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All eggs in one basket?


Bongofish

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Hey guys!

Sorry haven't been on for a while just been window cleaning and also doing family stuff.

So as many of you know I've been at this about 10 months now and business has really took off, to the point I've lost a slight bit if control (first time owning a business in first year so please don't shoot me). I've sold 70ish customers to another cleaner. All them customers were in surrounding villages to where I live. My issue is i still have 3 towns round my area where I do windows but considering getting rid of these too as I'm just getting busier and busier in my own village/town. And now spring is nearly here I'm booked up for next 6 Saturdays with Conny roofs and gutterclearing/facia jobs etc etc. 

Im considering getting rid of all customers in all areas except my own village now. I have about 200 monthly customers here now and gain between 3-10 new customers a week here. However a little concerned about putting all my eggs into one area and then if something went wrong here I've let all the other areas go. Where I live is great but very clicky. Everyone kn the streets know eachother and guarantees one mistake will spread like wildfire. 

As it was such freezing weather and snow in February it set me behind and I just can't seem to catch up, everyday getting a message from a customer asking where I am (even though I'm not seriously late) and that on top of still gaining customers in my village at a steady weekly rate I'm starting to feel a little bit like im letting it slip . 

 

Wondered people's thoughts on this? Good idea, bad idea? I wouldn't ever have to travel more than 1.5 miles from my own door step in this situation. 

Also alongside thisbi haven't had a day off in about 24 days. No big deal I know, and on a Saturday and Sunday only working about 3 hours each day but still not ideal. But feel a little snowed under. Again it's raining here today got 6 houses done this morning but round my area people hate with a passion cleaning in the rain so always sets me behind to then have to catch up again at weekend. And like I said earlier if people round here start saying I clean in the rain and there not happy it will spread quickly and then I will lose/ not gain customers. 

 

Thanks all and hope everyone is well! 

Edited by Bongofish
  • Like 3
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Just a thought but how about looking into sub contracting?

Got to be careful mate. You don`t want to burn yourself out.

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Only you know what to do but I would be more proactive in informing your customers that there are no disadvantages to working in rain. You mustn't let them dictate what weather you work in otherwise you will find yourself losing so many days. 

Personally speaking, I dump those that will not allow me to clean in the rain but I appreciate your concerns here. However, you can't go thinking that if you lose one or two customers, that you will lose the whole village. Surely most people can make up their own mind. 

Congrats on being too successful though! 

Edited by NewGuy
  • Agree 3
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2 minutes ago, Crystalalan said:

Just a thought but how about looking into sub contracting?

Got to be careful mate. You don`t want to burn yourself out.

As I'm so in experianced in business running I wouldn't even know where to begin sun contracting. People have said to me why don't you take on someone with you, but it just feels complicated to me in terms of wages and tax and employment rights. It may not be but feel it's simpler to keep it just me. 

In regards to burning myself you are right in a way. This is a very hard one. I work 7 days a week now but for much shorter hours than I worked before as a lorry driver. I do less weekly hours now then I did then....but I can't remember the last day I got up and put a pair of jeans on rather than my work trousers. 

Its still BY FAR the best job I've had but definetly feeling pressure alot more than 4 months ago when I kept everyone in check and to time .

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I don`t think its that complicated to sub contract. Obviously it will affect filing out self assesment forms. I would suggest having a word with your accountant about it if you have one.

I to was a HGV driver before window cleaning and yes you are right it was very long hours for poor pay and I found I was racing against time a heck of a lot. Plus it was all the crappy stuff like drivers meetings after work and CPC`s out of hours of work that got my goat up. Yes window cleaning is a much better job but you need to work to live not the other way round.

 

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Also you want to question if your prices are too cheap. This might be the reason why you are getting so many new custys. Its better to get less new custys but ones you get are paying better if you get my drift.

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7 minutes ago, Crystalalan said:

Also you want to question if your prices are too cheap. This might be the reason why you are getting so many new custys. Its better to get less new custys but ones you get are paying better if you get my drift.

Hi again. 

