64. What To Do When Your Laundromat is Destroyed 3 Weeks After You Buy It with Shawn Dandridge

Shawn Dandridge, former White House employee and Congressman candidate, shares his laundromat experience with us. His laundromat was destroyed shortly after he purchased it and Shawn shares the difficulties of dealing with that and what it’s taken to claw his way back.

In this episode, Shawn and Jordan talk about:

  • The difficulty of running a laundry pick-up and delivery without a laundromat
  • Rundown laundromats
  • What to look for in a laundromat to buy
  • Grand opening promotions
  • Community events in your laundromat
  • Tips to buy your first laundromat
  • Resources to help you succeed in your laundromat business

And a lot more!

Watch The Podcast Here

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Episode Transcript

hey what’s up guys it’s jordan with the
laundromat resource
podcast this is show 64.
and i’m pumped you’re here today because
today we’re talking with sean
dandridge and this was an incredible
conversation i mean
this guy went from basically i mean
being the leader of the free world to
owning a laundromat
uh and tells you the story of how he got
there is really really fascinating
he had a lot of really great stuff to
share and uh
his process has been insane and i think
you’re really going to enjoy it
get a lot out of it cannot wait for you
to meet him
and in fact i think it’s going to spawn
a new maybe
short series podcast uh talking about
his experience in politics because i
just found that super fascinating we
might actually
get together and uh talk about his story
what that was like not here on this
podcast uh but stay tuned just in case
you’re interested
after you listen to this podcast and i
think you might be
she’s a really really fascinating guy
okay well
uh we’ll get to sean here in a second
but real quick i wanted to let you know
um our sponsor here for this episode is
atmosphere tv you’ll hear about that in
a second
but i just want to let you know that
mike kelly from atmosphere tv who’s a
previous podcast guest
he and i are going to be doing a webinar
about atmosphere tv what it can do for
your business how it really
uh can improve your business and how he
can do it all with no
upfront cost from you um and it’s
incredible i love love love atmosphere
tv if you’re not using it
and you own a laundromat or multiple
laundromats you should be using it
so come check out this webinar if you’re
interested in hearing a little bit more
about atmosphere tv and not only that
but we’re going to talk about
atmosphere of your laundromat in general
and how to create a good
positive vibe in your laundromat and how
that can translate to more and better
business for you so make sure you check
that out
you can register at uh laundromat
resource dot com
on the top of the home page you can go
to londonmyresource.com events
register for it there so make sure you
join us it’s gonna be a really good time
and uh yeah i mean just just be there
especially if you don’t have atmosphere
tv yet come here
what it’s all about and he’s got a
a great offer for you where basically
you can get one for free
so we’ll talk about that at the webinar
but come join us and check it out see
what it’s all about
okay i gotta take one second to stop
and say a huge thank you to stephen
clayton who sent me
a shirt if you’re on youtube you can see
says peace love and the laundromat
resource and the laundromat resource
is in there it’s awesome uh huge shout
out and thank you to stephen clayton for
and a big shout out to the anonymous
who sent me the rage against the washing
t-shirt love it love it love it you’ll
see that one in a future episode i’m
a lot of fun so anyways make sure you
are jumping on those forums throughout
the week there’s a lot of awesome
conversations happening over there all
the time
go introduce yourself in the
introductions forms laundry source dot
forums go introduce yourself over there
let people know who you are
where you’re at in your laundromat
journey where you’re located in the
and who knows you might make a new best
friend over there i hear that’s
all the time on the introductions forum
and then make sure you go jump in on the
conversations on the other forums as
well the laundromat specific one the
real estate one the financing one the
machine repair forum
we got it all happening over there so go
jump in be a part of
the conversation meet each other and i
say it all the time but i truly believe
it we are all
going to succeed faster and hit higher
when we are working together helping
each other out
all right so that’s on the forums i mean
there’s a lot lot going on
make sure you’re checking us out on
youtube if you haven’t done that yet
check out the blog i’ve been blogging
every single week
and there are new blog posts coming out
every single thursday so make sure you
those out those are sponsored by sense
make sure you check out the webinar with
sense and i mean there’s just a lot of
awesome stuff happening right now
so much good stuff in fact that i
when this happens man my brain goes nuts
and i just come up with more and more
um and so there’s more and more coming
up on the horizon
two final things i wanted to let you
know about very very
big and monumentous in my
career i don’t know uh is number one
this week on the laundromat millionaire
i finally have made it in my life and i
am on
the laundromat millionaire podcast this
week so make sure you check
that out you can just search laundromat
millionaire uh in any podcast platform
go to the laundromat millionaire youtube
channel i’m sure you can find it there
uh check out londonmillionaire.com it’s
all over if you search along about
millionaire you will find it’s coming
out this
week and also speaking of dave and the
laundromat millionaire men’s
he and i are doing a live q a together
on july 28th which is a wednesday
uh four o’clock pacific time seven
o’clock eastern
this month it’s on my youtube channel so
make sure you go subscribe over there
and jump in on the live q a
there and every other month
we switch offs we do a live q a every
month and this month happens to be on my
channel make sure you go to his 2 and
subscribe because we’ll do
next months on his channel so make sure
you’re checking
those two things out my featured podcast
on the ladder met millionaire podcast
super pumped to be on that and our live
q a but with me
and dave the lottery millionaire mint
and so stay tuned for all that
but without further ado let’s skip the
ad read
come to the atmosphere webinar instead
hear what it’s all about come ask your
and maybe just come give it a try try it
out so that’s happening on
thursday that is july
i don’t know what is it the 22nd
something like that 20 21 yeah july 22nd
4 o’clock pacific time 7 o’clock eastern
come check that out we’ll skip the out
read just come to the webinar
talk with mike talk with me we’re going
to have a good time and you hear all
about atmosphere tv
and also we’ll talk about atmosphere in
your laundromat
all right without further ado i don’t
think i had anything else let’s jump
into it with sean dandridge because this
is an
awesome interview i know you’re gonna
love it i know i loved it
super cool guy lots to offer let’s do it
sean thank you for coming on the show
how are you doing
i’m doing good my man how are you i am
awesome i’m awesome i’m really excited
you know i
we chatted just a little bit and you
promised some good stories so i’m really
excited i always love a good story
uh really excited to hear about your
experience with laundromats
and to hear how you’re you’re like a
like somewhere around a year in is that
right well
actually not even a year i bought my
in january 31st of this year so
literally about seven months or so in so
not even a full year yet
all right good well you know what if
there’s anything that i know it’s that
seven months in laundromats you can
quite a bit of experience in this that
seems like a lifetime
yeah it can it can seem like a lifetime
you’re right so
but before we get into that story and
all of that i want to hear a little bit
about you can you give us a little bit
of backstory
about you and who you are yeah
absolutely so
like you said my name is sean dandridge
i’m currently in the dallas fort worth
metro area arlington to be exact
was in the army for about ten and a half
deployed to iraq a couple of times i got
a bronze star one of those deployments
right worked at the white house for
about five and a half years so i was a
white house aide to
president obama uh my background is i.t
so i did worldwide communications for
the president the vice president
cabinet members so
okay well hold on time out i didn’t know
it was an interesting guy
i just got super nervous i didn’t know
you were such a big deal here
oh man all right well well i don’t know
well can you
before i mean listen you can’t just drop
something like that we got to talk about
that for just a minute can you tell us
maybe your experience uh working in the
white house and
thank you for your service by the way
and you know we really appreciate
welcome not a problem
that that does for us and in our country
uh but tell us a little bit about
working in the white house what was that
um it’s a very interesting place it
never slows down
it never stops there’s always something
to do and
always somewhere to be like i said i did
communication so
the team or the organization i was with
is actually called
waka it stands for white house
communications agency so
basically we travel all over the world
in support of the president and the vice
and cabinet members i actually worked at
camp david so
when the president would be on air force
one or anywhere away from the white
house we
were responsible for ensuring that he
could connect with world leaders
and the command and control of the
united states wherever he may be
wow okay okay man i mean you’re just
making me more nervous
