn good money.

I don't think they'll ever catch up the previous generations mate. Work ethic is not just something that people have. I remember doing my paper round from the age of 13, out in all weathers delivering 350 papers every week for less than £15. I remember how knackered I was at the end of my first full week at Wetherspoons. They would be years behind and not used to working.

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P4dstar
7 hours ago, NorthumberlandWindowCleanr said:

Feel free to take them on, as you see fit. each to there own.

My post was just to say that the worst of the worst worst customers i have had experienced thus far, are single mothers.

Simple question, 

1. pay your window cleaner what you owe?

2. OR ............feed Chanettle Mercedes Clymaidia Smith and her two sisters to six fathers ?

........................and i think you know the answer.............

 

Delete from your hard wired part of your head that says part you might get your leg over or "she just met the wrong guy" etc 

 

Bottom line, they think of No1 and their brood. you are chit on their jimmy choos (copies) and will ALWAYS look after No1

 

Note, bounced DD from "this week" on  a bi-monthly semi @ just £14. single mother even on gocardless agreed priced, first clean done in jan, text alert night prior, receipt dropped. STILL the DD bounces for no funds..................no sorry, she has had her "bank account scammed" yeah right.l  Same reason why she couldn't afford a pooppa-scooppa for the back garden either to clean the chit away 

IMG_4229.JPG

This kind of thing is a misrepresentation of all single mothers though mate and that's what @Incheck is saying. Some window cleaners swear by avoiding council estates, others swear they are their best work.

 

I think the kind of person you have portrayed in the above description is someone we would all avoid. If I turn up and the grass is ten foot high with old sofas in the front garden I turn on my heels as fast as I can or find a good excuse not to bother. I've been ripped off by 3 people in the last couple of years. 2 of the 3 fitted the modus operandi above and one of the 2 was a set up by another window cleaner to keep me off ''his turf''. In all I have worked for over 400 different customers and only 3 ripped me off. I can't give an accurate number on the amount of customers in social housing but I reckon i've gone past the 100 mark. Don't get me wrong if the mum stops paying I wouldn't carry on cleaning for the daughter etc that's just daft. Have a read of ''the speed of trust'' by Stephen Covey. A very successful multi millionaire managing director I used to work for swears by its teachings.

 

While I think your advice was a good insight I personally found it less use than most. It is your way of running your business and wouldn't work for mine. Some of the things you have written wouldn't work for Incheck or Iron Giant. Don't take offence, it's just their opinion and doesn't mean either is wrong.

 

I'll give you another couple of examples that I disagree with.... You mention signing up for GC and discussing it at the end of the first clean. If you want them on GC your best option is prior to the first clean and this will weed out most of the messers described above. You talk about the length of their grass, double driveways etc but I think this will have some lads heads spinning trying to remember all this stuff on a quote. I naturally notice these things but having managed sales teams for years I can imagine how some lads will be lost trying to keep up.... The above paragraph is all my opinion on how things work for me, an example really of what i'm talking about and above. Horses for courses etc.

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Iron Giant
1 hour ago, P4dstar said:

I don't think they'll ever catch up the previous generations mate. Work ethic is not just something that people have. I remember doing my paper round from the age of 13, out in all weathers delivering 350 papers every week for less than £15. I remember how knackered I was at the end of my first full week at Wetherspoons. They would be years behind and not used to working.


I think you were getting underpaid, I used to deliver around 80 papers a day 6 days a week and got £6.00 😜

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P4dstar
Just now, Iron Giant said:


I think you were getting underpaid, I used to deliver around 80 papers a day 6 days a week and got £6.00 😜

Noooooo, you were underpaid. Yours works out at 480 papers. Mine was 350 of the local newspapers once a week.

 

Went to work with the local milkman once too, that was a rip off. I did 3 days from 5:30 until 7:45 and he paid me £4.20. I never went back!

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Iron Giant
9 minutes ago, P4dstar said:

Noooooo, you were underpaid. Yours works out at 480 papers. Mine was 350 of the local newspapers once a week.

 

Went to work with the local milkman once too, that was a rip off. I did 3 days from 5:30 until 7:45 and he paid me £4.20. I never went back!


Definitely underpaid then 😥 doing a milk round the lads were clapping there hands 30 years ago as they were getting £20 a week but that was in a town miles from the village I lived, then I went on Y.T.S after leaving school and was getting £29.50 a week I think it was, I could go out and get drunk 2 nights running when I was on the big money 🤣 and I had to give my mother £10 board a week 

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Incheck

Well a lot of single mothers are only in the lurch because somebody else has left them there. My partners ex left her for somebody else when she was pregnant...hence why he has absolutely nothing to do with the little un.

