Clothes make the man. –German proverb

The importance of (clean) clothes is a lot in this modern society. A person is judged by what he/she is wearing. So, people always need clean and attractive clothes. So if you are in a business that provides (clean) clothes, you will never run out of trade.

Today people don’t even have time to go to laundry centers, stay there, and wait until their clothes are washed and dried. People need something that diminishes their efforts to go to such laundry outlets. Here enters the on-demand laundry app. With these kinds of apps, the customers can set a pickup and drop location and time for the clothes, and the employee of the on-demand laundry service will come to receive/give the laundry.

If you have decided to start a laundry business (Laundromat), you need some pre-venture knowledge to succeed in this on-demand laundry service business. Here are all the factors to consider and work on while creating your laundromat business plan.

  • Researching Business Prerequisites
  • Learn From Competitors
  • The Right Laundry Business Model
  • A Base of Operations
  • Equipment & Workforce
  • Form A Legal Entity
  • Creating A Brand & Marketing
  • Digitization: The Great Beyond
  • The Cost To Start A Laundry Business

Researching Business Prerequisites

There are some important things to know before setting up a laundry business, like:

  • Does your city or town need another on-demand laundry service?
  • What do the existing laundry outlets lack which you can provide?
  • What are their services and price point?
  • How much do these outlets earn on one individual service?

All these and many other questions should be satisfied before taking a plunge into setting up a laundry business. Visit your competitors’ websites, read about their services, and observe the customer reviews to get the correct picture.

Learn From Competitors

Learn from your competitors. Search how companies like Washio, Cleanly and Rinse are prospering in this on-demand laundry service industry.

All these companies started their first branch in one or other metropolitan city like New York, Washington, etc. This gives them a lot of exposure towards their customers as their target customers are the ones who do not have time to do their own laundry. So the idea that could be a complete failure in urban towns became a smashing success story in such metropolitan cities.

Washio shut down in the year 2016 due to heavy competition from its competitors Rinse, Flycleaners and Cleanly. But, Cleanly is one of the companies that is still standing strong. The reason for their long and successful survival is their thinking of first focusing on profitability rather than scalability.

Cleanly has achieved immense success by making slow and methodical expansion across America instead of just selling bulk franchises.

The Right Laundry Business Model

There are many business models that companies like Washio and Cleanly have followed and achieved great heights in the on-demand laundry service industry. Every plan that gives you good returns is a successful business plan. We will talk about some ideas to make your on-demand laundry business get better revenue.

1. Self-service Laundromat

The first business model is the most common one that laundromats have been using since the early 40s. The customer goes to a nearby washateria, puts the laundry into the machine, feeds in the coins, and waits for the clothes to be washed. Once dried, they fold and take their fresh clothes home.

2. Wash & Fold Services

If you plan to get a higher chunk of profit from the laundromat business, this second model is a better choice for you. The customers will come to your laundromat store to give their laundry to be washed, dry cleaned or ironed, and you do the chore for them. They’ll return for their fresh clothes and pay you for your service.

3. Laundry Pickup & Delivery

Let’s bump up the previous model with an even greater customer experience and higher profit margin. The customer will ask for a laundry pickup via your laundry app; your employee will pick up the laundry. It gets washed and ironed at your laundromat and then delivered back to the customer at their preferred time.

A Base of Operations

You need a place where you will start your laundry business. There are several things to consider while choosing your base of operations, but we can divide all of them into two broad sections: space and location.

Space for your Laundromat

The place should be enough to accommodate all the machines you plan to use and some more space to store bulks of clothes from the customers. Also, the buildings plumbing and electrical output should be more than enough for your business to function efficiently, even on the busiest of days.

Location of your Laundromat

The location of your laundromat is as important as the space, if not more. While looking for the right property, the goal is to aim for a place that is close to the majority of your potential customers. The best locality would be where most people live in rental homes or off-campus living spaces for college students.

Equipment & Workforce

Once you finalize the location of your laundromat store, then it’s time to fill the space. You have to hire a workforce to run the place and equipment to do the work.

Used or New Equipment

You need to get the right equipment and that too in the right quantity. An average-sized laundromat can have about 10-15 washing machines and dryers, nearly half of that. We’ll talk more about the costing of all these machines later in the blog.

There are also a few other equipment and machinery that you need to install, like:

  • Coin Dispenser Machines
  • Credit Card Payment System
  • Laundry Carts
  • Oversized Washing Machines
  • Soap Dispensers
  • Vending Machines
  • Security Cameras

Crowdsourcing for Workforce

Any business needs a sufficient workforce to scale. The same is for the on-demand laundry business. But, hiring more staff doesn’t always guarantee that the company will boom. So it’s better to Crowdsource your work to freelancers who will work for much less amount and work according to their availability. Giving them bonuses for extra runs they make will provide you with loyal associates.

Form A Legal Entity

You need to create a business entity. You will need to file articles of incorporation with the Secretary of State or Corporation Commissioner of your state. The incurring fee depends on which state you are starting your laundry business in and also the category of business you apply for. Typically start-up paperwork costs around $200 to $1000.

