Author Topic: What do you think about a car wash business?  (Read 2715 times)

Bearded Man

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What do you think about a car wash business?
« on: March 08, 2015, 06:54:31 PM »
They seem attractive because they don't require employees in most cases, and are low maintenance and relatively passive income opportunities. I'm considering buying one (after carefully reviewing the books with a CPA) to diversify my rental income, full time job income, and other investment income.

Tips on valuating a business such as this would be appreciated.


lakemom

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Re: What do you think about a car wash business?
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2015, 06:12:54 AM »
They CAN be a great investment if location, location, location is a good one.  Also find out age....the older it is the more frequent maintenance is going to become.  Finally, find out why the current owner is selling....these can be quite the cash cow when located and managed right (my husband knew someone years ago who owned a chain of these) and most people don't want to let them go.  So be careful you aren't buying a dying location/business.

sabertooth3

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Re: What do you think about a car wash business?
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2015, 06:27:31 AM »
OK Heisenberg... what's REALLY going on here?

JLee

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Re: What do you think about a car wash business?
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2015, 07:29:27 AM »
OK Heisenberg... what's REALLY going on here?
:D

FarmerPete

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Re: What do you think about a car wash business?
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2015, 07:56:25 AM »
Is this an automated tunnel car wash, or a coin operated one?  I worked at a non-automated car wash in high school.  I'm having a hard time imagining how it would work without workers.  During the winter, it was quite regular to have 1 inch of mud coating the entire floor of the car wash near the scrubbers.  It was a lot of work to clean that stuff up after closing.  I'd assume that your volume would be a lot slower, but still, there is going to be regular maintenance.  It also wasn't that uncommon for people to claim the was damaged their car.  I'm not sure how those claims were resolved.  The car was is still there, 15 years later.  I quit after getting held up at gun point, and it is in a pretty nice side of town.  Certainly a low crime area.

Also, my experience was that the car wash tended to attract the near bottom of the food chain workers.  Very low supervision and no required drug checks for employment also helped foster bad employees. 

Cpa Cat

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Re: What do you think about a car wash business?
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2015, 08:05:11 AM »
My FIL has a car wash. On high-traffic days, he gets out there for a few hours at a time to "muck it out." Having never joined him, I have no idea what that means. But I guess it gets clogged.

This often occurs on holidays - because I guess people get bored and go wash their cars.

libertarian4321

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Re: What do you think about a car wash business?
« Reply #6 on: March 12, 2015, 05:12:16 AM »
OK Heisenberg... what's REALLY going on here?

Yup, looks like someone is trying to find a way to launder meth profits. :)

Bearded Man

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Re: What do you think about a car wash business?
« Reply #7 on: March 13, 2015, 08:19:09 AM »
I must have missed that episode. Anyways, yeah, buying any business seems very risky to me. Real estate is pretty low risk IMO. Renting out a house is pretty easy, it's not like you're going to get ripped off buying houses to rent them out, unlike buying Billy Bob's pressure washing business.