How Much Does a Cleaning Business Make per Year?

Starting a cleaning business is a smart choice. You know why? It’s an easier initiative than other types of businesses. After all, you don’t need employees with certifications and specialized skill sets.

Anyone can be hired as a cleaner as long as they know their way around cleaning equipment. Also, there’s a steady demand for cleaners at both commercial and consumer levels. Most people don’t like cleaning and will throw money at people to avoid it.

The amount of money a cleaning business makes annually depends on a lot of things. So, can a cleaning business make you rich? Theoretically, the answer is yes. However, you need to think about some things.

If you’re wondering ‘how much a cleaning business makes a year,’ you’ve come to the right place. Moreover, if you want some tips on starting a cleaning business, keep reading.

Let’s find out the answers.

How Much Does a Cleaning Business Make per Year

How Much Does a Cleaning Business Make a Year?

According to Glassdoor, the cleaning business owners make $36,000/year on average while their workers make $24,000/year. More successful cleaning businesses make between $60,000 and $100,000 per year.

However, how much a cleaning business makes depends on some factors below.


Do you have a small-scale or large-scale business? Large-scale businesses require more startup capital, but they end up more profitable.

Simultaneously, small cleaning businesses are less risky and have the potential to grow into larger ones. With a cleaning business, it’s smarter to start as small-scale.

Client Base

Do you cater to commercial clients or private ones? Cleaning businesses in residential areas can develop a substantial client base, but commercial clients often pay more. However, commercial cleaning is more challenging to break into.


Every business has competition, but cleaning businesses, in particular, have a saturated market.

From janitorial services to maid services and carpet cleaners, there’s a lot of demand for cleaning businesses in commercial and residential areas.

Opening a cleaning business in a less saturated location is ideal. However, not everyone has that luxury, and earning more money requires competing with other companies.

How to Start a Cleaning Business?

Now, you know how much money you can make with a cleaning business. Are you considering starting one soon? If yes, you need to know the basics.

What You Need to Know

As a business owner, you will need some qualifications. For example, you should have some knowledge of the administrative requirements your business will have.

Moreover, you must do an inventory of your resources. Over here, resources include stuff like your assets, capital, connections (in terms of investors and potential business partners), and access to government programs that help small businesses.

These things will help you determine what equipment you can buy, how much staff you can afford, and whether or not to get a company vehicle.

Questions to Think About

Apart from the above, you should know the answers to these three questions:

However, answering these questions isn’t as simple as it seems. Firstly, cleaning businesses have two primary markets: consumer and commercial. You should know which one you’re going to cater to. In other words, which one will be your target market?

Well, your target market depends on your location. As mentioned, you don’t want to delve into an already saturated market. For example, if there are multiple home cleaning services in your area, you should pick a different marketing niche.

Marketing niches are very significant if you want to be successful. Do some market research and check which marketing niches are in demand in your area.

Here are some common niches in the cleaning industry:

Now, to address the last question, cleaning businesses are very versatile in terms of operating style. You can structure the company to suit your preferences.

You can work from home or open a commercial location. Alternatively, you can either create a franchise or opt for independent operation. With franchises, it’s essential to market your business consistently and adequately (elaborated on below). 

How to Run a Successful Cleaning Business?

If you’ve gone through the factors mentioned above, you know running a cleaning business is no joke. Therefore, before you run off to register your business license, you should know the dos and don’ts of entrepreneurship in the cleaning industry.

Of course, cleaning businesses are incredibly lucrative. Currently, over 2.3 million people have jobs in the cleaning industry. The industry is expected to grow by 7% in the next ten years.

However, as mentioned above, it’s easier to start a commercial cleaning business than to run it. If you aren’t smart about your choices, your business can quickly fail.

To help you out, we have gathered suggestions from the experienced cleaning business owners. Follow them to have a clear insight.

Maximizing Use of Resources

Whether the resources are personal or external, they are essential in starting a business. All businesses have multiple components, including administration, management, advertising, research, and customer support.

Realistically, no one can be an expert at all these things, especially if you’re just starting. If you don’t know anything about a particular component, don’t worry.

You can ask for support from professional agencies. Simply look up the ones in your area.

Such agencies specialize in helping small businesses break into the market. Sometimes, government and state initiatives fund such agencies so small businesses have all the support they need.

However, if you’re looking to attend business management classes, you have multiple low-cost options. For example, you can enroll part-time in your local community colleges. Alternatively, you can take free online courses on platforms such as Coursera or Edx. 

Maintaining Quality Services

In a cleaning business, maintaining the quality of your services is highly important. No one wants to hire an agency that does a half job.