Several other legal procedures are to be done, like getting an EIN (Employer Identification Number), opening a business account in a bank, taking business insurance, and much more. It is better to get a business lawyer to help you get through all these steps quickly and make the best decisions for your business and yourself.

Creating A Brand & Marketing

The most important asset of any business is not the equipment, the employees, or even the owner; it’s the brand value. With the brand image that you create in your customers’ eyes, you can boost your reach in a short time or even bounce back from a bad business phase, only if the people recognize and adore your brand.

You need to have a strong marketing strategy to break into this industry and make a name for your business in the quickest time frame. The best way forward is to get your name known on all the top social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn, etc.

It’s cheaper than renting giant billboards and will get more eyeballs to your brand. Although, you also need to do old school marketing activities too like advertising in the local papers and magazines, flyers, posters, etc.

Digitization: The Great Beyond

The telephonic bookings are not very feasible and friendly at these times. People want quick service with the least interaction, and that requirement screams mobile application. An on-demand service app is the solution, and its importance can be improved by launching a supporting website.

Before starting a laundry business, you need to have a high-functioning, user-friendly on-demand laundry app. There’s a myriad of benefits and features that a mobile app brings to the table, which will benefit your business and your customers.

However, to make such a fantastic on-demand laundry app, you need the best mobile app development company to handle your digitization project.

The Cost To Start A Laundry Business

How much does it cost to start a laundry business with an on-demand laundry app like Cleanly?

Well, the short answer would be around $200,000 to $400,000 and more as you grow bigger in size. Now let’s get a detailed budgeting breakdown for setting up a laundry business.

Building a Laundromat will cost you more than an already existing one. If you choose to build your own Laundromat for somewhat 2,000 sq. foot space will cost between $200,000 to $500,000, including the machines (washing machines, dryers, etc.)

If you own a space and only need to buy machines, the top-load washing machines will cost you around $500-$700 each, while the front-loading machines will cost between $3,500 to $20,000 each, depending on the size of the machine. Dryers will cost you around $5,000 to $6,000 per dryer. All in all, to fully stock a Laundromat, you would need $150,000 to $400,000.

An app like Uber For Laundry or On-Demand Laundry App Development is a must for this business, and to do that; you need to hire android app developers. The cost of building a laundry app like Cleanly depends on factors like what features you need in the app, how many platforms (Android, iPhone etc.) are you thinking to build it for and many others. Developing an on-demand laundry app will cost you around $10,000 to $25,000.


Man is searching for automation in all walks of life, and the business that can provide this automation will have his money. You need to make your on-demand laundry app a full-circle loop that starts from picking up the dirty laundry to dropping off fresh ones.

Giving a complete service with a luxurious touch will help you win your customers’ hearts and money. And to achieve such feats, you need to have the workforce and technology walk hand-in-hand. If you are motivated to create your own laundry and dry cleaning service app, get in touch with the best mobile app development company to fulfill your entrepreneurial dream.

FAQs on Laundry Service Business

How much does it cost to develop a laundry service app?

The cost of developing an on-demand laundry service app depends on numerous factors, and only after answering all of them can we give an exact price range. These governing factors would be:

  • Number of apps to be built as per various app platform
  • Whether you choose to go hybrid or native
  • The app features decided for your laundry app
  • Level of intricacy required to develop those features
  • Customized app design and it’s complexity
  • The experience of the app developers involved
  • Location of the app development company
  • The scale of at which the app will function

After you can answer all these questions, we’ll be able to give you a precise app development pricing.

Hybrid or native app: Which one is better?

If you have enough funds to develop two distinct apps for Android and iOS platform, you can go for native and experience the complete capabilities of both these app platforms. But if you are short on finance or prefer to save money for other parts of the business, hybrid is the best option for you.

Hybrid app development has also gone through a large technological boost. The present generation of hybrid technology stack can give a strong competition to the native tech stack and even come at the top for certain parameters.

So, the final decision will depend on two things, time and money. If you have both to spare, native is the best option, if not then hybrid should be the way you go.

How much time will the laundry app development process take?

You can’t get a fixed time frame to develop a laundry app without making a few important choices beforehand.

  • Which platform/s are you planning to launch your app for?
  • Would you prefer the native or hybrid app development approach?
  • What are the app features you want in your laundromat application?
  • Do you want the app to have a simple design or a high-end app design?
  • Which payment gateways do you plan to integrate?
  • Are there any advanced tech to be integrated like IoT?

Only after making these important decisions can an experienced business analyst study your request and provide an accurate timeline and pricing for the app development project.

How does an on-demand laundry and dry cleaners app make money/profit?

The biggest chunk of revenue for a laundry and dry cleaning app comes from the price charged for the services availed by the customer. The pricing for washing, dry cleaning, ironing, would be different. Additionally, you can also charge a small price for home pickup and delivery service.

You can also offer a membership model where the customers will take up a monthly or yearly membership of your laundry service based on different categories of plans.

Other alternate revenue streams from a laundry app would be by showing advertisements of different brands, mostly related to cleaning products and other household goods.