How to Choose the Best Location for Your Laundromat

Laundromats boast some of the beefiest profit margins and success rates for entrepreneurs. But keep in mind, your true potential hinges on your ability to pick the right storefront for your business model, customer demographic, and revenue goals.

With the laundry business depending largely on foot traffic, every passerby is a potential customer, so situating your storefront in a busy spot with ample parking and lots of curb appeal is essential to maximizing your growth. That means central locations with heavy foot traffic are your golden ticket to long-term laundromat success. 

Whether you're looking to pick your very first laundromat location or scouting out spots to expand your business, intimately understanding the ins and outs of strategic laundromat location selection can turn a good business into a great one. Keep reading to learn the true significance of location, location, location on your laundry business and exclusive tips for choosing the best location for your laundromat. 

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Learn how to use these top 5 marketing techniques at your laundromat with little to no cost to help bring in more customers and boost revenue.

Why location matters in the laundromat business

Laundromat success relies on customer accessibility, competition leverage, and profitability. A great laundromat location significantly enhances visibility and convenience for your target demographic, be it busy families, students, or transient populations, ultimately driving foot traffic and boosting your bottom line. The physical location of your laundromat will always be extremely important. But, an increasingly digital world has opened the door to growing your brick-and-mortar business through online searchability. This is where search engine optimization (SEO) comes in. 

SEO is a process that helps your laundromat's website rank higher in online search results, making it easier for potential customers to find your business online and increasing your chances of attracting more visitors. The importance of laundromat location is still a major component but is complemented by a strong online presence. For example, a laundromat nestled in a quieter location may be able to compete with one on a busy street corner downtown if it harnesses the power of local SEO well. Optimizing your website for important keywords in search engines, will allow you to attract local customers efficiently, even if their physical location isn't immediately visible.


This starts with a robust Google My Business profile and collecting positive online reviews, which both support in enhancing your laundromat's online visibility. These strategies paired with relevant content production and on-page SEO best practices, will allow your customers to find you easily, regardless of your location.

Your chosen physical location remains a critical factor in your laundromat's success, but this should not discount the importance of integrating comprehensive digital marketing strategies like local SEO. This dual approach puts you in a high-traffic location and positions you to show up on page-one of Google when prospective customers who search “laundromat near me.”

Key factors in choosing the best laundromat location

Picking the ideal location for a laundromat is more than just setting up shop in a storefront downtown. The top three factors are your target demographic, business niche, and lease details. However, it’s even more nuanced than that. In other words, the question "what is the best location for a laundromat?" requires more thought than meets the eye. Here are all the important factors in answering that question for your business:

1. Demographics

Understanding the demographic profile of your target market plays a huge role in your laundromat’s growth potential and serves to help you choose the right community for your storefront. Consider these:

  • Population density: High-density areas typically offer a larger customer base. Urban settings, with their mix of apartments and condos, often lack in-unit laundry facilities, creating a steady demand for laundromat services.

  • Income levels: Areas with lower to middle-income families may have a higher demand for laundromat services, as residents might not own washing machines or dryers.

  • Lifestyle and housing trends: Neighborhoods with a high percentage of renters, students, or transient populations (such as tourists in vacation rental properties) are ideal for laundromats. 

Each demographic segment may require a different approach when it comes to your business offerings. For example, a laundromat near a college might offer late-night hours to cater to students' schedules. Similarly, one based in a family-oriented suburb could focus on providing ample space and entertainment for children.

2. Accessibility and visibility

Your laundromat should be easily accessible and visible to potential customers. A location on a main road, near public transportation, or within walking distance of a large residential area can increase foot traffic. Visibility from the street helps attract walk-in customers, and visually appealing signage can enhance your laundromat's presence and brand identity. But accessibility isn't just about location; it also encompasses plentiful, safe parking and ease of entry. A shared parking lot with other businesses can increase convenience for customers hauling heavy bags of laundry. 

3. Lease terms

You may find a storefront nestled in a central location, within the community you wish to serve, with a great parking lot, and tons of foot traffic, but if it’s lease terms aren’t promising, it’s all meaningless! A long-term lease with options to renew can protect your business from unexpected rent increases or eviction. Make sure to understand the terms of the lease fully and to negotiate clauses that benefit your business, such as exclusivity rights to prevent the landlord from leasing other spaces within the same complex to competitors. Consulting with a real estate attorney can help navigate these negotiations.

