I made $40,000 last year doing other people's laundry through a gig app. It's the perfect side hustle for a stay-at-home mom like me.

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I made $40,000 last year doing other people's laundry through a gig app. It's the perfect side hustle for a stay-at-home mom like me.
Channa Patridge.Courtesy of Channa Patridge
  • Channa Patridge is a stay-at-home mom who runs a laundry-washing side hustle through Hampr.
  • She saw an ad for Hampr on Facebook in March 2021, and now she does 18 to 25 loads of laundry a day.
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This as-told-to essay is based on a conversation with Channa Patridge, a 31-year-old stay-at-home mom who uses the app Hampr for her laundry side hustle and is based in Phoenix, Arizona. Insider has verified her 2021 income with documentation. The following has been edited for length and clarity.

Before starting on the app Hampr, I worked at Wendy's as a manager. After I had kids and got sick with ovarian cancer in 2018, I decided to take time off work and become a stay-at-home mom. My husband, Marc, works at an auto-parts store as a manager, so he supported us during this time. It was a blessing to focus my full attention on my three girls, ages five, six, and seven.

In March 2021, I saw an ad for Hampr while scrolling on Facebook. It caught my eye because I wanted to bring in additional income during the pandemic and still be a hands-on mom. Hampr, which is headquartered in Lafayette, Louisiana, was launching in Arizona, and I became one of its first "Washrs."

The interview process was pretty easy, and it was all virtual. I had to pass a background check, prove my washer and dryer were up to Hampr's standards, and verify that I had a place to fold clothing.

Hampr charges customers $15 per bag, and Washrs get paid around $10 per bag. Washrs are required to purchase and use Dropps detergent — scent-free, dye-free detergent pods — to wash the clothing because it's great for members with allergies and sensitivities and Hampr has a partnership with the brand. After our 20% discount, the pods cost around $15.60 for 64 pods. From March through the end of 2021, I took home $40,000 after Hampr and detergent fees.

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At first, business was slow

I did plenty of self-promotion by posting flyers around the neighborhood to get the word out. Whenever I went to the laundromat, I would tell people about my services.

I also delivered for UberEats, and when I brought food orders to customers, I would include Hampr flyers promoting the laundry service. I still deliver for UberEats occasionally.

After around five months, business started to pick up steadily, and I was receiving orders every single day.

The craziest order I've received was a laundry bag full of 30 urine-soaked doggy pads. I had no idea until I opened it, and it had been sitting in my car all day. It was disgusting, and I refused and returned the order, but it made my car reek for three weeks.

I can have anywhere from 18 to 25 orders on really good days, and I take orders 7 days a week

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I made $40,000 last year doing other people's laundry through a gig app. It's the perfect side hustle for a stay-at-home mom like me.
The "hamprs" provided by the app for clients to put their laundry in.Courtesy of Channa Patridge

I can make up to $250 a day before tips. Washrs get a two-hour window to pick up orders and have 24 hours to drop off the order in the same window the following day. Customers have the option to order a few days out, but most order the same day they want the laundry to be picked up. There are three time frames for delivery: 6 to 8 a.m., 12 to 2 p.m., and 4 to 6 p.m.

I'm up by 5 a.m. to pick up orders and start running loads of laundry. After I get started, I'll try to catch a nap, but if the kids are awake, I'm up with them. By 10 a.m., I'm watching for the next round of orders, and by 11 a.m., I'm out the door dropping off completed orders and picking up new ones. After finishing up the third round of orders, I'll make dinner with the kids and have family time. When it hits 11 p.m., I'll stop for the day and go to bed.

Saturday and Sunday are my busiest, when I typically do more than 20 loads of laundry a day. Just a few weeks ago, I completed 32 loads of laundry in a day, which was my busiest day to date. On hectic days, my husband helps me deliver the laundry. I'll drive off in one direction, and he'll head in another.

Monday and Tuesday are my slow days. On those days, I'll generally only accept orders from customers who have me on their "favorites" list — being a customer's "favorite" means that I get their order notification 10 minutes before it's sent to other Washrs in the area. Customers can choose up to five favorite Washrs.

The best part of the job is meeting customers

I love learning about their lives and why they're using the service. I'll chat with them on the app and also if I meet them when I'm dropping off or picking up an order.

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I do laundry for all types of people, including an elderly woman who can no longer walk to carry and wash her own laundry. It's funny because I hate doing my own laundry but find it fulfilling to help others.

It's a great job because I can do most of the laundry at home, although on crazy days, I'll fill additional orders at the laundromat. I also love the flexibility of choosing which orders I want to accept depending on my schedule. Also, the earnings are transparent, and I get 100% of customer tips. Tips vary from $5 to $20.

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