Jump to content
Customer Service 866.965.0400
  • 0

Who has a detailing "side business"


K5/TBSS
 Share

Question

So I've been tossing this idea around in my head for a while now and am just wondering what the professionals here think... I have a full time job that I'm pretty committed to from 7-4; but otherwise my evenings are mostly free. (Single w/ no kids at the age of 26) I'm considering getting the word out that I'm detailing vehicles on the side. I used to do this when I was in high school and college, and usually spent my week home during spring break detailing cars; but that was 5 years ago. Then, I would just do a simple wash/wax/interior cleaning. Usually not clay barring and never polishing.

 

I think I have a fairly good name in town (only about 10k people), I'm fairly involved in the community; and they all know I'm a car day that usually has a ridiculously clean ride.

 

So I'm just wondering what advice any of you have to offer? I'm mostly curious how many people in a town this size would actually pay decent money for a paint correction. When most see the extent I go to to have a clean car, some simply shake their heads.

 

Thanks in advance for any advice you can offer!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Recommended Posts

  • 0

If nothing else it could be a great way to meet and impress the movers and shakers in your town. Show them that you're hard working and do a good job; it could certainly lead to more opportunities in life.

 

Of you could look at it as a way to build a great retirement account -- half of what you make is fun money, half goes into a retirement account. It may not seem like much now, but for a 26 year old to put away a few grand a year makes a big difference down the road -- it literally could mean the difference between retiring early or working much later into your life.

 

In short, do it. It sure beats sitting on the couch.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0

I do the same,, little jobs on the side. I work about 60 hours weekly at my regular job. When I am not working on the weekends I try to get some cars to do.

There is alot of money where I live, but it is a retirement community for the most part. They do not like coming out of their pocket alot for a detail. Most visit the local car wash and for 25.00 get a wash and quick sort of wax,, armor all dripping off tires and slung all down side of the car withing 1 mile after leaving this place.

I have a couple that I do their car, 40.00 each. I wash, dry, quick vacuum, Tire and trim,, hit of Buttery Wax,, and do give attention to detail on small things. Sometime I will clean up the interior trim some for a bonus.

Then I have the ones that will say you are more than the Jiffy Car Wash down the road. The only thing I can say is,, get what you pay for. I have a old cat that wants me to polish his ride up, but thinks charging him 175.00 or more is crazy.

Bottom line when you start doing your deal on the side,, just watch the pricing. This is a rather upscale area I live in. People pay 15,000 for a golf cart to ride in, but are picky as hell paying to have their ride detailed.

 

Good Luck make it work. :2thumbs:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0

Awesome man, good luck with your new venture. Let me know if you need any help with anything or any advice. I work the Sam hours as you but some weekends too and I also have a wife and kid. It's all worth at as long as you're enjoying what your doing.

 

Just don't steel any of my business from Wichita.:willy:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0

I do it on the side as well, throughout the weekend. I look at it as fueling my passion and not paying for my hobby. Like other said I put half aside and spend the other on random things I would. Also just come up with some packages and they can pick what they want based on what you offer. The one advise I would say is dont sell yourself short and treat there car like your own and you will be fine.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0
I do it on the side as well, throughout the weekend. I look at it as fueling my passion and not paying for my hobby. Like other said I put half aside and spend the other on random things I would. Also just come up with some packages and they can pick what they want based on what you offer. The one advise I would say is dont sell yourself short and treat there car like your own and you will be fine.

 

:iagree:

 

I've been thinking about doing this too but not really sure where to start. Be nice to be a adams dealer later down the road:rockon:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0

Thanks for the advice guys... Interior is probably my biggest concern. I don't at all mind doing my own, because I usually keep it clean, so it's easy to do. But cars that spill pop/coffee/etc and have messes from children are time consuming to clean, and can get difficult.

 

I have spring plans of painting the house and redoing the landscaping, but after that, I should have some decent time available to start!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0
:iagree:

 

I've been thinking about doing this too but not really sure where to start. Be nice to be a adams dealer later down the road:rockon:

 

Been looking into the Adams Dist also... I got the package Ashley emailed me,,, got to look it all over and see what all is to it. Get with Her when you looking to do it...

 

I need to see what kind of interest there is here in Central Florida to do it...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0

I do it on the side. Im not trying to get rich off of it however. Mostly friends and family and friends of family that see what i can do and want theirs. I have this month booked out and some of April for Saturdays. It works out good, it pays for my product and gives me something to do while my girlfriend works during Saturdays. I like it a lot and its always great to see their faces when they see it once its done.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0
Been looking into the Adams Dist also... I got the package Ashley emailed me,,, got to look it all over and see what all is to it. Get with Her when you looking to do it...