4. Real estate essentials

Several real estate factors play into the attractiveness of a laundromat location, such as: 

  • Rent: It should align with your business forecast and budget. High rent in a prime location might be justified by increased customer volume, but be sure that it’s sustainable in the long term.

  • Size and layout: The space must accommodate your equipment and provide a comfortable area for customers. Bonus points if the space allows for future expansion! Efficient layout will enhance the customer experience and benefit you in the long run.

  • Zoning laws: The location you choose must be zoned for a laundromat. Since zoning restrictions can vary widely, it’s wise to check if there are any planned developments or changes in zoning laws that could affect your business.

  • Parking: A dedicated or shared parking lot is a huge plus in the eyes of your customers (and employees), especially in areas where street parking is limited or unsafe.

5. Competition analysis

Analyzing your competition is an important step in choosing the best location for your laundromat and it goes far beyond simply counting the number of laundromats in the area. Consider the following:

  • Quality of services: How does your planned service offering compare to existing laundromats? Is there a gap in the market you can fill? For instance, if there are no laundry businesses offering pickup and delivery services, this may be in opportunity for you if there’s demand.

  • Pricing: Understanding the pricing strategy of competitors can help you position your services competitively.

  • Niche services: Offering specialized services such as eco-friendly washing, large-capacity machines, or additional conveniences (like a coffee shop or bar) can differentiate your laundromat from competitors.

6. Water and electricity hookups

The technical feasibility of installing and maintaining laundromat equipment is a critical factor. Adequate water supply, electrical capacity, and proper plumbing/HVAC systems are non-negotiable for operational efficiency and compliance with health and safety regulations. You should conduct a thorough inspection with qualified professionals before committing to a location. The cost of upgrading utilities can significantly impact your budget and timeline.

Recommended laundromat locations

The ideal location for your laundromat is where potential customers spend the majority of their time and how the location can cater to them. Here are 10 tested laundromat locations that guarantee high customer foot traffic and operational success:

  • Close to city center: Establishing a laundromat near a city center puts your business in the heart of urban activity. City centers often house a dense population of residents in apartments or condos without in-unit laundry facilities. Moreover, these areas attract a significant amount of foot traffic from people shopping and dining.

  • In strip malls: Positioning a laundromat in a strip mall is another excellent strategy. Strip malls are frequented by a wide range of customers completing their routine shopping and errands, providing a steady stream of potential users. 

  • Near residential areas with high rental occupancy: Targeting locations near neighborhoods or complexes with a high percentage of rental properties can capture a key demographic for laundromats—renters who may lack access to personal laundry facilities.

  • Adjacent to college campuses: College students, especially those living in dorms or off-campus housing without laundry amenities, represent a significant market for laundromat services. A location near a college campus can tap into this demand, offering flexible hours and a comfortable, study-friendly environment that can turn laundry day into a productive experience for students.

  • Transportation hubs: Opening a laundromat near busy transportation hubs such as subway stations, bus terminals, or train stations can attract commuters looking to multitask during their daily routines. 

  • Mixed-use developments: These buildings combine residential, commercial, and sometimes industrial spaces into one complex. A laundromat located in a mixed-use development can serve a built-in customer base living and working within the same area.

  • Military bases: Military bases have a large, concentrated population with specific needs, including laundry services. A laundromat located near a military base can cater to service members and their families, offering tailored services such as uniform cleaning or bulk laundry options.

  • Tourist areas: A laundromat located near hotels, campgrounds, or RV parks that do not offer laundry facilities can attract tourists and travelers. This location can be particularly lucrative during the travel season.

  • Low-income neighborhoods: In areas where residents may not afford personal laundry appliances, a laundromat serves as an important community service. Offering affordable, reliable laundry services in these neighborhoods can fulfill a critical need.

  • Near large employers or industrial parks: Employees working long hours or those in industries requiring specialized laundry services (like uniforms or heavy-duty work clothes) can benefit from a nearby laundromat. Offering wash-and-fold services or partnerships with businesses for employee discounts can further enhance appeal.

