Let’s start with the basics; the Who, What, Where, When & Why. While they are seemingly obvious questions, the answers will lay out the foundation of your new venture.
Every ‘W’ in your business model serves its own unique purpose and all are as important as each other, but location is everything. The ‘Where’ can make or break a company, no matter when or what it is, potentially having the largest impact on all other W’s if not Truthfully analyzed.
So, you want to build a Truck wash?
Location is everything. It is the most concrete (literally) decision that you will make throughout this entire journey into the Truck wash business. Without location properly researched, fully vetted and mapped out, every other aspect is irrelevant.
Truck wash location is one of the few things that can truly not be undone once you’ve made a decision, but seems to be somewhat overlooked as an easy change if something happens or fails along the way. Physically uprooting to a new location is possible, yes, but it also remodels your entire business plan.
New truck wash location means new goals, new demographics, new traffic, new prices, new laws, new people, new EVERYTHING. Paint can be redone, staff can be replaced, partners come and go, but the truck wash location is forever.
Determining the perfect location is not something that you can just decide from inspiration or the price of real estate, it must be well thought out Truthfully, considering a vast number of factors.
Here are 20 Quick Questions to ask yourself about your potential truck wash location:
- How many people in the surrounding area, plus or minus 3 miles, are Truck owners AND over 16?
- Is the location easy to get to?
- How busy is the street of the location?
- Will the Truck wash be easily accessible to get in and out of?
- Is the speed over or under 35mph when passing the Truck wash?
No one wants to make a hard left or U-turn into busy traffic for a Truck wash.
- What are the nearby neighborhoods like? Is there adequate nearby truck density?
- Where are the closest big distribution centers?
- Where is the closest truck terminal?
- Where is the nearest Truckstop?
Rental Trucks could always use a good wash, especially when used for leisure or family.
- Are there any large fleet or distribution companies nearby?
- What small companies are nearby?
- Who, what, and where is/are the nearest Truckwash/washes?
- What is the history of the competition?
- What is the history of your specific location?
- What is the utility cost of water in the area?
- Is the community decreasing or increasing in value?
- Are any projects taking place?
- Will this Truckwash be open all four seasons?
- If not, how many days out of 365?
- Last but obviously not least, what are the zoning regulations in the area?
If zoning, health code, or environmental regulations are in the way, it may be best to keep it that way. Fines, externalities, and/or other associated consequences may not be worth the risk.
The answers to these 20 quick questions will help you determine if the location or locations you have your eyes set on is feasible or not.
You can use your answers to then create a SWOT Analysis for each potential truck wash location in order to define the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats of building a Truckwash at the potential location.
If you don’t like the results or think it may negatively impact your ROI, the next goal is to determine how you can a) change the answer or, b) work with it. If neither, then the next potential location in your sight may be plan c).
As an investor, when it comes to selecting a location for a new Truck wash, you should look for the best possible site you can obtain. A Truck wash is a location-driven service business, so it’s vital that you commit to procuring an A+ property.
Here are ten critical components for selecting a Truck wash site.
At the top of your priority checklist, review the current demographics of a one-mile, three-mile and five-mile radius of the property you’re considering. You need a steady stream of traffic to secure a customer base large enough to support your business.
Other demographic factors include average household income, median income, the number of vehicles in the area and a breakdown of the population.
What is the current zoning for the property you’re considering? Is it primarily commercial or will rezoning be required? It’s difficult to get a property rezoned from resident to commercial, so it’s best to find a property zoned for business use.
3. Property Size
The ideal size for a tunnel Truck wash is approximately one acre. You will also need a minimum of 225 feet in one direction to allow for at least a 125-foot conveyor. The best situation places the largest side of the property along the road for maximum visibility.
4. Available Space
If you plan to build an express exterior model, allow space for vacuum pads, queuing land and turning radiuses. A flex-service wash will also need room for the post-vacuum and finishing areas.
If your property is out of sight, it’s out of mind. Ideally, build your Truck wash in front of other buildings parallel to the main street.
6. Traffic Counts
As important as traffic counts are, they are not nearly as vital as demographics, which is why we listed it first. We have seen Truck washes with extremely high traffic counts not performing well because the demographics weren’t right.
7. Traffic Speed
If traffic is going 50 miles per hour or more, drivers are usually traveling too fast to view the facility or signage. Shoot for a location with speed limits less than 45 MPH.
