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PlantscapeSolutions
01-20-2013, 07:39 PM
I thought the Holiday thread could use some pictures and a personal touch. Hell, I could be in a room with you guys in NE and I wouldn't even know it. In the slim chance I spend the money to go to NE again I'd like to know who to look for. It sure would be nice if the holiday lighting industry had an annual trade show. I bet eventually there will be some sort of trade show. This industry is just too big not to have one.

If you see the goofy looking guy in this picture you have found me!

KrayzKajun
01-20-2013, 07:50 PM
You spelled plantscape wrong in the title david.
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PlantscapeSolutions
01-20-2013, 07:54 PM
Here is my 45x30 shop. I'm going to pick up some used tear drop racking and put my space to better use. In Texas there is a huge market for used racking. It looks like I'm going to use three 8' or 10' uprights that are 42" deep, two 8' bays with three shelves in each. Complete with metal racking shelves it's under $600. I'll post pictures once it's up.

PlantscapeSolutions
01-20-2013, 08:28 PM
Here are the spools I made for my C7/C9 storage. The ends use 3" drywall screws with a 1x4 in the middle. The spools fit nicely in the $12 Walmart storage containers. I may take my spools a step further next year with a stand for holding the spools.

PlantscapeSolutions
01-20-2013, 08:46 PM
I think the biggest must have item is an enclosed trailer. This is a Pace 16' trailer. The rack is a Rack'em Fit's All from etrailer.com.

Swampy
01-20-2013, 09:50 PM
Might have a issue with it but look into used pallet racking, its cheap at auction a few sections as low as a $1 and can hold over a ton of wieght. That would make loading and organizing easier if you palletized everything you possibly could.

PlantscapeSolutions
01-20-2013, 10:22 PM
I tried to work smarter this year and invested a lot of money in new items and came up with better ways to do some things.

1. The PVC used to increase the distance of my ladder offset is a super cheap mod. This mod allows you to work right over the wreath and gives you room to work without mashing the wreath. For peaks that have a lot of overhang you can work more safely without having to arch your back.

2. Getting organized with tool boxes on wheels was really a must. These were Stanly boxes from Home Depot. About $70 each.

3. The Quick Disconnect version of the ladder standoff is a must have item. I like these because you can go over the gutters and set the ladder on the roof. No sliding back and forth on the smooth gutters. If you get one of those roofs where the shingles stick out past the edge it's a must as well to prevent damaged shingles.

4. This was my first year for adjustable ladder feet. I should have purchased these things long ago.

5. The Milwaukee 18 volt hammer drill is a must in my area where there are lots of homes with stone exteriors. You can drill a holes in just a few seconds. It makes your drill bits last much longer.

6. I had to buy the dreaded 40' ladder this year as well. Nobody in the Austin area stocks a 40'. I had to get Industrial Ladder in Dallas to deliver the ladder.

KrayzKajun
01-20-2013, 10:27 PM
love your shop!

PlantscapeSolutions
01-20-2013, 10:27 PM
You spelled plantscape wrong in the title david.
Posted via Mobile Device

This is what I get for trying to watch football and post material.

KrayzKajun
01-20-2013, 10:36 PM
This is what I get for trying to watch football and post material.

im glad the Falcons lost.

PlantscapeSolutions
01-20-2013, 10:41 PM
im glad the Falcons lost.

My GD Patriots lost as well. I emailed the moderator and as soon as I went back to my thread my goof up was gone. Thanks Mike!

PlantscapeSolutions
01-20-2013, 10:53 PM
Here is my quote for racking. I'm still talking to a few other sources.

PlantscapeSolutions
01-20-2013, 11:12 PM
love your shop!

The shop was built by Antone Welding out of Lockhart, TX. I talked to a ton of places and nobody could beat his price. The building is 30' wide and 45' deep, 12' eve height, 20' insulated roll up door, as well as insulated walls and ceiling. The building was about $22K plus $8K in rebar, and concrete work. I may have spent $2.2K in electrical.

The interesting thing is I purchased everything with a credit card. USAA merged two cards into one with a 35K limit and made the rate a fixed 6% rate. Now I'm doing a refi on my house and I'm going to lower the rate to 3% or less.

David Gretzmier
01-22-2013, 01:04 AM
cannot beat an insulated shop. I need to spray foam mine with 1" closed cell on the ceiling and walls. but oh, the cost. just 15k. I would look on craigslist for used pallet racks from individuals. you can always cut down taller ones with a sawzall. I would do thicker beams, 3" are what we used and I still reinforced the middles. the wire decking also bent on us, so my beams have the bend in them that let you insert 2x material for shelves. we got oak from a local sawmill for cheaper than pine at lowes.

