Photo by Raban Haaijk on Unsplash

Parking lot litter removal is an essential service that benefits commercial businesses in your area. At the same time, it can provide you with a lucrative opportunity to earn a good living by working for yourself. 

Parking lots are often the first thing people see when they visit a business. Moreover, clean parking lots improve a business’s reputation. Moreover, they result in less garbage potentially clogging storm drains and polluting waterways. It may be surprising to some, but launching a parking lot litter removal business is simple and can be quite lucrative.

Step 1: Decide How You Want to Set Up Your Parking Lot Litter Removal Business

Should You Run a One-Person Operation or Hire Others to Do the Work?

When beginning a parking lot litter removal business, you may only have one or two properties to start with. This is a reasonable amount of work to manage as a one-person operation. However, as your business expands and your territory grows, having reliable independent contractors to call upon will become an increasing need.

Do You Want to Jump in Full Time or Start Your Parking Lot Litter Removal Business as a Side Hustle?

For many, starting a parking lot litter removal company as a side hustle makes the most sense. Since most of the litter removal occurs in the early mornings or late evenings, the operation fits nicely around a typical nine-to-five job.

However, time management becomes an important factor for a side hustle. At least in the beginning, it is probably best to perform sales and marketing in the morning and service your litter removal contracts in the evening. On the other hand, there will be a tipping point where you are making enough with your litter removal contracts so that it will begin to sense for you to put all your attention to your new business.

Will You Invest in Power Equipment or Discover Inexpensive Tools of the Trade?

Parking lot litter removal is most successfully completed on foot using inexpensive hand tools. You simply walk the exterior of retail, office, or industrial properties and sweep up litter into a litter collection bag. When the collection bag is full, you empty it into the on-site dumpster. 

You can buy the hand tools you need at your local home center or cleaning supplies store for about $50. In his book, Cleanlots, Brian Winch describes a special tool that he uses that reduces his cleaning times and makes his work more profitable.

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Step 2: Build Your Parking Lot Litter Removal Business

Take a Fresh Look at Your Community

You’ve driven past or walked through your community hundreds of times. But now that you’re building a business, you need to do it again. See your community through the lens of potential cleaning contracts. Look at all the commercial properties in your area: shopping plazas, office buildings, and warehouse sites. These are all potential contracts.

Build Your Contact List

Commercial real estate management companies are your best sources for business. They are contracted by property owners to manage their commercial properties. A management company typically has several properties in their portfolio. Create a database of contacts and keep track of when you reached out, what the response was, and when you plan to reach out again.

Price Your Service

An average parking lot litter removal billing falls within the range of $30-$50 per hour. It’s amazing how many commercial properties with parking lots are all around you! Each one must be maintained litter-free on a regular basis. Your potential earnings are huge.

Step 3: Market Your Service

Practice Your Elevator Pitch

You should start getting comfortable with introducing yourself and your business to prospects. Chiefly, you want to focus on potential decision-makers. For this purpose, you need to create a short elevator pitch.

Develop a Sales Letter

A sales letter is a more formal introduction to your business. You can either mail your letter via snail mail or email it to potential leads. You may want to try out a few different versions until you find one that consistently resonates with your prospective clients.

Prepare for Objections

Objections are an inevitable part of the sales process. However, you should never take them as a door slamming closed in your face. The key is to understand why the customer is objecting. Then prepare responses for the most common objections.

Build Your Clientele

Word of mouth and referrals are a great way to build your clientele. When those avenues seem to be tapped out it’s time to consider promoting your business in more creative ways. Brian Winch, an entrepreneur with a successful parking lot litter removal service, mentors others who look to build this type of business.

Step 4: Enjoy the Benefits of Owning a Parking Lot Litter Removal Business

Parking Lot Litter Removal Is a Low-Risk Venture

This business can be started up with very little investment. In fact, if all you have are ambition and an entrepreneurial spirit, you can launch a successful parking lot litter removal service. Not ready to jump into the deep end? Start the business as a side hustle and keep your nine-to-five job until you feel secure enough to go at it full force.

It’s Great for the Environment and for Your Health

Take pride in performing a green service that makes a positive impact on your local environment. You will also be guaranteed to walk a few miles a day. So wear your personal fitness tracker and see how many steps you take!

You Need No Special Skills or Education to Start a Parking Lot Litter Removal Business

Turning trash into cash is almost as easy as going for a walk in the park.

Ready to Get Started with Your Parking Lot Litter Removal Business?

For additional resources on launching and maintaining a successful parking lot litter removal business, check out this guide to America’s simplest business.

Also, for more great business ideas, be sure to browse our blog.