Car Detailing Business Plan for starting your own business

Do you want to start an auto detailing business? Well, the auto detaling business is the thing which keeps the valuable cars of vehicle owners in shape so the prospects of earning huge amounts of profits in this car detailing business plan are really high. But as with any other business, this business also requires top-notch planning for its startup as well as for its successful operation.

In case you aren’t sure how to start a mobile auto detailing business, the first thing you should do is develop a comprehensive business plan covering all aspects. The business plan for car detailing not only lays the primary ground for establishing your company policies but it also helps you in startup. For helping you write an effective professional business planning, we are providing here the business plan of an auto detailing startup named ‘ProStar Auto Detailers’.

Executive Summary

2.1 The Business

ProStar Auto Detailers will be started in a leased location adjacent to 6-Sigma Carwash in the main commercial district of San Jose, United States. We will be based at a ten minutes’ drive from the residential zone, that’s why our location is nearly ideal for starting a auto detailing business.

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2.2 Management

ProStar Auto Detailers will be owned and operated by Samuel King, who has been associated with automobile industry for more than 9 years. Samuel will hire a team of industry professionals for providing quality services to the customers.

2.3 Customers

The company will provide in-station auto detailing services at the facility while a mobile minibus will provide out-station auto detailing services to the customers. We plan to serve all sorts of customers, ranging from individual car owners to automobile dealers, located in the vicinity of our workshop.

2.4 Target of the Company

Our main car detailing business plan targets are summarized in the following column chart.

Business plan for Car Detailing - 3 Years Profit Forecast
Franchise Business Planning 
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Company Summary

3.1 Company Owner

ProStar Auto Detailers will be owned and operated by Samuel King, who has been associated with this industry for more than 9 years. After graduating from High School, Samuel started working in Realtek Carwash & Auto Detailers. Within next 5 years, he was promoted to Manager Operations of the company’s Manhattan branch. He then served as General Manager of Star Carwash for next 5 years after which he finally decided to start his own car detailing business startup.

3.2 Why the Business is being started

Samuel aims to start car detailing business for making profits in this industry as well as for introducing innovative detailing solutions originated from his creative mind. Being associated with this industry for around a decade, Samuel knows how to run a successful auto detailing business.

3.3 How the Business will be started

ProStar Auto Detailers will be started in a leased location adjacent to 6-Sigma Carwash in the main commercial district of San Jose, United States. The company will provide in-station services at the facility while for providing out-station services, a mobile minibus will be procured. The location was used as a warehouse in past and a contractor will be hired for converting the facility into an auto detailing workshop. In addition to leasing the facility, the company will acquire an operating license from the state. The inventory needed for startup includes furniture for office and waiting area, cash registers, computer systems, carpet extractors, air/vacuum fresheners, steam cleaners and associated detailing equipment and tools. The major startup costs are summarized in the column chart below.

Auto Detailing Business Plan - Startup cost

The detailed startup requirements and expenses are given in the table below.

Start-up Expenses 
Research and Development$42,750
Expensed Equipment$42,750
Start-up Assets$0
Cash Required$322,500
Start-up Inventory$52,625
Other Current Assets$222,500
Long-term Assets$125,000
Total Requirements$245,000
Start-up Expenses to Fund$121,875
Start-up Assets to Fund$195,000
Non-cash Assets from Start-up$118,750
Cash Requirements from Start-up$0
Additional Cash Raised$118,750
Cash Balance on Starting Date$121,875
Liabilities and Capital$0
Current Borrowing$0
Long-term Liabilities$0
Accounts Payable (Outstanding Bills)$0
Other Current Liabilities (interest-free)$0
Planned Investment$0
Investor 1$312,500
Investor 2$0
Additional Investment Requirement$0
Loss at Start-up (Start-up Expenses)$313,125
Total Funding$265,000
Any questions? Get in Touch!

    Services for customers

    Before starting a mobile car detailing business, you must take many things into consideration such as you must consider what types of detailing services will you be providing to your customers. Deciding your services is extremely important since it helps you plan other components of your car detailing business plan so make sure to consider it before you think about how to start a car detailing business. ProStar Auto Detailers will mainly provide following services to its customers:

    • Exterior detailing: Exterior detailing will be done by providing a multi-step, scratch free, manual hand washes for giving an exquisite look to the valuable vehicles of our customers.
    • Interior detailing: Interior detailing will be done by cleaning all hard surfaces; seats, dashboard, center console, instrument cluster, door panels, etc. by wiping them down to remove topical dust. After that debris will be removed from carpets by blowing out & vacuuming.
    • Waxing & paint correction: Paint correction will be done by restoring the paint back to its true clarity by removing visible defects followed by waxing to protect and maintain the car’s paint.
    • Ceramic coating: Ceramic coating will be done by coating the vehicles with a fine layer of quartz for protecting their surface and giving them a shiny look.

