More and more people are looking for side hustles to pick up a little extra cash. In fact, 16% of American adults have earned money with gig economy apps like Uber, DoorDash, and TaskRabbit.
While these apps can be a great way to earn extra cash, most require a new(ish) car or time away from home — a tall order for parents, caregivers, folks who drive beaters, and introverts.
But a new kind of gig lets you make money doing laundry for other people. Laundry apps like Poplin (formerly SudShare), Londr, and Hampr allow you to make money from home whenever you want.
Becoming a laundry pro
Laundry apps connect the growing trend of outsourcing household chores and tasks with many people looking to make an extra buck in their spare time.
These companies are growing to meet the demand and looking for laundry professionals who know how to wash correctly.
One of the most popular apps, Poplin, is now in over 500 cities nationwide. Registering on these apps to get paid to wash laundry is relatively simple.
When you sign up to be a Poplin laundry pro, you’ll go through a 10-minute training on their expectations and methods of washing, drying, and folding professionally.
You’ll also need to fill out an application, which includes a background check. Once you’re cleared, you can start accepting orders.
While the availability of orders will depend on your geographic area, you can always choose which orders to accept and which to pass on.
How much do laundry pros make?
How much you make as a Poplin laundry pro is up to you. Some people take a load or two occasionally, but some have made this a full-time job.
Poplin notes that the average its top 100 laundry pros make is about $2,500 per month. The top producer makes over $5,000 a month.
Poplin pays their laundry pros $.75 per pound of standard delivery laundry and $1.50 for same-day delivery, plus tips. There is a $15 minimum per order.
As independent contractors, launderers pay for their own supplies (dryer sheets, detergent) and are responsible for picking up and dropping off the customer’s laundry.
If you already own a washer and dryer, this is a no-brainer. Your machines aren’t in use all the time, and becoming a laundry pro is an easy way to monetize something you already own.
And while complying with Poplin’s standards might require a little more conscientiousness than you might devote to your own laundry, it’s not rocket science.
You don’t have to stand next to the washer the whole time, so you can watch Netflix, listen to a podcast, or mix in other tasks while waiting for the current load to finish.
More time at home
If you’re a parent with toddlers or a student with a crazy schedule, this is a perfect way to make some extra cash while not committing hours away from home to a side hustle.
You can complete your main tasks from the comfort of your home, though some laundry pros prefer to use a laundromat to make the process more efficient.
This side hustle could be an excellent way for parents who want to stay home to save on daycare costs.
It also allows them to make some of the money they would earn at a job but still gives them the leeway to care for their children at home.
As a laundry pro, you get to choose your customers. So if you’re squeamish about washing cloth diapers or heavily soiled clothing, you can pass on an order.
You also have the flexibility to work at night, early in the morning, or on a lunch break. As long as you deliver the washed, folded, and dried laundry to the customer on time, it doesn’t matter.
And if you need to take a vacation, there’s no boss or HR department to clear it with. Don’t accept any orders for the days you want off, and you’re good to go.
Earn extra cash
Are you saving up for a nice vacation? Do you want to contribute extra to your child’s college fund? Or are you paying off a hefty medical bill?
Washing laundry with a service like Poplin as a side hustle can give you the financial boost you want.
And unlike a second job or a full-fledged business, you can pick up as many or as few loads as you can handle. You can earn extra cash without making a long-term commitment or rearranging your schedule.
The only money you have to spend to get started is on laundry detergent, bags, and a few other basic supplies, so it’s pretty easy to get started.
Participants in the SudSharers Reddit community (an online forum for Sudshare/Poplin laundry pros) note that you can hone in on the most profitable orders with some trial and error.
User SaltyCity_ advises, “I used to drive further for bigger orders but I’ve moved states and now I’ll only drive a mile or two. I used to grab anything close and had lots of regulars. Now I only accept jobs with at least a $30 bonus.”
You could use dozens of gig economy apps to make extra money, but only some of them let you do so while you stay at home, care for your kids, and watch TV.
Laundry apps like Poplin allow you to make money but don’t interrupt your life too much. You get to be your own boss and work as much or as little as you like.
After a few months and positive customer ratings, many laundry pros on Poplin and other apps end up with a steady stream of regular clients.
This helps them pick and choose loads from customers that are easy to please, live close by, and tip well — all of which maximize profitability.