There are so many considerations to think about before opening an automated carwash business. So, let’s do an actual case study from a real entrepreneur outside of a major city doing a little business planning prior to making the decision to go for it or not.
First, we note that the small town, suburb, did have some previous challenges with their city sewer system, and needed some upgrades to comply with law, thus, increased sewer fees, which would be even more for industrial users, which a carwash would be thought to be in such a category. Oh, there are a lot more things to consider besides that minor hick-up, so let’s talk shall we?
The entrepreneur was very wise to check out the competition in the area and noted two competitors with tunnel hand car wash houston tx operations with affordable rates namely $3-5 for your very basic wash, with add-ons if the customer was so inclined. The property is only a quarter-acre and that makes things tight, but there are properties adjacent which could be available. So, the question might be could the new operator do a lease option on the adjacent properties, and is the secondary piece of property owned by a non-resident owner?
One challenge also is that such an un-attended automated carwash might not have enough volume to make the project worthwhile, but a co-marketing business on the property might solve that challenge, and allow for an attendant to watch over the carwash and do the occasional routine maintenance or crisis management which often occurs.
Perhaps, a burrito stand could do very well in the area – $2.50 each, and a hand-wash might be good due to labor ability, as it is a predominantly Hispanic area. I also advised the concept similar to many of the hand-washes we see near Universities which use college kids for labor, typically a $5.00 hand wash, and they are busy. Interestingly enough, I do remember driving through that area and getting a hell of a burrito once about plus or minus 5-miles from that area.
Indeed, I’ve seen lots of such businesses around the nation, lots of co-branding going on too. In the South parts of the US it’s extremely common. Consider this, if the carwash was slow you’d have a line for the burritos rain or shine anyway. Also, burritos take about 2-3 minutes, hand wash takes 5-10 minutes depending on size of car – SUV, duallies, etc.
Next, we need to look at such things as water availability; what are the water restrictions? Are you under level one drought? What are the level II drought procedures and rules? Sometimes they shut down car washes during level two droughts.
What I am saying is this, to be successful in business, you need to understand all the details before you start, borrow the capital, or take the entrepreneurial plunge. Please consider all this and think on it.