    Marketing Analysis of auto detailing business

    The most important component of an effective car detailing business plan is its accurate marketing analysis. If you are starting on a smaller scale, you can do marketing analysis yourself by taking help from this auto detailing business plan sample or other car detailing business plans available online. On the other hand, if you are starting a car detailing business on a larger scale, it is always best to seek the counsel of marketing experts.


    The success or failure of a business totally depends upon its marketing strategy which can only be developed on the basis of accurate marketing analysis.

    Therefore, it must be considered before you think about how to start car detailing business. Samuel acquired the services of marketing experts to carry out the marketing analysis for his mobile auto detailing business plan.

    5.1 Market & Industry Trends

    Immigration business plan

    Before you start an auto detailing business, you must analyze whether the market is feasible for startups or not. For analyzing the market trends, you can also take help from this car detailing business plan template. According to IBISWorld, the car wash and auto detailing industry generate $11 billion in revenue every year in the United States. As of 2018, there are more than 65,000 businesses in this industry which are responsible for employing more than 212,000 people in the United States. The number of car wash and auto detailing companies has been increasing over the past years while the industry is growing at an estimated rate of 3.1%. Considering the number of established businesses in this industry, the environment has become extremely competitive especially for the startups. Starting an auto detailing business is easy but sustaining it and making it profitable is something which can only be achieved by impeccable planning and effective marketing.

    5.2 Marketing Segmentation

    Our primary target market is the residential community living in San Jose. Nearly all people based in the area have their own vehicles either new or leased. Our secondary market will be the car dealerships located in the vicinity. Our experts have identified the following type of target audience which can become our future consumers:

    Auto Detailing Business Plan - Marketing Segmentation

    The detailed marketing segmentation of our target audience is as follows:

    5.2.1 New car owners:

    This group comprises of customers who have recently bought a new car. These customers are very conscious about their cars and want them to look new as long as possible. Our detailing services will provide the perfect solution to them. In addition to exterior and interior detailing, these customers are also expected to have their vehicles ceramic coated by us for preserving their new look.

    5.2.2 Sports car owners:

    Many young and middle-aged men in the neighborhood own expensive sports cars. These people will also need our services for maintaining the exquisite looks of their expensive vehicles.

    5.2.3 Luxury car owners:

    Luxury car owners have totally different requirements and they can easily spend a lot of cash for maintaining their high-end expensive cars and keeping them in the best possible shape. These customers prefer quality to cost that’s why we will offer premium packages for them.

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    5.2.4 Local businesses:

    Since we will be located in the main commercial district of the city, we will be surrounded by several companies and local businesses, most of which have fleets of small vans and cars. Although these businesses own a lot of cars, their contribution to our revenue and sales will be negligible since they seldom require car detailing services.

    5.2.5 Dealerships:

    There are 5 car dealerships within 6 miles of our location. These car dealers sell old as well as new cars and need their cars to be in the best possible state. That’s why they will regularly require our auto detailing services.
    The detailed market analysis of our potential customers is given in the following table:

    Market Analysis       
    Potential CustomersGrowthYear 1Year 2Year 3Year 4Year 5CAGR
    New car owners35%22,33432,34443,66552,54466,43213.43%
    Sports car owners15%11,43313,34416,55318,74520,54510.00%
    Luxury car owners18%12,86714,43315,99917,56519,13115.32%
    Local businesses7%8,3229,45510,65512,86714,43310.00%

    5.3 Packages Pricing

    Considering the competitive environment, we have priced all our services in the similar ranges as of our competitors except for the interior detailing. While many of our competitors offer interior detailing services for about $100 on average, we have priced this service in relatively lower ranges. This is done to achieve a competitive advantage since interior detailing is the most frequently availed detailing service. Our services are priced as follows:

    • Exterior detailing starting at $50
    • Interior detailing starting at $80
    • Waxing & paint correction starting at $200
    • Ceramic coating starting at $400

    The pricing varies with the type of car and will generally be 30% more for SUVs and trucks.

    5.4 Target of the Company

    Our main business targets to be achieved as milestones over the course of next three years are as follows:

    • To become the best auto detailing service in San Jose within next five years of launch by providing high-quality services
    • To achieve the net profit margin of $10k per month by the end of the first year, $15k per month by the end of the second year, and $25k per month by the end of the third year
    • To balance the initial cost of the startup with earned profits by the end of the second year


    After identifying the market demand, market trends, and the potential customers of the startup, the next step is to define an effective strategy for business attracting those customers.

