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As a residential cleaning contractor, you not only need to provide a good service, but you also need frequent communication with your client to ensure that both parties understand their responsibilities and that there are no misunderstandings.

Communicating with Your Residential Cleaning Clients is Key

Communicating with Your Residential Cleaning Clients is KeyCopyright 2006 The Janitorial StorePeople hire a residential cleaning service to make their lives easier. As a cleaning contractor, you not only need to provide a good service, but you also need frequent communication with your client to ensure that both parties understand their responsibilities and that there are no misunderstandings.Before taking on a new client, it is important to specify what services are included in their cleaning service. As you walk through the home with the client discussing the specifications list of what will be cleaned, be sure to ask plenty of clarifying questions. For example, "so you DON'T want us to dust the curio cabinet?"Give your client the written specifications list so they know what is covered in their routine cleaning. Your specifications list may also include the additional services you can provide such as carpet cleaning or window washing, the fees for those services, and how much advance notice you need before taking on any additional tasks.You may need to explain to your clients that your crews are scheduled to clean several homes on a particular day and therefore, any added services must be requested in advance. This not only ensures that your crew can spend the additional time needed to clean, but that they will have the right supplies for the job.Good communication is also important in the case of accidents, mishaps or broken items. Instruct your employees to leave a note whenever a problem or accident occurs, and to contact you immediately so you are aware of the situation. It is handy to have a pre-printed form that contains a check off list (broken item, stain that would not come out, cracked window, etc.) to leave at the home and contact information for your cleaning company.Your cleaning crew can also leave notes if they notice additional tasks that need to be done. Is it springtime and the windows need washing? Are the carpets looking soiled and need cleaning? This not only shows the client that you care about their home but can also lead to additional services you can provide and charge for.Cancelled appointments or missed appointments can cause problems if you don't communicate with your client about your policies. Outline your cancellation policy in your customer contract and discuss it with your customer so they are fully aware of your policy. Conversely, if your employees miss an appointment, you need to have a policy in place that will keep the customer happy - perhaps a discount on the next service.Don't let a simple misunderstanding of the services you provide escalate into losing a client. Keep open a good line of communication to help ensure your success. Make sure your crew leaves notes and check up with follow-up phone calls to keep your clients happy and your profits flowing!

Custom T-shirts and What Kind to Purchase

Custom T-shirts and What Kind to Purchase

Deciding on what kind of shirts to print on is sometimes the most important part of getting custom t-shirts done correctly. However most people are the least informed on this part of the process. So I thought I would try to educate people about this part of the decision making process. There are many different bands, fabrics, weights, finishes, styles to consider. T-shirts are as ubiquitous as any advertising forum available today. Brand loyalty is great but from my experience most people cant really tell the difference if two similar shirts are juxtaposed. I will try to inform you the factors that you should consider. When choosing a shirt I would ask the following questions. What kind of apparel do I want to get printed? 100% cotton, 50/50 blend, ringer tee, raglan tees, jerseys style, tank top, sweatshirts etc. Next is what color of garment? Not all colors are available to you depending on the style of shirts you pick, so be flexible. When deciding on color you are faced with pigment-dyed, tie dyed, whites, lights, & darks. As a rule of thumb whites are the cheapest, then lights, darks, and finally the especially colors get more expensive. This is just the beginning. Now here is a list of options to which ever type you have chosen. Sleeve length, , , or long sleeve. Color style: regular color, scope neck, v-neck. Tank tops: spegheggeti strap or regular tanks. Also inquire as to the size of the arm holes. They vary significantly from brand to brand. Consider your audience when deciding on the cut. You can choose between classic which most of fit into this category but also available are fitted and youth cut for children. Even more you can find most regular cut t-shirts up to 6xl but not in all colors. Lastly talls are also available to you. The more you deviate from the norm the higher the prices become. This is basic supply and demand. Most every manufacturer makes a white 100% cotton t-shirt so they fight harder for your business with price. If you choose 3xl, navy, tall, long sleeve with pocket the number of manufacturers making this product is reduced so the prices are higher. Simple economics 101!Now if you have selected sweatshirts to print. Here some extra choices to make. Hooded or crewneck, heavy weight or light weight, zip, full zip just to mention a few. All this being said remember my earlier comment about not being able to see much a difference when two like products are juxtaposed. Brand loyalty is great but for my money if I need buy a large quantity of t-shirts to print. I go with the brand that has the best price. Dont substitute a 50/50 5.6 ounce for a 100% cotton heavy weight to save a nickel but if you are purchasing 100 shirts and you can get brand A for 1.99 and Brand B is 2.49, buy wisely. Lastly if you really dont know what to pick look in your own closest and find the t-shirt that has been the best for you and chances are you can order the same brand. Good luck on all your custom apparel purchases.

