After starting your own pressure washing business, one of the most important decisions you will make is how much to charge for your services. If you set a high price, you will have difficulty finding clients, and if you charge too little, you will find it challenging to make a profit.
And if you set a low price and hike it after realizing your mistake, then there's a possibility of losing clients accustomed to your old rates. So, setting a price is all about achieving the right balance. Finding this balance is aided by considering all the variables while focusing on the bottom line.
Here's a blueprint of factors you need to consider while setting the price for your pressure washing services:
1. Assess your location
The location and area of your pressure washing services usually dictate the rates you can charge. If your business is in an urban location, you have the choice to provide services to a particular niche – commercial property, homes, or vehicles. You might even be able to offer competitive pressure washing prices to your customers.
On the other hand, if your pressure washing business is in a rural area, you might have to diversify your service portfolio to capture a larger market segment. For example, you can offer varied cleaning services catering to different niches in the market. However, catering to different niches means your equipment and labor costs will also increase. When setting the price for your pressure washing services, you should consider this increased cost.
2. Research your competitors’ service portfolio and their job rates
Visit the competitors' job sites and check the types of jobs they do. Find out the price they charge for each type of power washing job. Also, identify whether they have insurance or provide workers' compensation.
Evaluate the types of detergents and chemicals they use and determine if you can provide better service at a lower cost. Consider the cost of all essentials when you decide to fix your rates. You must let your clients know the quality of your services when explaining your service rates.
3. Measure the space
Before you set your price for a job, visit the property in person. Assess the condition of the site, ask what the customer expects done, and if there are any additional services or repair work needed. You can then estimate the cost based on the area's square footage or linear footage to be washed.
Projects that are estimated based on square footage include driveways, commercial cleaning, roofs, sidewalks, decks, fences, siding, garage floors, and parking lots.
How to find square footage?
- Find the width and length of the area.
- Multiply the length by the width.
- Multiply that number by 1.35 - The result is your approximate square footage.
Projects that are estimated based on linear footage include boats and houses.
How to find linear footage?
Measure the length of the structure while ignoring width or thickness measurements.
The charge of linear feet is higher than square footage.
4. Decide on a pressure washing pricing strategy
The following pressure washing pricing strategies can be used:
Per hour: This pricing strategy requires payment for every hour you put in.
Per square foot or linear foot: This form of pricing makes it easier to bid on various shapes and sizes of different structures.
Flat rate: This pricing strategy is good for you if you are an experienced pressure washer with a deep understanding of how to price for different pressure washing jobs and surfaces. Ideally, you need to roughly estimate the price based on square footage and then add your markup in this method.
5. Decide pressure washing price based on the type of project
Pressure washing prices can also differ based on the type of service provided. Below are some of the standard rates for different jobs, which will help you estimate the correct pricing:Area to washAverage ratesRoofs$250 – $600Houses$173 – $358Deck or Patio$119 – $244Gutters$55 – $160Sidewalks and Driveways$108 – $262Fences$173 – $358Data Source: Home Guide
6. Estimate the labor cost
You can calculate your labor cost in three steps:
- Multiply the time spent on a job by the number of people needed on the job. The result is your labor hours.
- Calculate your hourly labor cost, including employee's wages, worker's compensation, taxes, and other employee-related expenses. Then add a percentage to this amount (20% is a reliable markup) to determine your total cost.
- Multiply the labor hours by the hourly labor cost. The result is your total labor cost for a pressure washing job.
7. Consider material costs and overhead expenses
Make a list of all the materials you need for the job. Attach a cost to each item, then total it up. The result is your material cost.The next step is to calculate the overhead costs for a specific time frame (weekly, monthly, or quarterly). Your overhead may include a number of expenses, including office supplies, legal fees, utility bills, insurance, office rent, advertising, and any field service management platforms you use.
How to calculate your overhead fees?
- Add up your overhead fees for a specific timeframe.
- Calculate the number of labor hours invested for that timeframe.
- Divide overhead costs by labor hours to get the hourly overhead cost.
- Multiply the hourly overhead cost by the number of hours you or your team spent on the pressure washing job.
8. Estimate your profit margin
Your profit margin is your net sales revenue minus material, labor, and overhead costs. Profit margins are usually expressed in percentage; the higher the percentage, the more money your business makes. If you are not satisfied with the profit margin, consider revising your price estimation numbers or your markup percentage and do the math again.
Calculating how much to charge for pressure washing jobs requires a lot of work. But it's essential because you will have a clear picture of the future success of your pressure washing business from the beginning. Now that you know how to price your pressure washing, generating leads should be next. And we have powerful tips for generating more pressure washing leads in this blog here.