I think I might be on the right track here. I started calling manufacturers (Maytag, Dexter, Wascomat ) and getting contacts of local representatives in my area. I then cold called and E-mailed them and introduced myself. I got a couple of leads, but the best part is that I made a contact with a gentleman who has been in this business for 45 years, he seems to be a wealth of information and tremendously nice man with a wonderful attitude. Im just a small fry to him but he has taken the time to entertain my calls and has put me on the track of a prospective mat. Im pretty excited about it.
Anyway, in no small part, thanks to the resources like this board and the CLA I am able to speak intelligently with this gentleman. We were going to meet yesterday, but he got busy with something else and couldnt make it out my way. I told him it was no problem. He went on to tell me he is outfitting a new Laundromat build and , well , why do I go out to him so he can show me what he does. It was a pretty far drive, but how could I pass up an opportunity like that! Got to check out a brand new facility being built, 4000 sqft and two rows of washer platforms poured with the utilities laid in, no machines yet, so I could get a good look at the bare bones. In speaking with him I made a lot of connections to things I have learned here on this board and about his involvement with successful mats I have previously visited and was impressed by.
Well the best part is that it was a mat I had prepared myself for he told me the town so I previously drove by 10 random mats in the area, it was one, and the numbers we were talking about were realistic. I am going to do some laundry there this weekend and make a close inspection. Funny thing is that I told him I would call him next week sometime and he tells me he is out next week going to New Orleans. So I offered that perhaps he was going to the clean show and he is!! LOL, he says he goes to them all. I told him I would love to go and thought about it, but I need to be very careful with how I am spending my money at this point. I still feel there is a great more I can learn on my own and that perhaps Ill be better prepared for the next show and Id see him there.
I think this mat is not necessarily going to be a walk in the park, but its a good opportunity for me to make an entry. A lot of competition in the area and they are all free dry. I noticed that when I was driving around and he tells me that its been that way forever. A largely Spanish population and they really feel like they will only go to a place if they are getting something for free. So free dry it is Ill let you know what I see .
Capture.jpg (94.4 KB)
Capture1.jpg (99.6 KB)
These ads just burn me up. What do you think? I think I have really had it with Brokers.....
Brand New Laundromat Opportunity. To be clear, this was an investment project by owners that have other full time jobs. They do not have the time to manage or operate the business. It is turn key and ready to go. This is an immaculate 1,500 sq. ft. stand alone laundromat in the heart of a very busy ___ town. They have all Dexter equipment less than 1 yr. old. 22-washers, 22-dryers, (2) Rinnai/WalNat HWH, with storage tank. Large product Vend Rite vending for all retail sales, plus extras . The store is brand new. There is private parking on the street and in the rear of building. The location has great visibility with large apartment buildings across street and down block. It is a 1/2 block from Main St. and all the people from local apartment buildings have to pass the laundromat to get to Main St. shopping. The current owners have done NO advertising or promotions and only visit the store 1 or 2 days a week. THIS BUSINESS IS NOT BEING SOLD BASED ON FINANCIALS! There are limited records as the store has been open less than 1 yr. For $500K you are buying the lease, build-out and all equipment free and clear. The store has a 19 year lease with a rent of only $3,100 mth. You may be able to assume the equipment payments from the current owner. We are looking for a financially qualified buyer with at least $300k in liquid funds. Proof of Funds will be required to meet with the sellers. If you are qualified and serious, please call
I'm trying to find all of the laundromats within a 20 mile radius of my house. From what I read in the forum, that would put me within 20 to 25 minutes travel time of those laundromats. As I am searching for a laundromat to buy and remodel, this information would really help me.
My plan is to get a list of all of those mats and visit them. Then try to figure out which one I would like to buy, if it is for sale. Even if it is not for sale, I would like to contact the owners and discuss their mats with them and maybe one or two might be interested in selling. Once I find the mats that fit my criteria, I could narrow down my search by doing demographic searches of the area within a 3-mile radius of those mats. I think with this information, I would be better armed to find and buy my first mat.
The problem is that Google doesn't list all of the laundromats. I imagine I could get a phone book for each of those areas, but that seems like a big pain. Do you guys think I'm on the right track with this approach? Anyway, I was hoping that someone might have a way of doing this type of search and wouldn't mind helping me out with the information. Thanks. Mario
I started cold calling distributors in my area. I spoke with one gent who has what initially looks like a good deal. I'll meet with him next week. One question. He told me the current owner's has financing with him and the mat owner will pay off his loan with this sale of the mat.
I am not sure of this distributors motivation. I'll come with my own financing, but do you think he may be willing to transfer that financing to me? Does he care? Or is he just looking to get paid?
I am thinking that I want to pass on one Laundromat but I am tempted to throw out a low ball offer rather than shut the door on this opportunity. Without getting into details would you say an offer lower then 1X Gross is low ball or insulting? How low would you go? I would rather pass then be insulting...
I've been reading the posts in the Laundry 101 section for the past couple of months, and finally decided to register this morning. I'm getting more serious about buying a mat now, and I'm hoping someone may be able to help me with my due diligence.