 

I need to see what kind of interest there is here in Central Florida to do it...

 

Are you near orlando?... i know there used to be a adams dealer there, so im pretty sure there are some clients that want some adams stuff.

 

But thanks, i've been needing to talk to ashley about that. So far, i've gotten our camaro group to try adams stuff and everybody really likes it. So we'll see:thumbsup:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0

Yup I do it. Definitely don't sell yourself short. On avg I spend about 20 hours on a car. I've now gotten to the point I no longer do that in a weekend. If it takes me less than 20 hours to do an exterior I'll toss in other things like quick interior clean up, etc. I am now to the point they drop off on Thurs and I'm done by Wed next week. My reputation is why people come to me. People that say they won't pay $200 + for an exterior detail.......aren't looking for my kind of services. I don't do wash/wax's. I can pay a 10 year old $5 to do a wash and wax. Eff that! My experience, skill, and product comes with a price.

 

At 20 hours and approx $50 in product and equipment I'm not making much. That's for your typical 4 door sedan. SUV's are $250 for small, $300+ for larger, $500+ for mega SUV's/trucks. I tend to burn through product and on avg need $50 worth of SOMETHING after every detail. Whether it's pads, compounds, tape, various interior/exterior product, etc.

 

For example right now after this detail I need FMP, more pads, In & Out spray, Detail spray( Gallon), and APC type cleaner.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0
I agree with the comments above. My only concern for you is if you are working on cars at other people's property. You may want to look into insurance in case of damage to someone else's property or an injury. Sounds kinda lame but you never know what can happen.

 

this is always a good idea. I have the customer drop their car off at my place, it gets washed then i drive it into the garage where it stays until delivery. I dont ever drive it and never leave until delivery.

 

Stuff can always happen regardless however.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0

You do it because you like to do it. IMO if you spend 20 hours on an interior if its yours then fine but a customer no way. My rational on this is that if it took 20 hours on an interior then that person will not keep it clean and will need another 20 hour session to clean the interior in 2 months because they are not gonna keep it clean. To make money you have to find an angle. High end customers with high end rides not the everyday person. You have to find a way to streamline your process so that you get paid for your work and use minimal product. We all know with neglected cars you use more product. Well there's my 2 cents.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0
If nothing else it could be a great way to meet and impress the movers and shakers in your town. Show them that you're hard working and do a good job; it could certainly lead to more opportunities in life.

 

Of you could look at it as a way to build a great retirement account -- half of what you make is fun money, half goes into a retirement account. It may not seem like much now, but for a 26 year old to put away a few grand a year makes a big difference down the road -- it literally could mean the difference between retiring early or working much later into your life.

 

In short, do it. It sure beats sitting on the couch.

 

This. It can make a HUGE difference in retirement.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0

Thanks guys. I'm definitely not looking to spend 20 hours on an interior, exterior, or combined. In theory I'd like to get a "medium" sized job done in an evening (Meaning strip washing, drying, waxing, tires/trim, interior spruce up in ~4 hours)

 

If I have customers interested in claybarring & polishing, I would save those for Saturday mornings, but would still like them done within the day.

 

Honestly, around here I don't know that there are many people that are interested in spending $250+ for a vehicle detail.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0
You do it because you like to do it. IMO if you spend 20 hours on an interior if its yours then fine but a customer no way. My rational on this is that if it took 20 hours on an interior then that person will not keep it clean and will need another 20 hour session to clean the interior in 2 months because they are not gonna keep it clean. To make money you have to find an angle. High end customers with high end rides not the everyday person. You have to find a way to streamline your process so that you get paid for your work and use minimal product. We all know with neglected cars you use more product. Well there's my 2 cents.

 

I've recently raised my prices on interiors,especially the nasty ones, for this simple reason. They keep coming back with trashed interiors. Lets face it here we all keep our interiors in above average conditions. The majority of us enjoy shining on the outside. I do what I enjoy and stay clear of bad interiors, unless there's a serious payment involved.

 

Mook said it best in an older thread. It was something like, I'm not going to being people's maid. I wish I could find the exact quote cus that kind of stuck with me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0

Been detailing on the side now for 15 years. It started out as a hobby but started to get notcied when I brought home Paul Newmans car one year and started to bring home exotic cars to detail when I worked in personal security for an owner of a hedge fund company.

 

Im not looking to get rich ..I do it to support one of my hobbies and to have some extra $$ to throw in my IRA.

