Shine on a Dime

Traci McLaughlin's company, Shine on a Dime, offers one-time and regularly scheduled cleaning services for homes and businesses throughout Southern Illinois.

The old photographs bring a smile to Traci McLaughlin’s face. Much younger then than her 26 years today, the pictures are of her at age five or six, dusting, trying to vacuum and even making beds – while family members are still asleep in them. From the grin in the photos, she enjoyed what she was doing. She still does.

“I’ve been doing this a long time,” McLaughlin, the owner of the Carbondale-based cleaning service Shine on a Dime explains. “I was doing it when I was little, but I probably really got into cleaning and doing a good job when I was 14 or 15 and I started the business about three years ago.”

The business offers ceiling to floor cleaning for homes and businesses across the region. Services including sweeping, dusting, mopping, window cleaning, upholstery and more. McLaughlin says the company offers regular, scheduled cleanings or can do one-time jobs for things such as move-in preparation or special events.

“Every customer picks what they want. I like to give them options; there are basic and premium options,” she explains, adding that her services are priced according to square footage and frequency of cleanings. She says many customers prefer the per-job or per-package pricing she offers over hourly rates “because the customer never really knows how long something is going to take.”

Shine on a dime offers basic services which including sweeping, mopping, dusting vacuuming and bathrooms. Other services like cleaning windows and ceiling fans can be added.

McLaughlin says she enjoys the sense of accomplishment that comes with a job well done, especially the bigger buildings.

“My favorite part about being in the cleaning business is the sense of accomplishment because I can look at what I did knowing where it came from. I love the before and after,” she says.

She says one of the keys to her success has been stressing communication with her team members but especially with her customers.

“I work hard to make sure that I understand what my customers want and to make all of them happy,” she says. “Every single customer wants different things and so communication is important. I always encourage my new customers to talk to me if they see anything they would like done differently so we can make it better.”

She says she has several staff members whom she brings on whenever the size of a job or the number of jobs require it – things like spring cleanings and cleanings around move-outs.

McLaughlin says her goal is to continue to grow the business, especially the commercial side of things.

“I want to focus even more on cleaning businesses, mostly because of the regularity of those jobs. She says, however, she always will be available to clean residences.

“I love meeting people and taking care of their homes,” she adds.

For her, the flexibility of having her own business is one of the things McLaughlin says she loves, especially, when it allows her to spend time with her husband and daughter, a toddler. She says she also enjoys the variety of her role.

“I love that there are some slow weeks and some really busy seasons – like right now with all of the spring cleaning and the move-outs,” she says.

McLaughlin added that the business is completely registered, insured and bonded. She says she’s been amazed at the growth of Shine on a Dime – from just a few homes when she started to now cleaning dozens of homes and businesses on a regular basis.

“I enjoy what I do. I guess I always have,” she says.

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