Is there a thread, or a page on this site that lists out some of the basic questions new owners might have? Right now I'm specifically thinking about the amount of time a new owner can expect to spend in the store each week - I want to know if it's realistic for me to run a laundromat without affecting my day job.
I'm also looking for a checklist that I can use to walk through the stores I'm looking at and gather all the info that would be important. If anyone has a link, or a PDF that they could send me I would appreciate it.
As I have already stated, I'm from South Florida where the laundry industry seems to be saturated. I'm looking for my first laundromat and I cannot compete with the bigger, newer mats that I have seen. I will continue to look for something in Broward or Miami-Dade that fits my criteria, but in the mean time, I'm wondering something.
From reading in this forum, it doesn't seem that the laundromat biz is as hands-off as some would have you believe. I want to expand my search into other couties/cities in Florida, maybe central or west coast, putting me 50 to 100 or even 200 miles away. I am even thinking about some of my own stomping grounds in the Bronx, Manhattan or Westchester counties in New York. I have seen some mats for sale that may fit. However, does this seem feasible or is it just a pipe dream?
I know everyone says that you should start with a laundromat closer to home, but I want to be flexible. Couldn't I run a laundromat with a manager in another city or state? I came across one here in Broward whose owner lives in Ecuador and it seems that it is being run well by the current manager. I know it is the luck of the draw, but does this sound like a dumb idea? Thanks.
What do you all make of this situation. One mat I am considering has a rather large competitor within a 1 mile radius. Now before you all say RUN like my first impression was, consider this.
Mat for sale: 18 washers (9 out of order :eek:) 21 dryers. He has supposidly 41 commercial accounts where he does pick up and drop off service (Beauty salons, resturants etc.) In my observation this gentleman has abandonded the walk in customer. His sole purpose is to service the Pickup and Drop off customers. I have been in the store three times and never saw 1 walk in customer.
Competition: Maybe 100 washers and 100 dryers. Offers free drying. The place is packed, all the time. I have yet to do laundry there, but this weekend is looking good for that.
Now, could this be a hidden gem? What if I could even get say 5% or 10% of his business of self serve customers? Right now he has ZERO. Sources claim that a new competitor will drop business by around 30%. But I would not be that big and I don't want to poke a stick a giant either. I just want to siphon off a few customers to make the place more lucrative.
I just want to say that the information contained herein is great. I have only been a member for three days, but I have found a lot of information. I was advised to join CLA as a researcher, but the price seems a little steep ($499) right now. I also came across a site that sells a tele-seminar on the coin laundry business. This is by Brian Brunckhorst. Being new to the industry, I am a little weary as to where I put my money. Has anyone heard of Brian Brunckhorst and his course...is it worth the fee?
I hope to be able to join CLA in the near future, but for now, I will keep reading all of the posts on the board. Thanks.
Well I spoke customer service at the Suffolk County Wather Athority and explained my request for obtaining the water bill of an adress I am considering purchasing.
She shut me down and said they are really not allowed to give out personal information about other adresses. I asked her if it is not "public record" and she said it was not.
So how can I find out for sure? Am I just getting shut down by desk clerk? Should I drive down to the office? What do you think?
Two quick questions while looking at mats. One mat does not have a sewer connection. It has a "leeching" pool for the washer discharge of 26 washers. Moreover there is a three tier filtration system prior to discharge to the pool. They tell me there is a $90 a month water testing fee by the county and servicing the pool is nearly $1000 per year.
Does anyone have any experience and or comments on mats with this set up? Is it to be avoided? My initial thought was that if it maintained properly it should be fine and the lack of a sewer may discourage near by competition from opening. Comments??
Also, is there a quick and simple way to tell the size of a dryer by looking at it? Washers have become pretty obvious to me, but when the are all the same size at a mat it is difficult to eye...
It seems that every mat I go into and I ask if they count machine turns, they all just laugh at me. Good luck buying a mat if you think the sellers are going to be this organized.
So now what do I do? I get the number and model of the washers, look up the water usage and get the water bills on the business. But now what? What split up do I "guestimate" on Top loaders, triples, and 50# machines?
Worse yet, what's the split up between WDF and self serve?
I looked at one mat two days ago. I admit the Pro-Forma looks promising and I told the broker this. He is relentles and is pushing me to send a "letter of Intent". He says it's not binding for me in any way but will hold the business while I consider it. This sounds like a question for my attourney but I am just curious to hear what you all know about the issue....
I am trying to get a good idea of selling prices and I like the formula for a multiple of Net income. However, the mats I am looking at include or don't include the "owner's income" in the Net Income. Worse yet is that some owners only draw 5,200 per year and others as much as 40,000 per year. Weather or not you include these numbers can have a HUGE effect on the sale price I calculate. Should I just exclude it? What do you think?
customer calls ( speaks very little english) best i could tell says your dryer turned my clothes red. you buy me new clothes. I say sorry that you did not check your kids pockets. it was their crayon and ink pen no refund and I will send you a bill for my time to try to clean the red out of my machine. not a happy ex customer. oh boy cain't win them all.
