How to Start a Laundromat in Canada

laundromat business owner

In recent years, the laundry business has emerged as a lucrative venture in Canada, offering entrepreneurs a promising opportunity to establish a sustainable source of income. However, diving into this industry requires careful planning and consideration of various factors. From determining the ideal location to assessing financial requirements and navigating legal procedures, launching a successful laundromat necessitates thorough research and strategic decision-making. In this guide, we’ll explore the essential steps and considerations involved in starting a laundromat business in Canada.

Choosing the Ideal Location:

  • Selecting the right location is paramount to the success of your laundromat business. Factors such as foot traffic, accessibility, parking availability, and demographic profile play a crucial role in determining the viability of a potential site. Urban areas with a dense population and limited access to in-house laundry facilities often present lucrative opportunities. Additionally, proximity to residential neighborhoods, colleges or universities, apartment complexes, and commercial hubs can significantly influence customer traffic.

To identify the best geographical location, conduct thorough market research to understand the laundry needs and preferences of the local community. Consider demographic factors such as income levels, family size, and lifestyle preferences. Collaborating with a real estate agent specializing in commercial properties can also provide valuable insights and assistance in securing a suitable location.

Space Requirements:

  • The space required to operate a laundromat largely depends on the scale of your business and the range of services offered. A typical laundromat requires a minimum floor area of 800 to 1,500 square feet to accommodate washing machines, dryers, folding tables, seating areas, and utility facilities. Adequate ventilation, plumbing, and electrical systems are essential to ensure operational efficiency and customer comfort.

When designing the layout of your laundromat, prioritize functionality, and optimize space utilization to accommodate maximum equipment without overcrowding. Consider incorporating amenities such as vending machines, Wi-Fi access, and comfortable seating to enhance the overall customer experience.

Financial Considerations:

  • Launching a laundromat business entails significant initial investment, including equipment purchase or lease, leasehold improvements, utility installations, licensing fees, and marketing expenses. The total capital required can vary widely depending on factors such as location, facility size, equipment quality, and renovation costs.

On average, entrepreneurs should budget between $150,000 to $500,000 to establish a standard laundromat in Canada. It’s essential to develop a comprehensive business plan outlining your financial projections, funding sources, and contingency measures to secure financing from lenders or investors.

Deciding Between Business Registration or Incorporation

  • Before commencing operations, aspiring laundromat owners must register their business and comply with regulatory requirements at the federal, provincial, and municipal levels. The two primary options for structuring your business are sole proprietorship and incorporation, each with its pros and cons.

Sole proprietorship offers simplicity and flexibility, as it involves minimal paperwork and allows you to retain full control over your business. However, it also exposes you to unlimited personal liability for business debts and legal obligations. On the other hand, incorporating your laundromat business provides limited liability protection, tax benefits, and enhanced credibility but entails more complex administrative procedures and compliance obligations.

To review more details of the differences between registration and incorporation, take a minute to read our comprehensive guide between the two available options to start your business.

Insurance Coverage:

  • Securing comprehensive insurance coverage is essential to protect your laundromat business against potential risks and liabilities. Consider obtaining the following types of insurance:
  • Property Insurance: Covers damages or losses to your laundromat building, equipment, and inventory caused by fire, theft, vandalism, or natural disasters.
  • Liability Insurance: Protects your business from claims or lawsuits arising from bodily injury, property damage, or other liabilities associated with your laundromat operations.
  • Workers’ Compensation Insurance: Mandatory in Canada, this coverage provides financial benefits to employees who suffer work-related injuries or illnesses.

Research different insurance providers and policies to find the most cost-effective options tailored to your specific business needs and risk profile.

Innovative Marketing Strategies:

  • To attract and retain customers, consider implementing creative marketing strategies and promotional activities to differentiate your laundromat from competitors and enhance customer engagement. Here are some ideas to infuse fun and excitement into your laundromat experience:
  • Loyalty Programs: Reward frequent customers with discounts, free washes, or loyalty points redeemable for future purchases.
  • Themed Events: Host special events or themed nights such as “Laundry Bingo,” “Movie Nights,” or “Kids’ Craft Corner” to create a vibrant community atmosphere and encourage repeat visits.
  • Social Media Campaigns: Leverage social media platforms to showcase your laundromat facilities, share customer testimonials, and announce promotional offers or contests.
  • Eco-Friendly Initiatives: Appeal to environmentally conscious consumers by offering eco-friendly detergents, energy-efficient machines, and recycling programs.