Market research strategies

Conducting market research is an important step in choosing your perfect laundromat location. Utilizing a combination of analytical tools and community engagement strategies can provide a comprehensive understanding of the local market, which will help you feel confident in your final decision. Here are some useful analysis tools that can help you in this:

  • Demographic analysis tools: Websites like the U.S. Census Bureau offer detailed demographic data, including income levels, household sizes, and the percentage of renters versus homeowners in a specific area. Also, tools like ESRI's ArcGIS provide geographical information system (GIS) data that can visualize demographics, helping identify areas with your target customer base.

  • Foot traffic analysis: and SafeGraph utilize mobile data to offer insights into foot traffic patterns around potential laundromat locations. Analyzing these patterns can help determine the best times for business operations and pinpoint high-traffic areas that might not be obvious.

  • Competitor analysis: Conducting a SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) on existing laundromats can uncover gaps in the market. Use Google Maps and Yelp to find these laundromats and check out their customer reviews to learn areas for improvement or innovation.

  • Community engagement: Engaging with the local community through forums, local business associations, or social media groups for small businesses can offer invaluable insights into the community's needs and preferences. 

  • Local business and real estate agents: Collaborating with local business and real estate agents can offer a ground-level view of the market. These professionals are the best sources for information on upcoming developments, changes in the local economy, and available commercial spaces that may not be widely advertised.

Balancing affordability with potential revenue

The affordability of a location largely depends on the lease or purchase price but the true cost of your new business goes even deeper. Considerations must also include utility costs, taxes, insurance, and any necessary renovations to make the space suitable for your laundromat. It's also crucial to forecast potential revenue based on the location's demographics, competition, and accessibility to be confident that the chosen site can cover these costs and generate a healthy profit margin. Taking this comprehensive approach to analyzing the affordability of your laundromat location will aid you in accurately calculating your expenses and revenue potential

How Fresh Laundry & Cafe chose the perfect location for profitability

Fresh Laundry and Cafe 2

Gainesville, Florida-based Fresh Laundry & Cafe are the perfect example for picking an optimal location for a laundromat and the transformative power of integrating technology into its operations. This innovative laundromat stands as a testament to the synergy between strategic site selection and leveraging advanced management solutions.

Strategic location meets innovative operation

Situated in a busy area that attracts both the local community and students from the University of Florida, Fresh Laundry & Cafe chose its location with precision. The decision to occupy a spacious 6,000-square-foot facility allowed for the unique combination of a laundromat with a cafe, offering not just laundry services but also a cozy spot for customers, particularly students, to enjoy some caffeine and get schoolwork done while they wait. This smart choice of location addressed the dual need for convenience and community, allowing for a business model that extends beyond traditional laundry services.

Future-proofing your location choice

Future-proofing your laundromat location choice is essential for sustained growth and relevance. This forward-looking approach involves a keen analysis of trends and predictions, scalability potential, and the influence of technological advancements.

Analyzing trends and predictions

As cities expand and neighborhoods evolve, areas that are currently underserved may become tomorrow's hubs of activity, creating new opportunities for community-service business models like laundromats. Keeping an eye on urban planning projects, such as new housing developments or public transportation expansions, can provide early insights into future demand shifts.

Scalability and expansion

When choosing a location, consider the potential for future expansion. A space that comfortably meets current needs but offers little room for additional machines or services may limit growth prospects. Scalability involves both physical space and the capacity to diversify offerings, such as adding wash-and-fold services or incorporating technological solutions for enhanced customer experiences. 

Technological advancements

The impact of emerging technologies on laundromat operations and location choices cannot be overstated. Innovations in machine efficiency, payment systems, and customer management software are transforming the traditional laundromat model. Future locations should be chosen with an eye towards technology-friendly features, such as robust electrical and internet infrastructures to support smart machines and app-based customer interaction platforms. 


Searching for the best location for a laundromat involves understanding demographics, prioritizing accessibility, and considering lease terms, among other things. Each of these factors plays a big role in launching a successful business and setting it up for long-term growth in an evolving market.

While opening a laundromat can be complicated at times, you don't have to navigate this journey alone. We encourage you to explore more about how Cents can transform your laundromat operation and offer helpful resources along your journey to choosing the ideal location and opening your laundromat. Let Cents be your partner in hacking the laundromat industry, creating a laundry business that’s successful and poised for innovation in the years to come.

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Learn how to use these top 5 marketing techniques at your laundromat with little to no cost to help bring in more customers and boost revenue.