If you are considering purchasing a car wash, the best place to start is with a Business Plan. It is ideal to sit down and write a page or two about why you want to own a car wash, how you intend to operate it and to prepare an exit strategy. Please contact me by email if you would like me to email you a business plan template.
The next step is to meet with a commercial lender or commercial mortgage broker. Meeting wiith someone at your own bank is usually a good place to start. Commercial financing is very different from a residential mortgage; interest rates are higher and the amortization period is shorter which make your monthly payments higher. You will also require a significant amount of cash down - it is NOT possible to purchase a commercial property with 5 or 10% down like you can when purchasing a home. If you are purchasing your first car wash, you will generally require 30-40% cash down (note: home or other equity is not the same as cash).
Once you have an idea of how much you want to spend and how much you can afford to spend, it is time to start shopping for your new car wash!
Many buyers ask me what it`s like to own a car wash or gas station. The best way to know is to get a job working in a car wash or gas station - that will give you a great feel for this type of business.
WHY BUY A CAR WASH?
The main reason why people are attracted to owing a car wash business are:
* largely a cash-only business,
* generally recession proof,
* minimal and unskilled labour requirements,
* automation can allow for remote owner-operation,
* no threat of franchising to affect your business - location is key,
* good investment and excellent retirement opportunity.