that’s pretty cool i mean essentially
what you’re telling me
is that our country stops to function if
it’s not for
what you did during those years that’s
what i’m hearing
there’s no communication we’re done for
if it wasn’t for you
if if the president cannot talk we’re in
trouble so
i would say that’s an accurate statement
so yeah so i mean
yeah basically you ran the country
the quasi-type of way yeah i’m just
saying it out right you ran the country
and you’re on the podcast i love it uh
well that is
crazy okay so i mean this
begs the question in my mind then uh how
do you get from the white house to
laundromats how does this happen
so so um i got out of the army in
april of 2016 moved to dallas um
for years my wife always had this uh
this thing with
like laundry it’s like oh man we need to
start this laundry business you know we
can pick up people’s clothes
and wash them and do all this stuff i
was like okay you’re
kind of crazy i don’t want to do that
did she not know that you were
basically the most powerful person in
the world at the time
i don’t think she cared she still
doesn’t care
sounds like my wife i don’t know okay so
of course i didn’t know about the whole
you know the technical terms to pick up
in delivery
and the wash and fold i was just like
okay she wants to go to people’s houses
and pick up their clothes and watch them
that sounds
crazy there’s no money in that so
we actually so after years and years and
i finally relented and i was like okay
we’ll try so we did it and we
actually did very well but what we found
out is
we we contracted with a laundry local
but what we found out is if you don’t
control the entire supply chain of
actually owning the laundromat and
owning the processes
it’s never going to work so it started
out pretty good but
as we got bigger and grew it very
failed because we didn’t control the
critical piece of the laundromat
can can you tell me a little bit about
because i get this question a lot is can
you start
without a laundromat doing exactly what
you guys did can you tell me some of the
struggles you guys had
um doing it that way i
i would say the the easiest thing was
actually finding a laundromat to
do it i mean we have several laundromats
and they were already doing it so it was
just kind of like
hey can you give me a corporate rate
type deal if i bring in x amount of
pounds every week
but the biggest part was finding
reliable workers to actually
pick up the laundry and drive that was
the biggest thing and we were scaling so
quickly that
we just could not find reliable people
then my wife started law school and i
had a full-time job so it quickly went
bust just because of logistical things
yeah that makes a lot of sense and i
mean i think that that
those can be difficulties whether you
have a location or not especially right
now when there’s
you know we’re in middle of 2021 and you
know it’s
labor is tough right now kind of all
across the board not just in our
industry but across the board so
yeah but i also think the biggest thing
is obviously we knew
nothing about the laundry industry so we
were kind of
learning on the job and learning with
our own money so that was
that was a very eye-opening experience
as well
yeah so would you would you suggest
people get into the business that way or
would you say hey
you know what you’re way better off
saving your money and buying a
and doing it that way like i said i
i think you’re at a significant
disadvantage if you don’t own the
so i personally would not recommend
go that route to get into the business
because you’re kind of at
someone’s someone’s mercy along the
chain of the process other than
you know having the website and having a
phone number where to pick up laundry
yeah other than that you don’t control
anything else
right yeah yeah i know that that is
tough we had a guy mark vlaskamp who’s
actually also in texas
who him and his buddies started that
same way
and there they’ve scaled crazy amounts
and you know last i talked to him they
were looking for a location for the
exact same reasons because it just
didn’t make sense anymore for them to do
it the way they were doing it so
can be difficult for sure okay so
your wife pestered you and then promptly
started law school
and that fizzled at that point did you
guys stop doing the business or did you
continue what happened
um we continued for a while uh i also
have a full-time job i’m
uh i t manager at a publicly traded
company so okay
i really couldn’t do both she couldn’t
do both so it kind of slowly
fizzled out from there as we both got a
little busier but
always in the back of our minds we were
like man that was a good idea
we just need to control more of the
process so
that kind of after i relented and i saw
that okay this can make some money the
laundry business is
okay i just always kind of kept my eye
out for laundromats and
you know signed up for business mailing
lists from different brokers and stuff
and that’s kind of how i got into owning
a laundromat
just so happens one day i got an email
for laundromat
about 45 minutes from me it was a
complete dump
the guy just wanted to get out i went
over there and i was like okay
i’m gonna do this so that’s how i bought
my first launcher man
holy cow okay so you you had just talked
to a bunch of brokers and eventually
somebody brought you a deal that was
close enough and
made sense enough for you to pull the
trigger is that how you feel well
well this broker i got an email from a
broker i
honestly didn’t know the broker never
talked to him don’t even know how he got
my email address but
it was a laundromat it like i said it
was it was run down
it had about eight machines working in
and i was like okay i think this is what
i’ve been waiting for
so i’m just gonna do it without even
knowing much about
laundromats in general i just decided
okay this is what i’m gonna try
okay so
all right but i mean here’s what you
just here’s what i just heard you say
is this laundromat was run down it had
barely eight machines working and i said
this is what i’ve been waiting for and
what i’ve been looking for
what was it about this place that was
falling apart that was what you were
looking for
what made you say oh yes this is the one
when i got there when i first pulled up
i immediately turned across the street
and there was
an entire apartment complex i drove down
the street
there was three more apartment complexes
and a gentleman on the outside of the
decided or told me he’s like hey you
know none of those
apartments have washer and dryer hookups
so at that point i was like i know i can
make this work whatever’s going on
inside i’m sure i can fix it i can make
that work
if there’s 500 apartment units within
a walking radius and they have no no
washer and dryer hookups
so that was kind of my determining
factor without even
delving much into anything else
yeah good uh okay so
what was the process like buying it was
it easy did you just kind of be like
okay we’ll take it and that was it or
did you
go through a process of evaluating it
at all or did you not bother because it
was so run down
well i did do some due diligence the
guys they were kind of selling it
i guess ass is is what they called it so
they had some numbers i wouldn’t say the
books were very good
because when i actually took ownership
and got in there the first week was
significantly lower than the average
week of the numbers they gave me which
which i kind of expected yeah because
i’ve done real estate and other things
um the numbers are never what the owners
say they’re always much more rosier than
what they actually are so
i negotiated on price and discounts for
that because i just
knew just based on how i looked i i knew
you weren’t making the amount of money
that you’re telling me
so so did you negotiate after you had
made your initial offer or
when in the process did you negotiate
that um it was
pretty much at the beginning when i saw
it they told me what they wanted
and i just straight up told the guy i’m
not giving you that i’ll give you
probably 60 of this
because mainly 30 for potential and 30
for the equipment that’s there that’s
actually functioning
right so okay
so you negotiated this deal got it at
deep discount what i mean what did you
did you
replace equipment did you put some new
stuff in use stuff
leave it as is what’d you do so um
the first day i got there they they had
like a
i honestly still to this day don’t know
what they’re trying to do maybe create
like a little grocery store on the side
or something
so it the place was filthy like i’ve
never seen a place more dirty in my
entire life
so the first thing i did was hire a
cleaning company to come in there and
like just
get all of the years of lent and dust
all of that stuff yeah just everything
and even just by doing that people are
like whoa
did you do anything different in here it
looks different
i was like no all i did was clean yeah
yeah i haven’t done anything else i
promise you um
after that like i said it was only seven
or eight machines working and
they were they just needed a good
cleaning and but
the interesting thing that i saw was
even though the place was run down it
only had seven or eight machines
people would still come in there and do
laundry and i’m like i would never come
in here and do my laundry
but that just tells me that there’s a
significant need
for a laundromat in this area even
though there’s
a huge one up the street and another one
a couple of miles away this
in this area right here this is the only
laundromat that people can actually walk
to if they don’t have a car
from these apartment buildings right so
that that really caught my attention and
piqued my interest
yeah okay so i mean does it still only
have eight working machines in it or
now we’re closed um i decided i don’t
know if you’re familiar but in texas we
had this major storm in february where
they turned off all the power
and all that stuff so during that time i
