are banks lending for small business yet? (carwash)

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Handicapper
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Me and a friend of mine got an idea to start a full service carwash.
We both work fulltime and would need to hire other people to run the place.

We have no experience running any kind of company like a carwash.

We both have good credit, and we have enough down payment to put up 20%.

Its obvious I have not done any heavy research yet. Otherwise I would not start a thread in a sports forum about a carwash.

We are at the beginning stages of thinking this out.


None of our friends have ever got into a business like this.
I was just wondering if anyone on this site has.


We want to go 50/50

Does this mean we get 2 separate loans to start this business, or do we have one loan that we both pay?

Im really a dummy about this right now.
Like I said im in the beginning stages of this process.

Im not even far enough along to ask good questions yet.
But we are both very serious about this.

Already have the land picked out.

Would a bank laugh us out the door because we have no experience in this business?
Any thoughts.
 

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Would a bank laugh us out the door because we have no experience in this business?
Any thoughts.

I am just going to add my desdain for the banks....as I laugh for messing up the world economy when supposedly they had experience in banking practices
 

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Give them a call and find out Chop.
Wolfie, I join you in your resentment towards banks, I place them in the same class as pay for plays touts.
 

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since neither one of you knows anything about the carwash business you will both be second guessing each others decisions.

I think we should do this...
No we should do this...

and you both could be wrong and will end up blaming the other and calling each other dumbshits when all is said and done.

if you are both serious about it, you guys should both work part time at a carwash to see what it is like from the employee side of things.

other employees will share with you how they rip off their boss/company and you can see how things are when the "boss" is not around.

you'll learn how the equipment works, how to and where to order supplies and may even meet a few guys you could hire.

also you may just end up buying the place you are working.

you may also decide it sucks and move on to something else.

either way it could be fun and not cost any money.

good luck
 

Rx God
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Why a carwash, instead of something else like a laundromat, convenience store, etc. ?
 

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oh btw... no one is going to loan two guys any money to start a business in which they have no experience.

they might loan it to a sole proprietor that has business experience but not related to that business. and only if it is an existing operation that has cash flow and assets.

but no way does bevis and butthead walk into a bank and ask for a loan.
 

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do this.

you say you have the land picked out?

maybe start a commercial property development company (i just made that term up) you guys buy property and develop it.

tell the bank you have land picked out, it looks good for storage garages, car wash, parking ... that kind of stuff.

you guys just want to finance the land and can put 20 to 30 % down. you plan on paying off the loan after you improve the property.

if you get the loan, make a few months payments and go back and ask for a bigger loan to build a car wash.

see what happens
 

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I would suggest that one of you owns 51% or it will hard to make a final decision, Trust me on this as i have been a 50-50 owner and it will cause problems
 
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I will have some input here later tonight when I have more time. A friend and I owned a carwash in Tampa for a period of time. It was not full service, but still may have some insight.
 

I never ever got beat-I just run out of Money
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I would suggest that one of you owns 51% or it will hard to make a final decision, Trust me on this as i have been a 50-50 owner and it will cause problems

Great advise.

I will tell you from experience DO NOT GO IN BUSINESS with a partner it doesn't matter if it's a friend, family, etc.... you will regret it in the long run. I own a business with a partner each of us own 50% each for 8 yrs. now. I'm trying to sell my half to him at the moment as I want out. A lot of successful business men told me several yrs. ago to never go in business with a partner, to keep saving until I had the money to do it on my own. I will say that for the first 1-3 yrs. it was good but ever since it hasn't been so great as a 50/50 partnership business wise and this is/was a good friend of mine for 15 yrs. now and it's to the point that each can't hardly stand each other now because of the 50/50 business partnership.

I will never be in a 50/50 business ever again.
 

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Handicapper
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since neither one of you knows anything about the carwash business you will both be second guessing each others decisions.

I think we should do this...
No we should do this...

and you both could be wrong and will end up blaming the other and calling each other dumbshits when all is said and done.

if you are both serious about it, you guys should both work part time at a carwash to see what it is like from the employee side of things.

other employees will share with you how they rip off their boss/company and you can see how things are when the "boss" is not around.

you'll learn how the equipment works, how to and where to order supplies and may even meet a few guys you could hire.

also you may just end up buying the place you are working.

you may also decide it sucks and move on to something else.

either way it could be fun and not cost any money.

good luck

good advice although it would be very difficult for either one of us to find time to work a carwash a few months to find all that out. It is a good idea though
 

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Handicapper
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Why a carwash, instead of something else like a laundromat, convenience store, etc. ?

My preference is a convenience store.
But my friend is the one who has always had the desire to open a full service carwash.