I think you might be shocked at how fast your shop fills up. I did a thread here on my new shop 2 years back and it has the math on how much cubic foot per customer I use, and that number has been pretty close to linear as the business has grown the past 2 years.

PlantscapeSolutions
01-22-2013, 10:56 AM
cannot beat an insulated shop. I need to spray foam mine with 1" closed cell on the ceiling and walls. but oh, the cost. just 15k. I would look on craigslist for used pallet racks from individuals. you can always cut down taller ones with a sawzall. I would do thicker beams, 3" are what we used and I still reinforced the middles. the wire decking also bent on us, so my beams have the bend in them that let you insert 2x material for shelves. we got oak from a local sawmill for cheaper than pine at lowes.

I think you might be shocked at how fast your shop fills up. I did a thread here on my new shop 2 years back and it has the math on how much cubic foot per customer I use, and that number has been pretty close to linear as the business has grown the past 2 years.

The insulation for my shop at the time of construction may have been $2000. There was another company that did a high tech spray insulation that I think was going to be twice as much. I've had the temps outside get down to around 14 but inside the building it never got below the low 40's.

PlantscapeSolutions
01-22-2013, 11:04 AM
Here is my racking install in progress. The shelving was cheaper quality then I thought it was going to be. Next time I want to find some of the heavier duty Home Depot shelving.

PlantscapeSolutions
01-22-2013, 11:08 AM
I take old pole saw tips and cut therm down for use in installing and removing lights in tree's. I use the Wolf Garten brand pole saws. They used to sell these at LESCO. The Wolf Garten pole saws are the cheapest quality pole saws you can buy by far.

I give the edges a quick file job so there are no sharp edges. Anybody else do this?

Swampy
01-22-2013, 02:38 PM
Now just bolt it down the common uprights, it will stiffin up, and will be safer. I seen it happen at my night job when racking tips over. I can't tell but they should have gave you some locking clips for the common rails that lock them to the uprights so the rails don't pop off. Your going to know see that metal grate is going to bend and flex, they have spanners that lay betwen the back and front rails, again makes it more rigid when you span a distance, obiviously use more spanners the greater the distance.

Not dis'ing your choice, but what you have are called "Common" raking, I love the stuff. The intial cost to get set up is kind of expensive. The great thing about it is that its expandable, you can add on different fixtures such as "M" dividers, Hangers, Madtix (SP?), etc.... and even more racking. It allows you to palletize things for storage, such as christmas lights, any bagged material, snow plows and snow blowers.

DalesLanscaping
03-20-2013, 11:10 AM
Can anyone tell me what they charge for a basic house decoration or have a price sheet they can email me as this is an area we have talked about getting into. I am not sure how many or if it anything we are looking to jump into yet but we figure we live near a college and could get several college students to work for us as it is part time work.

Also can someone also give me an idea of start up costs which I understand is going to vary depending on what we want ot put up
Thanks

PlantscapeSolutions
03-20-2013, 11:40 AM
Can anyone tell me what they charge for a basic house decoration or have a price sheet they can email me as this is an area we have talked about getting into. I am not sure how many or if it anything we are looking to jump into yet but we figure we live near a college and could get several college students to work for us as it is part time work.

Also can someone also give me an idea of start up costs which I understand is going to vary depending on what we want ot put up
Thanks

I would budget at least $1000 for a shoe string budget for quality ladders (8', 12' 24', and 32' are a must), hammer drill, ect. If you want to stock some basic LED C7/C9 bulbs, socket cord, extension cords, slide plugs, lamp cord, ect. it can easily eat up another $2000 plus.

turf hokie
03-20-2013, 01:55 PM
Plantscape's budget is real shoe string at 3000. It really depends on how you want to grow the business and how serious your are about it.
My 1st year we spent close to 10,000 on material and equipment. Then figure overheads on top of that

Keep in mind it adds up fast. A little giant ladder will run you 400 alone.

Good luck.
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PlantscapeSolutions
03-20-2013, 02:53 PM
Plantscape's budget is real shoe string at 3000. It really depends on how you want to grow the business and how serious your are about it.
My 1st year we spent close to 10,000 on material and equipment. Then figure overheads on top of that

Keep in mind it adds up fast. A little giant ladder will run you 400 alone.

Good luck.
Posted via Mobile Device

I was lucky because I already had all the ladders, an enclosed trailer, and a place to store lights. I went nuts this last year and spent 5K on advertising and another 2K racking, tool boxes, and other stuff. I think I mostly just broke even last year. I will not do direct mail three times again. I think I'll skip the early batch this year.