pipes that burst in all types of things
the plumbing was already like crap it
one of the workers when i walked in
there they actually told me hey you know
when you came in here and
did an inspection with the plumbers the
guys turned off the water so you
wouldn’t see the leak
so the previous owners but
but when i immediately when you walk in
you see the entire floor is wet behind
the washer so you know there’s a leak
somewhere even though water isn’t
so everything was rusted out leaking
so the storm was kind of a blessing in
disguise because it kind of solidified
you know in order to make this work i
need to get in here i need to rip all
this stuff out
i need to redo the plumbing i need to
you know make it look nicer build a new
office for
wash and fold service there was really
no office it was kind of like a run down
closet that they had
so the building is i completely gutted
the building
reframed it um put new ac units in there
the place hadn’t had ac for like 15
years the lady told me that worked there
so um got new equipment uh went through
uh laundry
lux electrolux for new equipment so
all new equipment and that’s kind of
where i’m at now just
going through a i wouldn’t say a full
remodel but
a pretty big remodel to get things
up and the way working should be
sounds like it i mean you’re you’re
you’re trying to rival
ross dodds here who came on the podcast
in his
his laundromat burned down after i think
five days of owning it or something like
that wow
but i mean having i mean your pipes
basically burst a month after you bought
it right
three weeks three weeks oh gosh
well if it makes you feel any better
ross now has like a thousand
laundromats and you know he and i are
laundromats together and stuff yeah i’m
a big fan of ross i’m
on the laundromat owner’s message boards
i always love his stories about his
wrecked vehicles so i am definitely a
ross fan and i am looking forward to
meeting him one day
oh yeah he would love it he listens to
every episode so he’ll hear this and i’m
sure he’ll reach out
um that’s good uh that’s if you haven’t
i’ll put the
in case you listen to this and you want
to hear ross’s story which is pretty
crazy it’s probably time to have him
back on because he’s
he’s doing a lot of stuff right now but
um i’ll put the link to his
episode just in case anybody wants to
hear it in the show notes
or if you’re on youtube down below in
the description it’s worth a listen for
um okay so you bought a lot okay
man i had no idea like he bought a
laundromat three weeks later the pipes
burst he had to shut it down and
basically have to do a get
job is that a good summary
yes it’s a great summary so what’s your
what’s your timeline looking like in
terms of
reopening now but before we
get to that question i want to move back
a little bit let’s go back um this kind
of um
talks about your episode with the
distributors i have
so once i bought the laundromat and i
was reaching out to these distributors
my local distributors here uh the sales
guys they were okay
i had one he was um dexter guy
you know they just about every
laundromat in dallas for whatever reason
has dexter’s machine so they
they’ve like cornered the market here
reached out to this guy he was going to
give me a quote
never heard back from the guy and i was
looking to spend
you know hundreds of thousands of
dollars the guy wouldn’t even give me a
i’m like you don’t want to make any
so that guy never heard back from our
local dexter distributor in dallas
shouldn’t be too hard to figure out who
he is there’s only one
um then i went over to um
hips my local hips distributor heard
back from him but
the financing guy there was like
it was weird it seemed like he was much
more interested
in how i made my money even though i
have a full-time job
to be quite honest he was talking to me
like i ran like a drug cartel like i was
like pablo escobar or something
i’m like i’m showing you all this proof
that uh this is how i make this
do money know who i am i ruled the world
at one point in time
that didn’t click with him yeah so but
then i reached out to uh
laundry luxe and um texas coin laundry
they were fantastic within the week of
reaching out to them
i had a quote a week and a half later i
had an approval for all the equipment
and it was on order so that was probably
the easiest
process i’ve dealt with with a laundry
distributor in
seven months so it was definitely night
and day
between dealing with the other two yeah
and funny enough when i got the approval
from laundry lux the same day i got an
approval from hips
that’s how that works yeah yeah of
course they didn’t get a call back
i know still well one of the problems
with the distributorship model right now
that i didn’t even touch on in that
episode that you referred to which i’ll
put a link to if you’re
um interested in hearing that one
but is the
the sales people are assigned
territories basically
and they can’t sell outside of their
territory so if you’re stuck in a
location with a bad
rep like you know a rep who won’t get
back to you or somebody who
is obviously just in it for a quick buck
and is not there to help you long haul
um you know then basically you either
gotta suffer with that or you have to go
to a different brand because you can’t
use a different rep and like you said in
dallas there’s one
rep so if that guy doesn’t get back to
you you can’t get that brand of
right and that’s a huge huge issue not
just for owners because we get stuck
with bad ones
if we’re unfortunate enough to live in
an area where there’s a bad rep but it’s
kind of unfortunate for the good reps
out there because there’s there are a
lot of really great reps i’ve had a few
of them on the podcast
who i would consider great you know jd
dixon would be one michael ambrose would
be i mean there’s some great reps out
um but they can’t help you if you don’t
inside the territory that they’ve been
um and that’s that’s a pretty big
problem because if you had wanted dexter
you’d have just been out of luck right
that’s such a broken system and
it is not sustainable over the long term
especially in this hyper-inflated
technology space that we currently live
in i don’t see how that is
even sustainable for an additional 10
years personally
i just think that’s a dying model yeah
yeah i think you’re probably right um
so yeah thank you for thank you for
sharing all that that experience because
i get that
question a lot too about how do you you
know how do you go about
finding distributors or choosing one
sometimes it’s just the only one who
will respond to you
um if that’s if that’s the case
uh but okay so all right so going back
to your rebuild
what is your timeline looking like so
um the equipment should be here within
the next couple of weeks and
hopefully i’ll be open by the beginning
of september
okay awesome are you going to be doing
or maybe you haven’t thought about this
yet but
just out of curiosity are you going to
be doing any kind of
grand opening or any kind of promotions
kind of try to win some customers over
when you when you open up
yeah i’ve um kicked around a couple of
things and the thing that i’m kind of
stuck on that’s doing
one dollar washes for two weeks or a
i think if someone sees a big banner out
there that says
one dollar washes no matter what machine
you pick that
it’s kind of hard to turn that down yeah
yeah that is attractive especially you
know when you have all those apartments
right there right and our favorite guy
ross i
uh posted this uh a similar question
what should i do for a grand opening he
responded um
so i’m also getting the the laundry lux
and he responded that maybe i should do
like a match
whatever you load on the app do a match
so thinking about doing that too i
never thought about that so that’s a
good idea
yeah you know what luke williford who
was show 10 which is another
classic episode if you know if anybody
hasn’t listened to that that’s another
i’ll put a link to it um but he does
um he does a match for i think he does
it for the first
month i want to say um where however
much people load onto there they’ll
they’ll match it and it’s a huge success
for him i mean they’re pushing 40
laundromats now so
you know he and his brother lee know
their stuff and they know what they’re
doing and
you know not a bad not a bad
team right there to model after so um
yeah so that’s that’s a good good one so
but i mean
i think the dollar wash is equally um
attractive you know for people um
you just yeah that in i’m just thinking
mainly you know
you’re gonna no matter if someone shows
up or not you’re still gonna have the
same fixed cost so
get them in the door and hey look what
we got here it’s not the same laundromat
that you’re used to for the past 20
years look it’s it’s actually clean and
nice in here now
yeah that’s kind of what i’m going for
and there’s no
there’s no machine you know lottery
where you put your money in and you’re
not sure if it’s going to work or not
you know the lights aren’t occurring i
forgot to tell you that they had the
first day i walked
in a cat follows me in and
the attendant’s like hey we have a
there it is like what if you like hear
customers like oh my god there’s a cat
in here she’s like oh
this is the mascot i’m like you can’t do
that anymore
there’s no more mascot that ends today
that’s pretty funny so yeah when i was a
just related slideshow when i was
retooling my first store
um i had come in and you know in the
night time after they had
ended for the day and i was cleaning up
or whatever
and i kept hearing a sound
and a cat a little kitten had kind of
worked its way
into one of the bulkheads somehow and
was mowing
in there so we also had a little mascot
for a night that’s funny what you can
find in life
yeah it’s very interesting yeah i’m
i mean i think we we need to have maybe
we should start a thread on that
facebook group the laundromat owners
facebook group which i’ll link to by the
