How to Start a Dry Cleaning Business

Are you interested in starting your own dry cleaning business? Here are the basic things you need: a place of business, permits and licenses to operate your business, machineries to do most of your work and a great customer relation service.

Although it looks as if dry cleaning isn’t such a lucrative business practice, it really is one of the most versatile ventures one could get into.

A dry cleaning business can start off very small, and it has great potentials for growth and expansion. Plus, the fact that most everyone needs the services of a good neighborhood dry cleaning business makes it an ideal entrepreneurial practice. A dry cleaning service can also have laundry services, but not all laundry services have dry cleaning. So what are the basic things you need to start this business? You need a place of business, permits and licenses to operate your business, machineries to do most of your work and a great customer relation service.

Your first priority is to find a place to set up your shop. This is not a typical home-based business which you can operate in your basement or garage. You really need a distinctive place to set up a dry cleaning business; preferably, some place that gets a lot of foot traffic. Foot traffic can bring in lots of customers, and the more customers you have the more varied their dry cleaning needs become. Also, you need a space large enough to accommodate your machineries and equipments. A large storage area is also needed to store the chemicals you will need for dry cleaning. Basically, you need to formulate an efficient working lay-out for your dry cleaning business. You need to have a reception and pick-up area, a sorting area, an area for your dry cleaning machines, an area for pressing clothes, an area for hanging and labeling clothes, a packaging area, etc.

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You can start this business small, perhaps only offering the basic dry cleaning services to your market. The wonderful thing about the dry cleaning business is that it leaves a lot of room for business development and growth. For example, from simple dry cleaning services, you can then offer sewing and repair services (which will need an in-house seamstress or garment sewer); or you can offer pick-up and delivery services (which will need a vehicle and a delivery person.)

Other types of dry cleaning expansion work include: alteration services, boxing and storing, coin laundry, dyeing, household item cleaning, shoe repair and even wedding gown restoration.

Once you have your place of business, make sure that you get licenses and permits to operate. Don’t hack into the system with a hack business because that’s exactly what you will tend to get: nothing but hack. Make your business legal, and your clients will flock to your shop in droves.

In order to give your clients speedy services on their dry cleaning needs, you really have to invest big time on machineries, equipments and chemicals. Machineries include dry cleaning baths like washers, dryers and presses. Equipments include sorting bins, hanger lines, and garment coverings. Chemicals are essential in all dry cleaning processes, and you must at least be well versed on how to safely use them without damaging the fabric or health of your workers.

Often, people patronize dry cleaning businesses that are close to their homes or to their work areas. Developing great customer relations with your patrons and complaint-free services are ways of establishing your business. It is also the subtle kind of advertising, yet it is the most effective. If your patrons are happy with your business, they might even make referrals to everyone they know. This beats making promos and giving away freebies.

