Money-making has become a tough proposition in this highly-competitive world – where keeping competitors at bay on a constant basis is always a challenging task.
Under such circumstances, it would be dreams come true if you’ve an innovative idea or service to offer, which is virtually non-existent in your nearby locality. One such unique concept, related to the western concept of community washing machines, is being reported to be making waves in Delhi.
Yes, this concept of self-service laundry system – popularly known as Laundromats – is already existent in advanced western countries such as the UK, the US, Canada and Australia; and prominently used by hostellers, foreigners and even working housewives.
The Delhi-based Laundromat at Satya Niketan is a walk-in laundry facility, where people pay and use a coin-operated washing machine to wash and dry (yeah! even drying clothes is a big headache during monsoons and winter season) a maximum of 6 kg clothes for an hour of spin-off. And, if you’ve hostels or college around the arena, it could be only a matter of time before you start gaining footfalls.
For the uninitiated, Laundromats are commercial public laundries – usually coin-operated and self-service – that are made available to individual customers who are usually not equipped with a washing machine or dryers in their living space.
However, some laundries do employ staff or a full service wash facility for the customers. In fact, the business of Laundromats are so common is America, that some staffed enterprises also provide facilities like dry-cleaning pick-up and drop-off. Not only that, many housing societies have Laundromats within premises itself.
Coming back to the Delhi facility, what comes as a little surprising to me is its high cost – Rs.150 for each round of wash-up. On simple calculations, I figured out that a family of 4 members could easily generate washables to the extent of 6 kg clothes or even more on daily basis.
Does that warrant Rs. 150 for a machine-washed outsourcing service that my housemaid could do, for an extended period of 10 days, at the same cost?
Oh! Yes, availing of such launderette service is just fine if your housemaid hasn’t turned up on a particular day due to illness. It could also be a blessing if you’re bachelor studying in a hostel wherein you accumulate clothes for whole week and get them sloshed over the weekend, all at once.
Usually, 4 aspects go into a successful Laundromat business:
- Location of the Laundromat
- Length of a spinning cycle
- Price of the service
- Whether Self-service or staffed service?
Finding a good location – a residential area – is the most important part in settling for a Laundromat business; preferably nearby some established paying-guest facility where people visit for a temporary stay and need to wash their Lenin once in a while.
A good Laundromat should also be fully sanitized and have presence of at least an attendant (if not staffed serviced) during the hours of operations who will be responsible for cleaning the washers and tables, clearing-off the detergent residue and checking the results of wash-up.
Most of the Laundromats are pretty crowded. An ideal setting would be the one with more washing machines at work which aim to provide a solitary experience.