An ironing business is a good way to earn income. The equipment needed can be small and the start up costs few. If you feel you are efficient at ironing and good with customers, begin with a business plan.
- Time how long it takes you to iron various items, and consider carefully which items you prefer working on. You may end up with an ironing business focusing on one area such as shirts or linens. Figure out how you can cut down your time. Start building a list of fabrics and their care requirements.
- People who look for ironing services want convenience, professional results and efficiency. Ironing services are convenient for those who need to look their best, and want last-minute services; for example, people attending special events. Another time when efficiency and professional results are required is when ironing linens for a motel.
- Figure out what equipment you need to buy for your ironing business. Look at the room you will work in. Do you have enough space to put your incoming orders and to hang your finished product? Besides a good professional grade iron and board, you need: a steamer, hangers, starch, trouser guards and garment covers. Since ironing is a repetitive task, look for ergonomic designs. Other necessary equipment includes record-keeping supplies and order-taking software. If you offer delivery services, install a rack or other device to safely hang your ironed garments in your delivery vehicle.
- The best advertising for an ironing business is word of mouth, but you can start with directories or posters. Go to small wedding and costume stores and offer demonstrations to show that you can be quick and efficient. Go to bed and breakfast inns or smaller nursing homes; take brochures that show you can do your work at a competitive price. To grow, focus on repeat customers. Give them two business cards so they can bring in others. Personalize garment bags and hangers, and volunteer your services on occasion to increase awareness.
- Some ironing companies price by weight or by hour; others price by garment and difficulty. Think about what works best for your clients. If they tend to come in with a large orders of linens, then pricing by weight might be useful. Whatever you decide, make the prices clear from the start. Don’t forget to budget for gas for delivery, and hangers or garment bags. Finally, you will need a method for your customers to place orders with your ironing business. You can take orders over the phone or through a website.