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  • Oyetunji Anthony said on February 5, 2009
    I need advices on what to do in order to start a medium standard Dry cleaning and laundry business.
  • Valentine A. Nwaokolo said on April 7, 2009
    I still need precise info on the kind of machine and chemicals and as well as the costing.
  • Riste said on April 15, 2009
    I would like to ask about how much space do i need for small shop of dry cleaning. and information about machinery from which type, and for start is it ok second hand or used machine?
  • efe ikhayere said on April 25, 2009
    interested in knowing how much space, machinery, chemicals, as well as start up cost needed for this business.
  • igodan vicb said on April 28, 2009
    laundry business is a good biz. i have started it. i am about expanding... my major constraints are staff, finance... but i would get there
  • Oduopara Blessing said on May 17, 2009
    Laundry business is good biz. i have not started, am interested in knowing how much space, machinery, chemicals, as well as start up cost needed for this business.
  • Shughudu said on May 19, 2009
    I want to know how much space is needed to start a small/medium laundry business here in Tanzania, East Africa
  • PECCY said on June 2, 2009
    Thanks a lot! I have gotten the finance, I have paid for a space, please throw more light on the procedure of setting up a small, modern dry cleaning and laundry outfit, and more importantly where can i get a good operator and what's the best motivational remuneration strategy to sustain professional washman/operator towards delivering good result.
  • Evelyn said on June 7, 2009
    I am interested in starting a quality care, serious high standard, organic dry cleaning business. I need information on the business, as well as find a group of high standard laundry workers that knows the business at hand. Cost to start, and space, equipment or any other needed items. Thank you!
  • Said Salim said on June 14, 2009
    Thanks a lot for the article, i am in a process of preparing the business plan for Washing and Dry Clean business. Just wanted to know the average GP% in:-
    - Dry clean business.
    - Washing and Pressing.
    - Pressing only.
    I will appreciate if i can get these information ASAP. Thanks again.
  • Okpara, Emmanuel said on June 17, 2009
    I would like to kick-start a drycleaning business; I think I have the necessary dry cleaning skills, managerial skill and good customer relationship prowess. I need to know the intricacies-in and out of the business so that I can make a good decision before venturing into the business. Thanks
  • adebisi atobatele said on June 19, 2009
    i really have a strong desire for drycleaning and laundry business, but i need the required training. Can you be of help? thanks
  • SHOLA AYOOLA said on June 19, 2009
  • Adedayo Aderemi said on June 22, 2009
    I am seriously interested in dry cleaning and laundry business. What are the type of machines and the cost for an initial start up. thanks
  • akin akinfe said on June 25, 2009
    I am planning on opening a corporate service drycleaning and laundry business. what items are necessary to purchase and what unique ideas can i use to pull customers to my outfit. thanks
  • njokuoma kelechi o said on July 14, 2009
    please, need help on how to go about writing a proposal for dry cleaning and laundry business.
  • Ndidi said on July 23, 2009
    I need to know the basic equipments needed to set up a small laundry and dry cleaning business with a potential for growth in the future
  • Adetola Olive-Adelodun said on August 3, 2009
    I am planning on establishing a Laundry and dry cleaning business. Can you furnish me with procedure for writing a comprehensive business proposal.
  • ViMakadi said on August 18, 2009
    hi, i love laundry business but I don't know how to start. i am planing of buying machines but i need to know all it takes like which cloth should be wash or not, which type of detergent should be used and information that will help me. thank you, i am looking forward to hear from you. thank u once again
  • Babatunde Fanawopo said on August 29, 2009
    Thanks, a great deal for the information. I have just thought out an idea of establishing a laundry with a corporate approach in mind, but my problem is that I do not really know other equipment needed aside the washing machine, dryers, industrial irons and delivery van. Please help me out. Thanks
  • Alphonsene Williams said on August 30, 2009
    What I've read so far is very informative however I need more info. Info that provides the actual machines, their cost, the type of chemical that's needed and tutorial advise as how to actually perform the dry cleaning aspect of the business. Step by step assistance and guidance. I'm very interested in setting up my own dry cleaning business. Your expertise will be greatly appreciated.
  • oluwarotimi akindele said on September 1, 2009
    please if there is anything any body can do to help me to start my own dry cleaning business.
  • KESHINRO OLUWASEGUN AKINDAYOMI said on September 2, 2009
    i would really like to know and have an update on how to build my own dry cleaning services and also how to get and maintain machineries, equipments and chemicals
  • narender kumar said on September 4, 2009