I live in West Yorkshire so the prices arnt anywhere near down south prices. Also there is a few traditional cleaners round here that do houses for £5 still and I'm shocked when I hear new customers question my pricing. However I've only not got about 2 quotes. I charge around £10 for a normal 3 bed semi detached with no conservatory on and I'm happy with this. I always aim to make about £30 an hour. Some streets I make £60 per hour and some others £24 per hour. But I think for round here my pricing is pretty bang on. I'm not as expensive as big corporate company's but more expensive than the local trad guys, but I dont seem to lose any customers or quotes 🤷

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I would definately look into sub contracting though. When I first started out I was approached by another window cleaner who had bitten off more then he could chew and It worked out pretty well for both of us as I was fairly quiet at the time. It helped me out and also him.

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Your village needs some serious educating in the virtues of wfp and cleaning in the rain, no work is no money either, I would look at putting a message out on fb and reinforcing this every once in a while, my custys are told at the outset that I will clean in rain. hail and shine that's what they accept and are used too, if I get a whiner they are directed to a a page on my website which clearly outlines things they got this before they signed up so have no comebacks.

Work 8 hours a day Monday to Friday then you won't be working weekends, small minded people in villages aren't running your business you are, it would be water off a ducks back to me, but I also sacked off the village I grew up in and moved away as they wanted outdated methods and prices I lost multiple cutys every time I put my prices up I went from 10's of jobs to about 10 jobs over the years so not much too lose. 😂

The trouble you have is your custys, NOT YOU!!  they will take a while to evolve and accept how you work I am guessing you were either the first or second wfper in your former village now town, 13 years ago it was me in my former village and the next town over I have covered for 20 years and the former village and town for some years now which we have now lived in just over 8 years, they all come around in the end. 

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3 minutes ago, Iron Giant said:

Your village needs some serious educating in the virtues of wfp and cleaning in the rain, no work is no money either, I would look at putting a message out on fb and reinforcing this every once in a while, my custys are told at the outset that I will clean in rain. hail and shine that's what they accept and are used too, if I get a whiner they are directed to a a page on my website which clearly outlines things they got this before they signed up so have no comebacks.

Work 8 hours a day Monday to Friday then you won't be working weekends, small minded people in villages aren't running your business you are, it would be water off a ducks back to me, but I also sacked off the village I grew up in and moved away as they wanted outdated methods and prices I lost multiple cutys every time I put my prices up I went from 10's of jobs to about 10 jobs over the years so not much too lose. 😂

The trouble you have is your custys, NOT YOU!!  they will take a while to evolve and accept how you work I am guessing you were either the first or second wfper in your former village now town, 13 years ago it was me in my former village and the next town over I have covered for 20 years and the former village and town for some years now which we have now lived in just over 8 years, they all come around in the end. 

I'm actually giving people the option tomorrow of getting them done or leaving till April. 40mph winds and heavy rain forecast. I'm working away the next 2 weeks so cant fit them in till the back of the month anyway. Hopefully a few will cancel, it's been a long year up to now weather wise.

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3 minutes ago, Part Timer said:

I'm actually giving people the option tomorrow of getting them done or leaving till April. 40mph winds and heavy rain forecast. I'm working away the next 2 weeks so cant fit them in till the back of the month anyway. Hopefully a few will cancel, it's been a long year up to now weather wise.

Not a bad idea mate,

I have plenty of jobs due that don't get a text the night before, I'll see what's like tomorrow and suss it out, where I live it will be blowing a gale no doubt but in the next town which is much lower down and areas are less exposed can be like a different world 

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Chill and live don’t live to work. Put your prices up abit and think about subcontracting or get a young hungry lad on with you. Life is too short to work seven days a week. 

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2 hours ago, Bongofish said:

Hey guys!

Sorry haven't been on for a while just been window cleaning and also doing family stuff.

So as many of you know I've been at this about 10 months now and business has really took off, to the point I've lost a slight bit if control (first time owning a business in first year so please don't shoot me). I've sold 70ish customers to another cleaner. All them customers were in surrounding villages to where I live. My issue is i still have 3 towns round my area where I do windows but considering getting rid of these too as I'm just getting busier and busier in my own village/town. And now spring is nearly here I'm booked up for next 6 Saturdays with Conny roofs and gutterclearing/facia jobs etc etc. 

Im considering getting rid of all customers in all areas except my own village now. I have about 200 monthly customers here now and gain between 3-10 new customers a week here. However a little concerned about putting all my eggs into one area and then if something went wrong here I've let all the other areas go. Where I live is great but very clicky. Everyone kn the streets know eachother and guarantees one mistake will spread like wildfire. 