I'm also only going to push c7/c8/greenery this year. The LED Light Links no longer use the "Always Lit Technology" and are way too risky to sell anymore. Every time a bulb goes out on any LED Light Links or yard art stuff you will half the strand will go out as well. An average size home that never caused you much grief in the past could easily generate 20 call backs over a five year span. Do you think that is going to be a happy customer? The call backs are going to run you ragged and eat up your profits.

Last year I unknowingly did one house with the new LED Light Links and another with yard art and they both had failures and I found out the hard way the Always Lit Technology had been very, very, silently killed off.

addictedtolandscaping
03-25-2013, 08:52 AM
My first year I spent over $25k. Started from scratch, including material, advertising, trucks lettered etc.

David Gretzmier
04-21-2013, 11:07 PM
I have listed what I think is the minimum start up list on another thread a couple years back. There is just a ton of stuff. it seems simple until you list it all. the best way to figure out what you need is to do your house now with c-9's on front and sides, a couple wreaths, garland around your entry door and mini lights in all your trees and bushes. and buy whatever you need. clips, cord, bulbs, timer, ladders, etc. and then add up every dollar you spent or would have spent if you had to buy the item you already had. then I would triple that number. that would give you inventory and tools for the first few jobs. you will need some tall ladders, some short ones, and enough inventory to do a few jobs.

PlantscapeSolutions
04-26-2013, 01:15 AM
For anyone who has not been to Houston it is a very spread out city. The night life area is down town where the convention center is located. All the stuff you want to walk to is between the convention center and HWY 45.

From the Holidynamics hotel location to the cool part of Houston is about a 25 mile drive. For anyone who goes and wants to have a good time at night and be able to walk from your hotel to the clubs and bars you need to get a room downtown.

A month after the event in Houston is the Texas Nursery & Landscape Expo in Dallas. It's too bad they couldn't have the Holidynamics event at the same time. Christmas Designers, Christmas Decor, Novelty Lights, and a few others go to the event. Each year more holiday light suppliers are showing up.

I want to check out Vickerman's showroom in Dallas this year.

PlantscapeSolutions
05-01-2013, 06:04 PM
My dealer had been trying to sell this power head for a T261 for several years. They wanted $250 but I got it for $200. I just have to stick the bottom end on from one of my worn out units and I'm ready to go.

PlantscapeSolutions
05-04-2013, 12:02 PM
Oops, I stuck my T261 on the wrong thread. I think this year I'm seriously looking at using Vickerman for all greenery. I just emailed Dara to see how much off list I can get certain items for. Vickerman does five years on the LED warranty (hear that NE). Vickerman has the most extensive line of greenery products on the market.

From the plain plain but super dense Grand Teton line to the Cheyenne Pine that can match the best from NE they have it all with the best warranty in the industry. I just wish they had a warehouse location with their Dallas showroom. Even shipping from MN the shipping probably won't exceed the NE prices.

I purchased one of Vickerman's high dollar exterior use trees last year from Dara. The shipping wasn't that bad considering it came in two huge boxes via truck freight. I think Vickerman is big enough they get freight discounts and do not milk people for handling charges.

I'm still feeling very deceived in the way the superior LED technology was dropped last year with out saying a word until after the fact. Everyone should have been told in advance that they would need to buy a testing box and that every time one GD bulb goes out and your going to lose half of the strand. I had multiple failures on new stuff last year and the problem is only going to get worse with each passing year and cause some serious customer satisfaction issues.

It seems to me that the folks in NE are are constantly focused on surviving one year at a time and put short term profits ahead of building long term relationships. I probably purchased 90% from other sources last year and it will probably be closer to 100% this year. $1500 down the drain. I wish I were a Johnny Come Lately and had only wasted $99. It might as well be .99 cents.

PlantscapeSolutions
05-10-2013, 12:19 AM
It looks Dara may be able to get me a 25% discount off list for the Vickerman greenery. At that price, level of warranty support, coupled with their high end looking material I think I'm going to try Vickerman this year.

David Gretzmier
05-18-2013, 01:47 AM
I have used Dara for some items, she is nice and will treat you right. I have continued to be thrilled at my decision to shun mostly all LED products. Garland, wreaths, and mini's really don't pull that much juice unless you get into a whole bunch of them. The best mini's do give you 6-9 seasons of service if you only burn them 4-6 hours a night from Thanksgiving to New years.

Since I have never gotten LED's from HYDY, I have always had a great relationship with them. but then, when an incan bulb fails, you can lose 1/2 a set too. it is just far easier to fix.

I appreciate the updates on what is going on in your business.

PlantscapeSolutions
06-10-2013, 04:12 PM
Is anyone else going to the June lighting show in Dallas in June? I also want to go by and check out Vickerman's showroom. I'm seriously looking at using Vickerman this year for greenery.