8. Nearby Retail Area
Locating your Truck wash near other retail businesses provides an additional draw. When possible, harness the destination draw from big box retail stores and place your wash on one of their out-lots.
9. Nearby Competition
Competing Truck washes located within a three-mile area are definite deterrents, which you should avoid. Visit all the local washes that are not service stations, convenience stores or self-service washes in the three-mile radius and assess them as a competitor.
10. Property Cost
Take into consideration the cost of property, whether for purchase or lease, as part of your total investment or monthly operational expense.
Site selection is no time to penny-pinch so never be cheap when choosing a property. If the location is right and projections show that it could generate high volume, it’s worth paying an extra amount. There is no substitute for obtaining a great site.
LazrTek can Help you with Site Selection
These are but a few of the many factors to consider when making a site selection. Others include everything from trade barriers to local sign ordinances to environmental concerns and much more. Download the complete guide to learn everything you need to know about choosing the site that’s best for you.
If you require help, Motor City is here for you. We can provide advice on finding the perfect “A” site location, whether to choose a full-service, flex or express business model and ways to generate revenue.
Discover 10 ways to increase your net profits of your planned truck wash by contracting LazrTek to help you with site selection services and feasibility study.
Why May You Need A Feasibility Study?
You need to evaluate the market and financial feasibility of projects before making a major financial commitment. In most cases your lender, potential partners or investors want to ensure the proposed project can be a success. The scopes of our studies are unique to the project and incorporate the necessary research and analysis that are necessary for you to make a qualified decision.
Why a Feasibility Study is Important for any Business
A feasibility study examines the practicability of a Truck wash in your area. The principal function of this is to determine if the project will be successful or not and whether you should continue to pursue the venture or not. In business, feasibility studies work in a number of fashions.
The feasibility report will look at how your truckwash idea can work on a long-term basis and endure financial risks that may come. It is also helpful in recognizing potential cash flows and gaining supportive appraisals for your commercial lenders. Another important purpose is that it helps planners focus on the project and narrow down the possibilities when approaching zoning boards and municipalities for support of your proposed project. Additionally, a feasibility study can provide reasons not to pursue the truckwash project.
A feasibility study that helps you decide not to move forward is as valuable or more valuable as a feasibility study that fully supports your plan. When it comes to the operational aspect, the analysis determines whether the plan has the necessary resources for it to be sustainable, scalable and profitable. LazrTek will also help you discern whether or not truckers and nearby fleet owners will support the proposed truck wash. Additionally, you can have knowledge on the trends because a feasibility study looks at the present-day truck wash market and studies the anticipated growth of the truck wash market regionally, nationally, and locally.
Feasibility studies are prevalent in all business industries. Whether Hotel, Hospitality, Restaurant, Real Estate, Medical, Office or Industrial. Getting a head start on a Feasibility study from LazrTek will ensure you save valuable time and money on the project. It will also provide substantial and corroborative information for your investors and lenders.
LazrTek has been providing accurate and precise Truck wash feasibility studies for many years. Find out more on how LazrTek can assist you obtain the necessary study to ensure your project starts off on the right foot to be hugely successful..
What Is a Feasibility Study?
A feasibility study is formal assessment of the practicality of a proposed project plan or method. This is done by analyzing technical, economic, legal, operational and time feasibility factors. Just as the name implies, you’re asking, “Is this feasible?” For example, do you have or can you create the technology to do what you propose? Do you have the people, tools and the resources necessary? And, will the project get you the ROI you expect?
When should you do a feasibility study? It should be done during that point in the project management life cycle after the business case has been completed.
So, that’s the “what” and the “when” but how about the “why?” Meaning, why do you need a feasibility study? Well, it determines the factors that affect project feasibility, making it pretty important.
What Is Included in a LazrTek Feasibility Study Report?
The findings of your project feasibility study are compiled in a formal feasibility report that usually includes the following elements.
- Executive summary
- Description of product/service
- Technology considerations
- Product/service marketplace
- Marketing strategy
- Financial projections
- Findings and recommendations
Types of Feasibility Study
- Technical Feasibility: Consists in determining if your organization has the technical resources and expertise to meet the project requirements.