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    Aqua Hydro Solutions

    Aqua Hydro Solutions Alex and team are very professional, courteous and patient through out our business development. They helped our multi million dollar company advance to the next stage within our original business plan and strategies. We look forward to working with them on our next development and strongly recommend their services to any serious company that is evolving from start up and/or in the growth stages. Kirk

    ∙ Kirk

    Like marketing analysis, sales strategy is also an important component of a mobile car detailing business startup and must be properly planned before you think about to start your own car detailing business.

    6.1 Competitive Analysis

    As mentioned earlier, there are more than 65,000 similar businesses in the United States and for surviving in such intensely competitive environment, one needs to have certain competitive advantages. Our biggest competitive advantage is our location which is nearly ideal to start mobile car detailing business. We are located in the main commercial district but the residential zone is just at a ten minutes’ drive from us. Secondly, we have priced our interior detailing service in relatively lower ranges as compared to our competitors so as to promote our sales and build trust among customers. Another aspect which will distinguish us from other similar businesses will be our unparalleled and exceptional customer service. At our company, all esteemed customers and their valuable vehicles will be dealt with utmost respect and care.

    6.2 Sales Strategy

    After carrying out a detailed analysis, our experts came up with the following brilliant ideas to advertise and sell our services.

    • We will advertise our company on social media.
    • We will make a company webpage by which our customers can make a reservation with us.
    • We will offer various discounts on special occasions to attract new customers.
    • We will initially offer 20% discount on all services for first three months.

    6.3 Sales Monthly

    Auto Detailing Business Plan - Sales Monthly

    6.4 Sales Yearly

    Auto Detailing Business Plan - Sales Yearly

    6.5 Sales Forecast

    Auto Detailing Business Plan - Unit Sales
    Sales Forecast   
    Unit SalesYear 1Year 2Year 3
    Interior detailing1,887,0302,680,3202,588,240
    Exterior detailing802,370815,430823,540
    Waxing & paint correction539,3207702301,002,310
    Ceramic coating265,450322,390393,320
    TOTAL UNIT SALES3,494,1704,588,3704,807,410
    Unit PricesYear 1Year 2Year 3
    Interior detailing$140.00 $150.00 $160.00
    Exterior detailing$600.00 $800.00 $1,000.00
    Waxing & paint correction$700.00 $800.00 $900.00
    Ceramic coating$650.00 $750.00 $850.00
    Interior detailing$2,149,800 $2,784,000 $3,383,200
    Exterior detailing$120,050 $194,500 $268,500
    Waxing & paint correction$50,110 $71,600 $93,000
    Ceramic coating$139,350 $194,600 $249,850
    Direct Unit CostsYear 1Year 2Year 3
    Interior detailing$0.70 $0.80 $0.90
    Exterior detailing$0.40 $0.45 $0.50
    Waxing & paint correction$0.30 $0.35 $0.40
    Ceramic coating$3.00 $3.50 $4.00
    Direct Cost of Sales   
    Interior detailing$989,300 $1,839,000 $2,679,700
    Exterior detailing$66,600 $119,900 $173,200
    Waxing & paint correction$17,900 $35,000 $52,100
    Ceramic coating$19,400 $67,600 $115,800
    Subtotal Direct Cost of Sales$1,294,100 $1,699,400 $2,104,700
    Any questions? Get in Touch!

      Personnel plan

      Personnel plan is also an important component of a car detailing business plan since it gives you an estimate of the staff required for your startup as well as the costs incurred on their salaries. So, make sure to duly consider it before thinking about how to start a car detailing business. The personnel plan of ProStar Auto Detailers is as follows.

      7.1 Company Staff

      Samuel will act as the General Manager of the company and will initially hire following people:

      • 1 Accountant for maintaining financial and other records
      • 2 Sales Executives responsible for marketing and discovering new ventures
      • 10 Workers for manually washing the cars and providing detailing services
      • 3 Technicians for operating the equipment and machines
      • 1 Driver for driving the mobile van to customers
      • 1 Technical Assistant for managing the company’s official website and social media pages
      • 1 Customer Representative for interacting with customers

      To ensure the best quality service, all employees will be selected through vigorous testing and will be trained for a month before starting their jobs. Since the traffic for car detailing service varies month to month so part-time workers will also be hired to facilitate the company staff in the busy summer months.

