How to Start a Commercial Cleaning Business: 7 Easy Steps to Follow

Who doesn’t love a clean floor, crystal clear windows, big beautiful floors that sparkle and smell like heaven? Did you also just felt nicer than you already were? We could be onto something. Most folks are not into clean spaces as much but if you are one of those who take pride in how clean their spaces always look and your friends and family around you agree with that then we are here to tell you that this borderline OCD behavior of yours has potential to be a full-fledged business. Think about it if you are one of those folks who know what details are important in cleaning and you feel quite peaceful when you make your room shine. We’re done beating around the bush if the shoe fits then we think you are perfect for owning a commercial cleaning company. We are gonna guide you through the process of it, so let’s strap on.

What is Commercial Cleaning?

What is Commercial Cleaning
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Commercial cleaning is done by a professional cleaning company, it is an organization that employs and trains cleaners to clean commercial spaces with specialized technology to sanitize them, they also clean homes and offices.

It’s a business like any other and this is how you can start it and excel in it.

Reasons Why Should You Start a Commercial Cleaning Company?

  • You are passionate about making spaces look clean 
  • You have an eye for detail and can be good at training people in the same.
  • You understand the importance of clean space and know what that could mean to people.
  • You know your borderline OCD for clean spaces is a talent and you want to use it.

7 Easy Steps on How to Start a Commercial Cleaning Business.

So if you’re convinced with commercial cleaning business being your calling, then let’s discuss how we can help you get there.

Step 1: Register your business with the state.

You will have to start by being officially certified with the state. You set up a legal entity for your cleaning business the most well-known structures for these kinds of businesses are-

  • Sole proprietorships-  IF you have decided to go solo then you can make your entry as a sole proprietor, keep in mind that when you’re going sole your business assets are not separate from your assets. So that’s a risk that you will have to be okay with but the pro of a sole proprietorship is that you will have complete control over your company.
  • Partnerships- When you chose this the liability of the business is shared please sit down with a lawyer before you go into it in full swing, This way your business assets are separate from your ones so the risk is quite minimal but the control will be shared.
  • Limited liability companies (LLCs)- Commercial cleaning companies can pick this since it’s a viable option for most cleaning companies. This is because they separate your business from your assets.
  • Corporations- This type of structure gives owners the most protection, they are a bit heavy on the pocket to create but since the taxation process is done separately it requires them to pay income tax on their profits so there will be bookkeeping involved but you can make this decision based on what suits you the best.

Once you have decided what your business structure will look like you can wear your thinking hat and try to settle on a business name. Research the market to see what names are taken and what can set you apart from the competition. 

Once that is done you can go official and register your business with your state. This helps you avoid fees and will put your business in the market, it will increase your visibility for the customers as you would be able to showcase your license on a company vehicle,

For this to be so easy, Am I right?

Step 2: Consider commercial cleaning business insurance.

This is an important step, this will help you protect your business. It also protects you in case of an accident or an injury when you or your employees are on the job site, it also protects you against being sued for different things like negligence. These are some of the business insurance that you can pursue:

General Liability Insurance-

This is the most preferred type of insurance, it comes in handy if there is a third-party accident, damage of property, physical injury, reputational harm, and many more.

Commercial Auto Insurance-

If you plan to have a business vehicle (which you will need) you will have to get this insurance, if you drive your car for work then your personal auto insurance might not cover you.

Workers Compensation-

If you are going to be hiring employees then this is the insurance you should go for, it helps your workers and business if your employees get sick or are injured, without this you will have to pay a percentage of their lost wage from your pocket and in case of injury you will be liable for the medical bills.

Do not go easy on this, you will thank us later for emphasizing this part of your business so much.

Step 3: Buy Commercial Cleaning Equipmentents

Once the boring bit is complete it is time for your retail therapy but business. You will need a fresh stock of cleaning supplies that are just the right ones for you. 

Consider what you want. Do you want to go eco-friendly? Is there a brand you prefer more than others? Do you want to go a little easy on your waller? When you’re ready go to the local store or go online. To make it easier this is a list of things you are going to need-

  • Cleaning cloths 
  • Cleaning mitts
  • Good Quality Commercial brooms
  • Good Quality Commercial buckets
  • Alcohol-based Disinfectant sprays
  • Some Dusting tools
  • Floor washer
  • Floor waxing machine
  • Commercial vacuums that are high functioning
  • Lots and lots of garbage bags

Another thing please think about designing your cleaning uniform it should look professional, first impressions are the last ones too. Professional appearance goes a long way, especially if you work for high-end clients. It adds to the appeal of your brand and establishes credibility.

After these things are done you have to think about the logistics of how will you run this business, you will have to get-

  • Company Electronics- such as laptop, cellphone, or tablet
  • An efficient accounting and bookkeeping software
  • Software for marketing
  • If you have employees a software for employees.

