Caddy full of cleaning supplies

How to start a cleaning business on a budget 

06 September 2017
Have you always wanted to pick your own hours? Does being your own boss sound appealing? With the help of this start-up guide, you could ditch the nine-to-five and start running your own cleaning business.

If you take pride in your work and have a keen eye for detail, starting your own cleaning business could be a fantastic way to make a living. Not only is it a flexible profession, it also has minimal overheads; making it a potentially profitable career path.

The downloadable guide below will guide you through some of the essentials needed to start trading. Learn how to register your business with HMRC, market your company, carry out a DBS check and much more. You will also find some useful tips regarding bookkeeping, sourcing stock and building a company website.

We understand that setting up your own business can be a daunting prospect. That's why we've broken up the guide into manageable chunks, allowing you to tick off each step as you go. For extra guidance, we have also included a few invaluable tips and tricks from people who have succeeded in setting up their own cleaning business - so you can learn from the best!


This resource has been made into a downloadable PDF for you to save, print or share. Use the download below to save this guide.
Infographic thumbnail

Business type

Before you start your own cleaning business you will need to choose your business specialism:

  • Domestic cleaning
  • Commercial cleaning
  • Specialised cleaning

Business status

Something you’ll need to decide relatively early on is your legal trading status such as:

  • Sole trader
  • Limited company

Qualifications & training

Training which may come in handy:

  • Apprenticeships
  • Online courses


You do not need a licence to start a cleaning business. However, having some licenses may prove a valuable asset when reassuring potential clients.

Buying stock

Some cleaning clients will provide their own cleaning equipment, but in some environments you will be required to use your own cleaning products.

  • Recommended stock
  • Specialist wholesalers


Having a uniform not only portrays a professional image but can help to protect you when using harsh chemicals.


Cleaning companies rely heavily on word-of-mouth, as well as the repeat business they naturally gain over time.

  • Print marketing
  • Social media marketing
  • Cleaning agencies and contractors


Taking out the right insurance for your cleaning business is crucial.

It is important to make sure that you have the right insurance in place to protect the business that you have built. Every business is different and has its own business insurance needs, which is why we work with some of the UK’s most well-known insurers to ensure that you are getting the right insurance cover for your business.
The information and tools contained in this guide are of a general informational nature and should not be relied upon as being suitable for any specific set of circumstances. We have used reasonable endeavours to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the contents but the information and tools do not constitute professional advice and must not be relied upon as such. To the extent permitted by law, we do not accept responsibility for any loss which may arise from reliance on the information or tools in our Insight Hub.