car-wash-owning
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Slingblade

Greg Pack

About:

I've been in the carwash business since 1992. I've owned ten different self serve washes. Seven of those were existing sites purchased from others. I built three from the ground up, two 5/1s and one 4/2. At the current time I own one 4/2 and one 5/2 in the Birmingham, Alabama metro area. All autos are touchless IBAs. I've also had a brief stint rehabbing a small conveyor but sold out my half of the partnership within a year. Partnerships suck! Overall I'm a little bearish on the SS business. Total development costs have gotten too high and ground-ups can be hard to pencil out. But a good high volume IBA/SS still offers a great lifestyle. I'm living the dream...... TIPS FOR NEW INVESTORS: I caution all new investors about this business in general. Not only is the car wash business "discretionary" and one of the first to suffer during tough economic times, but we also have to deal with the weather God gives us. Beware of what equipment salesmen tell you and the proformas they provide. Lop at least 30% of their estimates as a safety factor. Get plenty of references from their customers, visit their sites, and ask them if the proformas they were provided were accurate. Do not underestimate the impact existing competition can affect your revenue. Despite what some salesmen may tell you The pie IS only so big and there is no guarantee you will come in and dominate the market. It's money well spent to hire a fee-based consultant. Pay down your note on a 15 year schedule. If you can't make the numbers work on a 15 year schedule re-consider the viability of your project. Finally beware the express wash. They are wreaking havoc on the SS/IBA markets in the south. They are frequently building in smaller markets here. They often don't succeed, but the collateral damage they do to the market can drag others down with them.

Location:

35242, Birmingham, AL

Industry information:

  • Job: Existing Operator
  • Employer:
  • Industry associations:
    • Southeastern Carwash Association
    • International Carwash Association

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