way that group because it’s a good one
if you haven’t um joined it yet you
tell ross i said to let you in and he’ll
let you in
but we should start a thread on the
craziest animal
that people have found in their life i
would be very
curious to see what some people have
come across
oh yeah me too i you know you gotta know
that like some of these rural places
probably have like goats or i don’t know
cats yeah yeah exactly
some kangaroo down under i don’t know
man like there’s got to be some stories
out there so
maybe we’ll start that one uh okay good
let’s go back you you bought your
three weeks later you guys had a big
storm blew everything out you basically
hey i gotta retool this whole thing so
what’s that process been like
so far for you in terms of you know
redoing all the plumbing how did you
just out of curiosity how did you find
somebody to come do
plumbing so i
so like i said when i first bought it i
had all these leaks so i
had a plumber that i’ve been working
with he was fixing leaks and stuff for
and then i just copper was totally
most of the outlets didn’t work
it was just they were like hey even
before the storm they’re like hey
you need to replace all of this because
this is not gonna work you’re just gonna
continuously have leaks and
all this stuff so i was already thinking
about it before the storm but the storm
just kind of
you know sped up my process because it
broke everything
so so i just facebook groups people i
knew i
had all these plumbers come out and of
course none of them had ever dealt with
a laundromat so they’re kind of like
uh i’m like can you just copy what’s
just make it new
so kind of started out that way and
but i end up going with a guy that
actually did some work for me in my
house he owns a construction company
because the storm like flooded the first
floor of my house
so the guy came in and did all the towel
in my house and
i was like okay if you could do this i
got another project for you
come meet me over here one day so
had him come out there he looked around
he’s like okay i can do this he
he’s also in real estate investing so
he’s familiar with like you know fix and
type of thing so so he’s the guy that i
contracted to do that and
they got the plumbing done um
and so far so good it’s just uh they
finished the framing yesterday so
it’s slowly coming back together it’s
looking like a laundromat again
instead of uh empty space with
absolutely nothing in it and busted
yeah yeah well it’s funny because
you know it takes a long time for all
that work and then it kind of just comes
fast once all the infrastructure is back
in place and
um yeah i mean it’s similar to like a
flip where
right you know you you’re doing all
these things that no one will ever see
and that’s what takes a lot of time and
then you know once you’re kind of
putting the finishing touches on that
stuff can go fast
and i know there’s been a backlog of the
machines too
you know they’ve they’re you know you’ve
had to order them and they’ve taken
eight weeks 12 weeks 16 weeks you know
to get in right now so
that holds things up too yeah um
i was told that six to eight weeks i
think it’s probably been about a month
so we’re coming up on it so hopefully
i’m done by the time the machines get
that that’s been my problem i don’t want
to i don’t want the machines to be
waiting on me i want to wait on the
machine so i’m kind of in a different
situation than
most people when they’re waiting on the
machines i’m like
please don’t get here on time i won’t be
so but i think we’re making good
progress and we
we should be good by
our first september opening timeline
yeah awesome okay well
so i want to ask some
questions about the business i know you
haven’t really even been open that much
but i’m just kind of curious about that
we have a section called down to
over and out yep and that’s where we
talk about
your business but real quick i’m just
when you when you bought this laundromat
how much time were you and or your wife
spending there for those first few weeks
so the first three weeks i was there
just about every single day okay and
this is probably from we opened at seven
and i would probably get there about 10
and stay the close which is
9 30 a 10 every single day so
and mainly this is for a few reasons i
had um
two attendants there there’s a lady she
was there for the vast majority of the
day and
she was kind of left her own devices
with previous owners so
i think in her head she just was like
this is my laundromat i’m gonna
do whatever i want to so i kind of had
to be there to break that
cycle like this is what we’re gonna do
this is
my processes this is how i want it to
right and another thing is we have this
change machine it jammed every single
and i don’t have to reset it but the
previous owners would
like leave the key with the lady that
was there i didn’t quite feel
comfortable with that
right so i would just probably i would
just stay there just to
you know hey the change machine’s broken
and i can never find anybody to come out
and fix the change machine either
and other equipment would break and
they would call me in a panic oh my god
this machine’s broken like
i don’t fix machines i don’t know what
to do put an out-of-order sign on
it so so just things like that just
you know to kind of mitigate the
learning curve
i needed to be there just to okay this
breaks why is it breaking
what is this doing why is this like this
that was mainly the reasons i was there
so much
just because i didn’t i didn’t know
anything so i had to be there just to
yeah so i mean were you working from
there or did you take vacation or
because you said you had a full-time job
right no i was doing both so i was
working from there and
handling the other stuff on the side
i like that i like what wait okay i mean
i gotta ask the question wasn’t this
whole thing your wife’s idea why wasn’t
she there
she was pregnant oh
a cop out a cop out come on you know
convenient excuse yeah it’s convenient
well was your baby born yet
my uh son was born february 28th
so three weeks
for four weeks um after we bought it and
a week after the storm that ruined
well congrats on your son thank you uh
kind of unfortunate timing with
everything else that went
yeah he didn’t pick a great time to come
but yeah made it work
you always find a way to make it work
yeah it’s funny how that works huh yeah
that is funny
yeah well congrats and uh now that that
is you know four or five months old i
hope you’re making your wife slave away
the laundromat now well when we reopen
she’s gonna be my uh
general manager she says so we’ll see
how that works she says she’s gonna be
and hang out during the day while i go
back to work
so yeah we’ll see how that works and we
might have to do a follow-up episode on
that one
yeah well i would like to hear if she
does how you made that work because my
wife told me similar things and i can’t
remember the last time she set foot in
one of our laundromats so
good luck with that if it works i will
bring her on and
tell and make her tell her story that’s
yes that’s good we’ll give her kudos
that’s funny uh okay so uh
so you’ve been i mean you were working
there a lot working from there
and being at the laundromat you know for
pretty much all day every day for a few
weeks there until everything went awry
um which you know i i mean i
don’t think that’s abnormal i think a
lot of people when they buy their first
laundromat they want to be there
and to help understand what it’s all
and how everything works and
you know to see you know their employees
and how they’re functioning all that
stuff so
i think it’s pretty typical um long term
are you planning on
being there a lot what’s your what’s
your game plan with it long term
well one of the main drivers of doing
this whole retool remodel is
so i wouldn’t have to be there all the
time i’m planning to automate a lot of
like with the app and new coin machines
and things like that new machine so
i don’t have to be there every waking
moment that i’m not at work
so that’s you know that’s not why you
do investing so you can have another
full-time job so
right so that’s that’s kind of where i’m
headed i just
like i said after the storm i figured
okay if i’m
gonna get my time back and make some
this is what i have to do to accomplish
so that’s what i’m kind of working
towards with this remodel and new
machines and all that stuff so hopefully
it works out and i can only be there a
few hours a week and my wife will be
a few days a week so hopefully that
works out for us
yeah well i’m sure i mean i’m sure it
will that is one of the draws of this
uh just out of curiosity did your wife
ever get her law degree
no so we she got pregnant again so i
have a
so i have a two-year-old daughter and
now i have a four-month-old son so
she’s been pregnant for like the past
two years so yeah
finished the first year and then she
started having kids
so well congrats on that
and uh she’s she’s a trooper then
she is what’s up with me so
something special about her yeah well
she’s smart too because you basically
ruled the world for a while so
she locked down a winner um okay
i’ll have to tell her that yeah you know
what you get her on here
and i will i will just to your horn for
to her i love it let her know who she’s
dealing with over here
uh yeah i got your back don’t worry
okay did you i can’t remember if we
talked about this
on the podcast or or before but can you
tell us where you’re located
i’m in the dallas fort worth area um my
laundromat is located in mesquite texas
which is about
15 or 20 minutes from downtown dallas
sounds very barbecuey mesquite texas
i like that yep okay so you’re there and
you have uh one laundromat do you have
real estate still no i i don’t have any
real estate i’ve i had
about four or five rental properties
that i
sold once i moved to texas and i was
kind of out of state
so i couldn’t really manage them the way
i wanted to
