The last bit of daily business in your store is restocking the vending machines. If you own your own soda and snack machines, you will need to make sure they’re full every day. If you contract with a vending company, they’ll worry about filling them.
You should also be aware of a few lesser-known fees that will affect you as a laundry owner. In many areas around the country, municipal water districts charge sewer connection fees. These can cost you anywhere from $200 to $8,000 per washer. If the fees are $8,000 per washer, the owner of a laundry with 30 washers must pay $240,000 in hook-up fees-almost what he’ll pay for construction! Brian Wallace of the Coin Laundry Association tells us that high hook-up fees are one of the biggest problems facing the coin laundry industry today. ”Before you get too far down the road, make sure you understand what if any impact fees, tap-on fees, wastewater fees-they call them lots of things-there are,” says Wallace. These fees are a major challenge to laundry developers. And in areas where operators are forced to pay these fees, the price of laundromats has also risen dramatically. If the fees are high in your chosen area, you may need to reconsider your entire plan.
In addition, owners have realized that they can maximize their profits by providing customers with access to multiple services. Since they’re paying a set amount of rent on their commercial space, they might as well use that space to its fullest potential. Many owners around the country are serving food, renting mailboxes and offering free internet access. Because newer laundries are bigger than in the past — often 3,000 or 4,000 square feet — overhead is higher, and owners are looking for ways to cover the cost. These additional services demand little increase in overhead because the rent is already paid for. Customers benefit by being able to use several services all in one convenient location.
The licenses and permits you will need depend entirely on your location. Check with your municipality regarding: Business license. Health department license (if you are serving food). Fire department permit. Air and water pollution control permit. Sign permit. Public improvement fees. Impact fees.