By incorporating these innovative marketing strategies, you can foster customer loyalty, increase brand visibility, and position your laundromat as a preferred destination for laundry services in your community.

register your business

Let’s look at a few successful laundromats in Canada. Review the details of how these laundromats show their flare to become successful businesses in their communities!

Suds Coin Laundry – Toronto, Ontario:

  • Suds Coin Laundry, located in the vibrant city of Toronto, has garnered acclaim for its commitment to customer service excellence and innovative amenities. What sets Suds apart is its focus on creating a comfortable and inviting atmosphere, featuring modern facilities, free Wi-Fi, and a cozy seating area. The management team at Suds understands the importance of convenience and efficiency, offering a range of high-capacity washers and dryers to accommodate various laundry needs, from small loads to bulky items.
    Suds Coin Laundry has also implemented a customer loyalty program, rewarding frequent visitors with discounts and special promotions. Additionally, the laundromat hosts regular events such as “Laundry Nights” with complimentary refreshments and entertainment, fostering a sense of community among patrons.

Spin City Laundry – Vancouver, British Columbia:

  • Spin City Laundry has become a staple in the bustling city of Vancouver, renowned for its eco-friendly initiatives and sustainable practices. The laundromat prides itself on using energy-efficient machines, eco-friendly detergents, and water-saving technologies to minimize environmental impact without compromising on quality.
    Spin City Laundry’s commitment to sustainability resonates with environmentally conscious consumers, attracting a loyal customer base seeking eco-friendly alternatives. The management team actively engages with the local community through educational workshops on eco-friendly laundry practices and partnerships with environmental organizations, positioning Spin City as a socially responsible business.

Laundry Lounge – Calgary, Alberta:

  • Laundry Lounge has established itself as a premier destination for laundry services in Calgary, known for its dedication to customer convenience and technological innovation. The laundromat features state-of-the-art equipment with advanced features such as mobile payment options, real-time machine availability tracking, and remote monitoring capabilities.
    Laundry Lounge prioritizes customer satisfaction by offering 24/7 access, on-site attendants for assistance, and a clean, well-maintained facility. The laundromat’s strategic location near residential neighborhoods and transit hubs ensures maximum accessibility for busy urban dwellers. Moreover, Laundry Lounge leverages digital marketing channels and social media platforms to engage with customers, solicit feedback, and promote special offers, maintaining a strong online presence in the competitive laundry market.

Laundromat Franchise Opportunities:

  • FranchiseDirect: This website lists various franchise opportunities in Canada, including several laundromat and dry cleaning franchises. You can filter by investment range, location, and other criteria.
  • Canadian Franchise Association: This association provides information and resources for franchising in Canada. They also have a directory of franchise opportunities, including some laundromat franchises.
  • This website focuses on franchise opportunities for Canadians. They have a section dedicated to laundry and dry cleaning franchises.

Specific Franchise Examples:

Creative Ways to Enrich the Laundromat Experience and Generate Revenue:

There are so many ideas of how to make you laundromat stand out, making it exceptional for people who come to your laundromat.  There are also opportunities to increase your revenues by allowing advertising space within your walls to the local community whether it be the butcher or the coffee house down the street.  At the same time, you can partner with a business who has complementary items such as organic soaps, fragrances or complementary services to yours where you can generate additional revenues from outside vendors. 

Enhance the Environment:

  • Themed Laundromats: Create different themed sections with unique decor and music (e.g., zen garden, tropical oasis, industrial chic).
  • Comfortable Seating: Offer lounge areas with comfy chairs, tables, and charging stations.
  • Community Art: Partner with local artists to display and sell their work, creating a rotating gallery.
  • Interactive Activities: Provide board games, puzzles, or even a mini library for entertainment.