    hi. i really want to open my laundry and dry cleaning business, so please can you provide me the information about the basic equipments needed to set up a small laundry and dry cleaning business and i need the information about the license and permit, how can i get the licenses
  • ADEWALE ADEMOLA JUSTUS said on September 10, 2009
    Thanks for your enlightenment. Please, I would love to have a detailed list of the basic EQUIPMENTS AND MACHINERY required to start a medium scale laundry/dry cleaning business. Moreso, kindly avail me the basic CHEMICALS required for the same scope of business.
  • 2SHÉ said on September 28, 2009
    I must confess, you guys are the bomb. you blow up the ppl's hardest failing mind. what ur fascinating & mind boosta e-journals. i'll like to know the machinery, equipment, chemicals & oda washing tips to start a dry cleaning service. i await your response
  • Nnamdi Offiah said on October 14, 2009
    Kudos for the information & enlightenment. You're a source of inspiration. Please, i need information on setting up a medium scale laundry & dry cleaning business. I'll need the equipments, chemicals & other valuable tips. THANKS.
  • HENRY EGBUIKWEM said on October 17, 2009
  • Abegunde, M.O. said on November 19, 2009
    Am based in Lagos Nigeria and i need information that will help me start this business @ a relatively large scale. I want to know the equipments i need, how much they will cost and how to get them to Lagos or do you know any where i can get this equipments to buy in Nigeria. how much space do i need. please generally explain to me what i need to do.
  • Oshin,Deborah said on November 21, 2009
    I wish to start up a dry cleaning business at Ikorodu, Lagos state, Nigeria. How do I start?
  • DEBEORAH ADESOKAN said on December 6, 2009
    i reside at akute, ogun state Nigeria. I wish to know about the chemicals needed in dry cleaning and its application. where to get such chemicals would also be of great help. This site is a very good one i must confess.
  • Emmanuel Akwe said on December 20, 2009
    I wish to start a small to medium standard dry cleaning and laundry business. Please let me know all it will take to begin. I wish to open a shop in Ojota or Ojodu area of Lagos State in Nigeria
  • Emmanuel Akwe said on December 20, 2009
    Business location will be Ojota or Ojodu, Lagos State in Nigeria.
  • mustafa akeem said on December 24, 2009
    how can i start a dry cleaning business in glasgow / nottingham.
  • khumbu said on December 29, 2009
    Business location Bulawayo Zimbabwe. I would like to start a small to medium dry cleaning business. I would like to know the initial capital investment needed and the types of machinery and chemicals needed. Thanks
  • Terra said on December 29, 2009
    Midtown Shopping Center Milwaukee, WI 53218 I would like to start a small $2.50 for each items dry cleaning / laundry business. I would like to know what would be my initial capital investment needed and the types of machinery and chemicals needed.
  • artur said on December 30, 2009
    Thanks you guys for helping us. I would like to start a medium Laundry dry cleaning business in Tirana Albania. I am interested to know about everything, the surface, first investment, machinery chemicals.
  • TAIYE DARE said on January 2, 2010
    Block c suit 4 primatek plaza opposite iju garage Pencinema Agege. Lagos state, Nigeria. I have started for about 2 to 3 weeks now and no single patronage yet. I really know its a good business but i dont know what to do to gain patronage after 3 weeks of commencement. Help me.
  • Mr Kelvin said on January 8, 2010
    i am Mr kelvin, of Laundro-Consult we are consultant in laundry and dry cleaning plus management of laundry business. for more information on the cost of opening a laundry business of any standard here in Nigeria please call +2348028396891.
  • Lateef Tijani said on January 11, 2010
    I'm desirous of starting a Dry Cleaning business, and create time to do apprenticeship, Is there a Dry Cleaning place I can do my tutelage. Im based on V/Island Lagos, Nigeria
  • sunday Emefiele said on January 11, 2010
    good day, I will like to know the machineries and chemicals needed to start up a small Dry cleaning and Laundry business.
  • Mr Kelvin said on January 11, 2010
    For any question on this matter laundry and dry cleaning call +2348028396891. either the cost or establishing, management or more understanding about it kindly call the number above.
  • Liz said on January 18, 2010
    Hi there, I came across this site, I am 23 years old and I am interested in opening a little dry cleaning business in my neighborhood from home in Melbourne, Victoria, AUSTRALIA, I am having trouble finding out the sort of equipment I will require to start dry cleaning, if you can please shoot me an email with these details it would be much appreciated!
  • Nelisiwe Mnguni said on February 4, 2010
    Hello there I'm a South African I am a 27 years old woman I am interested in starting dry cleaning business around my neighborhood in Vireeneging in Gauteng (South Africa) I Am having a problem on the sort of equipment. I will require to start this business. I will appreciate if you can email me these details.
  • Ayotunde Precious said on February 5, 2010
    Hello, i'll like to start a dryclening/laundry business in Gbgada area of Lagos State in nigeria. Kindly avail me with the necessary start up details. Thanks.
  • kelvin beginner adviser said on February 10, 2010