These are all important for your business so again don’t take any of this lightly.

What is needed to clean offices?

There are various reasons what a clean office is required-

  • Better Productivity of employees 
  • Better Performance enhance by a clean surrounding that positively stimulates the mind 
  • Better Hygiene means a lesser chance of people getting sick 
  • A clean store attracts more customers.

Step 4: Decide your Cleaning Rates.

Now that you are ready to hit the floor you have to see how you will capitalize on this. After doing your market research you have to know what the customers are expecting and what you can offer them that is different from the competition. Most importantly you have to know how much are they willing to pay,

These are some structures that you can explore.

  • Hourly
  • Weekly
  • Per Project
  • Per Square Foot

How much should I charge for cleaning offices?

You can do this square foot basis if the office space is big and if it’s a smaller office then you can do it per project rate or hourly. 

How much should I charge to clean a small office?

For a smaller office, you can do it hourly and/or weekly. You can throw in a free follow up clean to ensure that they keep coming back,

How much should I charge to clean a 4 bedroom house?

Do this by square footage, one square foot is 1$ so it will be good money.

Step 5: Create a marketing and sales plan and Implement 

Like we have discussed before, market research is a must for this. Lucky for you we have some easy steps for you.

  • Figure out who the customers are for you, what is the scale of business you’re approaching, where do these customers live? And who calls the shots i.e makes all the monetary decisions for them.
  • After this, you set financial goals. What is the number of customers you are targeting in a year, what is the scale of these projects? What will your expenses look like? What are the miscellaneous costs that surround you, your employees, and your logistical expectations? 
  • Now we come to marketing strategies, online is a way to go in the twenty-first century. There are also traditional ways to do this. Whatever your desired game plan be make sure you keep some money aside for marketing and advertising

Step 6: Think About Manpower.

This too is an important step. You will need employees if you want your business to grow.

Here are a few important members you would need for your business-

  • Accounting — You may have an eye for detail but you don’t have an eye for how to keep your money safe, look for an experienced accountant who can help you through this.
  • Bookkeeping — Keeping track of your expenses is quite difficult, If you have a large company and your clientele starts to grow you will desperately need a bookkeeper that you can trust. Otherwise, it gets quite daunting during tax season.
  • Legal — It is important to have in-house counsel, especially if you are new at this. You never know when you’d get sued in this country. Having a lawyer is like having insurance, don’t double down on that.
  • Human resources — Once your business starts to grow you will need HR to manage hiring, payroll, training etc for your company. HR is the right hand of the company.
  • Sales — For the business to start off and then to grow from there you need a sales team that’s negotiating contracts and markets the services to the desired clients.
  • Cleaning staff — This is the muscle of your business, make sure you hire the good ones and have relationships with them that are authentic. Happy employers always bring happy customers.
  • Supervisors — You will have to do a lot of running around so make sure you have a couple of trained supervisors who help keep your company in shape.

Don’t worry it’s not as difficult or technical as it seems, if you are passionate about cleaning then these few checklists will fill themselves while you are focussing on what to do next. But do all of this one day at a time.

Step 7: Create a schedule and start!

It’s time to go, now you have to make a schedule for you and your employees so that your company can run like a well-oiled machine. You have to make schedules for-

  • Night cleaning
  • Weekly cleaning
  • Biweekly cleaning
  • Monthly cleaning
  • One-time cleanings

You assign your employees these jobs depending on the location, time, and experience. You have to keep adjusting this schedule because just like life the cleaning schedules are unpredictable and don’t forget the possibility of your employees needing a last-minute leave.

Promote Your Commercial Cleaning Business

Like we promised, let’s brainstorm some ideas to advertise your business.

Traditional Advertising-

You can go old school when you are starting and depend on the word of mouth, start with giving free services to your friends and family and then socialize personally for more clients. Some of the ways to do this are-

  • Postcards 
  • Brochures 
  • Business cards
  • Postcards 
  • Magnets 

Advertising Online

Next up you can do it like all the kids do it these days, start a website. Build it, buy google ads, engage with millennial culture through social media and also start a blog. Quite overwhelming, we know but it’s the most effective way to create a client base.

How profitable is a commercial cleaning business?

It is as profitable as you make it out to be, it’s just like any other business, and post-pandemic the need for sanitization has increased. So bear in mind that you just might be entering the business when it is all hot.

How do I get commercial cleaning contracts?

You grow your business, create a social media presence, and then you wait. These contracts will not walk towards you, you will have to work for them, Once you work for long enough and prove your worth in the market they are bound to happen.

How do I make my cleaning business successful?

By not leaving out anything we have mentioned in this list.


Like we have said time and again, this is just like any other business. If you have a passion for it then you should just follow these steps and dive in without even giving it a second thought. The cleaning industry is expected to grow since the pandemic, you must hit the rod while it’s hot.