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soloscaperman
11-09-2012, 03:01 PM
My friend drives a Beer truck and recommended me to a 11PM -7AM night job Monday - Thursday. It pays from $15HR-$19HR and some nights you have to work 15 hrs loading the trucks up with cases of beer&wine. (Talked to the recruiter today)

I love the 90% of my business but not snow plowing anymore. I am afraid if I leave the plowing part I may end up hurting my business future with my customers. I may have a friend that I will transfer my plowing accounts to and not be threaten with him doing the mowing, mulch, cleanups because he owns a transmission shop.

What hurts me is I have a few customers that would be hurt. I have this one old lady about 95 years old that no one can stand because of her way of dealing with people and her pricing is based from the 1960's. I live about 1/4 mile from her and I don't mind and she is getting bad where she can't really walk. idk what I am trying to say but I need some opinions. I do like snow plowing but not when we get more then 5 inches of snow and the crazy cold hours and the money is like beer money compared to the overhead WHICH MY OVERHEAD IS NOT AS HIGH AS MOST GUYS! The lady asked me but you own a business are you looking at seasonal or full time? I told her that I am getting out of the plowing business and if I like this job I will sell my business or give it to another landscaper.

larryinalabama
11-09-2012, 03:26 PM
You and your beer truck are alaways welcome at my home.

Cant you keep a small lawn route part time?

GMLC
11-09-2012, 03:40 PM
I will be honest, my business is always for sale for the right price. If the right career and money were to be offered to me I could take it. It hasnt yet but Im always ready. Its part of business ownership.

I have a friend that has a bread route and loves it.

Oh and I also hate snow plowing.
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larryinalabama
11-09-2012, 03:42 PM
I never want to go back working for the"MAN".

Durabird02
11-09-2012, 04:15 PM
I never want to go back working for the"MAN".

Amen to that!

KrayzKajun
11-09-2012, 04:20 PM
Isnt this the 3rd or 4th thread you have started about giving up the business? Personally it seems ths industry isnt for u. Everybody u talk to seems to have a cool job offer for ya.
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KrayzKajun
11-09-2012, 04:21 PM
I never want to go back working for the"MAN".

Ditto.
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grandview (2006)
11-09-2012, 04:30 PM
Dump the snowplowing,your customers will understand that your not plowing anymore,just don't say you got a job.

soloscaperman
11-09-2012, 06:40 PM
Dump the snowplowing,your customers will understand that your not plowing anymore,just don't say you got a job.

This might be the answer. If I say I got another job they will think I will be leaving the normal landscaping maintenance at some point. I know Krazy cajun I hate working for the man they make you work harder for less and you get the blame from the people higher up. I have already seen 10 more wanna be landscapers after this Hurricane Sandy. I could always date a slam pig and have her help with my business but I am not like most guys. I will make sure that if I get the job I will put 90% of my income into my business. I am going to build a business savings that will last me a year or two if things go wrong. I will then put part of the money also into buying a second mower and truck. I will tell my customers that I will not be snow plowing this season for personal reason's I guess. Hopefully they will realize how much better I am versus the other guy.

32vld
11-09-2012, 07:37 PM
By your screen name it appears you are working your route solo. Is that correct?

How many customers, days of the week you work your route, and how many hours a week does it take to do your landscape route?

Are you married? Kids?

As grandview said give up the plowing or a second option is to find someone to sub out your plow route to cover the route for 16 hours a day and you still plow your accounts for the other 8 hours.

You now have your plow route kept in your business name and it will be there as a back up in case your beer case moving job goes south on you.

jsslawncare
11-09-2012, 08:22 PM
I never want to go back working for the"MAN".

Me EITHER!

Patriot Services
11-09-2012, 08:33 PM
Have you ever taken the time to seriously evaluate what you want to do with your life? You seem very conflicted and indecisive. Maybe the stability of a regular job is what you need right now. Sometimes you have to start over and reinvent yourself. Your still young, self employment will always be there.
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RodneyK
11-09-2012, 09:48 PM
Working nights 11p to 7a and for the man, no thanks...

aka lawn
11-13-2012, 12:33 PM
I have worked nights for over twelve years. Was great for the first eleven years. Now i hate it. Make more then what they are offering you per hour. But after all the years of nights it has got me burnt out. Started my business this past spring in order to tell the man what he can do with the job. That is something to think about

MV Property Care
11-13-2012, 04:50 PM
I never want to go back working for the"MAN".

If you work long hrs for somebody your bound to thier rules. If you want to work long hrs for your self you can always get something to eat or quit when you want to. I have 20 years of factory work. I can't punch another time clock. I can make more money by myself.

PremierT&L
11-13-2012, 11:56 PM
I never want to go back working for the"MAN".

Bingo. That would be close to impossible for me at this point.

RSK Property Maintenance
11-14-2012, 11:26 PM
My friend drives a Beer truck and recommended me to a 11PM -7AM night job Monday - Thursday. It pays from $15HR-$19HR and some nights you have to work 15 hrs loading the trucks up with cases of beer&wine. (Talked to the recruiter today)

I love the 90% of my business but not snow plowing anymore. I am afraid if I leave the plowing part I may end up hurting my business future with my customers. I may have a friend that I will transfer my plowing accounts to and not be threaten with him doing the mowing, mulch, cleanups because he owns a transmission shop.