      7.2 Average Salary of Employees

      The following table shows the forecasted data about the salaries of the employees for the next three years:

       Personnel Plan   
       Year 1Year 2Year 3
      Accountant$85,000 $95,000 $105,000
      Sales Executives $45,000 $50,000 $55,000
      Workers$550,000 $650,000 $750,000
      Technicians$145,000 $152,000 $159,000
      Driver$50,000 $55,000 $60,000
      Technical Assistant$87,000 $94,000 $101,000
      Customer Representative$42,000 $45,000 $48,000
      Total Salaries$1,004,000 $1,141,000 $1,278,000

      Financial Plan

      The last component of car detailing business plan is an in-depth financial plan. The financial plan crafts a detailed map of all the expenses needed for the startup and how these expenses will be met by the earned profits. It is recommended that you hire a financial expert for guiding you through all financial aspects needed to be considered for starting an auto detailing business.
      The company will be financed by Samuel himself and he will control the direction of the business to make sure that it is expanding at the forecasted rate. As for the car detailing business start up, no equity funding or outside loan will be required. With the help of financial experts, Samuel has developed the following financial plan for his auto detailing start up business, which outlines the financial development of ProStar Auto Detailers over the next three years.

      8.1 Important Assumptions

      The financial projections of the company are forecasted on the basis of following assumptions. These assumptions are quite conservative and are expected to show deviation but to a limited level such that the company’s major financial strategy will not be affected.

       General Assumptions   
       Year 1Year 2Year 3
      Plan Month123
      Current Interest Rate10.00%11.00%12.00%
      Long-term Interest Rate10.00%10.00%10.00%
      Tax Rate26.42%27.76%28.12%

      8.2 Brake-even Analysis

      Auto Detailing Business Plan - Brake-even Analysis
       Brake-Even Analysis 
      Monthly Units Break-even5530
      Monthly Revenue Break-even$159,740
      Average Per-Unit Revenue$260.87
      Average Per-Unit Variable Cost$0.89
      Estimated Monthly Fixed Cost$196,410

      8.3 Projected Profit and Loss

       Pro Forma Profit And Loss   
       Year 1Year 2Year 3
      Sales$309,069 $385,934 $462,799
      Direct Cost of Sales$15,100 $19,153 $23,206
      Other$0 $0 $0
      TOTAL COST OF SALES$15,100 $19,153 $23,206
      Gross Margin$293,969 $366,781 $439,593
      Gross Margin %94.98%94.72%94.46%
      Payroll$138,036 $162,898 $187,760
      Sales and Marketing and Other Expenses$1,850 $2,000 $2,150
      Depreciation$2,070 $2,070 $2,070
      Leased Equipment$0 $0 $0
      Utilities$4,000 $4,250 $4,500
      Insurance$1,800 $1,800 $1,800
      Rent$6,500 $7,000 $7,500
      Payroll Taxes$34,510 $40,726 $46,942
      Other$0 $0 $0
      Total Operating Expenses$188,766 $220,744 $252,722
      Profit Before Interest and Taxes$105,205 $146,040 $186,875
      EBITDA$107,275 $148,110 $188,945
      Interest Expense$0 $0 $0
      Taxes Incurred$26,838 $37,315 $47,792
      Net Profit$78,367 $108,725 $139,083
      Net Profit/Sales30.00%39.32%48.64%

      8.3.1 Profit Monthly

      Auto Detailing Business Plan - Profit Monthly

      8.3.2 Profit Yearly

      Auto Detailing Business Plan - Profit Yearly

      8.3.3 Gross Margin Monthly

      Auto Detailing Business Plan - Gross Margin Monthly

      8.3.4 Gross Margin Yearly

      Auto Detailing Business Plan - Gross Margin Yearly

      8.4 Projected Cash Flow

      Auto Detailing Business Plan - Projected Cash Flow
       Pro Forma Cash Flow   
      Cash ReceivedYear 1Year 2Year 3
      Cash from Operations   
      Cash Sales$40,124 $45,046 $50,068
      Cash from Receivables$7,023 $8,610 $9,297
      SUBTOTAL CASH FROM OPERATIONS$47,143 $53,651 $59,359
      Additional Cash Received   
      Sales Tax, VAT, HST/GST Received$0 $0 $0
      New Current Borrowing$0 $0 $0
      New Other Liabilities (interest-free)$0 $0 $0
      New Long-term Liabilities$0 $0 $0
      Sales of Other Current Assets$0 $0 $0
      Sales of Long-term Assets$0 $0 $0
      New Investment Received$0 $0 $0
      SUBTOTAL CASH RECEIVED$47,143 $53,651 $55,359
      ExpendituresYear 1Year 2Year 3
      Expenditures from Operations   
      Cash Spending$21,647 $24,204 $26,951
      Bill Payments$13,539 $15,385 $170,631
      SUBTOTAL SPENT ON OPERATIONS$35,296 $39,549 $43,582
      Additional Cash Spent   
      Sales Tax, VAT, HST/GST Paid Out$0 $0 $0
      Principal Repayment of Current Borrowing$0 $0 $0
      Other Liabilities Principal Repayment$0 $0 $0
      Long-term Liabilities Principal Repayment$0 $0 $0
      Purchase Other Current Assets$0 $0 $0
      Purchase Long-term Assets$0 $0 $0
      Dividends$0 $0 $0
      SUBTOTAL CASH SPENT$35,296 $35,489 $43,882
      Net Cash Flow$11,551 $13,167 $15,683
      Cash Balance$21,823 $22,381 $28,239

