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Thomas Sayle
04-23-2001, 11:07 AM
I am in the process of starting a new business in the Southeast(Charlotte, NC region). I have been reading through several posts about CPA's, lawyers, bankers, etc. Is all of this really necessary. I do not have a clue about the business side of landscaping. Someone please help!!! Thank you in advance.

John Allin
04-23-2001, 11:33 AM
First of all - welcome to lawnsite. Lots of very intelligent people post here that can be of tremendous help to you (and me and all others). The people that post here really have a desire to assist others and expect little in return except feedback. It's a great bunch here......

The business side of landscaping is the same as the business side of any service business. Cost of good sold plus depreciation, plus G&A subtracted from income leaves you profit. I tell people that if you just want to cut grass and be outside, you won't need much of a business plan. You can make a living that way..... However, if you want to manage a business, then treat it like a business.

Best reading material you can find (in my opinion) would be:

Understanding Business
Fifth Edition
Nickels, McHugh, McHugh
Irwin Publications.

Can be bought at Barnes & Noble (in store or on-line).
Read it cover to cover and operate it as a business, and you should do fine (assuming you know the technical aspects of landscaping - which I am not in any way minimizing with this post.... because that too is VERY important as this is like every business and has its own "science").

This business has made people millionaires and it is due to hard work and good business ethics. Good luck and welcome to the club....

Skookum
04-23-2001, 04:28 PM
Welcome Thomas to Lawnsite,

John had a very good answer about the business side. EDUCATE yourself on business by books or programs or classes if you feel you are clueless. I would like to add one little thing. There is more than one way to skin a cat or run a business. No two people would run the same business the exact same way.

You asked about CPA's, Lawyers, etc... If you are comfortable with doing those duties for yourself you can, or you can get advise, or you can hire it done. I think most do it themselves due to startup costs or lack of those funds and eventually hire it out when it becomes more time consuming or complicated.

Usually hiring the pros for those duties saves you some aggrevations down the road for many people. But, be also aware that CPA's and Lawyers are just like Landscapers and Lawn Mowers, some are better than others. They can also screw you up if you have no idea about what is really going on and you just take their word for it. This is why I believe starting out doing those duties you can yourself, makes you less of a risk for a bad CPA or lawyer.

Good Luck!

John Allin
04-23-2001, 09:08 PM
Just a short "add" to Skookum....

Remember that the lawyers and accountants work for YOU. You still make the ultimate decisions as to how to do things.

Fantasy Lawns
04-24-2001, 03:35 PM
amen to that ;->

stslawncare
04-24-2001, 07:46 PM
id definitly have to say that the all time best book, the absolute best, the one with the most info ever, that ive bought would be the book i found when i typed http://www.lawnsite.com into my computer. by doing a search for any question u have or by asking it on the forums u will get the best info ever. what better info is there then from the people that experience this stuff every day?

Skippy
04-24-2001, 08:04 PM
100% with stslawncare. Great people and the best info anywhere. Have a question and you don't just get an answer, you get people's perspectives, advice with reasoning(been there done that and learned the right way)and the ability to ask deeper in depth. Absolutely nothing compares not even a book. Great people, great advice, solutions. Just my thoughts.


P.S. A thank you will take you a long way. And looks like your off to a great start.