PlantscapeSolutions
06-23-2013, 08:07 PM
Vickerman had a pretty good display area that you can see year round at the Dallas Market Center. I was hoping GKI/Bethlehem would have a decent display but it pretty much sucked. The GKI display was temporary but all they brought was a tiny bit of stuff and zero greenery.

GKI said they have 6,000 square feet of space at the Atlanta show. The July show would be hard to go to but I may try to go to the one in the Feb time frame.

I like the bows Vickerman has. They have eyelets for securing the bows.

TimNNJ
06-25-2013, 09:59 AM
Hey glad to see the threads are alive!...I am looking forward to this years Christmas lighting season. Looking to stock up on basic materials in August and have everything lined up and on the calendar this year. We have been jamming this year exceeding all of our goals so far and should exceed sales goals by September leaving the rest of the year to really go after it. Hope all is well and try to stay cool.

PlantscapeSolutions
07-07-2013, 11:00 AM
I just got some HD direct mail and it looks like the Houston event has gone from three days for $150 to one day for free. It's tempting to go for just a day for free but I wish it was on a Saturday so I could avoid the Houston traffic. Coming from the Austin area I have to drive all the way around Houston to get to the event which is not an easy morning task. Is anyone else pondering the trip now that it a free day trip?

I already have the TNLA EXPO I'm going to in August in Dallas where I'm on the hook for three nights at the Omni so I don't want to spend any more money for a night in Houston. The EXPO realizes it much easier for contractors to get away on the weekend so the even is always Friday & Saturday now. They dropped Sunday this year. I'm sure the weekend convention space rates are more expensive.

PlantscapeSolutions
07-16-2013, 10:28 AM
Unless I read it wrong it looks like the membership fee has gone from $1500 (lucky me), to $99, to free. Brite Ideas is still advertising $2500 but a few years back they had offered to let me in for free if I gave them the first order of my season. It looks like only Christmas Decor has been unwavering in it's $7,500 or so membership fee. CDI's focus on sticking with the traditional stuff has probably minimized any product issues although I'm sure at some point they too had some LED issues.

Longhorn Landscape Lighting is the local Decor place in Austin. They don't even have a website. I don't understand how you can ante up $7,500 to buy a franchise and not spend anything on a website in modern times.

PlantscapeSolutions
07-16-2013, 11:37 AM
Uline has a 35% off deal on heavy duty boxes if your looking to stock up and save. For guys doing a lot of volume that could be some decent savings.

hotrod1965
07-23-2013, 11:12 PM
Unless I read it wrong it looks like the membership fee has gone from $1500 (lucky me), to $99, to free. Brite Ideas is still advertising $2500 but a few years back they had offered to let me in for free if I gave them the first order of my season. It looks like only Christmas Decor has been unwavering in it's $7,500 or so membership fee. CDI's focus on sticking with the traditional stuff has probably minimized any product issues although I'm sure at some point they too had some LED issues.

Longhorn Landscape Lighting is the local Decor place in Austin. They don't even have a website. I don't understand how you can ante up $7,500 to buy a franchise and not spend anything on a website in modern times.


A website is so important! I just did a video about this!

http://youtu.be/KNOwfwSFCmU

You can get a ton of leads just from your website, which is practically free.

PlantscapeSolutions
07-26-2013, 11:20 PM
Saw this guy going down the road on 620 in Lakeway, TX today.

David Gretzmier
09-11-2013, 02:01 AM
Dara has always treated me pretty well. I have looked at the Cheyenne pine from vickerman before, and I think it has it's place in the market.

maybe you can update me on what is the current foliage to foliage comparison, as my last trip to the dallas markets were a couple years back-And not to throw rocks here, but maybe I need to check out the vickerman larger wreaths again, because the frames I saw a few years back at the dallas markets were less heavy duty than HDY. mostly 1/8" steel rod rather than 1/4"

I may have this wrong, but I also remember their 6,7,8 or 10 foot wreaths being of smaller pieces rather than two halves. sizewise, I remember the 84 inch Cheyenne being roughly the same diameter as the old 7 foot and now newly labeled 8 foot wreath from hdy. comparing the two, the 7 foot hdy wreath is, in my memory, way better looking and less see through, or more fuller foliage, and it had a much heavier frame to boot, along with being two halves instead of 4 pieces. I think the really big wreaths were more like 6 or 8 pieces.

pricewise, I think the vickerman 84" cheyenne wreath was still about 35% more than the hdy wreath even after a multi thousand dollar order threshold was reached and a discount structure took place.

now, the Teton wreath was a different story. it was more their "commercial line" -it was fuller and had a decent frame, but the foliage was fairly single color, and pricewise was about double hydy. I still liked the mixed noble foliage better. but looking at recent photos and specs, I am not sure that is the same wreath I saw. seems to be less tips-foliage and the frame more in line with the Cheyenne. looking at the internet websites, it seems the box for the vickerman teton wreath is listed at 30 pounds on several places. there is just no way that can be right. the hdy wreath is closer to 65-70 pounds.

