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Starting a business

Small Business Ideas: Start Your Own Mobile Car Detailing Service

If you’re comfortable around cars and good with people, a mobile car detailing service could be a business that fits your talents. Running a mobile business provides excellent profit potential, especially because of low overhead costs. But you also have extra considerations to keep in mind when you have a business with no fixed location that involves other people’s valuable property.

Considerations Before Starting the Business

Before you get too involved in your car detailing business, you need to ask yourself how good you are at detailing cars. When someone pays to get their car detailed, they expect high-quality work. If your detailing skills still need some work, the key is getting more practice. You could learn the trade by working at a car detailing shop or check out online resources on the subject.

Physical fitness is important for detailing cars, because it’s demanding work when you’re doing it eight hours per day or more. With a mobile business, you could also end up working in all kinds of weather, from hot summer days to chillier conditions.

Check the laws in your province regarding the required licences and permits to run a mobile business. Keep in mind you need to do this for any area where you plan to operate. One way to simplify this process is to look into a mobile business licence that’s valid in multiple areas.

What You Need for Your Car Detail Business

The great part about a mobile car detailing service is you don’t need to spend much on tools and supplies. The basic supplies you need are the following:

  • A wet/dry vacuum
  • Car waxes and polishes
  • Carpet cleaner
  • Brushes, rags, and sponges
  • Buckets

Remember you’re going to need a water and power source wherever you are. If you go anywhere that doesn’t have these on site, then you could end up needing a portable generator and a water supply tank with a pump. You can keep costs down to start by only going to areas with an electrical outlet and water supply you can use.

You can either use your own vehicle to transport everything, assuming it’s big enough, or buy a service vehicle for this. Make sure you have an appropriate auto insurance policy, as your current policy may only cover personal vehicle use, not business. Liability insurance is also a good idea in case a customer’s car gets damaged.

Finding Customers

While you have plenty of options to market your mobile business, the most effective approach is to go to places with a large number of potential customers. Parking lots for malls, business centres, and large companies are excellent choices, because many people park their cars there for an hour or longer. You can set up your business in a visible area and offer your services to anyone with a car.

To conduct business on private property like this, you’re going to need the permission of whoever owns the parking lot. Contact a few in your area and see who agrees to it. You may need to pay a flat fee or a cut of your profits to make it happen.

While launching a car detail business is a lot of work, after you’ve set it up and built a customer base, you can start making great profits every day with only a little overhead.

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