    +234802839689 || Laundry and Dry Cleaning Business Consultant

  • ndubuisi said on February 17, 2010
    Sir, please I want start laundry and dry cleaning and household cleaning business. please can you send the chemicals use for the business and how to go about the business. thanks. Ogba, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria. Ndubuisi
  • William Howe said on February 18, 2010
    Working on this business idea and I intend to start in Monrovia, Liberia, West Africa. I want to know, based on estimate of 25pcs of clothes per day from customers, how many dryers, washers, and other machines and equipment I will need to start. And what will it cost (only price) me to order them from the US. Thanks, William
  • Kwesi said on February 18, 2010
    Accra nungua, ghana. looking for investors to start laundry business. +233245087149.
  • Jile Emmanuel Yaba said on February 21, 2010
    Great to be in touch with you. unlike William Howe, am into the biz, my problems are sourcing for durable equipments at good prices, better skills and adding other related biz like sales n repairs of equipments/chemicals. my location; Gwagwalada Abuja- FCT, Nigeria. 07042441793
  • Tino said on February 21, 2010
    I reside in Lagos and really love the idea of starting the business of dry cleaning. I need tips on the exact equipment needed and Is it advisable to start up when most times I won't really be there.
  • Samuel Aderonke said on February 23, 2010
    I reside in Sango Ota, Ogun State, Nigeria. Where can those equipments and chemicals be acquired in Lagos State, Nigeria.
  • kolawole said on March 7, 2010
    how can i get a good idea on the said laundry and dry cleaning? please mail me on that. i reside in lekki lagos nigeria
  • Emmanuel said on March 21, 2010
    Am interested in laundry and dry cleaning business, but i have a problem of where i can be using as collection centre, reside in ikorodu in lagos state.
  • Mussie Habtes said on March 22, 2010
    I am planning to start a dry cleaning business in Swakopmund, Nambia. I need advice on where to get the machinery/equipment from.
  • Cindy Aguero said on March 22, 2010
    How do i start a dry cleaning business in Cotulla Texas
  • sim said on March 22, 2010
    I am interesting doing laundry business in webster new york, for starter what do i need to do. Thanks
  • olowu bukky said on April 1, 2010
    i'm trying to put up a laundry and drycleaning factory & collection centre and i need the necessary information to start up. i reside in ikd in lagos state Nigeria
  • DEE said on April 1, 2010
  • Sam Stinner said on April 16, 2010
    Interested in opening a laundry and dry cleaning, what are the equipments needed and cost... Thanks
  • Mrs Margaret Inokoba said on April 20, 2010
    Thanks for this, I'll start something right away. Pls, can you recommend good washing & dry cleaning machines for procurement
  • MRS LIZZY O. said on April 28, 2010
    Great information... Like the saying goes "INFORMATION IS POWER" i'm in Ojodu, Lagos. I tend to start next month but looking forward to getting a good shop. THANKS FOR THE INFORMATION.
  • escobedo said on May 10, 2010
    I live in a retail shopping center with residents and local businesses. From clothing to electronic shoppers. As a resident, I dont see a cleaners here? With amount of people living here, a form of cleaners would be very successful! How do I go about applying for loans, and start up a cleaners here?
  • mexito said on May 16, 2010
    Thanks for such a good guidance! I'm planing for a dry cleaning/laundry service in Kosovo. I need recommendations on good equipment and also it would be useful to know an estimation of variable cost/item cleaned.
  • Saqib Mushtaq said on May 17, 2010
    Hi, I am based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. I am interested in setting up a small/ medium sized laundry and dry cleaning company. I am considering two options: option 1 is to start a standard laundry option 2 is to start a delivery service company and outsource the washing to a commercial laundry. I have no experience in the business but think that there is considerable potential by offering door to door delivery service. i need your advise on how to move forward and what kind of machinery required to kick start the business.
  • sunday said on May 24, 2010
