Open Forum

Decline in business during summer

  • 1.  Decline in business during summer

    Posted 11 days ago
    Hi everyone, I am looking into owning a laundromat in Nevada, I have heard from another laundromat owner that business declines during the summer in places like Nevada because of the heat so people don't like to go out, are there any laundromat owners in areas that get very hot during the summer who can share if they have or have not seen any differences in the amount of business they do in certain seasons, thanks.

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    Robert Webster
    Store Owner/ Employee
    Dover DE
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  • 2.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 11 days ago
    Robert,

    During warm months, people wear lighter clothing thus the weekly laundry chore is lighter.  The same number of customers could result in fewer turns in the summer than in the winter.  However, in some locations,  like west Michigan,  the influx of tourists more than offsets this summer drop.

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    Larry Adamski
    Muskegon Laundromat
    Spring Lake MI
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  • 3.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 10 days ago
    Larry, thank you very much for this excellent information.

    Sent from my iPad





  • 4.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 10 days ago
    Hi Robery,

       Yes this is very common. Here in Cincinnati we see about a 10-15% drop in the summer but really only when school is out. Once school goes back, we usually see some business come back even if it's still hot. My guess is that kids are wearing multiple outfits during school days but not during the summer.

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    Dave Menz
    Queen City Laundry Chain
    Cincinnati, OH
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  • 5.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 10 days ago
    School out, also less bulkier clothes, less blankets, maybe more air drying


  • 6.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 10 days ago
    I've written on this before on here, but every summer I start crying in my beer as business declines by 20% and I think we're doomed, then it gets cold and business goes through the roof and I start taking my new huge monthly deposits and multiplying them by twelve in my head, knowing I am a business genius.

    As is everything in this business, it completely depends on your store, your location (local) and your location (national).  And of course, your customers.

    Latino customers really stay away in the summers when the kids are out of school, but when fall/winter comes, they start doing blankets and comforters and huge loads weekly.  Areas with different demographics probably work differently.   A high-end luxury Millennial apartment complex is probably going to have much less of a seasonal swing.

    Nevada?  No idea.  Probably in-between.  It's not a big deal, if you have numbers going back, just graph them on Excel and you'll see the trend.

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    Luigi
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  • 7.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 10 days ago
    I have a store in Redding CA.  I am told Redding gets the most sunshine behind Yuma AZ in the USA.  Those that have acclimated over a few years are comfy with a 100 to 105 degree days.  The 106 to 110 degree days won't stop customers, but when the temp gets to around 115 degrees on those hot hot days, I pass out as fast as one of those fainting goats and don't know what is happening out there.

    Summer in FarNorCal can last for 5 to 6 months as it relates to Laundromats on those hot dry years.  Business will drop off 20% in a flash.  However, if you hustle WDF in our area, the tourists will keep you busier.

    The advantage is that our climate, like Nevada's, is conducive to using swamp coolers, and the dryers in the winter keep the store warm enough.  This cuts the overall cost of operation.  However, if you live near a paper mill or cow farm....you are not going to be able to get by with the swamp cooler.

    Do the math and figure an average, location location location.  Did I mention location.

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    Les Monthei
    Potential Investor
    Redding CA
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  • 8.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 9 days ago
    thumbnail image

    "Why Laundromat Income Can Decline In The Summer"
    from the blog of THE LATINA LAUNDROMAT ADVISOR

    Potential investors and Laundromat purchasers are usually unaware of the up-and-down nature of Laundromat income.  Income goes up and down like waves in the ocean.  If you buy your store in December - despite all the analysis and due diligence you do - it's possible you may miss the fact that when the summer months come around, your newly purchased Laundromat will produce lower income levels.

    Marta wears fewer clothes in July
    If the best months of income production for your Laundromat are November, December, and January, the worst months will normally be June, July, and August.  Laundromats in the summertime can have a decline in income of ten to twenty-five percent.

    My friend Marta comes from a family of twelve that regularly uses a Laundromat. Mom, Dad, five brothers, and four sisters are in her family. Her mom needs about eight to ten 20-LB washers to clean one week's worth of her families clothes in December. The Ortez family uses the Laundromat every week and produces a very good income for the owner.
    Why does income decline in so many Laundromats in the summer?  I knew the answer was easy, and I've heard it said a dozen times, but it just wasn't sinking in clearly in my brain.