so i i started in real estate i did fix
and flips buy and hold so
kind of did that and then i got into
this crazy
laundry industry
yes that’s what i like to hear so there
are a lot of similarities between the
two industries funny enough
so i can see how people go from one or
the other because there’s a
lot of things that are very much alike
yeah i
couldn’t agree with you more that’s one
of the things that really draws me to
this business
and i think it’s uh
i mean i think there’s a lot of things
you know that are similar between them
but i also think they complement each
other pretty well
um so having both is is awesome if you
can do it
um which you can if you want to you can
do anything
one thing i do want to touch on before i
move forward is
um i friends and family asked me like
you know
how can i get into the laundromat
industry i
i don’t know if that’s a if we’re going
to talk about that but
one thing i didn’t know before i bought
a laundromat is
wow um they are very capital intensive
you have to have a lot of
upfront money and i think if i would
have known the amount of money that it
would have
cost me upfront i would have i would
have never done it because
i would have been like this is insane
like there’s no way i could do this so
luckily i did not know and i moved
forward anyways but
i i would say if i did know i probably
would have passed
what uh what i mean i think that’s a
really great point can you kind of
elaborate on that what are some of the
expenses that you’ve encountered that
maybe you didn’t anticipate
can you think of any off top of your
head oh the first one is plumbing
to redo the plumbing it’s like 30 grand
i was like
for pipes am i missing something here
but i went and got four or five quotes
everybody was around the same price i’m
okay this is the price yeah and
if somebody would have told me it was 10
grand for a washing machine
i’m like a washing machine you’re out of
your mind
but it’s just things like that it’s just
eye-opening and you you wouldn’t know
that i mean i’ve visited laundromats
before i actually
ever thought about only one and i never
in a million years thought man that’s a
5 000 washer over there never crossed my
mind so it’s just things like that
yeah yeah well we’ll see how long they
that much but yeah you can spend well
over ten thousand dollars
uh on a washing machine easier these
so i mean you’re right it is crazy and
you know when i
when i’m helping people buy a laundromat
whether i’m consulting with them
or if i’m representing them as a broker
you know i always
i always tell my clients hey let’s do
let’s pay a little bit of money and do a
inspection i know you did that too but
just to know
what you’re getting into because
plumbing is expensive and if there’s
you want to know about them beforehand
if at all possible
you know if a freak storm rolls in and
blows out all your plumbing then i guess
you’re out of luck but
yeah it’s uh yeah it’s
it is crazy it is crazy you’re right it
is capital intensive but
you say luckily
so does that mean you’re not regretting
it yet or
too soon to tell or what where are you
no even the three weeks that i was open
like i said only had like five working
washers and
the amount of revenue i was making off
of those five washers i was like okay
i i got something here it’s not where i
want to be
but i just need to
fix it so i never regretted it but
it was just a lot of i guess sticker
shock and
eye-opening revelations that i never
would have thought of
yeah no and i think that’s a really
great point i’m really glad you brought
that up because i do
think that it’s shocking you know and
there’s a you know i mean
the whole free laundromat thing is
really popular and
you know for the record you can you know
take over a location
for free but there is nothing that’s
out there right yeah i don’t subscribe
to that i see
people that say oh i got this for free
no you didn’t
yeah you i guarantee you spent some
money somewhere
and i would be willing to bet every
dollar i will ever make that you spent
some money somewhere there’s
no such thing as free especially in this
yeah and even if you didn’t spend any
money you will be spending money because
because like you said i mean the
machines are not cheap and you know
having work done on the place
you know is is not cheap you know the
plumbing’s expensive the electrical is
expensive you need commercial
you know the you know your boiler or
tankless water heater is going to be
expensive your card system
is expensi i mean it can go on and on
and on so
there’s a lot of expense so i’m really
glad that you brought that up and you
know just
for anybody out there who’s thinking
about getting in maybe you don’t have a
ton of capital
know that there are ways to do it um but
a lot of times it means that you’re
gonna have to put in a lot more sweat
if uh if you don’t have the money to put
into it and
sometimes it’s not going to work um
and i’ve seen that happen unfortunately
quite a few times too
but yeah actually sorry once i’m
actually done with the remodel i would
love to come back and
come with raw numbers of what i actually
break down everything line by line
one thing i’ve also found out about this
people are like very secretive in this
business for whatever reason it’s like
oh don’t steal my idea or don’t do this
it’s like
it’s like man i work i had a top secret
clearance and nobody was this secretive
what do you guys hide but i would love
to just
break down like every expense everything
that i have because
i personally have nothing to uh this
if it’s gonna help somebody i will tell
you because i mean
what i’m making and what i’m spending
what’s that gonna matter to you
right but other than helping you yeah
well i mean that’s the mindset that
this industry needs desperately right
now i mean it’s a big part of why i
started the podcast
because there’s not a lot of people out
there who are willing to share
that stuff and you know i was like i
know there’s got to be some so let’s get
get them here and start to shift that
culture of secrecy a little bit and
it’s it’s deeply ingrained in our
industry there’s
you know uh price you know secrecy
throughout our industry and all kinds of
you know arenas of our industry and
that’s perpetuated
you know by manufacturers that’s
perpetuated by the coin laundry
um and in others and it’s it doesn’t it
doesn’t help own it doesn’t do anything
good for owners
right so um but yeah i mean i let’s
definitely do that and we’ll
we’ll run through you know what the what
the real costs are
because i think that that would be
really helpful for people to know
before they get through the business
without enough money
to get them over a hump if their pipes
yep yeah awesome well let’s talk about
those five
machines that you had working can you
if you can remember this far back can
you remember
like what sizes they were and about how
the vend cost was how much customers
paid to do their laundry there
absolutely so i keep a little so on my
phone i had this little
i started a little notes with laundromat
notes and i have all of that information
right here in front of me
awesome because i just organized keep
this type of stuff
yeah you are not a natural laundromat
owner here you don’t keep those kinds of
so when i first got there i had
16 um double stacked dexters
they were they’re the older model the
the kind of
i guess almond color so um
dryers that we’re talking about dryers
yes sorry
so um most of those actually worked
there was two that were like
in the corner burned out i guess there
was like a fire three years ago and
okay just kind of put some plastic over
two of them and
left them i’m like uh when did that
they’re like oh about four years ago
okay well there you go
so those were 25 cents
um so i had a dexter t300
double loaders so there was actually
nine there
five were broken and the vin price on
those were two dollars for everything
okay um had a dexter
ford dexter 400s thoroughbred 400s
four of those three were broken uh
275 ben price
dexter t600s two of those
325 dexter
900’s uh the mega loaders two of those
450. okay that’s the vin price
so as you can see most of the machines
were broken right
yeah interesting yeah and
probably underpriced because so many i
was broken i was getting to that
so i go down i was like man this
this seems kind of cheap so i go down i
have a laundromat
a huge laundromat like probably a mile
down the street from me and i
go in there i’m like man all of my
machines are
underpriced by like a dollar dollar
and then i go to another launcher man i
have another one maybe two miles from me
same thing i’m like man they’re they’re
giving away washes over here
yeah so i increased the price by like
50 cents a machine and
the revenue probably doubled the next
just by doing that yeah and i also found
out that
my first day there hey you know there’s
no hot water here
i’m like what you’re charging people for
hot water but you don’t have any
you’re like yeah the hot the attendant
was like yeah the hot water
heater has been broken for i don’t know
a year or two
so the previous owner was charging
people for hot water
but actually no hot water so
obviously i fixed that yeah
i mean classic i mean kind of classic
stuff you know being underpriced which
is difficult man i think that’s a
difficult issue for a lot of owners and
raising prices but it’s also
when you’re buying a new laundromat i
would say it’s probably the number one
way to add value to your laundromat
is you know raise your prices up to you
know where they should be
if they’re not there um like you said
you doubled
almost your revenue just by raising it
by 50 cents a machine
so right and i have the actual numbers
what i want to illustrate by giving
these is
this is what the first week that i
didn’t really do anything
to the second week what was all i did
mop and clean so the
first week it was for washers 440
and dryers 220 okay
two weeks later 725 for washers