      8.5 Projected Balance Sheet

       Pro Forma Balance Sheet   
      AssetsYear 1Year 2Year 3
      Current Assets   
      Cash$184,666 $218,525 $252,384
      Accounts Receivable$12,613 $14,493 $16,373
      Inventory$2,980 $3,450 $3,920
      Other Current Assets$1,000 $1,000 $1,000
      TOTAL CURRENT ASSETS$201,259 $237,468 $273,677
      Long-term Assets   
      Long-term Assets$10,000 $10,000 $10,000
      Accumulated Depreciation$12,420 $14,490 $16,560
      TOTAL LONG-TERM ASSETS$980 $610 $240
      TOTAL ASSETS$198,839 $232,978 $267,117
      Liabilities and CapitalYear 1Year 2Year 3
      Current Liabilities   
      Accounts Payable$9,482 $10,792 $12,102
      Current Borrowing$0 $0 $0
      Other Current Liabilities$0 $0 $0
      SUBTOTAL CURRENT LIABILITIES$9,482 $10,792 $12,102
      Long-term Liabilities$0 $0 $0
      TOTAL LIABILITIES$9,482 $10,792 $12,102
      Paid-in Capital$30,000 $30,000 $30,000
      Retained Earnings$48,651 $72,636 $96,621
      Earnings$100,709 $119,555 $138,401
      TOTAL CAPITAL$189,360 $222,190 $255,020
      TOTAL LIABILITIES AND CAPITAL$198,839 $232,978 $267,117
      Net Worth$182,060 $226,240 $270,420

      8.6 Business Ratios

       Ratio Analysis    
       Year 1Year 2Year 3Industry Profile
      Sales Growth4.35%30.82%63.29%4.00%
      Percent of Total Assets    
      Accounts Receivable5.61%4.71%3.81%9.70%
      Other Current Assets1.75%2.02%2.29%27.40%
      Total Current Assets138.53%150.99%163.45%54.60%
      Long-term Assets-9.47%-21.01%-32.55%58.40%
      TOTAL ASSETS100.00%100.00%100.00%100.00%
      Current Liabilities4.68%3.04%2.76%27.30%
      Long-term Liabilities0.00%0.00%0.00%25.80%
      Total Liabilities4.68%3.04%2.76%54.10%
      NET WORTH99.32%101.04%102.76%44.90%
      Percent of Sales    
      Gross Margin94.18%93.85%93.52%0.00%
      Selling, General & Administrative Expenses74.29%71.83%69.37%65.20%
      Advertising Expenses2.06%1.11%0.28%1.40%
      Profit Before Interest and Taxes26.47%29.30%32.13%2.86%
      Main Ratios    
      Total Debt to Total Assets2.68%1.04%0.76%67.10%
      Pre-tax Return on Net Worth66.83%71.26%75.69%4.40%
      Pre-tax Return on Assets64.88%69.75%74.62%9.00%
      Additional RatiosYear 1Year 2Year 3 
      Net Profit Margin19.20%21.16%23.12%N.A.
      Return on Equity47.79%50.53%53.27%N.A.
      Activity Ratios    
      Accounts Receivable Turnover4.564.564.56N.A.
      Collection Days9299106N.A.
      Inventory Turnover19.722.5525.4N.A.
      Accounts Payable Turnover14.1714.6715.17N.A.
      Payment Days272727N.A.
      Total Asset Turnover1.841.551.26N.A.
      Debt Ratios    
      Debt to Net Worth0-0.02-0.04N.A.
      Current Liab. to Liab.111N.A.
      Liquidity Ratios    
      Net Working Capital$120,943 $140,664 $160,385 N.A.
      Interest Coverage000N.A.
      Additional Ratios    
      Assets to Sales0.450.480.51N.A.
      Current Debt/Total Assets4%3%2%N.A.
      Acid Test23.6627.0130.36N.A.
      Sales/Net Worth1.681.290.9N.A.
      Dividend Payout000N.A.

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