    The light bulb of understanding came on one day when I was visiting Marta and saw her coming down the steps from her upstairs bedroom.  It hit me right between the eyes!  Short shorts, halter tops, and bathing suits can fit into fewer Laundromat washers than long sleeve shirts, long pants, and hoodies.

    In the summer, Marta's family can fit their dirty laundry into six to eight 20-LB washers because her family wears fewer clothes in the summer months:  that's the simple answer.  Laundromats don't lose customers, they lose pounds of clothes to process.

    Marta's mom also doesn't care if her boys wear their jeans for a few extra days - or it their T-shirts are worn an extra day or two.  During the school year, Marta's mom ensures her boys go to school with clean clothes everyday – in the summer, not so much.

    Marta's sister Maria in summer attire
    If Marta's family is typical – and I believe it is - the Laundromat owner receives about twenty percent less income from the same customer base. So now you know why I believe Laundromats make less income in the summertime.

    It's why I always explain the income cycle to anyone wanting to invest in the Laundromat business.  I want them all to view the income for an entire year.  If you believe that a picture is worth a thousand words, you know that Marta's picture clearly explains this phenomenon of Laundromat ownership.

    There is, of course, always the exception to the rule.  Less income in the summertime may not happen to Laundromats that are located in resort areas or near the Beach.  In fact, the summertime can often be the best income months for a Laundromat owner.  Tourists can bring dollars to resort and beach businesses, including Laundromats.

                 The Latina Laundromat Advisor

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    Larry Larsen
    Laundromat123.com
    Anaheim, CA
    Distributor - Insurance - Consulting
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  • 9.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 9 days ago
    Another factor we have found is that the non winter business tends to be folks who live in apartments.  In the winter we get people who have their own washers and dryers at home that can't fit their comforters into the home washer.

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    WEI CHEN
    Store Owner/ Employee
    Los Angeles CA
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  • 10.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 9 days ago
    As my husband and I are ready to take the plunge with buying a fairly large mat in a demographic area that would lead us to believe that this summer slump would apply to us, what ways have other owners found to try and offset some of this loss of cash flow?

    Do you try to work on developing a WDF delivery to slightly different areas? Offer pickup/drop off WDF to people who are leaving and returning from vacations? I would love to hear some ideas!

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    Mary Kate Dempsey
    Potential Investor
    Roswell GA
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  • 11.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 9 days ago
    Let's not forget another factor for summer sales drop.....People are not only wearing less clothing, but they are going away on vacations!

    Some customers will even go back to visit their home countries for the entire summer so they can maximize the high cost of a plane ticket halfway around the world.

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    Paulie B
    Multiple Mat Owner since 1976
    New York City, NY
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  • 12.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 9 days ago
    Paulie,
    Some of my customers go to Florida in January.  Thus January is usually my worst month of the year for sales.  For this reason, January is a good month for making improvements such as replacing equipment, painting the walls or whatever.  Monday I've got a guy coming in to start replacing worn and damaged ceramic floor tiles.  Have you noticed that you only have to turn around twice to find something that needs attention?

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    Larry Adamski
    Muskegon Laundromat
    Spring Lake MI
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  • 13.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 9 days ago
    Larry,

    Yes, absolutely any slump in sales is an opportunity to get work done that is normally impossible or extremely difficult if the store is in a busy mode.
    Ceramic tile repair is a great example of that since you have to block off any area that is being repaired for a couple of days.

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    Paulie B
    Multiple Mat Owner since 1976
    New York City, NY
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  • 14.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 9 days ago
    Mary Kate,

    The best answer I can think of is for you to have a summer sale every year, and promote it as much as you can.

    Air conditioning in your mat can also make a big difference. Especially if your competitors don't offer it.

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    Paulie B
    Multiple Mat Owner since 1976
    New York City, NY
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  • 15.  RE: Decline in business during summer

    Posted 9 days ago
    I have come to also expect a downturn in business during the summer based on wild fires that will occur close enough to our weather patterns that some folks won't use the LMat if the air quality is bad enough.  Last years fire season was catastrophic, and while we don't expect that to happen every year, it seems every year we are having the smoke blowing up, down or back and forth from our FarNorCal location.

    Any substantial weather related problems from any particular state will usually compromise LMat use to an extent.  Possibly the best answer to the occasional catastrophic seasonal events would be good planning and good insurance.

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    Les Monthei
    Potential Investor
    Redding CA
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