What hurts me is I have a few customers that would be hurt. I have this one old lady about 95 years old that no one can stand because of her way of dealing with people and her pricing is based from the 1960's. I live about 1/4 mile from her and I don't mind and she is getting bad where she can't really walk. idk what I am trying to say but I need some opinions. I do like snow plowing but not when we get more then 5 inches of snow and the crazy cold hours and the money is like beer money compared to the overhead WHICH MY OVERHEAD IS NOT AS HIGH AS MOST GUYS! The lady asked me but you own a business are you looking at seasonal or full time? I told her that I am getting out of the plowing business and if I like this job I will sell my business or give it to another landscaper.

sounds like you just need to advertise, advertise, advertise, if you really aren't making enough money and bills are piling up, then maybe dropping the snow plowing is what you need to do. But I got 10 new accounts in the past 30 days for plowing, maybe even 15 i haven't actually added them all to the list yet. and Its anything but beer money. Even last year my first year advertising I had 22 snow plowing accounts and was averaging 130-140hr and I would plow for about 10hrs with a small storm up to 6" I average about 3 driveways per hour and they pay well. well enough to not care about the 8 or 9mpg i'm getting in my f350 diesel with my new tires that i paid 1350 for that will be worn out by next december. the first few years can be tight. I have all kinds of low ballers in my area, new ones popping up every day. lots of illegal mexican workers trying to steal my work, but the truth is alot of people around here will only hire other white people, and they pay extra for some one who speaks english. Especially a hard working younger person like me. and with a setup like mine, they know i'm serious.

http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a608/Ryan_Krajewski/IMG_1287.jpg

hackitdown
11-15-2012, 05:44 PM
Raise your plowing prices until it makes the work more attractive to you. Plowing customers are a dime-a-dozen. With some strong pricing and a tight route, you can make good money on your own terms. For example, here are my plowing terms:

- No plowing until the storm ends.
- No guarantee that we will have you plowed out by any particular time of day.
- No shoveling
- No clearing mailboxes
- No free spring repairs on plow damage
- Charge for staking
- Whiners get cancelled

Being tough on terms means that many customer will not hire you, that is the trade off. It takes longer to build a route, more advertising is required. Keep it local, don't drive more than a few minutes, it isn't worth it, and service suffers. It took a few years, but I do pretty well money-wise, and I can do my route alone in 4 hours.

Another idea is to just hire a guy to plow for you. I hired a retired guy to plow last year. He was pumped to make $20/hr using my truck. There are lots of experienced people out there that want to work.

jrs.landscaping
11-15-2012, 06:29 PM
You can't make plowing attractive, I've tried many many times. I agree with Grandview, dump the plowing, take the night job and do lawns in your free time. Plowing IMHO is something to do in the winter, and a money pit. If I could get away with it I'd dump all plowing accounts and break even sitting on the couch.

NC Greenscaper
11-15-2012, 08:29 PM
This might be the answer. If I say I got another job they will think I will be leaving the normal landscaping maintenance at some point. I know Krazy cajun I hate working for the man they make you work harder for less and you get the blame from the people higher up. I have already seen 10 more wanna be landscapers after this Hurricane Sandy. I could always date a slam pig and have her help with my business but I am not like most guys. I will make sure that if I get the job I will put 90% of my income into my business. I am going to build a business savings that will last me a year or two if things go wrong. I will then put part of the money also into buying a second mower and truck. I will tell my customers that I will not be snow plowing this season for personal reason's I guess. Hopefully they will realize how much better I am versus the other guy.

It seems to me like your straddling a couple fences. What does your heart tell you to do. Make up your mind and put all your energy into that decision. If you want to mow grass only then find a way to make it happen. There are parts of every business that I don't like to do. Working a hand truck on a dock all night loading beer doesn't really appeal to me either. But I would do it if I needed to.

hackitdown
11-16-2012, 08:56 AM
You can't make plowing attractive, I've tried many many times. I agree with Grandview, dump the plowing, take the night job and do lawns in your free time. Plowing IMHO is something to do in the winter, and a money pit. If I could get away with it I'd dump all plowing accounts and break even sitting on the couch.

Ok, then answer this: If you could have a plow route that takes 4 or 5 hours, 1/3 of a tank of gas, and bills at $1000 per small storm, $2000 for large storms (8 to 10 hours, 2/3 tank) would you do it? You need 25 driveways at $40 per push on a tight, 4 hour route. Not too hard to manage. I think that is worth a day in the seat. In a typical storm, I am up and in the truck at 5am. Back home eating breakfast by 10am. Bill $1000. Spend $25 in gas. We get an average of 11 storms, 3 or 4 require a 2nd push. (Full disclosure...I do end up spending anywhere from $500 to $2000 per year on truck or plow repairs.)

Yes there are guys that will plow a driveway for $20. And they will drive 30 minutes in a blinding snowstorm to earn that $20. Those are the guys that can't seem to understand why they aren't making money plowing. They are in the truck for 12 hours, burn $100+ in gas, and bill $500 total. Not too strategic.

Do the math. I just don't see how working all day, every day for $15 per hour is a better deal.

jrs.landscaping
11-16-2012, 06:35 PM
Those numbers are great. What happens when your 6 wheeler, loader, skid steer, one tons, plows, sanders break down? Because they do. Or one guy calls in sick so you have a machine/truck with no driver. I've had seasons where I've grossed almost 30k and netted a whopping 2k due to breakdowns and fuel rising. To be honest I've made the joke that during that season I would have made more money as a cart jockey at Wal Mart and I wouldn't have been turning wrenches at 2 AM in -30 weather. If you make money great, I do as well, but if there were other alteratives I would be more than willing to explore them.

soloscaperman
11-17-2012, 03:41 AM
Raise your plowing prices until it makes the work more attractive to you. Plowing customers are a dime-a-dozen. With some strong pricing and a tight route, you can make good money on your own terms. For example, here are my plowing terms:

- No plowing until the storm ends.
- No guarantee that we will have you plowed out by any particular time of day.
- No shoveling
- No clearing mailboxes
- No free spring repairs on plow damage
- Charge for staking
- Whiners get cancelled

Being tough on terms means that many customer will not hire you, that is the trade off. It takes longer to build a route, more advertising is required. Keep it local, don't drive more than a few minutes, it isn't worth it, and service suffers. It took a few years, but I do pretty well money-wise, and I can do my route alone in 4 hours.

Another idea is to just hire a guy to plow for you. I hired a retired guy to plow last year. He was pumped to make $20/hr using my truck. There are lots of experienced people out there that want to work.


Every person should remember this! So true! The clients I mow I can't be lien-ant when it comes to plowing. I have that rich whiney guy that you guys told me to dropped well HE PUTS THE STAKES DOWN AND PUT THE LAST TWO 2 FEET ONTO THE GRASS. He has a $2M house but his driveway is the same size as my plow. He calls me telling me to fix the grass. I did fix it when the snow melted. I was trained that you always shovel out from the garage doors and that's what has been killing me with time and there is one mowing customer (good old people) that have a ripped up driveway so I have to shovel out the first 10ft or I would damage my plow and my ball joints.