If you have some current Cheyenne and Teton stuff, can you compare it to current hdy stuff?

PlantscapeSolutions
09-11-2013, 12:02 PM
Here are my three 36" Vickerman wreaths. I got the Cheyenne Pine (CP) on the left, the Camden Fir (CF) in the middle, and the Grand Teton(GT) on the right.

The CP and CF came with M6 LED's that were not sealed which surprised me. The GT can with the 5mm conical lights.

The Grand Teton is supposed to be the premium wreath but I like it the least. The wire used in the foliage is very hard and has almost no memory making it almost a futile effort to prep your wreath and get the foliage looking just right. The wreath has a disheveled look and there's not much I can do to fix it. It was supposed to be the most dense premium wreath but it's actually the most sparse. The lights in the wreath seemed like they were added state side to an unlit wreath. The lights wiring made prepping an already difficult wreath even worse. I would not recommend this wreath.

The Camden Fir has really good density and the foliage has great memory. This wreath is very quick and easy to prep. I really like this wreath and would recommend it. I just wish it had the sealed light set.

The Cheyenne Fir also has great density and should work great as a premium wreath. The foliage is very easy to work with and has great memory. I just wish it had the sealed light set. I recommend this wreath as well.

Both of the wreaths I like could probably be prepped a little better for the pictures I took. You will like either of them. I will probably use the Camden as my base wreath and the Cheyenne as my premium wreath. Vickerman probably has the best light set warranty in the industry so I'm not letting the unsealed lights be a deal breaker.

PlantscapeSolutions
09-11-2013, 12:20 PM
You can probably tell the CP is the left picture, middle is CF, and final is GT.

My recommendations for the matching garland mirror the statements I made about the wreaths. To me The Grand Teton almost looks the the end came out a little sparse (last picture). The GT feels like they used heavy gauge coat hanger wire inside the tips. It's impossible to work with. The wire in the tips feels like rigid steel wire instead of a more pliable copper feeling wire.

If you try the Vickerman stuff give Dara a call because she will get you a better price. You would probably have to be doing some high volume to get the same price directly from Vickerman. Dara gave me a great discount off list that will likely cover at least half the shipping. If you Google ccbydara you will find her.

PlantscapeSolutions
09-14-2013, 03:10 AM
Did you other HD members get a Brite Ideas catalog and price list in your mailbox this week? I didn't know if they were targeting all HD members or people who had contacted them in the past but never pulled the trigger. All I really looked at was the greenery and prices. I see they also do the whopping one year warranty.

I was given the industry standard warranty speech in the past but it really looks like the one year deal is a NE thing only. Vickerman, Christmas Designers, and some others give triple the warranty. I have a problem with stocking up on stuff with basically a six week warranty.

The Brite Ideas greenery probably takes a definite second to HD but it looks like they have undercut them on some of the prices some to try to make up for it.

I've been trying to steal one of my maintenance customers away from Decor for about five years and finally got her. I haven't even done her house yet and she has referred me to a friend who is also using Decor. Should be an easy sell. It's nice when your efforts pay off after trying for years and not giving up.

PlantscapeSolutions
09-19-2013, 10:28 AM
Dara contacted Vickerman and they had me box up the stuff and just leave it outside my door for UPS to pick up. That's what I call service. Christmas Designers emailed me labels last year when I had a problem as well.

I've asked other companies I deal why their process has to be such a pain in the azz. I think it comes down to customer service adds expense and to some it's just not worth the expense. I do not have time to take stuff and pay to ship back for issues beyond my control. Then I have to babysit the company for months to make sure I get my shipping credited back.

I'm sticking with the LED C7/C9, garland, wreath sales if possible from now on. It's easy to maintain and an easy sell to my upscale clients. I just can't deal with the multiple issues I've had with wire frame stuff.

PlantscapeSolutions
09-24-2013, 01:28 AM
I'm getting ready to contact a few leads from last year. A few of the homes range from 10,000 - 22,000 square feet. I'm really hoping to land at least one or two jobs that could be crazy big. The final job I landed last year was over 600' of C9's and was a nice job to land as the season ended.

PlantscapeSolutions
10-15-2013, 03:42 PM
If anyone needs a Magic Box light tester Dara has them for only $100. I have to buy the GD thing because the 2012 and later LED Light Links lose one bulb the whole link or wire frame material will lose the entire stand now. I had multiple first year stands go out last year because of one bulb failure and it was a real PIA. Moving forward I no longer will sell anything on wire frames unless it has reliable sealed bulbs.