He’s disabled, she’s a full time carer but she still goes out to work (not for the money but to occupy herself from going insane and to be motivated) bless her. She can’t do any gardening as little un needs 24/7 care.

when we met she needed help, a lot of it. 

I’m the closest thing to a father little mans ever had, nobody else would give him a chance with his disability. I’ve worked all my life since i was 11...paper rounds followed by chip shops followed by plumbing, catering, and now this. I try my damdest to save up for our own place but its hard saving on your own and a long time coming.

we can’t afford to offcially live together, get married, and are probably not even eligible for a mortgage considering our circumstances. so realistcally the only option is to keep saving until i’m dead and put down a cash offer i guess. 

But we know what we’ve got. Love. And what more is there, really? 

I don’t have a thing to my name other than this business but in 15 years of working i’ve worked full time and paid my taxes, as has she when she could. Just because we are young (ish) and on the fringes of existence doesn’t mean we haven’t tried or don’t try. 

One day hell i may end up homeless but i tell you what i’d still be out there Trad on a ladder because i have to work it keeps me from going insane.

 

 

 

 

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P4dstar
Just now, Iron Giant said:


Definitely underpaid then 😥 doing a milk round the lads were clapping there hands 30 years ago as they were getting £20 a week but that was in a town miles from the village I lived, then I went on Y.T.S after leaving school and was getting £29.50 a week I think it was, I could go out and get drunk 2 nights running when I was on the big money 🤣 and I had to give my mother £10 board a week 

Haha we're gonna end up sounding like the 4 yorkshiremen monty python sketch if we ain't careful haha. If you haven't seen it get on Youtube and have a look...

 

https://youtu.be/ue7wM0QC5LE

 

I only left school 18 years ago. My parents booted me out at 16 so I got £42 a week from the dole and another £30 a week for going to college full time. My food shopping consisted of bread and noodles from KwikSave. Went to the rugby on a Friday night and went out on the last both weekend nights on less than £20.

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scottish cleaning service

We had all the same problems that England's having now regarding people. Up here we have an aging population so don't have the hassle of a younger generation. Through boredom folk up here can get jobs looking after old people in the care industry and tend to enjoy it. Our car industry died decades ago which I can see happening down south. We still have plenty of tea leafs because my mates second Transit got nicked last week, he only had it a week. :1f644:

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P4dstar
18 minutes ago, Incheck said:

Well a lot of single mothers are only in the lurch because somebody else has left them there. My partners ex left her for somebody else when she was pregnant...hence why he has absolutely nothing to do with the little un.

He’s disabled, she’s a full time carer but she still goes out to work (not for the money but to occupy herself from going insane and to be motivated) bless her. She can’t do any gardening as little un needs 24/7 care.

when we met she needed help, a lot of it. 

I’m the closest thing to a father little mans ever had, nobody else would give him a chance with his disability. I’ve worked all my life since i was 11...paper rounds followed by chip shops followed by plumbing, catering, and now this. I try my damdest to save up for our own place but its hard saving on your own and a long time coming.

we can’t afford to offcially live together, get married, and are probably not even eligible for a mortgage considering our circumstances. so realistcally the only option is to keep saving until i’m dead and put down a cash offer i guess. 

But we know what we’ve got. Love. And what more is there, really? 

I don’t have a thing to my name other than this business but in 15 years of working i’ve worked full time and paid my taxes, as has she when she could. Just because we are young (ish) and on the fringes of existence doesn’t mean we haven’t tried or don’t try. 

One day hell i may end up homeless but i tell you what i’d still be out there Trad on a ladder because i have to work it keeps me from going insane.

Your situation doesn't sound far different from mine mate. I can see why you defend single mothers. It is worth remembering that you are in a minority, most of the people in ''single mother'' situations described by Northumberland will fit the demographic description perfectly. That said most of them won't book a window cleaner which is why I wouldn't tar them all with the same brush.

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P4dstar
42 minutes ago, Incheck said:

we can’t afford to offcially live together, get married, and are probably not even eligible for a mortgage considering our circumstances. so realistcally the only option is to keep saving until i’m dead and put down a cash offer i guess. 

Have you got yourself one of those help to buy ISA's? They give you a good interest rate, you can pay £1200 in during the first month and £200 per month after that. We're nearing £10k in ours now. For every £200 the government give you another £50 towards a house purchase. Basically if you fill it with £12k they will give you £3k of free money and you can get one each!

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NorthumberlandWindowCleanr
59 minutes ago, P4dstar said:

This kind of thing is a misrepresentation of all single mothers though mate and that's what @Incheck is saying. Some window cleaners swear by avoiding council estates, others swear they are their best work.

