Building a Business, One Cleaning Job at a Time – Grand Forks Herald

Building a Business, One Cleaning Job at a Time – Grand Forks Herald

GRAND FORKS – It started as a solution for cleaning litter boxes. The company brings trucks to residences and cleans the scum from bad trash cans.

But GF Bin Cleaners has expanded into a multi-purpose company that does everything from power pressure washing to house cleaning in the Grand Forks area.

“We are a cleaning solutions company in the Grand Forks area,” said George Scott, company owner. “We originally started out washing residential trash cans. We quickly moved on to electric pressure washing, and are now a full-service cleaning solutions company.

“We have in-house cleaners, we have lawn care and snow removal departments and a pressure washing department.”

A large part of its equipment is a machine that cleans and sterilizes garbage bins at a temperature of 195 degrees.

“The garbage machine isn’t a high profit margin, but it makes you think of me,” Scott said. “Interior cleaning of homes and offices is probably the most aggressive measure we have been addressing.”

A few days ago, Scott was preparing for snowfall in the Grand Forks area. He wanted to make sure his skid steer loader was ready for the winter.

Scott was born and raised in the San Diego area. When he lost his job in 2014, he decided to move to Grand Forks. He ran an auto parts store and later worked in tractor parts before deciding to start his own company.

“We don’t just throw out trash cans,” Scott said. “We build offices, actual office buildings. We have partnerships with a couple of brokers in the area, so we do the relocations and construction cleanup.

The lawn care department was added in April, and the indoor cleaning department became operational at the end of July.

GF Bin Cleaning Solutions’ largest project was a North Dakota mill. The company has cleaned the exterior of the mill to help prepare it for its centenary celebration in October 2022.

“State Mill has actually been able to keep us alive with this contract,” Scott said.

He said it wasn’t easy starting a business in Grand Forks. It was unknown to creditors and companies in the area.

“Trying to break into the Grand Forks market is very difficult,” Scott said. “There’s just a huge trust factor. If you’re not from here and you’re trying to break in, it’s very difficult. That was the hardest hurdle so far.”

Scott says things are going well because he’s had enough time to grow and develop his business.

“We did our best to achieve long-term sustainability,” he said. “I quit my job and went after that full time. It was basically ‘You have to do it’ because there was no alternative.

“We don’t have a loan. The only ones we have are against myself. My business has been paid for in cash. I haven’t paid myself since March because I keep 100% of my profits in the business.”

Scott, who washed some trash cans for free to market his product when he first started, now has a website showcasing all of his products.

He has a contract with Grand Forks Subaru to wash cars every two weeks. He works with Ziegler CAT in Crookston. He’s talking to other companies as winter dawns.

Scott, which employs seven full- and part-time workers, is leasing a shop in Manville from Gary Dub of Dub Construction.

“He gave us a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to lease one of his stores at a price where we could actually build a business.”

Scott decorated the office with at least one sign

“Results driven, fueled by passion,” that’s the old saying.

“My team is obsessed with customer service,” he said. “This is their No. 1 priority.”

Kevin Fee is a freelance reporter for the Herald.

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