Weekend cut easymoney
10-15-2013, 04:54 PM
Any of your xmas light or wreaths run on battery. Need a led solution or something for hoa without power on monuments

PlantscapeSolutions
10-15-2013, 05:14 PM
Any of your xmas light or wreaths run on battery. Need a led solution or something for hoa without power on monuments

Two of my suppliers do both wreaths and garland that are LED battery operated. You usually will get a full season out of a set of batteries.

PlantscapeSolutions
10-15-2013, 05:18 PM
Here is a shot of one of my Holidynamics battery powered wreaths. It needs a little prep work done to it in this shot.

David Gretzmier
10-16-2013, 12:57 AM
I have had pretty good luck with the HDY battery wreaths, but they are kinda funky on the timers. they are 6 hours on, 18 hours off, and you have to be there at 6pm to flip the switch the first time. and they last about 40 days or so. but kinda dim. you have to have a dark front porch or windows for them to look good. I use the batteries from harbor fright because they are the cheapest alkalines I could find. I think a much better and elegant solution would be a big cheap lithium rechargeable battery pack. for 25 bucks on ebay, you can get 8 18650 lithium cells, a charger, and this has basically the same energy available in amp hours as 8 1.5 D alkaline batteries. except you can just charge it once or twice per season. and it would last for 20 years at only one or two discharges per year. or go crazy and spend 35 bucks and get a 12 cell pack that lasts 60 days on one charge. but that's just me.

PlantscapeSolutions
10-24-2013, 03:44 PM
Have any of you guys seen the Wire Grabber clamps for rigging up things with 1/8th or 5/64th cable. Here is a link http://www.aifittings.com/products/spec-sheets/FLG3.pdf. I bought a bag of 50 I'm going to try.

PlantscapeSolutions
10-30-2013, 02:56 PM
Have any of you guys seen the Wire Grabber clamps for rigging up things with 1/8th or 5/64th cable. Here is a link http://www.aifittings.com/products/spec-sheets/FLG3.pdf. I bought a bag of 50 I'm going to try.

Here are the clamps that showed up. On heavier items like my 60" wreaths I may double up on then even thought they are good for 75-100 pounds depending on where which specs you look at. They seem like a great time saver. I wish they would sell them in a duplex set with two cast together into a single unit. Or larger sizes where each side of the guillotine had a set screw to add more clamping power.

PlantscapeSolutions
10-30-2013, 03:12 PM
This Vickerman bow is pretty nice. It has a stiff wire mesh like hardware cloth inside to keep it from contorting. It has grommets for mounting as well. I have no compared it to my CDI bow but the tails look noticeably longer. If the list prices from Vickerman look high talk to Dara. PM me if you don't know who Dara is.

The list price from Vickerman is probably going to end up being closer to your delivered price. Vickerman has been around longer then dirt and it's nice to deal with a company that stands behind their product and doesn't change their sales model or name on a regular basis. Vickerman/Dara & CDI are my main suppliers this year. Having CDI only a little over 200 miles away makes for quick and cheap shipping. CDI doesn't markup their shipping either. Dealing with Tricia at CDI is always quick and easy.

CleanCut1
10-31-2013, 02:38 PM
Good looking bow. Let us know after the season how it holds up to fading.

PlantscapeSolutions
10-31-2013, 03:43 PM
Good looking bow. Let us know after the season how it holds up to fading.

I'll let you know but I'm sure it will be near perfect. Have you ever seen the Vickerman booth at the Dallas Market Center? They have a year round display you can go look at. The Vickerman catalog is insane. They must have over a 1000 items.

I think it would be great if there was a top 25 list that showed the biggest names in holiday lighting supplies. I find it funny that every company I seem to talk to acts like they are close to being the top dog. Vickerman has never implied this but many others in CO and NE have.

CleanCut1
11-01-2013, 05:42 PM
No, I've never been there. I'm pretty far from Dallas. I'm going to check out Vickerman in the off season. Too busy right now. Maybe I'll make a run up to Dallas.

The bows I bought from CDI last year held up very well. The ones I got from HD the year before faded to pink within a few weeks.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-01-2013, 06:02 PM
No, I've never been there. I'm pretty far from Dallas. I'm going to check out Vickerman in the off season. Too busy right now. Maybe I'll make a run up to Dallas.

The bows I bought from CDI last year held up very well. The ones I got from HD the year before faded to pink within a few weeks.

Back in July they had a holiday event up there that I went to. Atlanta is the biggest show but I don't see myself going that far to a show. I've been using the CDI as well. HD is pretty much only going to be a replacement parts source for me I think. Between CDI and Vickerman I can get just about everything I need. I like working with companies where things stay the same year after year and turmoil is not the norm.

