Queens junior runs business fueled by the hard work of young car junkies
Seamus Smith is hoping for a lot of sunny days this summer.
The 20-year-old Davisviller is in his fifth year running Davisville Detailing, and has been cleaning up midtowners’ vehicles to make them look brand new.
It’s a sunny May afternoon at Yonge and Davisville, and he’s decked out in slacks and a dress shirt. It’s his goal to keep his business student-run, even after he graduates from Queens University with a commerce degree.
“It’s hard to believe it’s been five years,” he recalled. “I had just finished Grade 11, and I was looking for something to do for the summer. My parents explained to me how detailing cars works and so I thought I’d give it a try.”
There were the subtle signs of Smith being a gearhead, but since being in the business of buffing, waxing and gussying-up everything from sedans to vans to high-end sports cars, that passion for chrome and fiberglass has grown.
In those five years, Smith has also grown his business to six full-time employees, and four part-timers who assist with door-to-door sales. He has even expanded to Ottawa.
“The majority of people we work for are parents and pet owners who just want their cars cleaned out to look new,” he said.
That means rainy days dampen the amount of work they can do, ergo the yen for his ally, the sun.
For the next few years, he wants to continue to grow the business, and do at least 100 cars a week, but the biggest focus is to offer a job to help students build their resumes and earn a little more cash than say a retail worker or barista.
“A goal of mine whenever I bring someone on to work with me, it’s important to me that they’re earning more than anywhere else,” he said. “I know where they’re coming from. Every summer it’s been good for me to earn some extra to pay for expenses.”
Davisville Detailing covers the area of midtown from Lawrence Park in the north, to Bennington Heights in the east, Deer Park in the south and Forest Hill to the west.
Oh, and don’t forget Ottawa.
As for that gearhead passion inside of him, he grins, and mentions his dream car: a Porsche 918 Spyder.
“It’s a little bit more of a track car,” he said, with a laugh. “I don’t want to go over any speed bumps.”