DON'T RELY ON PLOWING AS AN INCOME BECAUSE HALF THE TIME YOUR NOT GOING TO GET THE SNOW AND THE OTHER HALF IS THE OVERHEAD. Unless you got new Ford F350's and have money in the bank plowing is to keep your workers busy and your full service customers happy. Commercial plowing which I do two small apartments that's where the money is!

inzane
11-17-2012, 08:58 AM
for about 9 years i have worked 11pm to 7am shift (more like 11pm till 11a.m. most nights) and what that kinda shift is doing to my family life, and what its doing to me physically is not worth 18 bucks an hour anymore. i took that job so i could run my lawn care business during the day (9 years ago), little did i know that i would be working 12 to 15 hour nights (which was good overtime, but not good for running my business on top of that), the money was great, the insurance was great, i spent 9 years building up a 401k so it wasn't all for nothing. but i'm burnt out, another year and i probally will be divorced, i see my kid mabee once a week and i sleep 2 or 3 hours a day if i'm lucky.

my point is, make sure you know exactly what your getting into. it doesn't sound like a bad opportunity if there is room to move into a day time position. night shift is not for everybody.. the only thing that got me through it was the amount of debt i was carrying due to stupid mistakes, however.. i've worked my way out of that hole over the last few years, and at the end of the year i'm out of there.. :clapping:



My friend drives a Beer truck and recommended me to a 11PM -7AM night job Monday - Thursday. It pays from $15HR-$19HR and some nights you have to work 15 hrs loading the trucks up with cases of beer&wine. (Talked to the recruiter today)

I love the 90% of my business but not snow plowing anymore. I am afraid if I leave the plowing part I may end up hurting my business future with my customers. I may have a friend that I will transfer my plowing accounts to and not be threaten with him doing the mowing, mulch, cleanups because he owns a transmission shop.

What hurts me is I have a few customers that would be hurt. I have this one old lady about 95 years old that no one can stand because of her way of dealing with people and her pricing is based from the 1960's. I live about 1/4 mile from her and I don't mind and she is getting bad where she can't really walk. idk what I am trying to say but I need some opinions. I do like snow plowing but not when we get more then 5 inches of snow and the crazy cold hours and the money is like beer money compared to the overhead WHICH MY OVERHEAD IS NOT AS HIGH AS MOST GUYS! The lady asked me but you own a business are you looking at seasonal or full time? I told her that I am getting out of the plowing business and if I like this job I will sell my business or give it to another landscaper.

Duekster
11-17-2012, 09:42 AM
I have to question the price structure of the business if you are considering taking a job making 30 to 40K. Then you say you would put most of money from the job back in to buy another truck and mower?

I say take the job and move on or take the time to learn How to Recover your expenses and make a good living. Do not do both.

CowboysLawnCareDelaware
11-17-2012, 10:23 PM
soloscapeman, where are you located?

Michael:confused:

soloscaperman
11-17-2012, 10:26 PM
soloscapeman, where are you located?

Michael:confused:

Around Fairfield county, CT

RSK Property Maintenance
11-18-2012, 02:45 AM
Every person should remember this! So true! The clients I mow I can't be lien-ant when it comes to plowing. I have that rich whiney guy that you guys told me to dropped well HE PUTS THE STAKES DOWN AND PUT THE LAST TWO 2 FEET ONTO THE GRASS. He has a $2M house but his driveway is the same size as my plow. He calls me telling me to fix the grass. I did fix it when the snow melted. I was trained that you always shovel out from the garage doors and that's what has been killing me with time and there is one mowing customer (good old people) that have a ripped up driveway so I have to shovel out the first 10ft or I would damage my plow and my ball joints.

DON'T RELY ON PLOWING AS AN INCOME BECAUSE HALF THE TIME YOUR NOT GOING TO GET THE SNOW AND THE OTHER HALF IS THE OVERHEAD. Unless you got new Ford F350's and have money in the bank plowing is to keep your workers busy and your full service customers happy. Commercial plowing which I do two small apartments that's where the money is!

I don't rely on plowing for income in the winter, but i see it as a bonus, and it does snow where i live in the winter, and I charge enough money where I make about 5-8 dollars a minute while i'm actually in the driveway plowing or shoveling a sidewalk or steps. none of my customers live in million dollar houses, none live in 800,000 dollar houses. most are probably 3-700,000 average sized for the area. And none of them complain. my 16 year old ford f350 with 271,000 miles doesn't require much maintenance. There actually is a pretty good amount of profit in snow plowing if you price it like I do, so you make at least 130-140 hour, which is having a bad route that is 14 hours long and driveways spaced apart so you can only do 3 per hour.

hackitdown
11-18-2012, 10:56 AM
I don't rely on plowing for income in the winter, but i see it as a bonus, and it does snow where i live in the winter, and I charge enough money where I make about 5-8 dollars a minute while i'm actually in the driveway plowing or shoveling a sidewalk or steps. none of my customers live in million dollar houses, none live in 800,000 dollar houses. most are probably 3-700,000 average sized for the area. And none of them complain. my 16 year old ford f350 with 271,000 miles doesn't require much maintenance. There actually is a pretty good amount of profit in snow plowing if you price it like I do, so you make at least 130-140 hour, which is having a bad route that is 14 hours long and driveways spaced apart so you can only do 3 per hour.

Exactly...it is decent money if you do it on your own terms. To me a 14 hour route wouldn't work, but that sounds like a profitable day for you regardless. My route used to take 8 hours because the driveways were spread out. But I kept advertising, searching for better customers. When I got some new ones closer to home, I would drop the distant ones. It took 6 or 7 years to get where I am, and I don't have that many plow customers. But what I do have works well, it is fast, and I make good money for such a short route. As an example, I have one shared driveway with 4 houses. It takes 20 minutes to plow all 4. They all pay $45 each per push. I also have 3 additional drives on that same street, maybe another 25 minutes. I do 3 of my neighbors, all 3 take about 20 minutes. So that is 10 driveways that (even with drive time) are all done in under 90 minutes. Situations like these are the way to make it work.

