published Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

Laundromat offers convenience with family appeal

Kimberly McMillian
Heather Sneed, owner of the Wash Barn laundromat, demonstrates the electronic payment option on the washers at her laundromat which opens on Monday in Dayton, Tenn.
Contributed photo by Kimberly McMillian
Heather Sneed, owner of the Wash Barn laundromat, demonstrates the electronic payment option on the washers at her laundromat which opens on Monday in Dayton, Tenn. Contributed photo by Kimberly McMillian
  • Name: Wash Barn

  • Location: 530 Dayton Mountain Highway, off State Road 30 in Dayton, Tenn. The Wash Barn opened Monday

  • Products/Services: A 24/7 self-service Laundromat, single-load and up to an eight-load washer and dryer set, with coins and electronic payment debit or credit card options. Seating includes Adirondack-inspired chairs and an indoor picnic table. Also, a kids’ corner with a television, three arcade games and Wi-Fi accessibility offer entertainment options.

  • Owner: Heather Sneed, age 35

  • Inspiration behind the name: “We love barns and live on a farm,” Sneed said, and thought the red-barn building would catch people’s attention as they drove up or down the mountain. Sneed said she hopes to recoup her investment in the business in three to five years.

  • Price range of services: Prices vary, depending upon the amount of items and time needed for completion. Six minutes of usage will cost the initial 25 cents

  • Target market: Family-oriented, particularly for moms with small children. Sneed has two children under the age of 9 and understands the challenges that moms tackle while doing laundry. “There was a need in this area,” Sneed said.

  • Biggest hurdle: Deciding on the right time to pursue it, after praying about it for three years

  • Challenges: The wintry weather delayed the process until spring

  • Lesson learned: Sneed said she’s learned that God’s timing might differ from our timing.

  • Five-year goal: She hopes to expand to surrounding areas, but said she’ll “see how it goes.”

— Compiled by Kimberly McMillian, who is based in Rhea County. Contact her at kdj424@bellsouth.net.

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