Offer Additional Services:

  • Pick-Up & Delivery: Partner with a local service for laundry pick-up and delivery.
  • Folding & Ironing: Offer laundry folding and ironing services for busy customers.
  • Dry Cleaning Drop-Off: Partner with a dry cleaner for convenient drop-off and pick-up services.
  • Vending Machines: Stock vending machines with healthy snacks, drinks, laundry essentials, and local products.
  • Local Artisan Products: Partner with local makers to sell handmade soaps, detergents, and other laundry-related products.

Local Advertising & Community Engagement:

  • Digital Screens: Install digital screens showcasing local businesses, events, and community information.
  • Bulletin Board: Create a community bulletin board for residents to post local announcements and events.
  • Partnerships: Partner with local coffee shops, restaurants, or bookstores to offer discounts or promotions to laundromat customers.
  • Charity Events: Host charity events like clothing drives or donation drives, partnering with local organizations.
  • Workshops & Classes: Organize workshops on laundry care, stain removal, or DIY cleaning products.

Additional Ideas:

  • Laundry Loyalty Program: Reward customers with points for frequent use, redeemable for discounts or services.
  • Subscription Services: Offer subscription boxes with laundry essentials delivered monthly.
  • Mobile App Integration: Develop a mobile app for laundry tracking, payment, and service booking.
  • Pet-Friendly Laundromat: Designate a specific area for washing pet bedding and offer pet-related products.


  • Target your audience: Tailor your offerings to your specific customer base and their needs.
  • Start small and experiment: Test different ideas to see what resonates with your customers.
  • Maintain a clean and welcoming environment: This is essential for any successful laundromat.
  • Promote your offerings: Let your customers know about the new experiences and services you offer.

By implementing these creative ideas, you can enrich the laundromat experience for your customers, build a stronger community connection, and generate additional revenue for your business.

In preparing this blog, we found most laundromats do not have a website and the online presence is minimal.  Taking the opportunity to make your business accessible online where customers can get a look at what your space offers can bring people to experience something new and inviting even if outside of their immediate community. 

Benefits of Using Ontario Business Central (OBC) to Start and Grow Your Business:

Experience and Expertise:

  • Over 30 years in the business: OBC boasts a wealth of experience, having helped countless entrepreneurs launch and grow their ventures. This translates into a deep understanding of the Canadian business landscape and its intricacies.
  • Comprehensive support: We offer a range of services beyond just registration, including business name searches, NUANS reports, incorporations, name changes, domain name registrations, and tax account setups. Our one-stop shop approach saves you time and effort.

Accessible and Responsive Support:

  • Multiple communication channels: OBC provides chat, phone, and email support, allowing you to choose the method most comfortable for you. This ensures you get your questions answered promptly and efficiently.
  • Standout support: Customer stories and testimonials highlight their dedication to providing personalized and helpful service, exceeding expectations and going the extra mile.  Check out our google and facebook reviews.  Our team works very hard to make your experience easy, memorable and affordable experience.

Long-Term Partnership:

  • Support beyond launch: Unlike some services that stop after registration, OBC remains a valuable resource as your business grows. They offer ongoing support for compliance, changes, and future needs.
  • Team of professionals: You’ll have access to a team of experienced professionals, including lawyers, accountants, and business consultants, who can advise on various aspects of running your business.

Additional Benefits:

  • Streamlined process: OBC simplifies the business registration process, making it quick and easy to get started.
  • Competitive pricing:  We offer transparent, upfront  and competitive pricing for our services.
  • Positive reputation: We enjoy a strong reputation in the industry, with high customer satisfaction ratings.

Overall, OBC presents a compelling option for aspiring entrepreneurs in Ontario. Our combination of experience, diverse support channels, long-term partnership approach, and team of professionals can empower you to launch your business with confidence and navigate its growth journey smoothly.
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Ontario Business Central Inc. is not a law firm and cannot provide a legal opinion or advice. This information is to assist you in understanding the requirements of registration within the chosen jurisdiction. It is always recommended, when you have legal or accounting questions, that you speak to a qualified professional.