A lot of landscapers don't realize that often times you are better off saying "no" to a customer. And that is especially true when it comes to plowing. I have a standard response to people who call from too far away, I just say that "I would love to help them out, but because of the distance I would not be able to provide the level of service they would need or expect". And at this point, even a mile off my route is way to far.

RSK Property Maintenance
11-18-2012, 11:16 AM
Exactly...it is decent money if you do it on your own terms. To me a 14 hour route wouldn't work, but that sounds like a profitable day for you regardless. My route used to take 8 hours because the driveways were spread out. But I kept advertising, searching for better customers. When I got some new ones closer to home, I would drop the distant ones. It took 6 or 7 years to get where I am, and I don't have that many plow customers. But what I do have works well, it is fast, and I make good money for such a short route. As an example, I have one shared driveway with 4 houses. It takes 20 minutes to plow all 4. They all pay $45 each per push. I also have 3 additional drives on that same street, maybe another 25 minutes. I do 3 of my neighbors, all 3 take about 20 minutes. So that is 10 driveways that (even with drive time) are all done in under 90 minutes. Situations like these are the way to make it work.

A lot of landscapers don't realize that often times you are better off saying "no" to a customer. And that is especially true when it comes to plowing. I have a standard response to people who call from too far away, I just say that "I would love to help them out, but because of the distance I would not be able to provide the level of service they would need or expect". And at this point, even a mile off my route is way to far.

yah that's my problem, I have a 20 mile ride from my two furthest accounts, but i have a lot in between so its really not bad, just a little time consuming. and its hard for me to say no. But i'm starting to get a lot of accounts that are about 1-5 mins away from each other finally, so things are looking a lot better this year plowing wise. i'd like to get to the point where i make 2000 off a small storm 2-6" i know right now with all the new accounts i just got last week i am probably pretty close, which i think, starting with no accounts last year is pretty excellent. I retained 98% i only lost 2 or 3 customers but it doesn't even matter because they are very replaceable. They have been replaced with better customers that pay better. If only I got lawns this easy and quickly. hopefully next spring I will!

RSK Property Maintenance
11-18-2012, 12:30 PM
i thought about getting a part time job during the summer when i had a few really slow months but then I realized if I just knock on a few doors, I can make the same money i would have made if i worked 3 or 4 nights a restaurant or some crappy hourly job, so I did and no job was needed, things do get tight in the summer but you gotta be able to get past that and look forward and be proactive. if someone offered me a full time job for 18/hr i would laugh...no way i could do it now. Don't get me wrong if i have nothing going on and one of my buddies needs some help with tree work or doing clean ups i'll work for little money just to help them, but thats only for a day or two, every couple of months. if even that much.

Duekster
11-18-2012, 12:40 PM
I do some work part time but it often is in 3 or 4 day events about 10 times a year.

94gt331
11-18-2012, 06:22 PM
Soloscaper my advice to you is do what feels best for you and if you know that taking a winter job is best for you take it. Alot of guys on here are gonna not work for those beer wages, but alot of people don't realize that that is consistant money every week 40-50hrs a weeks at $15hr adds up to a nice paycheck for the next 4 months. Plowing causes alot of stress plus you are putting your finances on the line and if it doesn't snow your sunk, and when you spend your summer bank fixing your plow when it breaks your sunk. Personally, I do alot of plowing in the winter but I also work about 30-40hrs on a farm over the winter to make some spending money. I plow because I like plowing snow and it's a bonus. But I now have my snow buisiness to where I relie on having employees plowing with me and that's my biggest stress while plowing. Talk to your customers and be straight with them, explain why you are dropping there snow work, they will keep you if you are good at there lawn etc. good luck!

soloscaperman
11-18-2012, 06:50 PM
Soloscaper my advice to you is do what feels best for you and if you know that taking a winter job is best for you take it. Alot of guys on here are gonna not work for those beer wages, but alot of people don't realize that that is consistant money every week 40-50hrs a weeks at $15hr adds up to a nice paycheck for the next 4 months. Plowing causes alot of stress plus you are putting your finances on the line and if it doesn't snow your sunk, and when you spend your summer bank fixing your plow when it breaks your sunk. Personally, I do alot of plowing in the winter but I also work about 30-40hrs on a farm over the winter to make some spending money. I plow because I like plowing snow and it's a bonus. But I now have my snow buisiness to where I relie on having employees plowing with me and that's my biggest stress while plowing. Talk to your customers and be straight with them, explain why you are dropping there snow work, they will keep you if you are good at there lawn etc. good luck!

Thanks for the insight. The warehouse is about 3 miles from my house so it's sweet to only spend a few bucks on gas. So far I like it. It's a different kind of hussle and I like the fast pace work. You have to memorize the truck numbers like #37 truck needs 5 cases of Pnoir, 6 Majors, 20 Pg's etc.. It's nice because the place is warm and the people work at the same level of hustling. It makes me realize how much I took running my business for granted in different aspects and my adrenaline is back at 100%. Some people don't like being told but I guess I needed it to put me back in my place when it comes to working mad crazy. It's hard to explain.

This second job is putting the training wheels back in my business TEMPORARY because I basically "Lagged business wise this year" with my Ex almost dying this summer and my mind was just garbled everywhere. I am going to focus 100% to make $$$$! I already have people that want to work with me but I won't because the owner of the liquor warehouse would probably fire me. Plus if I want to buy a house & it would look good that I run a business and also work a second night job.

Also getting paid $19 HR is about the same from what most guys make at mowing from reading this forum. From the gas from your mower, truck, oil, spark plugs, tires, insurance, taxes, to the coffee and bottle of water lowers your goal at $60 an hour. These little things add up. Unless your ripping your customers off and or doing shobby work your not going to make a crazy amount unless you know what your doing and it takes years to build that. This is almost my 4th year and I getting close to making a large amount of profit that I see as good.