260 for dryers and i added some vending
135 so that’s like two and a half times
or almost double from the first
and the third week and all i did was mop
and clean
yeah yeah well i it makes
i mean it sounds so simple right but it
makes so much
sense that people number one are going
to be willing to pay a little bit more
for laundry you know i’m sure they were
cheap because
they knew that their laundromat was not
as desirable so they’re saying well
you know we’ll just be cheaper than
everybody else so we’ll get some
customers that way
try to get more volume that way um but
you know keeping doing the you know
attending to the basics of laundromat
ownership right keeping things clean
keeping things working keeping hot water
hot i guess
is i guess you gotta say that happy hot
water period
yeah right uh you know those kinds of
are simple those are the basics
but really they can take you quite a
long ways especially if you’re buying
you know a quote-unquote zombie mat um
you know just by cleaning up and you
know adjusting pricing a little bit
accordingly and and taking care of
customers right right yeah that’s
exactly the point i’m trying to make
here you don’t have to be a genius to
some of this stuff out you just what
would i what would i use
is is always the phrase that i kind of
tell myself would i go in here and use x
or would i do this if the answer is no
you probably have
100 other people the answer is probably
no to
so that’s kind of how i guide myself in
this journey
yeah i i yeah i mean i think that that’s
a great
way to think about it too you know is
think about your customers as people
right like do they
you know do they want to come to a dirty
place to try to clean their clothes
and do they leave feeling clean or do
they leave feeling dirty
right they’re just regular people who
want to
clean their clothes and leave feeling
clean right yeah of course
another way i put it is would you send
your wife or your mom here
or would you have them do this you know
if if you get an answer that’s no
you should probably do some type of
evaluation or
fix that yeah so
yeah um okay so i mean did you
did you keep track of like turns per day
at all
uh no not really turns per day because
like i said only had seven machines
there so
right i don’t think it was really worth
the effort
yeah yeah well i’m just curious because
it would have been interesting to hear
how many times those machines were being
used per day
week one versus how many times per day
those machines were being used week
three right and
if you were able to actually gain some
new customers
just by mopping up you know that would
have been interesting to know
um but okay and you said you’re
it was attended right right so i had a
lady she was there probably for 12 hours
a day and another guy he came in that
basically to three hours at night to
close down the place and mop mopping
clean i was
told but i don’t think that was getting
right so but i
funny enough i i i just take from my
time in the army and my time at my job
if people have proper leadership they
will do what they need to do
like this guy at night i never had an
issue with him he always swept
mopped it but i guess if you know you
have an attentive owner
you’re gonna do what you’re supposed to
do so yes
quite honestly i’ve never had a problem
out of either one of them but
i always say people are only going to
get away with what you let them get away
with so that’s
kind of the mindset yeah i like that
um yeah and i think that leadership part
of it
too is uh i mean i think it’s a
difficult one for a lot of laundromat
owners too and you know we come from all
kinds of backgrounds i mean you ran the
i was in ministry i mean all kinds of
different backgrounds right but
uh you know i think by and large a lot
of small business owners in general
we don’t have a lot of leadership
experience necessarily and so
um you know but again kind of the basics
of leadership is
you know let people know what you expect
you know keep them accountable for what
you expect and
that’s kind of when you boil it down the
essence of
how to how to lead your attendance right
and i think caring goes a lot into that
i mean if people see you care
of course they’re gonna care a little
bit more they’re like okay this guy he’s
just not
here to collect money every week he
actually cares about what’s going on in
this place so
obviously that kind of ups the annie
with them a little bit as well because
hey i gotta step my game up or
he’s probably gonna get rid of me yeah
yeah and that carrying is contagious too
right and
it’s really easy to get for an employee
to get complacent with any business
you know if the if the owner is
basically outsourcing
responsibilities to the employees
ownership responsibilities or management
responsibilities to the employees
you know then it’s really easy for them
to get complacent because they’re not
going to care about
your business as much as you should care
about your business
because not theirs they don’t get paid
anymore any less to do a better
or worse job right i have a funny story
you know complacency so when i was first
looking at this laundromat and
i went up there a couple of times you
know just to look around and
do some laundry as a prospective
customer and
they attended she kept going in this
back room
like what the hell’s in this back room
and she would like disappear for like
20 minutes at a time i’m like what’s
going on back there
eventually she finally went outside and
she left the door open in this back room
i kind of snuck back there and looked
looked around and
i eventually figured out it’s like the
mechanical room so the
you know the heating and water shutoffs
and stuff but she was back there smoking
like right on top of the hot water
heater like ashtray on top of the hot
water heater and she was just smoking
cigarettes in the back
i’m like uh you don’t care about your
life do you yeah yeah
but then i found out the hot water
heater wasn’t working so
right yeah it hasn’t been working for a
well hopefully there’s no like gas leak
or something because there’s no pilot
well she definitely would have died
like a cigar bar in that place back
there oh geez
that’s so funny so i just say that to
this is what happens when you just leave
people to their own devices and
yeah you think they’re going to do the
right thing even though most people are
natured people they’re going to get
comfortable with what they’re doing and
do things their way which most likely
probably doesn’t align with
your philosophy yeah yeah
no i i think that’s exactly exactly
and i think you know people tend to have
a tendency towards complacency when
they’re not inspired by anything
and you know to be honest like your
typical laundromat is not a super
inspiring place
in and of itself to work but it can be
right if if you’re serving more and more
customers if you know if you’re part of
a team that’s
growing something you’re getting more
and more customers or you build deep
and attendant with customers or you’re
working with an owner who’s
you know who’s demonstrating that they
care by not just taking care of you as
an employee but by reinvesting
into the laundromat you know or
you’re starting new services that can be
exciting or there’s a
a management role that’s going to
as a result that they have an
opportunity to apply for something like
it can be inspiring but
you know if things are just kind of
coasting along then
yeah it’s not that inspiring and your
will i mean just because they’re human
right right
they’ll tend to get complacent exactly
yeah okay uh last question
in the down to business section that i
have for you
is do you well actually i have two more
i just lied sorry
uh are you planning on doing pick up and
delivery again
i am but i think it’ll come probably
after a few months
once we get back open and i want to
establish like
processes first for even the just the
watch and fold
inside and then i think it’ll be a much
better transition of
doing pickup and delivery so i do plan
on doing it
again okay uh
i thought of another question while you
were talking sorry
i mean i was listening to you but i was
also thinking
uh did are you keeping your same
for now yes to
to be quite honest i’m i’m kind of torn
on the
lady that was there i mean she’s she’s a
nice lady but
i think as i get more into this
and more changes come i i think she’s
gonna have a hard time adjusting
and i’ve already seen that so i don’t
i personally don’t think i’ll even have
like get rid of her i think she’ll
probably leave on her own because it’s
it’s too much i can tell at times it’s
like whoa
this guy’s like you know changing my
life here right
so so i that’s what i see but the guy
i have at 90s he’s awesome he seems like
he’s motivated you know
was looking for that breath of fresh air
to come in and you know shake things up
i kind of see both sides of the spectrum
from both of my employees here
yeah and i think also when i bring in
you know
new employees because i think we’re
going to have the business there i think
that’s also going to create some type of
you know thing with her where she’s
probably just going to
transition yourself out yeah
have you kept them employed while you’re
shut down or how does that work do they
go on yeah i’ve
i’ve continued to pay them their weekly
salary every week since i’ve been shut
are you having them do anything or
they’re just sometimes um
i’ll have them go up there if they need
to if a contractor needs to get in or
something like that but just little
stuff or when i was shut down if i
you know go up there and make sure the
place isn’t flooded or something but
no major stuff that yeah during the week
i just couldn’t you know lay someone off
during the pandemic
and with everything else going on i mean
it’s it’s little it’s money but it’s not
enough money where i’m gonna miss it
i guess is what i’m saying so i’d rather
give it to them and
you know try to build some type of