You would think a company would have their supplier send sample ahead of time to put out in the sun or rain to make sure they don't fade or crap out after a rain or two. Profits not quality control as the primary focus tends to get companies in trouble on a regular basis.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-05-2013, 10:28 AM
I'm not sure how much HD will direct sell to home owners but I think this is going to be the next fiasco. How pissed are home owners going to be when they buy LED stuff and find out they can't fix it when one bulb failure takes out half a strand on wire frame stuff. When they get told they need to buy the over priced HD Magic Box for $160 and trouble shoot the lights just to change one GD bulb there are going to be some angry people.

I find it very ironic that in 2012 HD did a skit at their annual NE event about the proper way to operate and showed a Joe Blow type idiot character and the wrong way to do things. Then two years later they direct sell to any fool with pocket change. I think to be a fly on the wall in Scott's office and to see what their churn numbers are would be very interesting. I would guess the lifespan of the average member is 2-3 years at best.

BI must be having retention issues as well to be the one who first went to direct sell. Charging $1500 to members only to sell them out a few years later really makes you look like you have a total lack of moral standards. It's all about making money and the hell with operating in good faith with any level of morality.

You could never sell this wire frame stuff at a mass merchandiser because they would RTV truckloads of it back to NE when it fails. I think both NE places are some what painted into a corner where direct selling is a Hail Marry attempt to keep pumping the water out of a sinking ship.

I think quality control on things like powder coating, all sealed LED bulbs, improved metal quality, and better welding have to improve by leaps and bounds for selling wire frame stuff on a large scale to be feasible from a durability and maintenance view point. Profit margin seems to be way higher up on the priority list then quality control and actually working in good faith to do what is good for your end users.

You don't see Decor begging for members and for guys getting started in this line of work that should send you a clear signal that going the traditional route with C7/C9, garland, and wreaths is really the way to go and is easily sustainable.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-12-2013, 01:25 AM
I was in a pinch so I tried some of the C9 warm whites from Seasonal Source sold by a local irrigation supply place. The color look spot on to the Minleon's I like to use. The bulbs were very similar as well.

I knocked out a house in the morning and one in the afternoon as it was getting dark. I finished and turned on the lights to see 16 bulbs out of 220 were a little on the green/pure white side. I know this supply place had an issue last year but I thought it was in the past.

We swap out the bulbs and on the way home I go by the morning job I did hoping for no green lights. Of course at the most difficult spot on the second story there are about 20 bulbs in a row that are green.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-20-2013, 12:21 AM
I had my camera on the wrong setting but here's a sneak peak at the one Griswold house I do. There a HD snowman on his gate and some other assorted things in the yard.

The custom mounts I had made last year are used on the Santa sled and Reindeer. The 12' tree also has a huge steel plate welded to the base to make it very stable.

All the rules are violated here. We have LED and incandescent and use warm white as well as bright white. We also install a multitude of things the client supplied. The tree in the picture is a Vickerman 12' exterior use LED tree which retailed for $2000. The tree is the most expensive single holiday item I have ever sold.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-20-2013, 10:08 PM
Last year I was not able to get many pictures so this year pictures are a major priority.

addictedtolandscaping
12-21-2013, 03:02 PM
The first one is beautiful

PlantscapeSolutions
12-21-2013, 04:07 PM
The first one is beautiful

I was trying to get three pictures in one day. My camera does way too good of a job in low light situations and actually brightens up the picture which is beneficial most of the time. This is not one of those times.

The best looking picture was taken when it was actually too dark. The second picture has a street light just out of the picture and a GD tree in my way. The last picture is a huge home but there are tree's in the way so what should be an impressive picture (with less light) is just average.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-21-2013, 04:28 PM
This is one of my favorite homes. It has 550' of C9's and 82' of garland. I hope to light the tree in front of the wall next year. If you look at the little straight roof that protrudes just below the highest peak that was done with a 40' ladder last year. This year I said the hell with that and lowered down a 8' ladder from the peak and climbed down. A little scary but a big time saver. I don't think OSHA would approve of this or a lot of other stuff.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-21-2013, 07:48 PM
Here is a shot of the 48" Cheyenne Pine.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-27-2013, 11:15 PM
I'm still trying to get website pictures. I'm trying to get pictures of everything and then go back if I have time for retakes. Only so many days to get lots of pictures.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-28-2013, 03:39 AM
This was a new job last year with C7's. I only push C9 now even on small homes. I think C7 multi color can work because it's so vibrant but for everything else C7 seems to leave people wanting more impact.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-28-2013, 11:57 PM
Still working on getting new and better pictures.