RSK Property Maintenance
11-18-2012, 07:16 PM
Thanks for the insight. The warehouse is about 3 miles from my house so it's sweet to only spend a few bucks on gas. So far I like it. It's a different kind of hussle and I like the fast pace work. You have to memorize the truck numbers like #37 truck needs 5 cases of Pnoir, 6 Majors, 20 Pg's etc.. It's nice because the place is warm and the people work at the same level of hustling. It makes me realize how much I took running my business for granted in different aspects and my adrenaline is back at 100%. Some people don't like being told but I guess I needed it to put me back in my place when it comes to working mad crazy. It's hard to explain.

This second job is putting the training wheels back in my business TEMPORARY because I basically "Lagged business wise this year" with my Ex almost dying this summer and my mind was just garbled everywhere. I am going to focus 100% to make $$$$! I already have people that want to work with me but I won't because the owner of the liquor warehouse would probably fire me. Plus if I want to buy a house & it would look good that I run a business and also work a second night job.

Also getting paid $19 HR is about the same from what most guys make at mowing from reading this forum. From the gas from your mower, truck, oil, spark plugs, tires, insurance, taxes, to the coffee and bottle of water lowers your goal at $60 an hour. These little things add up. Unless your ripping your customers off and or doing shobby work your not going to make a crazy amount unless you know what your doing and it takes years to build that. This is almost my 4th year and I getting close to making a large amount of profit that I see as good.

good luck with the new job, but I don't think most on here make anywhere near 19/hr mowing lawns even after everything you listed, probably closer 100/hr after everything you listed is deducted probably more then that. I for one gross over 100/hr mowing lawns, but i don't have full time mowing yet, but that's why i do so many other things, the landscaping side of things really helps keep me going when, while my lawns do pay a pretty good amount, i only have about 20 of them for now, I already got 3 new accounts for next year and i plan on booking several more over the winter so i can go into the spring with 40-50 lawns with an average of 50 a lawn, then whatever i get from april to june will be a bonus. and you can look in my picture thread and see my work is not perfect, but it is excellent, and my customers will agree.

jrs.landscaping
11-18-2012, 08:48 PM
good luck with the new job, but I don't think most on here make anywhere near 19/hr mowing lawns even after everything you listed, probably closer 100/hr after everything you listed is deducted probably more then that. I for one gross over 100/hr mowing lawns, but i don't have full time mowing yet, but that's why i do so many other things, the landscaping side of things really helps keep me going when, while my lawns do pay a pretty good amount, i only have about 20 of them for now, I already got 3 new accounts for next year and i plan on booking several more over the winter so i can go into the spring with 40-50 lawns with an average of 50 a lawn, then whatever i get from april to june will be a bonus. and you can look in my picture thread and see my work is not perfect, but it is excellent, and my customers will agree.

So do you net 100 PH or gross 100 PH....? I'm a little confused. If you're grossing $100 PMH are there some tips to getting rates to that level?

RSK Property Maintenance
11-19-2012, 07:45 PM
So do you net 100 PH or gross 100 PH....? I'm a little confused. If you're grossing $100 PMH are there some tips to getting rates to that level?

I gross 100ph, mowing, while doing clean ups, I price most of them so I will gross 100/hr if I do it on my own with no help usually, but I usually do my clean ups with 1 or 2 other people. much quicker that way. I've had my pricing this way for a quite a few years, I sure as heck don't make anywhere near 19 per hour after everything is deducted, do you? I will say if I do my lawn solo, as in I cut and do the trimming then I go down to grossing 60hr or even a little less for some lawns. still a far cry from 19hr like soloscaper was saying. If that's what he was getting after he deducted for everything then I completely understand him taking his job, but that is his fault for under bidding all his jobs.

jrs.landscaping
11-19-2012, 07:53 PM
If I could clear $19 PMH worked in the summer I would net over 80k, I can live with that :drinkup:

nepatsfan
11-19-2012, 08:02 PM
If I could clear $19 PMH worked in the summer I would net over 80k, I can live with that :drinkup:

i see why you need excedrin

jrs.landscaping
11-19-2012, 08:04 PM
i see why you need excedrin

:confused:

yardguy28
11-19-2012, 08:39 PM
My friend drives a Beer truck and recommended me to a 11PM -7AM night job Monday - Thursday. It pays from $15HR-$19HR and some nights you have to work 15 hrs loading the trucks up with cases of beer&wine. (Talked to the recruiter today)

I love the 90% of my business but not snow plowing anymore. I am afraid if I leave the plowing part I may end up hurting my business future with my customers. I may have a friend that I will transfer my plowing accounts to and not be threaten with him doing the mowing, mulch, cleanups because he owns a transmission shop.

What hurts me is I have a few customers that would be hurt. I have this one old lady about 95 years old that no one can stand because of her way of dealing with people and her pricing is based from the 1960's. I live about 1/4 mile from her and I don't mind and she is getting bad where she can't really walk. idk what I am trying to say but I need some opinions. I do like snow plowing but not when we get more then 5 inches of snow and the crazy cold hours and the money is like beer money compared to the overhead WHICH MY OVERHEAD IS NOT AS HIGH AS MOST GUYS! The lady asked me but you own a business are you looking at seasonal or full time? I told her that I am getting out of the plowing business and if I like this job I will sell my business or give it to another landscaper.

my advice to you personally after reading your post is get out and take the other job asap.

the businesses we own are for the sole purpose of generating money for our income to live off of. the moment we feel we need to stay in business or be in business to help this person or that person out is the moment we need to get out in my opinion.

I own and run a solo business for 2 reasons and 2 reasons only. the first is to make money and the second is because its work I love doing. I'd drop it in a heart beat if the right amount of money and job came along. there is no being hurt because of this client or that client.

clients are nothing more than people who pay me to do work on there property. no deals or discounts are made for certain ones. everyone pays the same price. if they can't afford it, find someone else. once I go out of business it's there responsibility to find a replacement. It's not my concern who gets upset with what I offer, don't offer or am going to stop offering.

we need to keep business, business and stop mixing it with pleasure and trying to be friends with our clients. we don't owe our clients anything more than quality, dependable service at the price we give them. we should never be thinking what about this old lady, what will happen to her if I go out of business. that not your problem.

just my 2 cents.