loyalty as well
and and keep you with some money in your
pocket and not just
out here with all this uncertainty we
have going on now
so yeah i mean i think that that mindset
tells me enough about you to know you’re
you know you’re on your way to ruin the
world again uh
just from a different angle this time so
got it gotta rule the world twice
just from a different industry you’re
like i’ve already ruled the world once
so how can i make it a little more
challenging i’m gonna
i’m gonna start in the laundromat
industry and somehow
weasel my way into rule in the world
again so i have the uncanny ability to
anything that’s remotely challenging
that’s like why are you doing this i
i have that it’s just a gift that i have
i don’t know where it came from but
i have it yeah but you know what it is a
gift and i want you to hold on to that
and keep
keep following that because that that
does make life exciting
for sure oh it does yeah
uh what okay this is my actual last
question for the down to business
section is
do you do you have any future plans yet
i mean i know you’re
really early in and you’ve been shut
down and you’re focused on getting this
laundromat open i know you’re thinking
about adding you know fluff and fold and
pick up and delivery your location
are you planning on just scaling up that
way do you want to get more
locations have you thought about any of
that yet
oh yeah i definitely want to get another
uh probably within the next i’d say 12
to 18 months so
even the first week i bought it i was
like okay i
the laundry industry is i like it i like
it a lot
and i’ve always said yes i want another
i don’t know if i’ll have a hundred like
ross but i’m definitely thinking five to
ten is where i want to be
i don’t know if i’ll go above that but
that’s kind of what i have in my mind
yeah well ross is still i think he’s on
the upper end he’s got like
nine i think but he’s pretty
aggressively buying more so
yep he’ll be at that hundred in no time
luke williford watch your back
uh all right we have another section
called secret sauce listen up it’s the
secret sauce
and secret sauce is this do you
have any tips for i mean in your vast
vast three weeks of experience and
with the shutdown laundromat uh do you
have any
any tips for current laundromat owners i
listen not too many of us can say that
you came in and doubled business so
maybe you got some real good tips for us
but any tips for laundromat owners that
can help them improve their business um
i would say
just don’t start something and don’t be
a part of the community
you’re in this community you want people
to come to your business and
spend money there you know be involved
in the community
you know do barbecues or
have a customer appreciation days or
something just don’t
just don’t be the typical owner and
investor just hey i’m coming to collect
my money and i’m
going back to the suburbs or whatever
you know stay in there get to know
people that’s one of the things that i
and all the time i did spend there over
the past the three weeks i was open is
i got to know a lot of the customers a
lot of the regulars and
and it was just enjoyable just to know
people and know their story and
i think that kept people coming back
because it’s like oh this guy you know
he’s he’s pretty cool he’s pretty
interesting you know i like him
so i’m gonna come over there and hey let
me see sean today and
hey what’s going on how’s your wife or
that was work the other night so
just things like that just knowing
people and
being relatable i guess is what i would
just just don’t come in and go hide in
your office get to know people
yeah i like that advice and i think that
you know when people know you and they
see around and especially
if you’re the kind of owner that cares
and that is
you know investing in that community by
trying to
improve the business continually i
always say that’s that’s
the differentiator between a laundromat
that’s going to be thriving
in five to ten years and a laundromat
that’s going to be
the new zombie mat in five to ten years
is if the owner
is continually reinvesting in that
business they’re gonna be thriving in
five to ten years and it doesn’t
always have to be in big ways it could
be big ways or small ways
um but reinvesting in that business and
showing the community that you care but
also just being
present and you know getting to know
people have a conversation with people
ask them what they like what they don’t
like about the laundromat
you know talk to them about things that
are going on in the neighborhood that
kind of stuff
people really respond to that and and
connect with that and that builds a lot
of loyalty
more than most loyalty programs do
actually right
those relationships you know it kind of
just boils down to good customer service
i you made me think of a story where i
in there one day and a lady she used
like an entire bottle of soap so she
still had soap on her clothes and
early attended were kind of you know
getting into a tiff and i was just
just kind of interjecting i was like
just give her the money let her redo her
clothes and the attendant kind of looked
at me like what are you doing you’re
giving away money you’re going to be
giving away a lot of money if you keep
doing that i’m like
two dollars does that really going to
change my life but
that’s gonna make her keep coming back
because it’s like oh this guy gave me
two dollars
to redo my laundry so
just building that loyalty and rapport
with customers is
is what you need to do yep yep yep and
you know taking that opportunity to do i
it’s treating people like they’re human
right and just right exactly
basic human kindness and there are
people who will
try to take advantage of that but you’ll
find out who those people
are yeah i mean in the first week you
know you get your usual suspects or they
just come in here they’re looking for a
handout but
they they always present themselves very
early in the relationship
so they’re they’re easy to figure out
yep yep
yep um awesome awesome secret sauce
we have another section called pro tips
tips and pro tips is for maybe the
people who are trying to buy their first
laundromat uh do you have any tips for
before they buy their first laundromat
that you feel like they should know
yeah if i would say find someone that
has a laundromat already
that’s gonna be that is the best pro tip
i can give you because
what you think you know what you think
you’ve read in these
guru posts and forms it is not gonna
scratch the surface of what you’re gonna
find when you actually walk through the
door and start
dealing with the laundromat so i wish i
would have
had a mentor of someone even a
consultant someone that i can just say
hey i’m gonna take you to this location
you own 10 laundromats or 2 or whatever
and tell me what you see and what i need
to look out for and
aid me in my negotiation process of this
even if you literally have to pay
someone to do that that will be the best
money that you will ever spend i
guarantee you
yeah i mean i’ve shared my story on here
before and i
if i could go back and pay somebody ten
thousand dollars to tell me not to buy
the first laundromat when i bought it
i would do it because i literally lost
tens of thousands of dollars
at that first location and i mean i
not that you should go out and drop 10
grand on a consultant but
but the point is is you know don’t
don’t make an investment that’s going to
be a
pretty big investment even for a small
you know don’t don’t invest that money
on your own it reminds me of uh the
richest man in babylon which is one of
my favorite books
um which is a book on finance basically
and a guy’s teaching another guy how to
build wealth and
he first teaches him that he needs to
you know set aside some of his money to
invest it
and he asks him after a year where he
invested it and he had lent it out to
i think a brick maker to go travel to a
different country and buy some
jewels right and he’s like you’re a fool
your money’s gone right because you
you know you didn’t talk to the people
who know about the thing you’re trying
to do right you’re not partnering with
the right people
he’s a brick maker he doesn’t know about
jewels and he’s going to get ripped off
and he does get ripped off and
there’s a couple other similar stories
like that in that book
but it the point being is
when you are making an investment
you know do it with people who know what
they’re doing right
especially in this industry where
there’s you know
secrecy and pitfalls everywhere you look
uh you gotta have somebody who can help
you navigate that so
awesome pro tip there yeah i think i
would have taken my own advice if
quite honestly i paid under a hundred
grand for my laundromat
and i think but i see laundromats
regularly going for
150 250 550. so
if i’m gonna spend that type of money i
think i would have been
much more engaged on probably everything
there is to know about laundromats and i
would have taken my own advice but
quite honestly i was like okay i can i
know i can get my money back
out of this thing so i can take this
risk without knowing
as much information as i needed to know
yeah and i mean there’s actually a pro
tip in that
also where you know i i can’t tell you
how many coaching clients i’ve talked to
you know been like i’ve been thinking
about buying a laundromat for years and
you know or 10 years even i mean i think
i want to say the longest somebody had
told me was you know multiple decades
that they’ve been thinking about buying
a laundromat but never did it right and
you know what i like about what you just
said is that
you learned enough of what you
thought you needed to learn to be able
to make a decision and once you made the
you just pulled the trigger right and so
there is
a balance in there between how
you know learning and research and
you know taking action and the point of
talking to somebody who knows about the
is just shortcut the learning so you
