Pandemic led man to drain his savings and start a business in Alabama
When COVID-19 hit in 2020, Nickolas Folmar combined his customer service experience and his father’s history in the carpet cleaning industry to start from scratch.
Folmar was ready for a change and wanted to start his own business after working 9-5 years. This is how Jet Stream Clean came about. The commercial and residential carpet cleaning company operates in Fort Mitchell, Alabama, and serves the Chattahoochee Valley.
“COVID-19 has changed everything,” Folmar said. “It took me from employee to owner. It changed my whole aspect of survival.
START FROM ZERO AND TAKE A BET
The COVID-19 pandemic has put an end to the operations of his former employer, a concierge consulting company.
“It forced me to think outside the box,” Folmar told the Ledger-Enquirer.
So he asked himself, among other things: “What am I good at?” How can I survive? How can I spend more time with my family?
Then he remembered that his father ran a small carpet cleaning business, where Folmar occasionally helped. Entrepreneurship “runs in our blood,” he said.
In September 2020, Folmar took a risk: he drained his savings to open his own carpet cleaning business, Jet Stream Clean.
The company will celebrate its first anniversary this month and won the Favorite Carpet Cleaner award at this year’s LE Readers ‘Choice Awards, the newspaper’s annual recognition of its readers’ favorite businesses in the Columbus area.
“It’s largely surreal,” Folmar said. “I didn’t know how it was going to turn out. It was pretty scary. I went into my savings and emptied them. … I went there to a world with barely any cash on hand. We took a huge risk, frankly.
He bought brand new equipment, he said, to bring “maximum results” to his customers – and he says he hasn’t lost any that he acquired.
“When you provide great service, you are providing the customer with an experience,” said Folmar. “And that experience is what we like to focus on. “
BIG PLANS FOR THE FUTURE
Folmar runs a narrow, family-oriented business.
His wife, Jessica, creates TikToks and posts them on the company’s various social media platforms. His son, Landon, takes care of the electronic side of things. Folmar is the operator, in addition to owning the business.
“I said, ‘I’m going to make sure we’re different,'” Folmar said. “You can call anyone to come to your house and clean the carpet. … I’m not just trying to do a favor. Anyone can do this.
Folmar said his next goal is to add another service vehicle. He also plans to eventually open a retail cleaning product store and offer carpet cleaning services.
“It’s a life changing for me,” said Folmar. “Because I never would have done that. I had an opportunity. I already had money set aside. But no one uses up their savings just to go out and take a risk. … You must control your own destiny if you want to be happy, successful, and spend time with your family. That’s what gave me the confidence to do it.