RSK Property Maintenance
11-19-2012, 08:58 PM
my advice to you personally after reading your post is get out and take the other job asap.

the businesses we own are for the sole purpose of generating money for our income to live off of. the moment we feel we need to stay in business or be in business to help this person or that person out is the moment we need to get out in my opinion.

I own and run a solo business for 2 reasons and 2 reasons only. the first is to make money and the second is because its work I love doing. I'd drop it in a heart beat if the right amount of money and job came along. there is no being hurt because of this client or that client.

clients are nothing more than people who pay me to do work on there property. no deals or discounts are made for certain ones. everyone pays the same price. if they can't afford it, find someone else. once I go out of business it's there responsibility to find a replacement. It's not my concern who gets upset with what I offer, don't offer or am going to stop offering.

we need to keep business, business and stop mixing it with pleasure and trying to be friends with our clients. we don't owe our clients anything more than quality, dependable service at the price we give them. we should never be thinking what about this old lady, what will happen to her if I go out of business. that not your problem.

just my 2 cents.

he did take the job. I agree to an extent, I try to keep business just that but sometimes things a get a little mixed, but not to the point where my feelings would hurt if someone i was friends with dropped me or I dropped them for any reason. But I do go out with some of customers, no issues for me.

yardguy28
11-20-2012, 08:42 PM
he did take the job. I agree to an extent, I try to keep business just that but sometimes things a get a little mixed, but not to the point where my feelings would hurt if someone i was friends with dropped me or I dropped them for any reason. But I do go out with some of customers, no issues for me.

well I'm glad that works for you and I'm glad you saw my point.

personally I can't and won't do that. for me it's strictly business and every client gets treated the same and no special pricing for any of them no matter how much or how little they pay me.

the doctors and lawyers who get full service don't get treated any differently than the trash collector who just has me "knock it down" once a week.

nor do I or would I feel sorry for any of them if I closed up shop. business is business.

iand
11-21-2012, 06:40 AM
i would feel sorry for most of my clients if i closed up and stopped mowing,i mean why wouldn't i feel sorry for them I'm forcing them to get someone who simply isn't as good to do their work

yardguy28
11-21-2012, 06:51 AM
i would feel sorry for most of my clients if i closed up and stopped mowing,i mean why wouldn't i feel sorry for them I'm forcing them to get someone who simply isn't as good to do their work

you really have that big of a head???

it's one thing to be proud of your work but another to think you are the absolute best.

sure I think I do a good job but I realize there are guys out there who do a little bit better job and there are guys out there who do a worse job.

I'm surprised at how many develop more than a business relationship with there clients.

90% of my clients I've either never met or only met once for the estimate. most communication happens either by email or messages left on the phone. we aren't buddys. I come, do my work and leave. at the end of the month they receive an invoice and send payment in the mail. end of relationship.

there is nothing in the business relationship about servicing there property for life. your aren't marring them.

to each there own I guess.

soloscaperman
11-21-2012, 11:48 PM
you really have that big of a head???

it's one thing to be proud of your work but another to think you are the absolute best.

sure I think I do a good job but I realize there are guys out there who do a little bit better job and there are guys out there who do a worse job.

I'm surprised at how many develop more than a business relationship with there clients.

90% of my clients I've either never met or only met once for the estimate. most communication happens either by email or messages left on the phone. we aren't buddys. I come, do my work and leave. at the end of the month they receive an invoice and send payment in the mail. end of relationship.

there is nothing in the business relationship about servicing there property for life. your aren't marring them.

to each there own I guess.

This is not good long term wise. I do agree with you about there are people better and others that are worse. This is mostly labor work which sadly is done by mexicans or meth heads that need a quick buck. I love the guys that say there the best when they weigh in at 300 pounds and sit home and do nothing. For a small to medium size customer base customer relationship is a very important foundation and in the long term you can use it at your advantage but don't use it in the wrong way.If you run a business like Apple then you know the customer doesn't want to hangout and talk or ask questions. The only time a customer like that talks is when the customer has a problem or a question and that's why there is a customer service number.

One of the reasons why large LCO's go out of business is that they don't build a strong relationship with the customer. For some reason in this kind of business most customer want to know you more or you should get to know them more because we see them once a week for a long period of time.

yardguy28
11-22-2012, 07:26 AM
This is not good long term wise. I do agree with you about there are people better and others that are worse. This is mostly labor work which sadly is done by mexicans or meth heads that need a quick buck. I love the guys that say there the best when they weigh in at 300 pounds and sit home and do nothing. For a small to medium size customer base customer relationship is a very important foundation and in the long term you can use it at your advantage but don't use it in the wrong way.If you run a business like Apple then you know the customer doesn't want to hangout and talk or ask questions. The only time a customer like that talks is when the customer has a problem or a question and that's why there is a customer service number.

One of the reasons why large LCO's go out of business is that they don't build a strong relationship with the customer. For some reason in this kind of business most customer want to know you more or you should get to know them more because we see them once a week for a long period of time.

I disagree.

90% of my clients aren't even home when I service there property weekly so how is that seeing them once a week.

I have a lot of clients who have been with me for the short 6 years I've been in business so far and as I said 90% I have never even met or only met once when the estimate was done. all other communication has been on the phone, email or messages left on a machine.

the only time my clients contact me or talk to me is if they want something extra done or to reschedule or cancel a service. otherwise it's just me showing up weekly and invoicing at the end of the month through snail mail or email and receiving a check in the mail.

I can also disagree because personally I don't care to become friendly with the service workers that do work or would do work on my property. when the plumber comes I want him in and out as quickly as possible with as little conversation as possible. if I were to hire an LCO I would expect them to do there work weekly and get going.

my parents and me split the cost for maids to come bi weekly to clean the house. we either make it a point to be gone or hang out in an area of the house the maids aren't suppose to be because otherwise the maids that come won't shut up and seem to wanna be your friend instead of just coming, cleaning and leaving.

if I wanna make friends or become friendly with someone I'll use a website or go to a public place to meet people. as far as I'm concerned my clients are just the people who sign my check for the work I do for them. I don't wanna hear about there personal life and I don't tell them about mine.