Kicking Up Storage For The Home And Office Into Overdrive

Kicking Up Storage For The Home And Office Into Overdrive

Coming across storage shelving for the home is no walk in the park. If becoming organized is at the zenith of your list this year, there are multiple opportunities that are more than able to help you put all of your things where it needs to go.Adding shelving storage to your residence doesnt have to be tricky or expensive. And, when you add it tastefully, storage solutions for the business are also available. Getting organized starts with providing a way to organize.To help you, here are some storage shelving solutions that you can incorporate into your residence or business.Up There? Wondering how high on the walls you can add shelves? One of the most massive problems that individuals have with adding shelving units to their homes is finding a way to put them up and still have a fine looking unit.You should not add shelves that are beyond your reach. They will look out of the place as well. And, they should be installed straight, as a slight dip will show against the wall.Hang It There. Another option that works well is to hang a storage organizer. You can use these in closets in right about any size and shape.There are those that are excellent for storing shoes while others are perfect for storing clothing. Still, in the office setting, this is a great place to store files and paperwork. Most can be tailor made for your size needs.Depth Counts Too. When adding shelves to an area that will be needed to store a lot of things, think about adding a little extra depth to the shelves.This way, you can place neat storage containers on the shelves to hide all of the clutter yet keeping it organized at the same time. Make sure that if you put up deeper shelves, that the walls can support them and that you anchor them correctly.One of the top ways to get a great amount of shelving space that is stylish are wall storage units that span the entire wall. Unlike traditional book shelves, these are units of different sizes and shapes that fit from the ceiling to the floor and offer a see thru look to them.The dimensions can be varied and custom ordering them may be necessary, but this is a great way to get a good amount of storage from an entire wall while keeping the area looking stylish.Finding storage shelving solutions for your house means that youll need to invest a little time in throwing away the junk and cleaning up.And, it means taking accurate measurements as well. When you do add them to your house or office, you will adore the feeling of knowing where anything is and youll welcome guests in without worrying about the clutter.There's some great canvas storage bins available at http://www.storageshelvingsource.com/ as well as other storage solutions for the house and business.

10 Things you should know before buying a business in California

10 Things you should know before buying a business in California

The decision of buying a business is a very crucial one and should be made only after reviewing all the information available. A buying decision should be made only after all the doubts and uncertainties are removed and you are able to anticipate all of the obstacles that stand before you. There are some essential points to consider when considering the purchase of a California business.

Following are 10 important points, which if kept in mind, can help you as a business buyer to capitalize on the opportunities that present themselves before you.

  1. Purchase the assets and not the entity:
    Unless there are intangibles of the business for sale which are not transferrable and represent substantial value, attempt to buy the assets rather than the entity itself. This is important so that you are not exposed to any liabilities of the business before you acquired it and so that you receive an increased tax basis equal to the amount of consideration you pay rather than what the business may have paid for the asset long ago.

  2. Employ Professionals:
    In order to ensure that the financial and operational representations made to you by the seller are accurate and complete, it is imperative to hire a competent business broker, attorneys, or CPA to assist you with respect to your required due diligence. Furthermore, once you are committed to the purchase and obtain an acceptance of your Letter of Intent (see below), hire a lawyer familiar with business disposition and acquisitions to review the contracts and related documents.

  3. Submit an Offer to Purchase through a Letter of Intent:
    A letter of intent (LOI), typically non-binding, is a two or three page document between the buyer and seller of a business which details all of the material terms and conditions to which both parties would be willing to commit to. It is prudent to discover whether the parties are capable of achieving an agreement BEFORE employing the expensive services of professionals such as attorneys and CPAs, to conduct due diligence and prepare/review documents. Thus, if the parties can hammer out the key terms, the professionals can later focus on consummating the transaction.

  4. Accounts Receivables:
    Often times a key asset of any business is its accounts receivable and there may be a substantial balance outstanding at the time of closing. It is not recommended that you purchase the accounts receivable as an asset of the business (in fact, is not typical for the California business buyer to acquire any cash or cash equivalent items in an asset sale); however, you ought to attempt to collect the accounts receivable on behalf of the business seller in order to remain in contact with the customers after the sale and ensure a smooth transition. If you do purchase the accounts receivable you should do so at a discount, the amount of which is dependent on the sellers past allowance for bad debts, with a right of offset against monies due the seller for uncollectible accounts.

  5. Discover the facts and circumstances surrounding the lease:
    The continued success of the business is often entirely dependent on the existing location of the business (to ensure the maintenance of the existing customer base or the retention of key employees). Accordingly, you must determine the remaining term of the existing lease and if not substantial, confirm with the landlord whether you can obtain a new lease on terms and conditions similar to the past before you buy a California business. Learn whether the seller has a security deposit with the landlord, and if so, that the landlord is so notified in writing.