- Economic Feasibility: You’ll need to do an assessment of the economic factors of your project to determine its financial viability. You can use a cost benefit analysis to compare its financial costs against its projected benefits.
- Legal Feasibility: Your project must meet legal requirements. That includes laws and regulations that apply to all activities and deliverables in your project scope.
- Operational Feasibility: Operational feasibility refers to how well your project matches your organization’s capacity planning, resources, strategic goals and business objectives.
- Time Feasibility: Estimate the time that will take to execute the project and set deadlines. Then think how your project timeline fits with your current operations, such as your demand planning, production schedule, among many other things.
The 7 Steps of a LazrTek Feasibility Study
1. Conduct a Preliminary Analysis
LazrTek will begin by outlining your project plan. We will focus on an unserved need, a market where the demand is greater than the supply, and whether the product or service has a distinct advantage. Then you need to determine if the feasibility factors are too high to clear (i.e. too expensive, unable to effectively market, etc.).
2. Prepare a Projected Income Statement
This step requires us to work backward. Start with what we expect the income from the project to be and then what project funding is needed to achieve that goal. This is the foundation of an income statement. Things to take into account here include what services are required and how much they’ll cost, any adjustments to revenues, such as reimbursements, etc.
3. Conduct a Market Survey, or Perform Market Research
This step is key to the success of the feasibility study, so our market analysis will be as thorough as possible.
Our market research is going to give us the clearest picture of the revenues and return on investment you can realistically expect from the truck wash project. Some things to consider are the geographic influence on the market, demographics, analyzing competitors, the value of the market and what your share will be and if the market is open to expansion (that is, response to your offer).
4. Plan Business Organization and Operations
Once the groundwork of the previous steps has been laid, it’s time to set up the organization and operations of the planned project to meet its technical, operational, economic and legal feasibility factors. This is not a superficial, broad-stroke endeavor. It should be thorough and include start-up costs, fixed investments and operating costs.
These costs address things such as equipment, merchandising methods, real estate, personnel, supply availability, overhead, etc.
5. Prepare an Opening Day Balance Sheet
This includes an economic estimate of the assets and liabilities, one that should be as accurate as possible. To do this, create a list that includes items, sources, costs and available financing. Liabilities to consider are such things as leasing or purchasing of land, buildings and equipment, financing for assets and accounts receivables.
6. Review and Analyze All Data
All these steps are important, but the review and analysis are especially important to make sure that everything is as it should be and nothing requires changing or tweaking. So, take a moment to look over your work one last time.
We will re-examine our previous steps, such as the income statement, and compare it with your expenses and liabilities. Is it still realistic? This is also the time to think about risk, analyzing and managing, and come up with any contingency plans.
7. Make a Go/No-Go Decision
We will now be at the point to make a decision about whether the project is feasible or not. That sounds simple, but all the previous steps lead to this decision-making moment. A couple of other things to consider before making this binary choice is whether the commitment is worth the time, effort and money and is it aligned with the organization’s strategic goals and long-term aspirations.
If your project is feasible then the real work begins. A feasibility helps you plan more efficiently. Our various Gantt charts in the feasibility study will organize tasks, set deadlines, add priority and links dependent tasks to avoid delays. But unlike Gantt software, we calculate the critical path for you and set a baseline to measure project variance once you move into the execution phase.
When completing a feasibility study, it’s always good to have a contingency plan that you test to make sure it’s a viable alternative.
If you ultimately decide to implement the project after results from the formal feasibility study, you will already have the project started in our software, which can now help us monitor and report on the project progress.
Feasibility Analysis Definition
Basically, it’s an assessment of the practicality of a proposed plan or method. Basically, we’ll want to want to know, is this feasible? Some of the questions that may generate this or we can hear people asking are, “Do we have or can we create the technology to do this? Do we have the people resource who can produce this and will we get our ROI, our Return On Investment?” What type wash equipment do we use? Do we build multiple bays? Do we offer detailing, under carriage wash, trailer and tanker washouts? Should we use mobile wash to test the market as an MVP? Do we add mobile wash to the fixed bay business model?
When to Do a Feasibility Study
When do we do the feasibility study? They are typically done at the beginning of project lifecycle and it’s done after the business case because the business case outlines what is being proposed.
So why do we do this? The reason we do this is because we need to determine the factors that will make the business opportunity a success. Often, feasibility studies are required by commercial lenders and investors.