View Full Version : Showboat LCO's

01-06-2002, 10:59 PM
Hey, do any of you have what I like to call "showboat lco's" in your areas? I'm thinking about spring already, and how every year at least 2 or 3 of these guys show up around here. It could be a young or older man, shiny new dump truck, new 12' trailer with all new spotless equipment, usually have between 5 to 15 accounts and charge lower than me (I try to talk to them). I think either these guys took the plunge all at once and decided to do lawn service, or they won some kind of giveaway or something! I don't mean to wish bad luck on anyone, but usually I don't see these guys the next season??? Maybe they decide that lawn service wasn't for them? :confused:

01-06-2002, 11:07 PM
I see them too, as I get around in my 11 year old truck. I think it is people with no limit left on the credit cards and a second mortage on the house. Nice, new diesel trucks, new trailers and equipment, and custom paint on most of it. I agree, I don't usually see them the next year.


01-06-2002, 11:14 PM
See about 3-4 new guys like this,alot of money in the hole to begin with is scary.Could have rich parents who knows.:eek:

01-07-2002, 09:12 AM
Now what's wrong with upholding a pristine image?

01-07-2002, 10:30 AM
I like them kind that way you get to browse the newspaper and load up on good equipment without the good price attached to them.:blob3: Showboats Rules:D

01-07-2002, 10:42 AM
Showroom floor look is great. On the showroom that is. hummm, maybe I'll go wax the lazer and armour all the tires. ;)

01-07-2002, 10:57 AM
I know a guy that waxes his Murray big wheels every other week. I wish I cared that much about look. I hose my stuff off every few weeks and a good scrubbing at the end of the season and that is about it.


luv of green
01-07-2002, 12:36 PM

01-07-2002, 02:42 PM
theres a couple of em here on the forum. You know, cut grass part time, always posting pics of their latest and greatest, and its quite obvious if they had to count on that equipment and support vehicles to earn a living, it wouldnt happen.

01-07-2002, 07:04 PM
we have people like that occasionally around here. usually, they are folks who have retired from their job, and are receiving their pension retiremnt income. they usually tend to last between two and four years. then they realize one of three things: A. not making much money
B. dont enjoy the work
C. realize its harder work than originally perceived to be. (IE: working sunrise to sunset sucks-LOL)
i pay no mind to them they are here today, and gone tomorrow.

Albemarle Lawn
01-07-2002, 08:21 PM
Get this: Last year an LCO sprang up with a brand new Ford Dually, new trailer with chrome wheels, 3 new Scag Turf Tigers, and....

A brand new JD Gator 6-wheel utility ATV that rides around with them EVERYWHERE above the roof of the F350 on the portion of the trailer above the gooseneck!!!


01-07-2002, 10:37 PM
I didn't mean to rip on those guys because of looking pristine, I try to keep my stuff looking good too. I was just trying to relay a visual image of these guys.

01-07-2002, 10:48 PM
why dont you like me....so I didnt know that buying all new stuff was gonna make me bankrupt....leave me alone!!!

01-07-2002, 11:44 PM
Nothing wrong with a pristine image. That is great for business. I see lots of new trucks and hear from others how some of these guys with the new trucks aren't/can't pay the nurseries and irrigation parts houses, yet they have new equipment and mamma drives a new Tahoe.

Having equipment that inspires confidence that we can do our job is good business. They don't pay their suppliers and my prices go up to cover it.


bubble boy
01-08-2002, 12:28 PM
in our first year, made enough to buy a new 4x4 silverado, had a few guys ask why and how, etc. (im relatively young)
they definately thought we were one of these people who would be gone tomorrow.

the thing about it is for most of that first season ran a 10 year old mazda b-series truck with bum brakes. so at first people looked at us as a scrub, then they looked at us as showoffs. either way i couldn't win in terms of other peoples opinion. good thing i really don't care.

and ive said this before, the people i'm most jelous of are the ones with the 10 year old truck, a truck that obviously a pure workhorse-the hardcore landscapers special. these trucks are paid off and make the best margins for their owners.

01-08-2002, 10:38 PM
I think it's important to be careful why we're thinking these things. Is it because we are jealous? Because we just don't understand how they afford it? Or do we really believe that kind of nice stuff isn't affordable making the kind of money LCOs make.

