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Cost to Start a Cleaning Business in 2024

The cost to start a cleaning business can be as low as a few hundred to a few thousand dollars, depending on your needs and goals. Cleaning businesses are a great starting point for entrepreneurs due to low startup costs. No prior business experience or degrees are needed. However, it's important to understand cleaning business costs for successful planning and budgeting. Knowing everything about starting a cleaning business will set you up for success. As the costs of your cleaning business are tax-deductible, we recommend using a business expense tracker for tax purposes.

Cleaning Business Registration Fees and Licenses

Registering Your Cleaning Business

There are different registration costs and filing fees for each business type. Knowing which business type you want to be will help determine the initial cost to start an official cleaning business.

For example, here are a few filing and registration fees for in California:

  • Sole Proprietorship: $0-100 (business license fees)
  • Doing Business As (DBA): $65-100
  • General Partnership: $70-$150 filing fee
  • Limited Liability Partnership (LLP): $70 filing fee; $800 annual tax fee
  • Limited Liability Corporation (LLC): $70 filing fee; $800 annual tax fee

State or City Business Licenses

Depending on your state or city, you may need a license for your cleaning business, which can cost around $50 to $150. You'll generally need to file for a business license with the city where your business is based. However, not all cities require a business license for cleaning services, so check your city's government website.

Employer Identification Number (EIN)

Depending on your business type, you may have to apply for a Employer Identification Number (EIN) which is free. Especially if you have employees, having an EIN lets you to separate personal and business finances for state and federal taxes. Another benefit of EINs is using your EIN instead of your social security number (SSN) wherever applicable. Using your EIN is safer as your SSN is exposed to fewer people.

Legal and Professional Fees

Although you can do most of the business paperwork yourself, you may want to hire a business consultant or attorney to help you register your business. Depending on your business type, legal and professional fees can cost up to a thousand dollars. It will usually be a flat fee and not an hourly fee.

Cleaning Business Supplies and Equipment

As cleaning jobs may vary depending on your investment, initial cleaning business supplies and equipment can range from $315 to $1175. Most cleaning equipment is reusable, so you'll purchase more cleaning solutions or replace tools as they're worn out. With industrial or commercial cleaning, expect higher costs as it usually requires certain cleaning equipment like a floor waxer. Residential cleaning may have lower costs if you're willing to use any cleaning supplies or equipment from your household.

Here is a breakdown of common cleaning supplies and equipment:

  • Vacuum cleaner: $75-500
  • Cleaning solutions (all-purpose, windows, etc.): $50-150
  • Cleaning tools (scrubs, brushes, etc.): $50-150
  • Mop and bucket: $50-125
  • Personal protective equipment (PPE): $20-75
  • Coverall Uniforms: $50-100

Business Transportation Costs For Cleaning

Unless the location you're going to already has cleaning supplies, you'll need a way to transport them yourself. If you're a residential cleaner, you can use any vehicle if it fits your cleaning equipment and tools. However, you may need a cargo van or truck for commercial cleaning, as they'll have the space to hold your equipment. Cargo vans also save you time as you won't have to load or unload for each cleaning job. Buying a cargo van or truck for your cleaning business can range from $10,000 to $25,000.

Buying Insurance

Car or Auto Insurance

If you use a business vehicle for your cleaning company, you'll need auto insurance ($750-$2750/year) if you don't have one already. Auto insurance protects your vehicle from accidents, damage, or unexpected events. Consider upgrading your auto insurance if you're driving it more often or have employees driving your vehicles. Protecting your business vehicle is important as that's your main way of getting to work locations.

Business or Personal Insurance

Business and personal insurance costs can range from around $232 to $8000 annually. According to Insureon, cleaning business insurance policies can range from $132 to $2076 per year, depending on what you need to be covered. Business insurance mostly depends on your business risks, employees, and skill confidence.

Personal insurance will include health, vision, and dental plans ($3500-$6000/year). Since not all plans are generally required, you can only select the ones you need. Be sure to check your state for any small business insurance plans available.

Online Business Presence Costs

Website and Hosting Fees

An online business presence is important as it allows potential clients to view your services, portfolio, reviews, and contact information. Being able to visit your business online at any time avoids the need for unnecessary text, calls, or emails. Domain registration and hosting fees are relatively low, costing around $15 to $150 annually. There are a lot of free and low-cost website services available.

Marketing and Paid Advertising Fees

Most businesses will start with organic advertising, a free way to show your business to others through online posts or videos. Paid advertising fees are generally flexible depending on your budget - expect to spend up to $100 to start. Some advertising services like Google Ads or TikTok will also give you some free credits as a trial.

Listing Your Business Online

You can claim your business or add a business profile online on Google. Having your business profile on Google lets potential clients see your business location, hours, and general information. Another popular website to list your business for free is Yelp, which allows potential clients to get quotes and communicate with your cleaning business. They can also see the locations and services offered.

Miscellaneous Expenses

Accounting or Management Software

Consider digital accounting or bookkeeping for your cleaning company to simplify filing taxes with automatic summaries and financial graphs. Bookkeeping software can cost up to $400 annually, depending on your needs. Accounting software should typically allow you to track your income and expenses with summaries available. Alternatively, a free manual method is using Google Sheets or Excel for your business accounting.

If you have a lot of employees and projects, consider management software. It should allow you to track your project status and assign your employees. Seeing where your employee's time is spent will help you make business decisions to improve efficiency and help with payroll.

Marketing and Paid Advertising Fees

Most businesses will start with organic advertising, a free way to show your business to others through online posts or videos. Paid advertising fees are generally flexible depending on your budget - expect to spend up to $100 to start. Some advertising services like Google Ads or TikTok will also give you some free credits as a trial.

Work Phone or Computer

Although business can be done with just your phone, you may need a computer or laptop as a more efficient way to communicate when you're not on the go. A cheap laptop or phone can cost up to a few hundred dollars.

Learning Courses

If you're uncomfortable with the free online resources available to learn and manage your cleaning business, consider online or locally available courses. Online courses from Udemy are usually under $25 for each course. Local cleaning classes can cost up to a few hundred dollars, which will last a few weeks to a few months.


The cost of starting a cleaning business can vary from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. Learning the cost of every expense in your business allows you to budget and plan effectively, as not all costs are needed. It is important to track all costs of your cleaning business for tax purposes to save money and make impactful business decisions.