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View Full Version : I am just starting my buisness and need help?


MowMasters
11-02-2009, 10:42 AM
Hello,

I was wondering if anyone on here can give me some helpful tips on what to do when getting started with a landscaping buisness. I have been doing some small landscape jobs for people on the side for 5 years now and I have decided to finally pull the trigger and open my own buisness. Can someone give me a little help on what I need to do?

DJ'sLawnCareSvc
11-03-2009, 02:37 AM
hustle hustle hustle...... dont go cheap on equipment, go over yourself twice, oh and did i mention.... hustle!!

Allens LawnCare
11-03-2009, 08:31 AM
Check with your sec of state (on the web) they give you a check list, everything from lisences to insurance and SBA help.
Buying stuff isn't the hard part......keeping the money coming in is the tricky part.
Good luck

MowMasters
11-03-2009, 10:05 AM
Thank You Allens and DJ, I apreciate the guidance, any other start up information is welcome

Allens LawnCare
11-03-2009, 03:29 PM
Just be ready for a ton of paperwork, your current stress level X Million....for some it stops. For others like myself once I get all my cleanups done the next day it snows and it's 14-16hrs straight of no sleep just mind numbing forward and back forward and back.....hoping next year to hire someone.! Good Luck!

lawnangel1
11-03-2009, 07:28 PM
Good luck, every year it gets harder and harder to really break into this business.

clean_cut
11-03-2009, 08:20 PM
Do buy quality equipment, but don't get way over your head. Start out small (lightly used equipment) until you have some customers, then remember to not waste all your money on a nice mower, save money to buy a grass catcher for the mower, new blower, etc.

Just my opinions, lets see what everyone else says...

SperaLandscaping
11-03-2009, 09:27 PM
Like clean cut said do overextend your budget on equipment at first. You can still do as good of a job with smaller equipment. It might just take longer. And a lesson I learned the hard way. Set a labor rate and stick to it. I used to give people to many breaks and then they expect it forever. It will save you alot of headaches in the future. Good luck

flascaper
11-03-2009, 10:45 PM
Advertise. I am surprised no one said this. Check local paper ad rates then hook into service magic.com they will give you leads for 20-22 bucks each in your area and you have the power to stop and start leads. Set an advetising budget based on local aspects and even hand out flyers. But online is the way to go. Marketing Marketing Marketing...........................................oh did I mention word of mouth that happens after Marketing.

Landscape Poet
11-03-2009, 11:45 PM
1. Get License and Insurance
2. Advertise - At first you will more than likely have a lot of free time until you get a good client base, use this time to pass out flyers, lots of them, do not get discouraged if you do not get a lot of calls at first. A lot of people will hold on to them and call at some point.
3. Equipment - like others have said - start with what you can afford and upgrade as your budget allows. When it comes time to buy commercial - do not ask here what brand is the best - rather ask some of your local landscapers - see what is common in you area and who the best dealer is - not what dealer does the most volume but what dealer give the best and fastest service. When you own 1 zero turn and it breaks - you need it back very quick.
4. Equipment continued - Ask dealer how long it normally takes them to order and recieve a part for a certain brand of mower before you buy. Same with Handhelds or any other equip. This was the final factor on me going with my equipment set up...both brands have distro center here in Orlando - so most parts if ordered by dealer by 2pm are here the next day.
5. When you get your first customer - and every customer after that - remember they are your boss - they hired you and they can fire you and will do so the minute they feel you are not earning your keep. Do extras on their properties whenever you can - without charging - but then get credit for it - tell them in person if you can and show them - if you can not do so in person - write them a note on their invoice. The little extras go a long way when you are starting out. As Flascaper said...that is when word of mouth happens and it is your best advertising.
6. Do everything you can to cut cost - before you buy anything for the business - ask yourself if it is going to make you money or just make you feel better. I have made purchases that I thought I needed, but when I look back at them, I really did not need, but rather wanted. A lot of people on this sight have a lot of toys - they have either earned the right to own them or have a lot of debt - do not get caught up in the hype.
7. Keep teaching yourself - If you do not already know everything there is to know about the turf and plants in your area - then you still need to study. This is one of many things that your customers will learn to appreciate about you. If you can spot a potential problem and save them money - they will not forget you.
Those are a few things...you will be amazed at all the stuff you will have learned after your first year.

rnd
11-19-2010, 04:59 PM
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scagwildcat18
11-21-2010, 05:34 PM
@Michael Geist Yard Works. i pretty much followed those same simple rules that u just listed and my business grew from a puny 5-6 lawns to about 42 lawns over all in just one mowing season. i couldnt agree more with what u just said. btw im 18 and just started last year. my friend tryed to open up a business as well around the same time as me just to see who would get more customers and he did the advertising part somewhat right. we have a alotta small devolpments scattered all around our area and we both advertised in the same devolpments. but see this is the funny part is he some how picked up a lawn right next to one of mine and i was going all out for my customers in the beginning, doing anything i could to make them happy and keep me. make a long story short the neighbor he was mowing fired him and called me because they heard and seen the work i was doing. my friend(competition) now mows 3 lawns with a garden tractor:)

Eric E
11-21-2010, 09:30 PM
Treat it like a business! Be a business person first, landscaper 2nd!