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rcracer
12-04-2007, 11:28 PM
Ok so I have been getting alot of good info from this site about starting a buisness so thank you to everybody. I have a 2007 chevrolet short wide bed with a v-6 and I have a new 6 by 12 drop gate trailer. I am in the process of selling one of my dirt bikes which I should get about 1,000 from. I price 2 commercial stilh weedeaters. One a weedeater and one an edger. I can get both of those and a stihl blower and maybe a decent toro self propelled push mower. I am thinking of getting the exmark wb 42 or 48 I cant remember which one it was. So basically my question is the only thing I am going to have to finance is the wb which is 2800 brand new. Does this sound like a responsible way of starting out. I am thinking of starting residential for the first yearand then if I need to get a ZT later I can. I am trying to keep my cost down. Any opinion from a seasoned veteran would be greatly appreciated:usflag:

advantage landscaping
12-04-2007, 11:35 PM
Okay so you are looking at a 48" Exmark Metro I assume, that is what is available around here. Thats a good mower, but your costs are not going to be $2800, first off. It's not a huge deal but you probably want a bagger and a velke/ride-on, then with tax.... Anyways its more trust me.

Yes it sound very responsible. You can probably pick up some very good used equipment, mainly your mowers, because at this state you may not really need new machinery. If you can grab a used machine for say 1000 or 1500 $$ off, then it may suit you better.

Stay with that equipment until you NEED more, that is you have more business than what you can handle. Keep excellent care of your things and you will be all set.

It will take a few years to get established. Don't rush it and work on establishing an excellent customer base, it will help you in the future.

Any other questions I might have missed?

rcracer
12-04-2007, 11:40 PM
Yeah I believe it is a 48 I looked at it today. I was just wondering I trying to keep the cost to a minimum. The sticker said like 2800 or something but your right there is the mulch kit and bag and sulky and taxes, theres always something right. The only good thing is I could get it on a 12 month finance no interest if I pay it off in a year. What do you think. I probalby should just get a used one though like you said. Do you think my v-6 will be plenty of truck or should I get a v-8. thanks for all the help

advantage landscaping
12-05-2007, 12:04 AM
It will be enough for now. When you have too much equipment to pull you move up, but not yet.

My advise is if you are conscious of price go used and start looking. You can always get a personal loan at the bank, or maybe off a relative for nothing to low APR (Especially for a year or two only) You have the winter to find something good so get to it.

hackitdown
12-05-2007, 10:11 AM
Yeah I believe it is a 48 I looked at it today. I was just wondering I trying to keep the cost to a minimum. The sticker said like 2800 or something but your right there is the mulch kit and bag and sulky and taxes, theres always something right. The only good thing is I could get it on a 12 month finance no interest if I pay it off in a year. What do you think. I probalby should just get a used one though like you said. Do you think my v-6 will be plenty of truck or should I get a v-8. thanks for all the help

There is something to be said for new equipment. It is a little less likely to break, so you can focus your energy on getting new accounts, and doing a really good job for the customers. If you were planning to buy a $10K ZTR I would try to steer you away. But $3K on a WB is reasonable and prudent.

You will have no problem with the v6, but check the truck's manual for towing capacity. If your trailer is 1000 lbs, the mower and trimmers are maybe 700 lbs, you should be fine. You could pull that with a 4 cyl.

topsites
12-05-2007, 11:43 AM
No it doesn't because your truck isn't paid off either so the insurance is sky high, I am sure you have full coverage because no bank will write a vehicle loan without this requirement. So there's the payment on the truck and probably several hundred a year or more on insurance you're paying, we haven't even started on the mower, but this is no way to start a business because you are spreading yourself too thin.

Selling the bike is a good start thou, sell that.

Then...
Sell the truck and get like a 92 - 98 model 4 cylinder economy car.
Or trade it in, something that cuts the cost of the vehicle at least in half, and I did say at least.
And start working or keep working on a perfect driving record, absolutely no citations or violations or accidents, ever.
> If this is already so, get on with Nationwide / Geico / Allstate / State Farm.
Then pay it off and put it on minimum liability.
Then save your money.
Now pay your insurance premiums in one lump sum, and keep saving.
Get all your crap paid off and keep saving.
This alone probably take at least a year.

Once you have this going on save enough so you can buy everything without borrowing.
Another year, probably longer.

You will need a 92-98 model 3/4 ton (at least 10-12 years old in decent shape, not much over 14-15 thou), and a 6x12 trailer.

Because a decent trailer will run you 1500 too...
On that note get the Toro so your wrists and forearms don't kill you.
Never mind the pain, the problem is it will reduce your production.
And these run at least 3000, you might want to think of getting a float deck if you're just starting, these are 4g.
And you need a velke, you don't want to walk these mowers, much less a gear drive.

wildstarblazer
12-06-2007, 02:20 PM
I would rather have hurt wrist and forarms than a toro. they bounce all over the place. the deck does not stay down unless you go 2 miles an hour and you get a choppy cut. Unless toto fixed this problem I don't know.

topsites
12-06-2007, 05:52 PM
I would rather have hurt wrist and forarms than a toro. they bounce all over the place. the deck does not stay down unless you go 2 miles an hour and you get a choppy cut. Unless toto fixed this problem I don't know.