    thank u for the highly informative article. however, i will require a more comprehensive details about the equipment required and the function. am about establishing an outlet (mega)and would appreciate if the info com handy.
  • Ayo Quadri said on May 31, 2010
    Ayodeji Quadri... our organismic run a laundry consultancy for new entrant n old pros. our specialty is in training in every segment, supply of chemicals n printing of packaging materials. give us a call n we will solve all ur prob. 08088041665. lagos, Nigeria draw from our wealth of experience
  • Margaret McCulloch said on June 15, 2010
    I am interested in setting up a laundromat/dry cleaning business in Turkey. I have no experience in this - can you point me in the right direction?
  • Oscar Jones said on June 17, 2010
    I live in Lakeland Fl. I have 20yrs. plus in the dry cleaning business. I would like to own my own business. I don't have any collateral, but i do have my VA benefits.
  • LUCIAN said on June 26, 2010
    Dear Sirs, Recently I have been focusing on starting a dry cleaning operation serving the neighboring community. I have my own location of about 700 sqm located in a central area in Bucharest, Romania. However, I must admit that I really dont know much about this but I have 20 plus years experience in manufacturing and sales management. I am looking at this start up on a step by step basis thus I am considering starting small and gradually develop it as I go. Having said the above I would very much appreciate if informed about the initial investment, equipment and associated costs. I am also considering joining a franchise system. Look forward to hearing from you soon, Lucian
  • stephen said on July 1, 2010
    Great site. Please i will like to know the cost of the equipment i will need to start up a small Dry cleaning shop with the intention of growing big in a short period
  • tayo ogundare said on July 8, 2010
    I am seriously interested in setting up a dry cleaning business. kindly put me through. Thanks
  • nosisa said on July 12, 2010
    informative site, really impressive. I would like to know where to find suppliers of the dry cleaning machinery and the chemical solvents used in this business and how much do they roughly cost, in South Africa
  • Wole Tokede said on July 12, 2010
    I desire to know how to go about establishing dry cleaning business. The requirement required and all that I will need to have a good business
  • Christopher Abuajah said on July 22, 2010
    I already have a laundry outfit and intend to expand it. What are the necessary things to achieve this.
  • Mwesigye Stephen said on August 1, 2010
    Thanks king size for what i would call excellent start-up advice. However, i need more information on where to find cheap/ affordable yet effective dry cleaning machines in Kampala, Uganda. The drycleaning business idea recently stormed my mind but i need to know the sources prices and types of the machines. I will appreciate valuable advice.
  • Christy said on August 2, 2010
    Thank you so much for the information, May God bless you. I am about to start the business but need to know more about the use of the chemical and how much it will cost me to get the machines, how to operate and some other basic things i need to know.
  • Kaycie said on August 4, 2010
    Thanks so much for this explicit explanation. I already got a space and a washing machine to commence, i will like to have a full list of equipments and chemicals including soap/detergent types to use. I will be looking forward to reading from you.
  • Andrew said on August 7, 2010
    Like everyone else, this is a very good article with information that is accurate. Just asking, what equipment do i need and where can i buy it online cheaply. Thanks. Andrew, Kampala
  • Paul said on August 11, 2010
    Nice Article. However anyone in need of perfect washing machines to use for your dry cleaning business with unique features such as Auto-restart function incase of power failure, energy saving function, special baby and bio care function e.t.c please send a mail to my email box.
  • otun omobolanle said on August 21, 2010
    i want to write a feasibility report on dry cleaning business and i want the location at Victoria island lagos.
  • Edward Adebanjo said on September 1, 2010
