The Pros and Cons of Starting a Foreclosure Cleanup Business

After reading so much fluff out there about starting a foreclosure extreme house cleaning services near me business, I knew the time was ripe to write an article about the NOT SO PRETTY side of the foreclosure cleanup industry. This is a peek at the real for those who are considering diving in so they are FULLY informed.

Here are some pros and cons to consider as you ponder this business from someone who’s out there.

Con: Waiting to get paid. Many banks take 60, 90, and 120 plus days to pay a simple invoice. If you don’t have the cash flow to bank roll jobs, and you’ve chosen not to factor (sell) your invoices, the wait can be crippling for the small foreclosure cleaning start-up business.

Con: Your foreclosure cleanup business WILL depend on the efforts of others. As your business grows, you will have the need to outsource services. If Joe-Schmo doesn’t show up on time, it’s your business image he’ll be ruining. If Lady Susan slips and falls on a job, it’s your insurance that will be tapped.

Con: You won’t get rich quick; this is a business that will grow over time with repeat customers. If you don’t position your business appropriately from the outset so it thrives after the foreclosure crisis has leveled out, clients will only associate you with foreclosures and will feel they no longer need your foreclosure cleanup truck in front of a new listing doing repairs.

Con: Foreclosure cleanup is a paperwork intensive business. If you’re running your business right, you’ll have contracts, forms, receipts, property stat printouts, Excel invoice sheets, and more to deal with. If you’re not organized, you’ll be buried in paperwork and will quickly lose control of your business.

Con: This is manual labor, folks, and the work can be back-breaking, especially in the beginning, when most foreclosure cleanup business owners will try to do everything themselves.

“Gender” Con:

If you’re “a girl,” many times you’ll be in charge of guys who think they know more than you; and, sorry ladies, many times they will — WHEN YOU’RE JUST STARTING OUT. Let’s face it, lot of times our moms had us in the kitchen, while the little brothers were in the backyard with dad doing “guy stuff.” But, it’s foreclosure cleanup, not rocket science!

Immerse yourself in what you don’t know from the very beginning. Roll up your sleeves, dawn a tool belt and some overalls and get to learning. Foreclosure cleanup consists of debris removal, lawn care, minor repairs and simple cleaning. What you don’t know, you can learn in a matter of weeks to get you rolling — and what you don’t want to learn, you can outsource.

If you’re a guy, you’re gonna have to deal with a lot of us women in charge. Realtors are starting foreclosure cleanup businesses at a maddening pace, and, according to the National Association of Realtors, 60% of realtors are, you guessed it, women.

That’s some of the bad stuff (we’re keeping it real, remember), now for the good stuff:

Pro: Easy to Start, Low-cost Start-up. Remember, it’s not rocket science; it’s foreclosure cleanup. This is an easy business to “start.” Notice I said “start” — because the work is some of the most labor intensive I’ve encountered. But you don’t need a college degree to start this business. You can do some solid initial research, get your license, tax ID, and insurance, order some business cards and car magnets, and start peddling your services.

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