  6. Determine whether there are any prepaid expenses:
    As mentioned above with respect to the security deposit relating to the lease, prepaid expenses and deposits are usually not included as part of the assets purchased from the California business seller. Therefore, it may be advantageous to define the assets of the business quite broadly at the time you prepare your LOI. If these items are not included, then make sure you get a schedule of closing adjustments from the seller and escrow so that you can budget accordingly -- since these items are prorated through closing and tacked onto the closing costs.

  7. Pay attention to Bulk Sales Laws and Sales and Payroll Tax Obligations:
    Many states require that the buyer (or escrow agent) of a business publish notification of the business sale to creditors in order to receive the business assets free and clear of creditor claims. Similarly, the law in many states allow for the taxing agency to pursue the business assets of the seller for any unpaid taxes unless the seller obtains a tax clearance certificate.

  8. Obtain Seller Indemnity and Right of Offset:
    No matter how diligent you are in reviewing the business sellers records and all available information, there is still a possibility that you will be presented with a claim against the California business which arose before the closing. In that case, it is important to obtain an indemnity provision from the seller of the California Business in the Asset Purchase Agreement. Moreover, if the seller is financing any portion of the transaction, a right of offset will provide the buyer with the right to offset any such claims against monies due the seller.

  9. Negotiate for a Management Assistance Period:
    In order to ensure a smooth and orderly transition of the business following the closing, negotiate for the business seller to remain available after the sale to provide short term training and necessary introductions to customers, clients and vendors. In addition, make sure the business seller remains available thereafter for in person or telephone consultations for issues and matter overlooked during the training period.

  10. Familiarize yourself with Sellers Employees:
    Before closing escrow and removing the due diligence contingency, meet with each of the business sellers key employees to ensure they have a desire to remain with the business after the sale. Thus, you can include a provision in the Asset Purchase Agreement that as part of your due diligence, you are entitled to announce the proposed California business sale to all employees of the business within 48 hours of the closing to meet and interview the employees to determine, to your reasonable satisfaction, that the employees are willing to continue their employment with the business.

Many times buyers get confused and intimidated by all the procedure involved in the acquisition of a business, especially those who are venturing into the market for the very first time. Hence it is very important that you obtain proper guidance and before investing your valuable money.

About the Author
Quantum Business Solutions Network is a full service Southern California business consulting and licensed brokerage firm. Quantum Business Solutions Network is comprised of professionals that combine valuation, financial, marketing, legal, accounting, tax and transactional structuring expertise to initiate, execute and consummate business acquisition and divestiture transactions.

Copyright
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Don't Eliminate the Middle Man Add One!

Today, there are situations when we actually add a middle person instead of eliminating one for increased service efficiency. If its cost-effective and demand is high, then proper market positioning will make it a worthwhile endeavor. For example, my sister just informed me of a food delivery service in New Mexico that will let you choose one out of many different food outlets (all types of ethnic/fast food)- and then guarantees delivery within a specific time period. This not only gives the customer assurance of reliability, but more choices for dining take out style. In other areas of industry, the same idea holds true. There are electrical suppliers that no longer manufacture the product of electricity, but now are involved only in the delivery process of electricity to the customers. Because of market fluctuations, the new delivery supplier will utilize many other different energy suppliers to get the product of electricity to the customer efficiently and at the best market price. Again, adding the middle man seems to benefit all around. In relating this theory to restaurants, it is the food runner that has become popular, especially in the larger dining establishments that rarely existed years ago. Food runners are employees who only work the rush hours of the dining room- only running food back and forth from the kitchen to the tables with light dining room table interaction (condiments, fresh pepper etc.). It is a 2-4 hr. shift, depending on how long the dining rush lasts. Before large restaurants existed, the waiter would complete the process of order taking and delivering of the food. Today, the food runner can be implemented (additional middle man) relieving the waiter of this time consuming and sometimes painstaking process. The waiter must share a percentage of his tip with the runner, but in return his job is eased because the food is delivered for him- allowing extra time to work more tables and up sell to customers thereby increasing sales. Though, it does remain the waiters responsibility to check the table for additional diner needs-- either while the food is being placed by the runner or shortly thereafter. The tip-out to the runner is usually 10-15% depending on the service system, but well worth it if waiter sales can increase by 20-30 %. The main point is the food runner addition improves delivery service efficiency while being cost-effective (if the sales increase outweighs the payroll increase). Properly integrating employees into the dining room with exact middle man connections always makes for smooth service flow. Its not a matter of just blindly throwing extra employees at a service problem, but organizing the best system possible with the minimal amount of labor. Adding the middle man can sometimes streamline operations in such way that it becomes irresistible and impossible to ignore. Always, the demand arises when delivery routes of a service system become overloaded.

Summary

As a residential cleaning contractor, you not only need to provide a good service, but you also need frequent communication with your client to ensure that both parties understand their responsibilities and that there are no misunderstandings.