When you’re cleaning a home or an office, always treat it like your own. Also, it’s essential to use the right products. You can look up reviews on relevant cleaning products, especially equipment such as vacuum cleaners, pressure washers, steam cleaners, etc.

The type of equipment you use depends on what you’re using it for. For instance, if you’re an industrial cleaner, you need high-tech equipment to clean everything properly.

Creating a Running System

Thirdly, when you’re writing your business plan, you should develop a system that helps you deal with day-to-day tasks efficiently.

For example, you can create a cleaning system, so your employees know what to do.

If you’re a carpet cleaning business, your cleaning system will look something like this:

The cleaning system doesn’t need to be fancy. It’s meant to inform your employees on how to do things efficiently, so they don’t make any mistakes.

Similarly, come up with a system to run your management, administration, accounting, customer service. Through this, you can map out the SOP for any scenario, and have your staff prepared if anything goes wrong. 

Setting Proper Prices

As mentioned, the cleaning industry is a competitive place. However, this doesn’t mean you should cut down on your prices to attract customers from your competitors. If you do this, you’ll be downsizing your cleaning business income, eventually going at a loss.

Instead, do a financial analysis and set a fair price with a reasonable profit margin. You have to work out the costs of different things, including equipment, salaries, office bills (if applicable), and transport.

To attract more customers, you should invest in the quality of your services and marketing strategies. That’s a feasible way to achieve the same goal.

Establishing a Managerial Style

All employees work better when they’re properly motivated. If you’re serious about running a cleaning business, you have to think about your managerial style.

Some people micromanage their staff while others give them complete freedom. Of course, these are the two extremes. For more effective management, it’s best to find a balance.

How so?

Don’t bug your employees about every little thing. Even if they make mistakes, take a more understanding approach. At the same time, make it clear that unprofessional behavior is not tolerated.

Also, make use of incentives. You can offer employees cash bonuses or perks such as free use of company equipment at home.

In this way, your employees will genuinely want to do their best, and you’ll have a more productive office environment. 

Marketing Effectively

You don’t have to spend half your budget on marketing. Instead, you should use cost-effective platforms such as social media, online blogs, email campaigns, YouTube channels, and company websites.

In this day and age, you can reach your target audience by placing online ads in relevant magazines or online reviews.

However, when it comes to marketing, knowing your marketing niche is essential. Once you’ve figured that out, you can decide what your goals are. Having concise goals helps you establish a practical and effective marketing plan.

Think of it like this:

Again, it’s a smart idea to invest in online marketing schemes. For example, if you start a blog, make it informative and relatable. You can add videos, bios, and other fun content.

In this way, you’re engaging with your audience in a more organic way. At the same time, you’re communicating what services you offer and how they’re unique to other cleaning businesses. 

Being active on social media and other online platforms is an excellent way to connect with customers. This strategy also helps establish a regular clientele.

What else?

Well, another important part of marketing is establishing networks. Don’t forget to do that. You can find multiple networking groups for different businesses on social media and LinkedIn. If there are local events, make sure to attend them, introducing your company in-person.

Common Mistakes Cleaning Businesses Make

Now, you have a rough estimate of how much you can earn as a cleaning business owner, how the business works, and what to do to make it more successful. If you follow these tips, you can make a lot of money from your cleaning business.

However, things may not work in your favor if you are not careful enough. Let’s see some of the common mistakes people make while starting their own setup.

Rushing Into Things

When you rush into an agreement, you’re bound to make mistakes. Always have a plan on what to do. If you’re looking at legal contracts, make sure to have a lawyer review them to protect your rights.

Not Having a Written Contract

This is super important, especially in a commercial cleaning business. For example, let’s say a customer claims you didn’t clean his/her ceilings and refuses to pay.

However, in your agreement, you never agreed to clean ceilings. What will you do if you don’t have a contract?

When you’re establishing a clientele, you have to make sure you are communicating properly. With a written agreement, everything is clearly stated.

As mentioned, having a written contract also helps protect your rights.

Offering Only One Service

When it comes to a cleaning business, versatility is the game-changer. From carpet cleaning to chimney cleaning, you can offer so many services with little capital. So, if you’re only offering one service, you’re missing out on an opportunity to grow your business.


To sum it up, cleaning businesses are stable investments. With a steady profit margin, you can earn up to $100,000 per year in four years.

Make a proper business plan so that you can map out all variables and make contingencies.

After all, developing cleaning businesses takes a lot of time and effort. You don’t want to go at a loss. With this article, we hope you’ve learned enough about how to run a cleaning business.