JContracting
11-26-2012, 07:32 PM
i thought about getting a part time job during the summer when i had a few really slow months but then I realized if I just knock on a few doors, I can make the same money i would have made if i worked 3 or 4 nights a restaurant or some crappy hourly job, so I did and no job was needed, things do get tight in the summer but you gotta be able to get past that and look forward and be proactive. if someone offered me a full time job for 18/hr i would laugh...no way i could do it now. Don't get me wrong if i have nothing going on and one of my buddies needs some help with tree work or doing clean ups i'll work for little money just to help them, but thats only for a day or two, every couple of months. if even that much.

I had similar thoughts with getting a job for this winter, I have a couple grand banked from a patio + stairs & retaining wall I did as well as some very profitable days with aerating & clean ups and most bills have been prepaid and I'm going to school full time through this coming spring so it's not like I'll be sitting on my a$$ all day and night but there's no way in hell I could work anywhere else. I plan to be relaxing after class and developing sales plans to greatly expand my business (plus plowing the few snow accts that I have).
I've had days where I've netted $100.00+/hr all day and parts of those days it was $270/hr (solo). I don't want to work for anyone else making $20/hr less taxes (if you can even get that, most part time jobs or w/e are barely $10/hr) doing something I don't necessarily like.
I plan to continually grow my business with full service maint clients to the point where I can take a few days off during early & late July for a couple trips (4th of July, Millville MX Pro Nat'ls) and won't have to worry about finances as the payments are the same as any other month through the landscape season.

soloscaperman
12-06-2012, 12:22 AM
UPDATE:

The Top manager just under the owner of the very well known Wine Warehouse wants me to join them full time and leave the Temp agency. They want me to try the Fork lifts as well. They say I am a hard worker and there are 2 workers that he is going to drop and put me with the company. I worked 74 Hours my first week and 68 Hours the next!

He said he understands that I have a business and said 80% of the time you work 4 days a week from 10PM-8AM and during Holidays there are weeks that you work 70+ hours. The benefits are good as well. I told him the reason I like running my own business is that I don't have to worry about being laid off and he looks at me with a smile and said I have been here 18 years and we grow more and more every year!

I think I am going to take the full time job and sell off my low end accounts that are in the Valley and keep my high end customers that live close to each other. I am going to use the money that I make and use it to pay for my new worker and to save the rest for more equipment.

RSK Property Maintenance
12-06-2012, 01:50 AM
I had similar thoughts with getting a job for this winter, I have a couple grand banked from a patio + stairs & retaining wall I did as well as some very profitable days with aerating & clean ups and most bills have been prepaid and I'm going to school full time through this coming spring so it's not like I'll be sitting on my a$$ all day and night but there's no way in hell I could work anywhere else. I plan to be relaxing after class and developing sales plans to greatly expand my business (plus plowing the few snow accts that I have).
I've had days where I've netted $100.00+/hr all day and parts of those days it was $270/hr (solo). I don't want to work for anyone else making $20/hr less taxes (if you can even get that, most part time jobs or w/e are barely $10/hr) doing something I don't necessarily like.
I plan to continually grow my business with full service maint clients to the point where I can take a few days off during early & late July for a couple trips (4th of July, Millville MX Pro Nat'ls) and won't have to worry about finances as the payments are the same as any other month through the landscape season.

nice, since i don't have anything going on unless it snows in from december to feb.28th i would take a winter job for 18hr if they would let me call out when it snowed, so i could keep my 30 or so plowing accounts i have, but i don't need a job for the winter it would make the time go by faster and i could pay off the little debt i have with that money but it, that's a pretty rare scenario.
UPDATE:

The Top manager just under the owner of the very well known Wine Warehouse wants me to join them full time and leave the Temp agency. They want me to try the Fork lifts as well. They say I am a hard worker and there are 2 workers that he is going to drop and put me with the company. I worked 74 Hours my first week and 68 Hours the next!

He said he understands that I have a business and said 80% of the time you work 4 days a week from 10PM-8AM and during Holidays there are weeks that you work 70+ hours. The benefits are good as well. I told him the reason I like running my own business is that I don't have to worry about being laid off and he looks at me with a smile and said I have been here 18 years and we grow more and more every year!

I think I am going to take the full time job and sell off my low end accounts that are in the Valley and keep my high end customers that live close to each other. I am going to use the money that I make and use it to pay for my new worker and to save the rest for more equipment.

sounds like you like what you are doing, good luck with everything and stay focused.

JContracting
12-06-2012, 01:56 AM
nice, since i don't have anything going on unless it snows in from december to feb.28th i would take a winter job for 18hr if they would let me call out when it snowed, so i could keep my 30 or so plowing accounts i have, but i don't need a job for the winter it would make the time go by faster and i could pay off the little debt i have with that money but it, that's a pretty rare scenario.


sounds like you like what you are doing, good luck with everything and stay focused.


A job making that much with plowing flexibility would be hard to find. I never have issues with passing the time. Taking time to relax after class instead of working til dark like I did all this year. Play xbox, catch up on tv shows, otherwise for business, handle all my accounting work that needs to be done, develop sales plans, ops plans, get my advertising in order for the spring, renewal letters written up, the list goes on. I don't have much down time even during winter.
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RSK Property Maintenance
12-06-2012, 02:44 AM
A job making that much with plowing flexibility would be hard to find. I never have issues with passing the time. Taking time to relax after class instead of working til dark like I did all this year. Play xbox, catch up on tv shows, otherwise for business, handle all my accounting work that needs to be done, develop sales plans, ops plans, get my advertising in order for the spring, renewal letters written up, the list goes on. I don't have much down time even during winter.
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yah i don't have renewal letters, my customers all stay with me, I'm the one to drop them usually and i only did that once because I decided to go to school and didn't think i would have time to do them. i don't play video games, and i don't really watch much tv. I have about 8500 flyers made up sitting in boxes ready to go out in the March. all my advertising is ready to go into print with 3 calls to the 3 local papers i'm in, or i could prepay and leave them in all winter. generally In the winter months or even fall when my friends and I have no work, we meet up in the morning for breakfast, hang out all day, go grab lunch somewhere, maybe go bowling or something, then later go out for dinner, and repeat until spring time, or it snows, and last year we went down to miami in february for 3 weeks with my buddys newly purchased cigarette boat that does 91mph gps verified so if we don't get a lot of snow that will likely be our plan again only part that sucks is it burns 400 dollars of gas per hour, but there was 4 of us on it last winter, but your never going wide open for an hour straight, usually wide open for 10-15 mins, then idling for no wake zones for another 5-10 mins then your at your destination nothing is far away.