It was his idea. He has been wanting to do this for a long time.

Im interested because it gets my entrepreneur juices flowing.
 

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Handicapper
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do this.

you say you have the land picked out?

maybe start a commercial property development company (i just made that term up) you guys buy property and develop it.

tell the bank you have land picked out, it looks good for storage garages, car wash, parking ... that kind of stuff.

you guys just want to finance the land and can put 20 to 30 % down. you plan on paying off the loan after you improve the property.

if you get the loan, make a few months payments and go back and ask for a bigger loan to build a car wash.

see what happens

are you saying I can buy the land with 20% down and not have to put any additional money down for the buildings, equipment etc....
These are the things we dont know.
 

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I would suggest that one of you owns 51% or it will hard to make a final decision, Trust me on this as i have been a 50-50 owner and it will cause problems

I dont have a problem giving him 51%.
He is the kind of person that would be better at this kind of thing then me.
His strength is servicing customers and running the day to day.
My strength is sells and marketing.

I have always been a good seller.

We pretty much have the understanding that he is 100% in charge of day to day operations, upkeep, hiring and firing , payroll etc...
Im 100% in charge of sells and marketing.

We both know that im better at what I do then he is, and he's better at what he does then I am.

Its really a perfect partnership. I trust him 100% and he trust me 100%.
 

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Handicapper
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I will have some input here later tonight when I have more time. A friend and I owned a carwash in Tampa for a period of time. It was not full service, but still may have some insight.

please share
 

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Handicapper
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Great advise.

I will tell you from experience DO NOT GO IN BUSINESS with a partner it doesn't matter if it's a friend, family, etc.... you will regret it in the long run. I own a business with a partner each of us own 50% each for 8 yrs. now. I'm trying to sell my half to him at the moment as I want out. A lot of successful business men told me several yrs. ago to never go in business with a partner, to keep saving until I had the money to do it on my own. I will say that for the first 1-3 yrs. it was good but ever since it hasn't been so great as a 50/50 partnership business wise and this is/was a good friend of mine for 15 yrs. now and it's to the point that each can't hardly stand each other now because of the 50/50 business partnership.

I will never be in a 50/50 business ever again.

Well like I said it was his idea but he could not come up with enough money on his own.
I cant come up with enough money on my own.

We are talking about a 2+ million project.

No way either one of us have 400+ in cash lying around.

I understand your issues with a partner.
But trust me, we are exact opposites in the fact that my strong points are his weak points and vice/versa.

I cant imagine us arguing over any major issues.
 
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A buddy of mine and myself bought a carwash in Tampa back in 2003. It was one with 7 bays and and at the time had no automatic wash bay either. The plan was for me to be a silent partner and he was going to do all the day to day stuff. I would do the books and pay the bills, but outside of that I would never even really visit the place. At the time he was a high school teacher and golf coach, so he had a lot of extra time. It did come with an employee who was going there everyday to do maintenance stuff and empty out the quarters. The plan was to keep him for 3 months and then my buddy would take over his responsibilities after he was "trained". We were up front with the guy and he was old anyways and ready to get out of doing anything anyways.

We applied for a SBA loan and were turned down right away because we had no prior experience. At the time I had perfect credit and many assets and was willing to put down 35%, but still no dice because of no experience. We ended up having me put up a little more and using owner financing to get the place.

Well after we took it over, my buddy came to the realization he did not want to be a teacher anymore and got into the insurance business. So we just kept the employee we had and that was definitely a mistake as he was just completely incompetent with any maintenance issue at all and I firmly believe he was stealing a little bit of cash for himself also. I was putting money into the place each and every month, but it was not that big of a deal for me back then as I was very flush. About a year later, I got busted and then I had no money to keep it going.

What we ended up doing at that point was getting a loan and basically refinancing it which lowered the payments and also allowed us to put in a automatic which gave us a little bit of positive cash flow for a short period of time. The problem is that shit kept breaking and any extra money kept going right back into it.

Decided to sell it and the buyer that we found could also not get a loan, so we financed it for a short period of time for them. They were successful business owners to in other fields I want to add and yet still no way to get a loan due to lack of experience.

They owned it for about a year and sold it to someone else. The guy who bought it was a from somewhere in the middle east and he also had no experience in the car wash business, but yet he did get approved for a SBA loan.

For me it was all a blessing as it was one of the few things that the Feds did not take from me and even though we did not make any money on the deal, I did end up getting most of my money that I was out of pocket and that would have just been more money I would have had seized. Also, my friend is now one of the top insurance guys in the state and he is doing very well for himself and I still thank God on occasion that I did not try to convince him to stick with teaching and operating the carwash.