 

I try and stay away from the old timers. They are too cheap and complain way too much about costs. Plus they always nitpick every detail that's not to their satisfaction. Example ..Uncles friend says to me last fall after spending 10 hours on his caddy.. "why couldn't you get that scratch out of my trunk lid"? well sir that's because you need a darn body shop to fill the dent and respray your trunk! Scratch my a--!.

I had many more always wanting me to do it for free or just b--- and moan when I gave them what I thought was a fair price. They also like to watch over your back the whole day. So now I no longer do any vehicles owned by people within a certain age group. Not worth the aggravation.

 

Interiors are the most profitable jobs for me. I have a lot of customers wanting just a wash & complete interior cleaning. Easy money in my opinion.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0
Are you near orlando?... i know there used to be a adams dealer there' date=' so im pretty sure there are some clients that want some adams stuff.

 

But thanks, i've been needing to talk to ashley about that. So far, i've gotten our camaro group to try adams stuff and everybody really likes it. So we'll see:thumbsup:[/quote']

 

Yes Mike use to do it in Orlando. Got my cart and all from him. The retirement community I live in or by there are alot of car clubs. Really nice Vettes, and Camaros and so on. Trying to get with them cats to set up a detail clinic of some sort. see what happens

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0
Thanks guys. I'm definitely not looking to spend 20 hours on an interior, exterior, or combined. In theory I'd like to get a "medium" sized job done in an evening (Meaning strip washing, drying, waxing, tires/trim, interior spruce up in ~4 hours)

 

If I have customers interested in claybarring & polishing, I would save those for Saturday mornings, but would still like them done within the day.

 

Honestly, around here I don't know that there are many people that are interested in spending $250+ for a vehicle detail.

 

That is my deal here at The Villages, people are tight with the greenbacks. Why pay me to wash and wax there car for say 50.00 when they can hit the local wash and swirl for 35.00?? But if you can get a good customer and do it right for them and let your work show off for itself. Alot of folks do not understand how much their ride can shine when polished up. Makes a world of difference.

I was at Publix this weekend. " local grocery store" Old lady parks in front of me with a new Buick Enclave. The whole front is covered in a white stuff. I got out and looked at it and asked the woman as she was getting out what is all over your car.. She said it is wax. Someone told her husband to leave it on there and it will protect the front. I said yes but need to wipe it off. She said I have no idea. The guy at the car wash told them that. Once again the old 35.00 local wash and swirl at its best.

 

Hook a car up righteous and it will speak volumes for you. Great advertisement.:cheers::patriot:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0

I've been mulling over the same question about detailing on the side (thanks to the OP for bringing this up) and I've been looking for more information about insurance.

 

Say your just doing this on your own property and not driving customer cars. Shouldn't you have some liability insurance in case someone claims you damaged their car? Are most of you covered for this scenario? If so, how do you shop of this insurance?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0
I've been mulling over the same question about detailing on the side (thanks to the OP for bringing this up) and I've been looking for more information about insurance.

 

Say your just doing this on your own property and not driving customer cars. Shouldn't you have some liability insurance in case someone claims you damaged their car? Are most of you covered for this scenario? If so, how do you shop of this insurance?

 

call insurances, I believe state farm is opening up to the "home detailer." People on other forums have said they are insured for as low as $150-$300 a year :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0
call insurances, I believe state farm is opening up to the "home detailer." People on other forums have said they are insured for as low as $150-$300 a year :)

 

Thanks for that. I called my personal insurer and they said they could offer coverage for a simple wash and wax business but paint correction was going too far. The representative couldn't give me specifics on the technicality so I figured I'd shop elsewhere. I even explained using polishes, not sandpaper, etc. I'll definitely give State Farm a call.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0

There are different types of insurance, you should consult your insurance agent especially if you are working from your house. I asked questions like what if the car gets stolen from my driveway? What happens if for some reason the garage door fell on the car? There are different levels of liability besides driving the clients car and that doesn't even count something that you do to the car while working on it ie burn thru clearcoat, ruining custom rims, ripping leather seats etc. I feel better knowing my house and future is protected, this is why when I see prices that are really low it somewhat angers me knowing its likely they aren't carrying insurance. I have a business licence along with copies of proof of insurance that I show clients and most of them like to see them. I would ask about personal liability and property liability, its not that much money to carry insurance. Protect your good name by being legit cause its all fun and games until the subpoena comes. :xfingers:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 0

I agree, Brian. I'm wanting to go 100% legit biz. I've been trying to get local info on license and stuff but not finding anything online. Chamber of Commerce website is a laugh. I might have to go old school and actually go to these places in person. I'm not looking at starting up 'till the weather gets a little better so I have another month or two.

Didn't intend to jack this thread but thought my question(s) might raise some good responses for the OP as well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Answer this question...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...