I have never been a big Laundromat customer in the past, I've been fortunate to always have my own place to do laundry. Since I've been considering this I thought it prudent to injecting myself as a customer for that perspective. Once a week I am taking one load approx 10lbs of my own laundry out to try the experience.
Turns out the closest to me I think I have found what I believe to be the gold standard. I would fully expect the owner to be a CLA member and quite honestly, I would like to befriend him at sometime. I believe he knows what he is doing.
The mat is 40x40 paces (maybe 6,000 sqft?) and I estimate 100 dryers and 70 washing machines (My opinion is that there are too many dryers...) The facility is very clean and spying his utility (4" copper water headers behind the washer rows) hook ups, it is a very stout mat. 8 TV's, 6 change machines and vending. Interestingly no Wi-Fi though...
It took me 1hour to do 10lbs and cost $5.00. WDF business is very active. I saw 3 to 4 pick ups during my hour and each seemed to average 3 to 4 bags which I guess is about 10-20 lbs per bag.
This guy owns three similar mats in neighboring towns 6 and 8 miles apart respectivly. This mat is very busy and at noon on Sat I observed maybe 4 out of the 35 washers in my row were not in use.
Also this guy has an air of a franchise to his mats, they all seem to be set up the same, same size and even look the same with the same name. But I think we know there are no franchises, plus a google seach only brings up his mats.
So without doing any demographics, I would estimate that this guy has already done them and bracketed a very good customer base which incidentally is in my own backyard. I think this strengthenens my decision to search within this area as well before I pay for my own searches...
Any comments guys?
ps Oh yes, and not a single non function machine although two of the coin depensers were out of order, not much of a problem since there were 4 more....
Greetings. I've been reading this board and looking at various laundromats for a while now. I think I have one that may be worth it...but I'd like your input.
First the bad:
3 straight years of declining sales/net profit (going off tax returns)
No maintenance costs or depreciation (on tax returns)
1 washer out of order and 5 dryers (and a parts dryer on the floor)
Owned by an attorney disbarred in 2 states and involved in a very public scandal...does not live in area.
Laundromat appears to be running itself...by this I mean the part timers are running it with very little if any management/oversight by owner
Signage is almost non existent
Now the good:
Located in a seaside community right by the beach
In winter there are college kids...in summer tourists
Located in parking lot of an upscale condo complex (they have w/d units in but I figure if they can spend a $1M on a condo...they might like WDF)
It does a little north of $110K per year (cash flow ranges from 11-14K)despite itself...lease needs to renegotiated for longer/better terms (currently it is approx $35K including CAM charges)...averages about $42K in wages...and about 15% in utilities (per tax returns)
The owner was asking $80K initially...dropped price to $60K recently. I offered him $40K (with seller holding $20K note) contingent upon equipment inspection, renogiatiation of lease, and a host of other things including supplying me with all bills/records so I can verify the tax returns.
I just received a phone call from the broker that he is seriously considering the offer and will get back to me most likely monday. I'd like to hear your thoughts?
I picked my top three mats from this current broker and did a drive by. About 70 miles in all including a stop home during the day. For understandable reasons I wanted to walk around inside, but not discuss anythig about thinking about buying the place. I didn't want to seem deceptive so I tried to keep it real. Honestly, the only time I really use a mat myself is to wash my car cover, so I went in with the story I wanted to wash it - would they allow me to and how to go about it. Worked great, I got to see machines and the demenor of the workers there. I'll post my notes below, Please check it out and give me your comments. I know there is much more work to be done - Demographics too, but I guess you have to start somewhere:
Wishing well Laundromat:
Asking=$175K, Revenues=$115.8K, CF=$50K
Stand along building, looked very old and outdated. Very serviceable but can use some repair and cleaning. Off the beaten path, but in the center of a small residential area. Small town corner, well maintained Beer deistribtor and FD on corner.
It looked busy when I walked in, very active WDF service and customers walking in and out. I was greeted immediately, when I asked if they worked there – I got an uncertain answer, No I am just helping out. 50Lb machine was $6.50
Asking=$89K, Revenues=$110K, CF=$23.8K
It is located in a strip mall, easy access, close to home >5 min. Fairly run down – lots of top loaders.
Empty except for WDF attendant (I presume). Every washer had wet laundry in it and was sitting finished its cycle. Dryers looked empty. Attendant looked very stressed and didn’t acknowledge me although we made eye contact. As I walked up and down and turned to leave, I saw her emptying coin boxes (so I presume she is an owner?). There is a Dry Cleaner right next door to this mat.
Asking=$110K, Revenues=$0, CF=0
This is located in a strip mall, very hard to see / find and get in to for parking. Parking lot is busy and difficult to navigate, I had a hard time finding it, parking and getting in. It looked like a very serviceable Mat inside, but not extremely busy. It was listed as a brand new mat, but it looks at least 5 years old if not more.
I was greeted by the WDF attendant right away, very polite and helpful. Not what I was expecting as this one is rumored to be for sale due to feuding owner / partners. This mat also had bad Yelp reviews. 50LB machine was $5.50