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22 Steps to Laundry Room Success
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by Scott & Lisa Kassner
To own or not to own, that is the question… The following article offers 22 headache-saving and profit-increasing reasons why you should choose a professional to run your laundry room.
1. You Won't Make That Much More Money Owning Your Own
It sounds like a good idea to own your own machines. After all, if coin-laundry companies are successful at it, then it should be lucrative for you, too, right? But the reason why a coin-laundry company makes money is due to "economies of scale." That is, when you specialize in certain tasks, you can do those tasks more quickly and inexpensively. A laundry company has specialized staff, specialized equipment, and expensive technology. They receive discounts on purchasing coin operated laundry machines, parts and labor.
2. Lots of Time for Little Pay
You must research which coin operated laundry machines to buy, and be present at installation. You must collect, count and deposit the money. You must deal with tenant problems, and repair the machines or hire technicians. You will want to keep track of changes in income. Consider if it would be a better investment of your time to do what YOU best specialize in to make money.
3. Signing Bonuses
Signing bonuses for qualifying properties provide instant cash for immediate investment.
4. Revenue-Sharing Plans
These plans provide an income stream for qualified properties without any effort on your part.
5. A More Attractive Laundry Room For Free
A laundry company may offer you benefits to make your coin operated laundry room a more attractive amenity to your tenants for free! These may include fresh paint, new light fixtures, flooring, or even security doors. A bright, clean laundry room will make tenants more likely to use it, and maximize profits.
6. New Machines for Free
Laundry companies will deliver and install new, especially-accessorized machines as well as the remove those tired, worn-out machines.
7. Cost of Depositing Coins
Yes, many banks will charge you to deposit coins. You may have to roll your own coins to save money.
8. Many Costly Repairs Are Not Under Warranty
Some think that when you buy a new machine, technical service is free because new machines have a manufacturer's warranty. Most warrantees are limited to parts, and don't cover labor, coin boxes, or coin slides. You must pay out-of-pocket for coin slide jams, stuck moneyboxes, off-balance machines, etc.
9. Free On Call Laundry Technician
When you own the machines, you must pay to fix them. Service calls average $200 per repair, including diagnosis, parts and labor. You must also be available at all times. Alternately, you can attempt to fix the machines yourself, which can be challenging, stressful, and time-consuming. Appliance repair and maintenance are free services of the laundry company.
10. Repairs Add Up
Many apartment owners underestimate their annual repair bill, which can easily be hundreds of dollars per machine annually.
11. Free Diagnosis of Problems and Safety Hazards
A laundry company technician can diagnose and alert you to plumbing and electrical hazards and problems in your laundry room, for free.
12. A Laundry Company Absorbs Machine Replacement Costs
If your machine cannot be repaired, a laundry company's free machine exchanging means continuous use and income, no shopping, and no cash outlay for you.
13. Laundry Company Absorbs Vandalism Costs
Vandalism can turn a new machine into a total loss. It often requires replacing machines that still had years of use left on them. Wouldn't you prefer that the loss be the laundry company's?
14. A Laundry Company Absorbs a Share of Coin Thefts
For example, if you receive 50% of the income, you'll only absorb 50% of the loss if coins are stolen. And the laundry company replaces damaged coin boxes immediately -- for free.
15. A Laundry Company Knows Where Hidden Losses Are, and Acts on Them
A good laundry company can spot and repair coin operated laundry machines rigged for free use and hidden theft. It audits constantly to make sure that the coin operated laundry equipment is producing well, and income is consistent. It takes timely action to remedy uncovered problems.
16. Go On Vacation Without Worrying about Loss of Income or Machine Complaints When You Return
If you don't collect money from coin laundry machines regularly, the coin boxes can jam. Then no one can use the machines until collection, resulting in lost income, complaints, and possible damage to the machines as tenants try to force them to work. Would you prefer to come home from your vacation to find these problems, or a check in your mailbox?
17. Who Can You Really Trust With Your Money?
If you don't collect the money yourself, how can you keep your proxy collector honest? Laundry company collectors are employees, and unlike friends and building managers, they can be fired immediately and replaced with someone honest. And the use of electronic counters helps to keep them honest.
18. Hi-tech Counters are Expensive
These counters help you tell if the machines are being used for free. A laundry company pays for this equipment, while you receive the benefit of this technology for free.
19. A Laundry Company Will Handle Tenant Problems
A good laundry company happily takes refund requests, service requests, and clothing damage claims off your hands.
20. A Laundry Company Absorbs the Cost of Liability Insurance
If the machines damage your or tenants' property, you'll be glad a laundry company's paying, not you.
21. Collection Risks
If your building is in a high-risk neighborhood, you may not want to carry around your bags of quarters. Regular laundry-room collection may make you a robbery target.
22. Free Price Changes
Unless you know how to take apart the coin slides, you'll need to pay to raise or lower vend prices. A laundry company will do this for free.
In summary, choosing a professional to run your coin operated laundry room will save you time, money, and headaches. You will happily find that it is like having free business income insurance, ensuring that your laundry room income remains steady, and will not be placed at risk by equipment, repair, maintenance, and vandalism costs.
For more information on the above article, contact Scott Kassner, General Manager of Angel Coin Service at 818/892-7227 or toll-free at 877-AN-ANGEL. Established in 1955, Angel will provide you with a free, no-obligation laundry room proposal, customized to your needs and preferences. Angel will look out for your interests and maximize your profits.
This article first appeared in AOA Magazine, March 2002. Reprinted by permission.
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