Do you outsource Wash and Fold to an independent contractor?

Many laundromats allow independent contractors to operate out of their laundromat to handle the wash and fold business. This way customers looking for wash and fold are being served and it is mostly hassle free for the laundromat owner.

Is this a good idea?

Outsourcing wash and fold is better than doing nothing, but it is far from your best option.

We used to outsource our wash and fold to a very nice husband and wife. All they had to do was feed the machines and they got free rent. Customers kept asking if we did wash and fold and now we offered it without worrying about staffing or putting the time in that was necessary to make it run. The biggest blessing that happened was we caught them starting the machines without putting money in. As a result, we took over the business and now our wash and fold brings in more money than the self serve business.

My dad always says, 'He who takes the risk, reaps the reward. No risk, no reward." You took a big risk opening up your laundromat, taking on a lease, signing a personal guarantee, spending HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS on washing machines and dryers. If done right, wash and fold can make more money than all of your self serve business combined. Why would you take the financial risk of opening up the laundromat and then give the reward to someone else?

The difference between a B and an A student is often 5% or less. If you put in a little bit more work, you can reap much greater rewards.

Here are some things to consider before outsourcing your wash and fold to a 3rd party:

  1. You are paying for the lease/mortgage.
  2. You bought all of the machines
  3. It is YOUR brand and YOUR reputation on the line.
  4. If that independent contractor goes, they're going to take all of YOUR/THEIR customers with them.
  5. The business will never live up to its potential, because who is going to advertise it online?

If you know that your wash and fold can make more than your self serve laundromat if done right, why give it away? Wash and fold earns dollars per pound while self serve earns pennies per pound.