As it was such freezing weather and snow in February it set me behind and I just can't seem to catch up, everyday getting a message from a customer asking where I am (even though I'm not seriously late) and that on top of still gaining customers in my village at a steady weekly rate I'm starting to feel a little bit like im letting it slip . 

 

Wondered people's thoughts on this? Good idea, bad idea? I wouldn't ever have to travel more than 1.5 miles from my own door step in this situation. 

Also alongside thisbi haven't had a day off in about 24 days. No big deal I know, and on a Saturday and Sunday only working about 3 hours each day but still not ideal. But feel a little snowed under. Again it's raining here today got 6 houses done this morning but round my area people hate with a passion cleaning in the rain so always sets me behind to then have to catch up again at weekend. And like I said earlier if people round here start saying I clean in the rain and there not happy it will spread quickly and then I will lose/ not gain customers. 

 

Thanks all and hope everyone is well! 

I don’t think working in just one village is putting all your eggs in one basket , working for just one firm well that would be different, the closer to home and more compact your round is the better I would focus on building it up more , we have well over 3000 customers within 5 miles of home 

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7 minutes ago, Mcsandlaly said:

Chill and live don’t live to work. Put your prices up abit and think about subcontracting or get a young hungry lad on with you. Life is too short to work seven days a week. 

damn right

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3 minutes ago, Pjj said:

I don’t think working in just one village is putting all your eggs in one basket , working for just one firm well that would be different, the closer to home and more compact your round is the better I would focus on building it up more , we have well over 3000 customers within 5 miles of home 

3,000? If you don't mind me asking....How? Im saying this as I think there is only 2 of you??? All my customers now are 4 weekly. I don't do any 8 weekly or 2 weekly. It really surprised me reading through the threads of a new starter doing 6 week and 12 weekly. I'm sure he will change that soon. But how do you do 3,000? 

 

That's near enough 10 different customers a day for a year for 1 clean 

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8 minutes ago, Bongofish said:

3,000? If you don't mind me asking....How? Im saying this as I think there is only 2 of you??? All my customers now are 4 weekly. I don't do any 8 weekly or 2 weekly. It really surprised me reading through the threads of a new starter doing 6 week and 12 weekly. I'm sure he will change that soon. But how do you do 3,000? 

 

That's near enough 10 different customers a day for a year for 1 clean 

No 3 vans and 6 of us in total been going 22 years so have a large round , we are mainly 4 weekly with some 8 weekly domestic , and quite a bit of large commercial. We have several hundred houses on estates ware we move the van half a mile or so in a week , this is less than a mile from home some of it is literally a few hundred yards away . We have over 4000 customers in total at last count give or take a few . When doing 3 bed modern semis we clean 5-7 per hour per man and work 8 hours per day . 

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3 minutes ago, Pjj said:

No 3 vans and 6 of us in total been going 22 years so have a large round , we are mainly 4 weekly with some 8 weekly domestic , and quite a bit of large commercial. We have several hundred houses on estates ware we move the van half a mile or so in a week , this is less than a mile from home some of it is literally a few hundred yards away . We have over 4000 customers in total at last count give or take a few . When doing 3 bed modern semis we clean 5-7 per hour per man and work 8 hours per day . 

One day I need to come out and see how the real proffesional do it. I'm guessing each van is double manned, but still doing 10-14 houses an hour??? I'm single manned but atleast spend a minute per window scrubbing and then rinsing and I still walk away with my fingers crossed that there clean enough 😂. But that time doesn't include extending the poles sorting equipment out and.....yes I know you all hate it.....but wiping the ground floor sills down with a cloth. 

3 minutes ago, Pjj said:

No 3 vans and 6 of us in total been going 22 years so have a large round , we are mainly 4 weekly with some 8 weekly domestic , and quite a bit of large commercial. We have several hundred houses on estates ware we move the van half a mile or so in a week , this is less than a mile from home some of it is literally a few hundred yards away . We have over 4000 customers in total at last count give or take a few . When doing 3 bed modern semis we clean 5-7 per hour per man and work 8 hours per day . 

One day I need to come out and see how the real proffesional do it. I'm guessing each van is double manned, but still doing 10-14 houses an hour??? I'm single manned but atleast spend a minute per window scrubbing and then rinsing and I still walk away with my fingers crossed that there clean enough 😂. But that time doesn't include extending the poles sorting equipment out and.....yes I know you all hate it.....but wiping the ground floor sills down with a cloth. 

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