So that is the back ground of my experience and now for the little advice I can offer is this.

Do not get into business with a friend if it is something that is going to be able to come between you guys if all is lost

Do not even think about getting a loan with no experience from the SBA, unless of course you are from some middle east country.

If neither of you are handy with fixing shit, DO NOT get into the car wash business as shit breaks constantly. And I dont mean just like fixing minor shit, I am talking about one of you need to be able to rebuild pumps and fix vacuums and stuff like that.

Just know that people are asshole and will maliciously break anything the can when you are not there. Stuff like ripping hoses from vacuums and what not.

This post is too long already, so I will just stop and let you ask any questions.

One final thing I forgot, shop for soaps and I mean shop everywhere to find the best value as the shit is crazy expensive!!
 

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Chop, no offense, but if you don't know the business, as you seem not to, steer clear.

You seem clueless about the whole process, this is a disaster waiting to happen.

The guy that bought my biz was a little rich kid, barely could tie his own shoe without help. He has completely ran the place in the ground, it is really sad. But his family has DEEEEEPPPP POCKETS. I think it is cheaper to keep throwing money at him than to support him, it ruins their Reputation.

go work in one for 6months to a year to see what it takes to run one. You don't want to depend on employees or previous owners for training, some times that can backfire.

GL
 

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Handicapper
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A buddy of mine and myself bought a carwash in Tampa back in 2003. It was one with 7 bays and and at the time had no automatic wash bay either. The plan was for me to be a silent partner and he was going to do all the day to day stuff. I would do the books and pay the bills, but outside of that I would never even really visit the place. At the time he was a high school teacher and golf coach, so he had a lot of extra time. It did come with an employee who was going there everyday to do maintenance stuff and empty out the quarters. The plan was to keep him for 3 months and then my buddy would take over his responsibilities after he was "trained". We were up front with the guy and he was old anyways and ready to get out of doing anything anyways.

We applied for a SBA loan and were turned down right away because we had no prior experience. At the time I had perfect credit and many assets and was willing to put down 35%, but still no dice because of no experience. We ended up having me put up a little more and using owner financing to get the place.

Well after we took it over, my buddy came to the realization he did not want to be a teacher anymore and got into the insurance business. So we just kept the employee we had and that was definitely a mistake as he was just completely incompetent with any maintenance issue at all and I firmly believe he was stealing a little bit of cash for himself also. I was putting money into the place each and every month, but it was not that big of a deal for me back then as I was very flush. About a year later, I got busted and then I had no money to keep it going.

What we ended up doing at that point was getting a loan and basically refinancing it which lowered the payments and also allowed us to put in a automatic which gave us a little bit of positive cash flow for a short period of time. The problem is that shit kept breaking and any extra money kept going right back into it.

Decided to sell it and the buyer that we found could also not get a loan, so we financed it for a short period of time for them. They were successful business owners to in other fields I want to add and yet still no way to get a loan due to lack of experience.

They owned it for about a year and sold it to someone else. The guy who bought it was a from somewhere in the middle east and he also had no experience in the car wash business, but yet he did get approved for a SBA loan.

For me it was all a blessing as it was one of the few things that the Feds did not take from me and even though we did not make any money on the deal, I did end up getting most of my money that I was out of pocket and that would have just been more money I would have had seized. Also, my friend is now one of the top insurance guys in the state and he is doing very well for himself and I still thank God on occasion that I did not try to convince him to stick with teaching and operating the carwash.

So that is the back ground of my experience and now for the little advice I can offer is this.

Do not get into business with a friend if it is something that is going to be able to come between you guys if all is lost

Do not even think about getting a loan with no experience from the SBA, unless of course you are from some middle east country.

If neither of you are handy with fixing shit, DO NOT get into the car wash business as shit breaks constantly. And I dont mean just like fixing minor shit, I am talking about one of you need to be able to rebuild pumps and fix vacuums and stuff like that.

Just know that people are asshole and will maliciously break anything the can when you are not there. Stuff like ripping hoses from vacuums and what not.

This post is too long already, so I will just stop and let you ask any questions.

One final thing I forgot, shop for soaps and I mean shop everywhere to find the best value as the shit is crazy expensive!!


Man thanks for the post.
I just emailed your entire post to my friend.
You bring up a lot of my fears.

Upkeep is my #2 fear.

I would be the hands off guy like you were.
But my partner would not be able to devote the same amount of time to this as your partner did.
He is writing up a business plan this month to submit to the banks.
If you dont mind I would like to send you copy of my friends business plan to read over and let me know if we are on the right path.

We know the SBA loan is out of the question. Thats why we know we have to come up with at least 20%
 

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