Making Choices; Following the ‘Success’ Formula

Robert J. Renteria |

CHICAGO — During the past year, numerous people have asked me the same question: Should I buy new or used equipment? That’s not a hard question, given the economy, but your answer needs to be based on your long-term goals and objectives.Remember, the times have changed when it comes to the banks requesting more collateral. More people are concerned about what they may be spending.I like the idea of saving 50% or more on a purchase of used equipment, instead of new equipment, but if you’re going to be part of this industry for years to come, then buying new equipment may be the way to go.There are limited warranties with used equipment, and the cost of parts and repairs during the term may cost you as much or even more than purchasing new machines with good manufacturer warranties. Don’t forget to think about the potential headaches involved with repairing and maintaining used machines. Time is money!Don’t get me wrong, buying used equipment in today’s financial climate is a serious option. With revenues declining, we must look carefully at our purchasing decisions, decisions that affect our bottom line.SHOW THEM OR FOLD THEMI was playing poker at a casino the other night, when the dealer said, “Show them or fold them.” It hit me that we can’t be afraid to spend the money we need to make our businesses the best that they can possibly be. Make the necessary upgrades you need to build your bottom line. Increasing your pounds per square foot is the name of the game.So rather than totally focus on things like used equipment vs. new equipment, make sure you are in the game and not holding on until it’s too late.I have developed hundreds of stores in this country, and I know that if you’re not showing your customers and your competition that you’re in the game to win, then you are setting yourself up to “fold them,” as they say to the losers at the table.This business has a pretty simple formula for success. I will leave you with the five basic rules:

  1. Keep your store clean at all times.
  2. Keep your washers and dryers working at all times.
  3. The most important people in your business life are your customers.
  4. Every day is a marketing day.
  5. Always look for ways to increase your pounds (machine capacity) per square foot.

As always, if I can be of any service, please e-mail me.

About the author

Robert J. Renteria


Robert J. Renteria is a national consultant based in Chicago. He has more than 23 years of industry experience, having helped develop more than 750 coin laundries nationally and abroad. The author of three books, he was named the 2010 Chicago Latino Professional of the Year and is the sole recipient of the 2011 International Outstanding Humanitarian Award. In 2013, he received two Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Awards for his work in civil rights advocacy and educational reform. He can be reached at 312-933-5619 or [email protected].


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