    Thank you for the great info. Please inbox me a good business plan on opening a Dry cleaning and Laundry business plus opportunities for franchising and financing such in Abuja , Nigeria. Thanks, once again.
  • Jerry said on September 5, 2010
    I already have a dry cleaning and laundry business in Abuja but my problem is how to Get an affordable Dry cleaning machine. please inbox me @ i really need the machine
  • Stella said on September 15, 2010
    I am interested in this business but will like to know where I can get basic/practical training for a week or two from a recognized institute.
  • Vijyendra said on October 2, 2010
    Hi, I am vijyendra from India, please let me know to start a laundry & lenin business, especially for hospital and hotels, please inform me from A to Z, just because I am new to this business,
  • Spencer Joubert said on October 4, 2010
    I would like to venture into the dry cleaning business for my hometown Bulawayo in Zimbabwe because I've noted massive potential in that area.God willing I may then spread my wings to other cities.
  • Lazaro Valencia said on October 7, 2010
    El paso, Texas- great tutorial on how to establish the business....Question- On average how much currency would be formal to start the business? i'm very interested in all the insight there's available in this particular field. (new to all)
  • PeeSam said on October 7, 2010
    This information have added to my drive for a dry cleaning business. Pls can u help me on the right equipment, machines, chemicals for this business and how to use them. I'll be very grateful. I live in Ebonyi State, Nigeria.
  • Thomas Ndungu said on October 11, 2010
    I am really interested to start a dry cleaning business with a difference. i need help where do i source for the equipment and how much will it cost. do you know any micro financier willing to help.
  • reem magid said on October 23, 2010
    i would like to open a dry clean buss i have a place with good location at a compound in khartoum sudan only needs a plan to start
  • nkurunziza eric said on November 29, 2010
    I need to know the equipment needed and cost for dry cleaning and laundry. kigali rwanda
  • Ayodele Olusola said on December 20, 2010
    Thanks for this avenue to share and learn on how to starts a business. I am really interested in having a dry cleaning business which i greatly have passion for. pls i will like to know about the best machines or equipment needed, so also the chemicals. thanks very much
  • Lebo Mashigo said on January 4, 2011
    I am in Gauteng Pretoria South Africa would like to have a dry cleaning business. Where to start when you need to build well suitable place for the business, machinery and chemicals. Who to contact for training and sponsors.
  • Mavido said on January 11, 2011
    Good article, but a little bit more detail will go an extra mile, e.g an average size of premises one can start with; rough estimation/indication of what it will cost to start such business, where one get training, what permits are required and who issues them etc
  • Tendai said on January 14, 2011
    Harare,Zimbabwe. This is a good article. May you furnish me with the best equipment i can use as well as the chemicals. Please let me no the overall start up cost. Thank you?
  • PARAGON GARMENT CARE said on January 19, 2011
    Dry cleaning and laundry buss is about operating by the company named above. source for finance is now the real thing to work on. Is it okay to get loan from bank or micro finance firm? Thanks.
  • Mona Sherif said on January 22, 2011
    I would like to start up a dry cleaning business and would like to know what equipment is required, where to source them from and an approximate amount that these will cost me. Thanks
  • Taruvinga Sabe said on January 29, 2011
    Glendale, AZ85305, USA. I'm looking into starting a dry cleaning business. How much are costs of opening a dry cleaning business?
  • Jasmin Kreyss said on February 16, 2011
    I will open a dry clean service shop in Cairo- Egypt and would like to know the following: Equipments requires, prices and where to purchase them. Detergents and chemicals. Thank you for your help.
  • Edward said on February 25, 2011
    thumbs up, please i will like to know where and how to get a training on laundry and dry cleaning business. especially on chemical handling. thanks


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