 

I think the kind of person you have portrayed in the above description is someone we would all avoid. If I turn up and the grass is ten foot high with old sofas in the front garden I turn on my heels as fast as I can or find a good excuse not to bother. I've been ripped off by 3 people in the last couple of years. 2 of the 3 fitted the modus operandi above and one of the 2 was a set up by another window cleaner to keep me off ''his turf''. In all I have worked for over 400 different customers and only 3 ripped me off. I can't give an accurate number on the amount of customers in social housing but I reckon i've gone past the 100 mark. Don't get me wrong if the mum stops paying I wouldn't carry on cleaning for the daughter etc that's just daft. Have a read of ''the speed of trust'' by Stephen Covey. A very successful multi millionaire managing director I used to work for swears by its teachings.

 

While I think your advice was a good insight I personally found it less use than most. It is your way of running your business and wouldn't work for mine. Some of the things you have written wouldn't work for Incheck or Iron Giant. Don't take offence, it's just their opinion and doesn't mean either is wrong.

 

I'll give you another couple of examples that I disagree with.... You mention signing up for GC and discussing it at the end of the first clean. If you want them on GC your best option is prior to the first clean and this will weed out most of the messers described above. You talk about the length of their grass, double driveways etc but I think this will have some lads heads spinning trying to remember all this stuff on a quote. I naturally notice these things but having managed sales teams for years I can imagine how some lads will be lost trying to keep up.... The above paragraph is all my opinion on how things work for me, an example really of what i'm talking about and above. Horses for courses etc.

 

Yup, fair play @P4dstar you raise some good points to consider. It is always a wise man who can listen to others and take on board their points of view/opinions. 

 

I will check out the Stephen Covey book you suggest, i liked his "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People" i read year ago and thought it was excellent, so will check out "The Speed of Trust" you mention

 

You are totally right on Horses for Courses, what i think is right is not what might work for someone else.

That is the beauty of this trade, you can build and grow things on YOUR terms and YOUR rules.

 

My calling out of single mothers as bad is definitely a little OTT and all wont be like that. Just be my bad fortune that the few messers who I've had have slipped through the pre-filter net/checks. It could have just as easily been some overly debtted up "Living Champagne Lifestyle on Lemonade budget" houses on a new build that caused me agro, nowt as queer as the general public. Rich or poor. 

 

Building a business is always work in progress and for every day you work, every day you learn something new. It is learning to learn from these messers/experiences

 

Being less than a year in myself, i don't feel anywhere near experienced enough to tell folk how things should be done or indeed if there is any perfect way to do this job, just a newby sharing out what hes learnt thus far and giving a little back to the community that was so helpful to me learning the ropes prior to starting up last year

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Incheck
3 minutes ago, P4dstar said:

Have you got yourself one of those help to buy ISA's? They give you a good interest rate, you can pay £1200 in during the first month and £200 per month after that. We're nearing £10k in ours now. For every £200 the government give you another £50 towards a house purchase. Basically if you fill it with £12k they will give you £3k of free money and you can get one each!

Glad it’s getting you somehwere dude 👍 i currently don’t know if the govenment are still doing it for new entries, my brother mentioned something about the government pulling out from it all. To be honest i don’t know whether i’m here or there half the time, i’ve been considering all sorts but the fact is my mrs is on a carers allowance as well as other benefits, if i move in she’d lose most of her support and the vast majority of everything would have to come from me which i honestly can’t afford at present. With both partners working full time you can get somewhere but a carers allowance doesn’t make up anything near a full time wage so 🤷‍♂️

By the time rent or mortgage/council tax and bills had gone out we’d probably be in the red every month & thats not even accounting for food/clothing etc. 

She will never be able to work full time so the thought is always in my head that i’ve got to earn for the 3 of us, i’m trying hard like but as you can guess....

i’m never all there mentally to be honest in order to think about things logically but i dont let it get me down i keep working and ploughing on, worrying dont get you nowhere. if i can possibly be of any use to this world i’ll try my damdest lol

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P4dstar
22 hours ago, NorthumberlandWindowCleanr said:

Being less than a year in myself, i don't feel anywhere near experienced enough to tell folk how things should be done or indeed if there is any perfect way to do this job, just a newby sharing out what hes learnt thus far and giving a little back to the community that was so helpful to me learning the ropes prior to starting up last year

I reckon to a big extent that is often worth more than an experienced person telling people telling folk how things should be done. I would compare it to painting a wall the same colour it was before, sometimes a fresh set of eyes will spot a bit you've missed haha.

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