STARTING A REEF AQUARIUM MAINTENANCE BUSINESS

Mikie Talked To The School's Dentist, and He Told Mikie He Would Pay $99.00 If The Students Would Clean The Office Reef Aquariums.

Then the students asked, "is there a need for a reef aquarium service business in our area?"

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Mikey and Molly are starting a reef aquarium maintenance business where they take care of aquariums, but this is a research project page and we're going need your help.

LeRoy is the researcher on the project and his first aquarium business in 1967 was an aquarium maintenance company in Boise, Idaho and it was called RENT A FISH .

That was a long time ago and things have changed. We are very anxious to have your help. We hope some of you can help the students find the best answer to some of the questions we will ask on this page. Please email leroy@garf.org if you have some ideas that will help others.

One of the things that we learned, is that some interior decorators specialize in Dentists and Doctors offices.

Many of them would love to install a beautiful aquarium, but they're afraid they won't know how to take care of it.

The office staff doesn't know how to keep a reef aquarium, and they do not have the time to learn how to take care of it. That is what Mikey and the students will do. They will take care of the new reef aquariums. The students know that beautiful reef aquariums, that use only farmed livestock, can help the wild reefs. When these reef aquariums are in public places they can help people learn to love the wild reefs. This is also a great way to grow out livestock and then trade it back for other farmed animals when the originals become too big. Remember the garf.org rule number one is SAVE A REEF - GROW YOUR OWN.

MOLLIE TOLD THE STUDENTS THAT THEY HAD TO TREAT THIS PROJECT LIKE A REAL JOB. WORK FIRST, PLAY LATER.

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The dentist said he was very anxious to install four aquariums. He told Mikie that he didn't know much about aqariums, so he thought that maybe freshwater would be better.

Mike explained to him that a properly set up reef aquarium grows corals that are photosynthetic.

These corals do not need to be fed. The fish often are very easy to take care of and they are quite beautiful. They are the hardy fish that beginners would take care of at home. So with a small amount of maintenance and the help of the trusty reef janitors™ from Garf the rocks and glass will stay clean. The students will come in and fill up the tank and they will bring the supplies for the reef aquarium.

The dentist was happy to trade dental work for the first month, and when all the student's teeth were fixed he would pay Mikie and the students $99.00 each month after that. This dentist could see that Mikie and the rest of his team had plenty of teeth and although Mikie is a vegetarian he has great big teeth.

Mollie is proud of her grandson Mikie. She could see that with some more research this might be a great way to help the school and save some money up for the new reef aquarium school.

THE STUDENTS EARNED ENOUGH MONEY TO BUY THEM ALL A TICKET TO THE FOOTBALL GAME.

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Before you open an aquarium maintenance service within your community, it's essential to determine how you will fit in with the aquarium maintenance services near you. Gain a knowledge of how existing firms run, and then design your business to set your new company apart from the others.

The first things that the students did was the marketing research to find out who might be the competition.

Getting Advice from Experienced Entrepreneurs

One of the things they had to find out was who else in their area cleans aquarium's for a profit, and even though there is a competitor whose doing very well. This is not a reason to not have a business in your area.

If you want to open an aquarium maintenance service it's a wise move to talk to an owner of a an aquarium maintenance service outside of your community. He will be much more likely to talk with you, once he realizes that you are not going to directly compete with them in his community. In fact, they are often very willing to share startup advice with you, and you may want to contact several business owners.

You can visit local doctors offices, but it's usually easier to make a list and call all of the doctors offices and lawyers offices to ask them if they have an aquarium. If they don't have an aquarium, then you can ask if they would be interested in learning about having a trouble free reef aquarium in their office.

Send brochures to interior designers who specialize in commercial establishments--they can refer you to their clients.
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After the students reviewed competitors they learned that their market needed a great reef aquarium store. The school is ready to do the research needed so the students can start a small reef aquarium store at the reef farm.

Some aquarium stores also cater to people who are not aquarium hobbyists. These folks want an aquarium, but don't want to clean or maintain it themselves. The aquarium store sends an employee out on a regular basis (usually every two to four weeks) to keep the aquarium clean, diagnose and solve problems, and basically do all the dirty work. This allows anyone with enough money to be able to own an aquarium without having to make it a hobby.

Aquarium maintenance services can provide a valuable second source of income for an aquarium store. Many aquarium stores experience a shortage of business during the summer months. Their hobbyist customers are busy doing outdoor activities and taking vacations, and tend to shop less for their aquariums. Very few people shop for new aquariums during the summer. Aquarium maintenance business can help the store make it through these lean months.

aquarium maintenance businesses are typically operated by one or two individuals.

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The attraction to aquarium maintenance is the $30.00 to $45.00 per hour (or more), plus materials, charged by most aquarium service companies, including those operated out of retail stores.

The first challenge is finding customers. This is actually easier than one might think. It simply requires a bit of leg work. Many businesses have aquariums on public display which are already professionally maintained. Promises of better service for a little less money are all it takes for some folks to switch.

Most aquarium maintenance busineses have to rely on mail-order to get their supplies and even livestock at near wholesale prices. Some set up deals to obtain livestock from aquarium stores that don't offer maintenance.

If you love aquariums and if you are willing to do some research -then an aquarium maintenance service MAY BE for you. You'll clean and maintain the tanks, feed and care for the fish on a routine basis, make additions and replacements as necessary and administer any special medications. You can set up and stock aquariums for clients who don't already have them. You perform tasks like changing filtration systems, replacing plumbing and moving aquariums.

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YOU MAY HAVE GUESSED MIKIE THE MANATEE LIKES GETTING $99.00 :)

You must be willing to get the knowledge and experience so you can keep these delicate creatures healthy. You must have a genuine love for them. You'll need to have a real concern for your reef animals lives and for maintaining them in the best way.

You will need several things to get started-some books and equipment like siphons, nets and glass cleaning sponges. You don't need expesive equipment to get started. You can use some resource websites, and equipment like buckets, glass cleaning magnents, algae pads, more buckets, and plastic tarps and towels, and more buckets. You can purchase fish, corals, fish food, saltwater test kits, and any necessary medications. You can sell these for a profit to your clients.