JContracting
12-06-2012, 02:59 AM
The full service clients are renewing their contracts, all others I try to sell them into becoming full service.

I went down to FL last march. A former field's parents have a second place in Naples and we had the place to ourselves (5 of us) for the week. Definitely a blast. Depending on what happens for snow ill be heading south to tx, ok, ga, al for motocross races a couple times this winter. A buddy is racing the pro ams and I just wanna go down to ride and race different tracks than just in MN & WI.

That boat would be pretty cool. My (now former, divorced) uncle is a yacht broker in Ft Lauderdale & a couple yrs ago my grandpa and I with my uncle and his biz partner at the time got to take a sold yacht from osprey, fl (gulf) through the caloosahatchee river & okechobee to west palm (Atlantic). Slept on the yacht in a marina on the island just north of Sanibel, it was a 50ft Sea Ray Sundancer. Two 350 horse cat diesels. Burned 23 gal/hr at cruising speed. That's expensive!
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RSK Property Maintenance
12-06-2012, 12:51 PM
The full service clients are renewing their contracts, all others I try to sell them into becoming full service.

I went down to FL last march. A former field's parents have a second place in Naples and we had the place to ourselves (5 of us) for the week. Definitely a blast. Depending on what happens for snow ill be heading south to tx, ok, ga, al for motocross races a couple times this winter. A buddy is racing the pro ams and I just wanna go down to ride and race different tracks than just in MN & WI.

That boat would be pretty cool. My (now former, divorced) uncle is a yacht broker in Ft Lauderdale & a couple yrs ago my grandpa and I with my uncle and his biz partner at the time got to take a sold yacht from osprey, fl (gulf) through the caloosahatchee river & okechobee to west palm (Atlantic). Slept on the yacht in a marina on the island just north of Sanibel, it was a 50ft Sea Ray Sundancer. Two 350 horse cat diesels. Burned 23 gal/hr at cruising speed. That's expensive!
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yah that sounds like fun, I'm glad i don't own the 38' cigarette boat though my buddy added up the hours he put on it since he bought last january and he spent almost 50,000 in gas just for the boat, and no he's not rich, he just does landscaping and tree work, i guess that would make him successful right? 29 with 100,000 boat paid for in full with no help from anyone. and then buying a 50,000 dollar truck just to tow it in style, then spending another 50k on fuel for the boat, not sure what the truck costs but its a lot too. lol have fun in tx. i'm gonna try to get him to go to one of the poker runs in lake havasu, ar but thats long drive from ct, not that miami was close lol

JContracting
12-06-2012, 01:35 PM
yah that sounds like fun, I'm glad i don't own the 38' cigarette boat though my buddy added up the hours he put on it since he bought last january and he spent almost 50,000 in gas just for the boat, and no he's not rich, he just does landscaping and tree work, i guess that would make him successful right? 29 with 100,000 boat paid for in full with no help from anyone. and then buying a 50,000 dollar truck just to tow it in style, then spending another 50k on fuel for the boat, not sure what the truck costs but its a lot too. lol have fun in tx. i'm gonna try to get him to go to one of the poker runs in lake havasu, ar but thats long drive from ct, not that miami was close lol

I would say that's successful. Idk if I'd spend that money on a boat, as I prefer 5th wheel toy haulers and dirtbikes. Does he live up by you in CT?
It's a hell of a drive to S FL west or east coast, 28 hrs or so from here.

RSK Property Maintenance
12-06-2012, 09:28 PM
I would say that's successful. Idk if I'd spend that money on a boat, as I prefer 5th wheel toy haulers and dirtbikes. Does he live up by you in CT?
It's a hell of a drive to S FL west or east coast, 28 hrs or so from here.

yah dirtbikes are fun too, I have 2010 klx110L i bought new in 2010 i upgraded that a little and its a blast to ride around, yah he up here by me. its 1400 miles each way, i wanna say last year it cost him 1200 between gas and tolls to get the boat and truck down there. one of my buddies has toy hauler that he never uses, so not sure i would buy one of those, but dirt bikes are fun too. one of my other buddies has a 40 acre motorcross track at his house, in the woods and a supercross track in side yard....

JContracting
12-06-2012, 10:19 PM
Pitbikes are fun to mess around on thats for sure.

Does your buddy that has the track race at all? That'd be an awesome set up have at your house.
$1200 for 1400 miles. Ouch. It was about $1250 for us with 1800 miles each way and burned a tank when we were down there, took my parents 01 2500 Suburban w/ 6.0. Got 13-14mpg.
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RSK Property Maintenance
12-06-2012, 10:41 PM
Pitbikes are fun to mess around on thats for sure.

Does your buddy that has the track race at all? That'd be an awesome set up have at your house.
$1200 for 1400 miles. Ouch. It was about $1250 for us with 1800 miles each way and burned a tank when we were down there, took my parents 01 2500 Suburban w/ 6.0. Got 13-14mpg.
Posted via Mobile Device

yah he's been riding since a little kid, he raced nema, and nemx for a little bit, tough to do paying your own way, not having your parents help out at all. and yah the fuel economy was about 8mpg on the way down, towing a 38' boat weighing 15,000 on a triple axle trailer with a 08 f450 crew cab long bed dually is about as big as you can get, lotta of tolls, they saw him coming and raised the prices probably because they knew he would just pay it and go. while down there he bought 24's for his truck and they stick out about 6" on each side of the dually fender so it has about 3" to spare maybe only 2 on each side before it doesn't fit through a toll booth. also the truck has 4.88 gears in it so it was turning about 3000rpm for 2.5hrs which is how often he had to fill up.