don’t have to go through all the the
learning process on your own
shortcut the learning so that you can
get to the action
and that is the action is where
the the money’s made right right not in
the learning
yep love that um okay we have another
called recommended resources
and just out of curiosity do you have
any resources that you’d recommend to
people to either
you know help their businesses grow or
to help themselves grow
personally my biggest resource
has been the laundromat owners facebook
i have learned more from that group than
i once again have learned
watching youtube videos reading guru
post and
things like that these people are real
owners who are
in the business day to day and run into
the same problems you will eventually
run into
on a daily basis so i i cannot recommend
that group enough it’s
just things about pricing strategies and
equipment makes and models and what
works here and
just things like you would never think
of that people post questions about
it’s just it’s been very eye-opening to
me to just
hear what other people have to say
especially in different parts of the
country what
or even the world there’s people there
from australia and
india with laundromats it’s just it’s
just a
fantastic resource just to just to pick
other people’s brains without
actually directly picking their brain
yeah i
i mean i think that’s a great
recommendation i’ll link to that for
anybody who wants to join in there
and again just you know let ross know
that i sent you and
you know you’ll probably get showered
with gifts
and praise and and all of that um not
but uh seriously just phrase this
wrecked band
no but that’s a it’s an awesome group
and uh it’s
it’s super super valuable uh can i put
you on the spot
with the resources real quick uh just
and if you don’t have anything that’s
totally fine but we talked about
earlier and i’m wondering if you have
any you know i don’t know
books or resources i don’t know youtube
channel or whatever
uh on the leadership topic that might be
helpful for people who want to learn a
little more about leadership
do you have a favorite i don’t have a
favorite but
being a military guy read a lot of books
on you know
generals and military strategies and old
wars and things like that and i think
from that you could how those guys
survived with
essentially nothing as far as resources
like i watched um documentary on grant
it was a dvd and that dude is amazing
like and the funny part is he was
actually a drunk his entire time but
he left the country in a war like so it
doesn’t matter what
i say that to say it doesn’t matter what
you have going on
personally if you’re a good leader
it will show no matter what else is
going on in your life
yeah i read a i wrote a book it was a
super long book
i can’t remember how long it was super
long but uh on grant and
i mean he there’s just lessons galore
from that guy
and yeah i mean i think you make a good
point you know
we all we all struggle with whatever we
struggle with personally
but uh we you know he’s he was still
able to do
great things lead us you know in a war
and and do it
phenomenally and you know i think we can
do some of the same things right maybe
not in a war but
um in whatever field that we’re in you
know that leadership
lessons can translate so yeah i am also
big political junkie i another tidbit
about me i
ran for congress a couple years ago
texas sixth congressional district um
so um for you that’s kind of a step down
to be honest
but that’s okay okay it’s humble that’s
a very humble position for you
well go ahead so i read the
joe biden’s book promise me dad um it
was a very good book
it it’s really it’s not really
i think most politicians books are he
jus he just talks about you know
himself his family and things like that
i think that
the latest book i’ve read that would be
a good recommendation
it’s not you know partisan one side or
the other
it’s just a guy talking about his life
and his experiences and his family
yeah cool i’ll check that one out i
haven’t read that one
are you gonna run again
i’ve thought about it but it’s just the
political landscape now
i’m not really a fan it’s just two
extremes on both sides and
yeah that that’s not the point of
in a position you’re supposed to help
out your country and your people
and not pander to one extreme or the
other so
i am not a fan of the current political
climate and i have
no plans to enter into it
at this point well for what it’s worth
i think we probably need more people
with that mindset
in our political system so but the funny
thing is people with my mindset don’t
get votes because i’m not
extreme enough so
it’s tough it’s tough hey
that’s another podcast for another my
experiences in running for congress
that would actually be a good podcast oh
it it’s
it’s full of gems i can tell you that
i bet so i bet and i would have to i
just hate to break up
you know a millennial
black guy running as a republican in
texas i will
start it i will that’s how i will
pre-phase the conversation
it is very interesting i mean it sounds
perfect i mean what’s not extreme about
that that sounds
good no matter what your beliefs are
your political
beliefs very eye-opening from all sides
of my life i don’t think i’ve ever
even working at the white house i have
never experienced anything quite what i
experienced in
the five or six months of running for
than i did i think it changed my life i
think it’s safe to say that
listen i think you and i need
to do a spin-off podcast maybe a short
series podcast where we just
talk about your whole experience with
that because i do i mean that’s pretty
interesting i bet it was a pretty
fascinating story
it was i if if people
understood how their political how what
it takes to get into office
they would probably hate every
politician they ever ran in contact with
yeah because politicians are better
actors than anybody you will ever see in
that you could ever imagine you think
the rock is a great actor
no look at your local politician they
they are much better i can guarantee
okay first of all i can’t allow you to
insult brad pitt like that
second of all probably right
yeah no i’m i’m serious we need to talk
okay we need to talk offline and figure
out how we can get
this series i think people would love to
hear your experience with that
so i would love to tell it so let’s do
it let’s do it
all right stay tuned for this
other podcast that we’re gonna make
happen it’s gonna be
incredible don’t laugh i’m serious
sean aka ruler of the world
i appreciate you man and i
i’m really really grateful that you came
on to share your story
um and i cannot wait to hear you know
when when you fling open the doors again
how it goes
and if your wife actually helps you out
or not
and all the good stuff that you’re going
to be learning but thank you for coming
on and sharing your story here
and i really really appreciate it was
you know not just an awesome story with
with great lessons in there but you’re
a good good dude and really really
appreciate you man
i appreciate you having me on jordan it
was great i
i was been looking forward to this all
week i’m sorry we
couldn’t connect but the world was
melting around me at work
so i had to deal with all that crap but
i’m glad we actually got it got together
and got this done
because i i just like telling my story
because i know it’s
very different from your typical
laundromat experience so
the more information we can get out
there the more good people we can get in
this industry i think it’ll
help everybody i agree and i’ve never
had a former
world ruler on here before you’re the
you know i get that a lot yeah
i mean i imagine i imagine so
alexander the great is next if he buys a
laundromat so
he’ll be he’ll be on there next well hey
thanks man
and really appreciate it and i’m i’m
serious let’s do this
other podcast where you tell your
experience about you know
running for congress because i think i
am definitely down for that i am a
100 political junkie so
if we could talk politics you’re you’re
right in my wheelhouse
i can talk anything with anybody so
it’ll be great i believe it
it’ll be great all right man well let’s
connect soon
all right what an awesome episode with
sean is such a cool guy he’s got an
interesting interesting history and an
interesting path
like most of us do leading him to
ownership uh so very very cool about
and uh man cannot wait to get an update
on how everything’s going for him
uh you know maybe a year or so down the
line but
sounds like uh he is on the right track
man i loved
loved a lot of what he had to say and a
lot of his mindset stuff
let me just remind you that every
episode i want you to try to pick
one thing that you can put into action
remember action
is what paves the way to success you can
learn all you want you can listen to the
stories you can
even meet the people but if you’re not
taking the action you’re never
going to accomplish your goals so pick
anything from this episode
and every episode that you listen to put
it into action put it to work
make it a habit to be doing things
uh to help you achieve your goals so if
your goal is to own a laundromat
be doing things that are going to move
you closer to that goal if your goal is
to optimize your laundromat
be doing things that will help you
optimize your laundromat
if your goal is to scale your laundromat
business maybe buy
more maybe move into you know more the
service side of laundry
whatever the case may be be doing things
to help you get to
that goal all right well listen
this was incredible as always thank you
guys for joining me we will see you
on the forums we’ll see you at the
webinar with mike kelly of atmosphere tv
thursday we will see you
i don’t know at the next on youtube
maybe we’ll see at the next podcast
episode we’ll see you wherever
you find us we’re all over the place
cannot wait
to hang out with you some more

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