You don't want to jump on a fixed deck Toro just to save money, not unless you got at least 1,000 cuts under your belt, I did say get a floater. The reason it jumps is because it has fingertip controls and a TON of power, it's not lame and weak and takes a gorilla to operate like all the rest of them, the 48" fixed deck Toro is the true razor's edge of lawn mowers.

That thing will squeal tires and get on its side in turns, you lose control of one of these and you might not live to tell about it.
That is, if you're like me and you get tired of the engine cutting out so you disable the safety switch, now the blades don't stop.

Temperamental and capricious is the best way I can describe it.
Way I see things, if a mower can't show me who is master then I need a better mower.
Yes sir, I've been over those handlebars a dozen times by now, that thing is bad to the bone.

So folks miss-understand, they see razor's edge and they think that it's the best.
But just because someone says Mt. Everest is the tallest peak on earth nobody said you can just go climb it either.

The toro 48" fixed deck needs mastering, this takes time, more than a few weeks.
But if you ever get one, you'll likely never look back.

There's another miss-understanding:
By getting one I don't mean buying it, that too, but I mean 'get' it.

advantage landscaping
12-06-2007, 08:29 PM
With all that said topsites, if you are looking 4k now then you may as well go hydro. You can get a quick 44 for way under 4k and they are nice nice machines. Or you can pick up an almost new used machine for 4k w/out sales tax, so you get more machine for less.

Willofalltrades
12-07-2007, 05:42 AM
I see where Topsites is going... oh so true. I couldn't agree more. Lets focus on the part where he suggests selling the New truck. I don't agree with that. I know everybodies policy is different but I actually saved money when I made my vehicle's insurance policy commercial. Everybodies is different. Anyway, he has the truck, he has the trailer, all he needs is a mower and experience. I say get the mower and your equipment and get 15 yards on the side to make it by and pay stuff off. Next get a job with a local established company and learn how to operate... 3-4 years from now get a strong client base and quit the other company... by then you should have low operating costs and you won't have to worry about the long term upkeeps on a 10-12 year old truck... especially a 3/4 ton with all that gas. THe older the truck gets the more you are going to be nickled and dimed to death. KEEP THAT NEW CHEVY NEW... it will save you $$$ in the long run.

grassnazi1
12-07-2007, 10:20 AM
I can see Topsites "plan of action" and it makes sense... However, I also agree with Willofalltrades on keeping the truck and trailor. You already have it, so better make it work for you. I find that having bills is the ultimate motivator in this industry. If I had everything paid for, would I really work as hard as I do or put forth the effort every single day? Now, I'm not saying get yourself 45k in the hole, but 3k isn't a bad "hole" to be in and it will probably push you to work harder towards building your business since you'll be in debt. 12 months interest free is a great way to mark your achiements and take satisfaction in your business too. If you know you have the debt, then you also know you have your cutting season to make enough money to pay for it and pay it off as soon as possible. I remember financing my first mower for $3k and having it paid off in 12 weeks (obviously not the only bill I had) was an awesome feeling and it gave me the motivation to really get my business up and off the ground. Just my 2 cents.

BeautifulBlooms
12-07-2007, 10:24 AM
Another thought process about the mowers is this. If you have no mechanical experience or aptitude it might be in your best interest to buy new so you have no problems. That is the way I started and as I have time to work ont hings I can figure them out but for a long time you wont have any sort of mechanical issue. Also being a one man show you have no backup, you are going to want the work taken care of quick in which you will onyl get that awesome service if you have purchased from a dealer new most likely.

Just my thoughts.

Harry1958
12-07-2007, 09:03 PM
I'm thinking ofr srtarting a "New" business, no overhead except consumables (Gas and oil) what should I charge as i've been out of the ther Business since 1976????? Just Cut

rcracer
12-07-2007, 11:04 PM
thanks once again for all the awesome advice. I am thinking that I am going to have to finance at least the mower because I get my last check from the military the first week in february. I will hopefully have my wifes car paid off by then which is why I am going to have to finance the mower. I hope it all works out. I agree with having the dealer there to fix anything quick for me that is a good thing for sure. I am dealing with a property management company that has 20 to 30 properties. Hopefully I can get these properties, does this route with the property managment company sound like a good idea?

RedSox4Life
12-07-2007, 11:34 PM
Regardless of all that's been said, I just wanted to offer you a little piece of advice on the mower you're thinking about buying. Five years ago I bought a 48" Exmark Metro, fixed deck, belt driven, regular pistol grip controls, basically a bare bones model. I paid somewhere around $2500 for it, which at the time I thought was an incredible (and unaffordable) amount of money. Granted I was 19 years old and dirt poor, but after running used junk for the previous couple years, I was determined to own a quality, reliable piece of equipment. Suffice it to say this mower paid for itself if in nothing more than lack of downtime. Not to mention the trivantage deck (assuming they still have these) leaves good cut and stripe. Now I can understand a new guy trying to save money by buying a used Z for $5k instead of a new one for $10k, but when we're talking about buying a reliable wb for $2.5k instead of a used one that you know nothing about for $1-1.5k, I definitly think it's worth spending that extra thousand or so. Sorry I was so long winded but I just wanted to offer my opinion.

Edit: I just wanted to add that I still have the exmark and it's now a back up mower, but I still have yet to replace a single part on it, not even so much as a belt or spindle.

rcracer
12-07-2007, 11:39 PM
I appreciate your opinion, I want all the advice I can get. I wish I could actually talk to someone about this. 405-822-0767 if anyone has a couple of minutes. Hopefully it is o.k to put your number on here.