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    25 Replies Latest reply on Sep 23, 2008 1:07 AM by 401k__

    Business Plan

    401k__ Wayfarer

      Hi, all. I am very motivated about starting a Coin Laundromat business. I really want to purchase an existing store and am currently doing my research. I know i'll definitely need a business plan but would like to know: where do i get the numbers to plug into a business plan ? All of the cost associated with the startup, lease and utilities among other figures. I know there has to be a way to retrieve this but I need your help.

      Also, if anyone can direct me to any Agencies or Programs for financing that are specific to minorities, minority women or just women.
      I have already been to the Small Business Association website, so if there is any other info, this will be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.
        • Re: Business Plan
          Lighthouse24 Ranger

          There are several consultants who offer advice on acquiring, owning, and operating laundromats. You can find a couple of them on-line (these are just examples, not endorsements):
          http://www.laundromatadvisor.com
          http://www.buyalaundromat.com

          There is also a coin laundry owner's manual that others in the business have recommended:
          http://www.mountainpublishingusa.com

          Hope this helps. Good luck!
          1 of 1 people found this helpful
          • Re: Business Plan
            LUCKIEST Guide
            Business Plan, Welcome

            How soon do you plan on starting this Coin Laundry?? and Where??

            Do you have a Business Name??

            Do you know about SCORE?? SCORE is FREE and can help you with a Business Plan.

            Good luck, LUCKIEST
              • Re: Business Plan
                401k__ Wayfarer
                I am looking to start as soon as 3-6 months depending on how long it takes me to get everything in order from financing to finding the perfect location to buy. It will be located in the atlanta metro area
                I do have a list of names i am brainstorming.
                Yes i know about score. I've me twith them before and didn't find the guy helpful or should i say eager and not very friendly but whatever it takes.
              • Re: Business Plan
                snowball Wayfarer
                I can help you with the details. Feel free to contact me.
                • Re: Business Plan
                  Lighthouse24 Ranger
                  You're welcome . . . glad I could help. I hope you'll keep the community posted on your progress. Best wishes.
                  • Re: Business Plan
                    N2Fitness Newbie
                    Business Plan Pro 2006 (or later) from Palo Alto Software www.paloalto.com has a 25 page sample Laundromat- Coin-Op business plan already in it that was written by someone who started a coin-op laundromat business and agreed to allow their plan to be published in the software. You can take the sample plan and print it out to review or save it as your plan and go in and change the text and the numbers to suit your location, demographics, etc. Either way you look at it, you're going to need a business plan to be taken seriously and the sample plan may detail some areas and open your eyes a bit to a real-world scenario since you are new to this industry. The plan has everything you need in it including charts, graphs, P&L and cash flow, you simply have to plug your own data into it. The more specific you can be about demographics, marketing, competition and your competitive advantage, the better. For about a $100 investment, this software will save you ten times that in headaches and trying to come up with charts and graphs on your own. Plus you can upload a copy online for bankers/investors to look at.

                    The good news to highlight about purchasing an existing coin-op laundry would be the minimal payroll overhead, lack of start-up costs normally associated with a building remodel and purchasing equipment, plumbing, electrical, etc. These are the types of issues you need to study and address in your plan and be prepared to answer when the bankers ask you, and they will ask you. Another plus to purchasing an established business is that you automatically gain status as a business owner with the past track record of the business you're purchasing and you can utilize the past tax returns to help qualify for loans and plug the hard numbers into your business plan. If you have some background in management, you definitely want to highlight this in a personal bio in the executive summary of your plan. You can start out applying for SBA loans and I would recommend going to your local economic development corporation for their assistance and SCORE counseling. Many community banks are customers of the local EDC and the head person should be able to get you appointments with bankers who will visit the EDC instead of you having to run all over town applying. If you're in a rural county (less than 250,000 pop.), there are USDA-backed loans becoming available in September for businesses in those areas.

                    An SBA loan of $250K or less is much easier to qualify for than the larger loans. You must be prepared to inject a minimum of 20% of the total project value out of your own pocket, have decent credit or a partner with good credit and have your own personal financial statement, 3 years worth of personal tax returns and 3 years of the business financials and tax returns. If you are purchasing a business that averages $250,000 per year in gross sales, a good rule of thumb is that you will end up paying close to $250,000 for the business. That means that a laundromat that takes in approximately $12,000 per month total and has a total overhead of $7000 per month will net you about $5000 per month in gross income. You just bought yourself a job! Bankers are going to examine your personal expenses as related to your new projected income to determine if you are able to support yourself. You may wish to keep your current job and keep your expenses low during this time. Paying down personal debt and not being late on any credit accounts is a major plus. If you don't have all of the above information together, you will waste time and frustrate potential bankers who will move on to focus on other deals and begin to not take you seriously as a business person.

                    Beware of sellers who simply tell you that their business is good or profitable, you want hard numbers to back it up, If they tell you they are skimming cash and not reporting it, hence lowering their tax burden, beware again and request to personally audit the machines and business for a solid month while you prepare your financials, if you are able to do this. Banks will not look favorably on this practice and you will probably have to inject more capital to get the loan.

                    Plenty of financial resources can be obtained from your local community colleges as well. Look for a local CPA (check the economics department of the colleges first) to help you with the hard numbers and a business attorney to help you with the business transaction, contract, incorporation, etc. You will want to incorporate or form a LLC almost immediately (unless an existing corporation is being purchased in its entirety) to protect your personal assets. These steps should be a given in any business purchase and are well worth the few thousand dollars they will cost. Even if the first deal doesn't pan out, you're semi-established and ready to take on the next opportunity immediately!

                    Hope this answers some of your questions!