12 Questions Millennials Should Ask Before Choosing a Laundry Service

Service-oriented apps have made our everyday lives easier in many ways: delivering us groceries or meals, finding us a on-demand driver and, yes, picking up and dropping off our laundry. Next comes the decision-making process of choosing one service over another. When it comes to your dirty clothes, here are ValuePenguin questions that can help you decide which laundromat, web or app-based service you should go with.

1. What types of laundry companies, services should you consider?

Beyond the traditional laundromat that has gone digital and offers online or mobile laundry service, there are local, regional and national startup companies with apps and websites serving customers. A few that might be in your area: Cleanly, Rinse, FlyCleaners, DRYV, Tide Spin, Delivery.com and TaskRabbit. (Washio shut down in the summer of 2016.) If you prefer the flexibility of managing your orders on your smartphone, make sure the company you choose operates on that platform.

2. Where is the company or laundromat located?

If you're going to be working with a regional or national app-based service, this question may be inconsequential, as they're very likely outsourcing the actual dirty laundry to local laundromats near you. But if you choose to work with a local but digital-savvy business, it's advantageous to find one that's near to you. That way, it will be more likley to pick up and drop off your oder on time.

3. Does the company have an easy-to-use app or website so that I don't have to pick up the phone?

In the digital age, this question is key. Calling up the laundromat every time you want to schedule a pick-up isn't the end of the world, but doesn't it seem like a hassle relative to the other options?

4. Does it give me the ability to schedule pick-up and drop-off of my laundry?

You're busy, we're busy, everyone is busy. So being able to choose the exact time — or at least a narrow window of time — is paramount. Otherwise, you may be stuck in a cable guy-like situation where your clothes will be on your door-step sometime between noon and 5 p.m.

5. Is there within-24-hours or overnight service available for no extra charge?

Rush delivery is a great perk of good laundry provider, and it's being offered by enough stand-alones and chains that you should insist on it being free, if the service (or the option of selecting the service) is important to you at all.

6. What is the price per pound for wash and dry?

Now down to the personal finance of it all: This is the most important dollars-and-cents distinction that you can draw between laundry providers. There will be areas of subjectivity in this space, such as how neatly your clothes are folded or how they smell when they come back to your home. But this one is objective: How much are you going to have to pay per pound of your laundry? You might be quote $1.50 or lower or higher, and you might think that it's not worth haggling over those nickels and dimes — but the budgetary savings could add up quickly depending upon how much laundry you have and how often you need it cleaned. This question is not to be overlooked, although some laundry companies are clear about their pricing, transparently posting it on storefronts, websites and mobile applications.

7. What is the price for dry-clean garments?

Depending upon your dress code at work (or your proclivity toward black-tie cocktail parties), you may have a lot of non-wash-and-fold laundry to do. In that case, it's important to find a laundry provider that not only offers dry-cleaning, but does so at a reasonable price. Typically, there is a per-article charge for things like button-down shirts, dresses and jackets, to name a few examples. And like the price-per-pound put upon wash-and-fold, these rates can vary provider to provider.

8. Is there a minimum cost for a free delivery?

In some cases, laundry providers may only offer you free pick-up and/or delivery if you have a certain amount of dirty clothing to make it worth their while. Depending upon the business, this could be as little as $15 or as much as $30-plus. Some businesses may charge a nominal delivery fee if you can't reach their minimums.

9. Is credit card an acceptable form of payment?

This seems like a no-brainer, but if you can set up automatic payment via your credit card with your laundry provider, it will save you time and allow you to reap your usual rewards for spending.

10. Does the company offer other services, such as hemming and zipper-fixes?

It's nice to have a one-stop shop at your disposal for those infrequent reasons to visit the laundromat, whether it's to polish your leather shoes or alter your new pair of slacks.

11. What are their online reviews like?

You can review websites like Yelp to make sure there are no horror stories from the companies' past customers.

12. Is it worth my time to pay less and do the laundry myself?

Ah, the real personal finance question of the bunch. Our answer: If you find a great laundry provider — it has an app with auto-payment, offers free delivery on your timeline and plies you with low prices, promotions and discounts — all of that convenience may trump cost. After all, doing your own laundry is more cost-effective (if you use our tips for saving money in the laundry room), but it's going to be significantly more time-intensive. Consider your trade-off.

The article 12 Questions to Ask Before Choosing a Laundry Service originally appeared on ValuePenguin.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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