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View Full Version : Christmas lighting business? Worth it?


nylawnman75
03-18-2009, 12:48 PM
After listening to a show this morning about getting into the Christmas light installation business (http://www.startingabiz.com/starting-a-christmas-light-installation-business/), I have been thinking a lot about it. I'm doing fairly well with two crews of two -- year round -- but I want to expand a little. Is this a pie-in-the-sky thing, or is there really business out there? I don't know ANYBODY who pays to put up lights. Maybe my area just isn't that affluent! Everyone I know heads down to the local walmart and buys the cheap crap and strings it up. If you have done it, does it detract from your main business too much? I don't want to be a jack of all trades and master of none.

I'm wondering if there are guys here who have made a successful business at it (or not), and what advice you might have. Thank you in advance.

TexasFire221
03-18-2009, 01:11 PM
I got into Holiday Lighting last season and I was very pleased. I did almost no advertising because i got into it late and still made a decent profit. Get in touch with Mike Marlow at Holiday Bright Lights and he will get you in the right direction. They have awesome products and was very pleased. PM me and I will give you his number.

nylawnman75
03-18-2009, 01:13 PM
What did it cost you to get started? I've got the trucks, ladders, etc., but I'm worried I'm missing something big.

jg244888
03-18-2009, 02:02 PM
theres a christmas lighting section on here try starting by reading there

Sack
03-18-2009, 03:36 PM
It's HUGE in my area.

TexasFire221
03-18-2009, 05:53 PM
lawnman send me an email and I will get you pointed in the right direction.

greenkeepers76550@yahoo.com

kaferhaus
03-18-2009, 06:01 PM
Zero market for it here. Several guys spent a bunch of money trying to get it going but they lost their shirts... and they spent thousands of bucks advertizing starting in mid November.

MOW ED
03-18-2009, 06:21 PM
I am starting a related business but it isn't putting Christmas lights up its taking Christmas lights DOWN

There are so many lazy azzes out there. I am tired of Christmas in April so I will charge people to take the junk down.
Whadda ya think?:laugh:

Carolina Cuts
03-18-2009, 06:39 PM
Christmas lighting business? Worth it?

depends on you...

I've been decorating since I was 17.... helping my uncle. Eventually, his clients were turned over to me.... I relocated to Myrtle Beach and would fly up Jersey for the month of November to decorate. All homes were finished and lit up by Thanksgiving. I'd return to Myrtle Beach with thousands. :weightlifter: Then fly back up in January to take em' down. Return again with thousands.... :weightlifter:

I have since givin' it up though... and have been pushing it down here... I'd much rather decorate in 70 degree weather.... :cool2:

David Gretzmier
03-18-2009, 08:29 PM
Mobile, Alabama- You guys have 400,000 folks. The market for folks spending 2000 plus bucks on Christmas lights is usually the top 1 or 2 percent, so you have a potential 4000 to 8000 folks to market to. I would nearly guarantee you I could go in to Mobile, send 3 rounds of 4000 my Christmas postcards, and get at least 80 bids and close at least 25 new customers each year at an average of 2500-3000 per customer. any town has the top earners and they will pay for someone to create a beautiful display if they trust the salesperson, and you do a great job.

we have 160 customers in my market and have been doing it in this market since 2000. we gain around 35 customers every year and lose 5-20 depending on the year.

Buffalo, new york, has similar population and should run similar numbers, but Buffalo is a shrinking town.

I buy from Holiday Bright Lights as well as other companies. HBL offers training and sales literature and has some of the best product lines in the country, and I have bought from dozens. Give Mike a call.

I'd also take a 5 hour read on the Christmas tree and lights side of lawnsite, it is a great tutorial on what to do to get started and what to expect.

Pietro
03-18-2009, 08:34 PM
We were going to get into it, but we decided not to. We refuse to put up anything other than commercial quality lights, which must be purchased thru us, we wont be digging your old crap outta the attic and seeing what light is burned out. It seemed like way too much of a headace.

kaferhaus
03-18-2009, 08:59 PM
Mobile, Alabama- You guys have 400,000 folks. The market for folks spending 2000 plus bucks on Christmas lights is usually the top 1 or 2 percent, so you have a potential 4000 to 8000 folks to market to. I would nearly guarantee you I could go in to Mobile, send 3 rounds of 4000 my Christmas postcards, and get at least 80 bids and close at least 25 new customers

Then come on down! and show us redneck hillbillies how it's done!

I've got a little demographic news for you though. We have plenty of folks you'd consider "wealthy". Almost none of them put up christmas displays other than a wreath on the door and open the blinds in front of the christmas tree.

The "poor folks" spend more money on lights and decorations than any other economic group here. Next would be the middle class and with very few exceptions most of that is "understated".... very conservative and very in-expensive.

It's doesn't get "cold" here until middle of january and even then it's rarely more than sweater weather..... very comfy for doing such chores has hanging a few lights.

The fellows that tried it here targeted mailings to only those neighborhoods that could afford such luxury, targeted their radio and tv spots to those people, got a half page write up in the newspaper about how great it all was (I thought they had hit the jackpot to be honest and was wishing I'd gotten in on it) and how it was going to put the "merriment" back into the streets .

Didn't happen they only sold a couple dozen jobs which all looked fantastic. Lost their butts, tried it again the next year (without the TV ads) lost their butts again.

No one has had the gonads to go at it since.

Grits
03-18-2009, 10:18 PM
I am starting a related business but it isn't putting Christmas lights up its taking Christmas lights DOWN

There are so many lazy azzes out there. I am tired of Christmas in April so I will charge people to take the junk down.
Whadda ya think?:laugh:

Now this is a great idea! Think I will try it this year.

shade tree landscaping
03-19-2009, 11:11 AM
If done properly, HUGE profits in it! Key is that you only use your product, customer must buy thru you! You sign people up for a 2-3 year contract to lock in their price, with minimal discount offered. Also you charge the customer to store their lights, they own them, you store them, maintain them, install and take them down. Be perpared for call backs for burnt out bulbs, lights that fall down ect.