Whatever the reason, maybe the answer points to a falacy in our own thinking. It takes a big man to admit when he's jeolous or even that he's thoughts aren't right. And I admit I am guilty of this some times. But rather than be jeolous, I try to make it a motivational factor. Telling myself. "One day I will be able to afford that ....."

If the reason is because we don't understand how they can afford it or because we don't believe that anyone could afford it on an LCOs income, then we should re-evaluate that assesment. I know several LCOs and landscapers that can afford very nice new trucks for their whole fleet and nice equipment too. Their profit margin and prices are WAY higher than mine are. But they've also put in WAY more time than I have and have learned the finer points of making this business profitable.

They know how and where to buy plants and supplies at bigger discounts than I do. They know what kind of landscaping work is most profitable for this area. They are great at marketing in this area. They have more knowledge, respect, and influence in this business than I do. And because of all of this, they can afford to buy the things they buy and not leverage themselves to the hilt.

It's important that we don't pre-judge people too. Too often we see a new-comer with nice stuff and think all sorts of bad things. We suppose he's spending too much. We suppose he's doing this just to "showboat". But we don't know his story at all. Maybe he had a very successful operation in another city and has decided to move. Maybe he has excellent credit and can afford that truck on very low payments. Maybe he inherited some money and decided to invest it into his business. Would you not do the same? And even if you wouldn't, who are you to judge what he does with his money?

I just bring up these things because there if we don't use right thought, it's easy to let our thoughts justify our failures. When the reality is often that you, too, could have the same things, and not be too far leveraged, if you only knew what they knew or had the diligence to do what they've done. Don't let your thoughts sell you short. When you see things like this, use them as inspiration and something to look forward too rather then something to be jealous over.

Just my 2 cents.

p.s. I only own one nice "showboat" truck. The trucks in my fleet are older work trucks. Their sharp looking but nothing to brag about. So I am not saying this stuff from a position of having lots of nice stuff.

01-08-2002, 10:44 PM
that's the whole reason i got into ownership so i could show off that i own something hot, pretty kinda like the strippers at player's i have lunch with it's good to be the boss

01-08-2002, 11:22 PM
Gee, my Dodge will be 2 years old in April..............bout time to trade her for a new one.:D

01-09-2002, 12:13 AM
i went looking at new dodge trucks, yeah i could use a work truck with 20" wheels. come on what are these kat's thinking i live near detroit not in it

01-09-2002, 12:55 AM
Originally posted by HOMER
Gee, my Dodge will be 2 years old in April..............bout time to trade her for a new one.:D

If I had a Dodge I would trade it in also. :D ;)

01-09-2002, 01:26 AM
My 99 ford needs to be replaced tooo! Tooo old:)

01-09-2002, 07:55 AM
Back to the showboaters, you really hit it on the head with one company that sprang up here. Its not the jealousy part that bothers me, yes they have all new Lazers, dump trucks, 18 ft trailers on and on but its the way they got it.

Daddy of one of the guys is a multi-millionaire big time. He owns many large paper related companies. Junior needed something to do so Daddy set Junior up with no less than 250K worth of equipment so Junior and his buddies can mow the lawns of Daddys factories. The crappy thing about it is that they are also taking jobs at other big commercials by the "low bid" method. Why should they care what they charge, they have no overhead. If things get tight the old man shoots in some capital.

I am just sitting back to see when junior gets boared, I'm guessing soon but we'll see. There should be some fire sale deals on equipment and some big commercial jobs up that I don't want to even look at.

Looking good isn't a crime but I'd venture to say 99.9% of the LCO's here have worked for a living and then bought equipment, there is only .1% that had it given to them.

01-09-2002, 01:37 PM

01-09-2002, 02:04 PM
We put the Special Edition TTHP's on the hydraulic lift hitch & load them right in the Hummer. Tailers are so crass.

01-09-2002, 02:26 PM
I'd like a new truck myself but I can't see paying those high truck pmt's just to look good.I m still running my old '85 Chevy one ton.
Besides it's not the truck that brings in the green it's the service you do and the quality you maintain.Last year I had a 99 Ford but I got tired of making payments so I got rid of it.Someday I hope to get maybe a 5 year old Dodge one ton and pay cash for it.