Hope Landscaping
12-29-2013, 01:03 AM
Nice work!

PlantscapeSolutions
12-30-2013, 12:45 AM
Still trying to get more pictures. My collection of website pictures was pretty sorry last year and I don't want to repeat that again next year.

The tree with the glowing orbs has 78 Starlight Spheres in it. I picked them up as a client last year and I hung their 60 aging spheres. I made them buy my lights to wrap the tree's. This year they purchased 80 new spheres from me to replace the aging ones (two bad ones).

I wanted LED spheres but GKI and Vickerman don't have the warm white in LED. Dara found one supplier with LED but it would have retailed for close to $5,000 and only had a one year warranty. Buying a few globes with a one year warranty isn't a big deal but five G's with what amounts to a six week warranty is too risky. This is an $845 install and I'm not going to risk losing it over some product going bad prematurely.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-30-2013, 10:31 PM
Here's a few more. The house in the picture has coping on the two wreath peaks an that's why there are no lights. I only had two days notice to do the project for a party. Next year I'm thinking about painting and fastening some angle iron shaped flashing to the peaks. This way I can quickly throw up sockets with magnetic clips.

The metal roof was wet when we started. I had my employee on the end of of an arborist rope while I sat on the ridge of the house keeping him safe from falling.

A note about magnetic clips is they are not very good if the temps are less then 40 F for installs. In the 30's they become brittle and break easily when you flex them to put them on sockets.

Hope Landscaping
12-31-2013, 01:25 AM
Nice work! I already miss the opportunity to do more holiday lighting this year.

PlantscapeSolutions
01-10-2014, 11:38 AM
Did any of you guys get an email from Wintergreen Corporation (http://wintergreencorp.com/)? It's the same address as Christmas Lights Ect.. I have not heard of it so I'm assuming they are rolling out a wholesale division. They are already doing pre-order discounts good until the end of the month.

PlantscapeSolutions
01-19-2014, 11:12 AM
Here is a picture that compares the CDI bows (left) to Vickerman. I have several lady clients who basically tell me they are bow snobs. If you get clients with very high standards you can't beat Vickerman bows. They sold out of 18" bows back during the summer.

PlantscapeSolutions
01-19-2014, 11:22 AM
Here are some shots of the device I used for hanging the larger wreaths. I doubled back the cable and zip tie it as an extra safety feature. You can hang wreaths really fast with this set up and all you need is adjust one set screw.

PlantscapeSolutions
02-10-2014, 10:27 AM
I just finished my new website and will have a good holiday lighting section for next year. I was Googling holiday lights to see who currently ranks high and how their sites look. I came across this http://www.wehangchristmaslights.com/bizop/bizindex.php. The video that has looked pretty good right up until they busted out the staple guns.

Hope Landscaping
02-11-2014, 02:37 AM
I just finished my new website and will have a good holiday lighting section for next year. I was Googling holiday lights to see who currently ranks high and how their sites look. I came across this http://www.wehangchristmaslights.com/bizop/bizindex.php. The video that has looked pretty good right up until they busted out the staple guns.

Lol, you mean to tell me you don't have a couple staple guns laying around?? jk.

On another subject; as I'm getting more into holiday lighting I need to look into roof safety, have any suggestions for that? Like harnesses etc...

PlantscapeSolutions
08-22-2014, 12:33 PM
Mike Marlow has left the building. It will be interesting to see where he ends up going. I would think he would be staying in the holiday lighting sector. I bet Scott is a bit freaked out. Lots of people bailed on HD but Mike surely kept some on board they would have left if he had not been there.

Stuttering Stan
08-22-2014, 11:04 PM
Wow, that's news to me. Hopefully he will resurface before the season begins. Heck of a standup guy!

PlantscapeSolutions
08-23-2014, 02:22 AM
Wow, that's news to me. Hopefully he will resurface before the season begins. Heck of a standup guy!

I would like to see Mike start his own business. As many year of experience as he has it would not be hard to go from zero to 100 pretty quickly. Mike is kind of like Colonel Sanders in that he knows the secret recipe for the HD greenery.

From industry contacts I know HD has done a great job of concealing who makes their greenery in China. Most companies have struggled to create greenery on the same level. Vickerman is probably one of few companies that comes close to HD quality. The Vickerman warranty is still three years. Any minor issues I have with their product Dara quickly fixes.

According to Jason Christmas Designers is working on a new line of greenery. Hopefully it will be ready for this season.

I would think if you were able to come up with HD quality greenery you could make a good living just servicing that market niche. As long as you use quality LED lights your exposure to liability is limited. Forget all that pain in the butt wire frame yard art and LL stuff.

I feel bad for anyone who loaded up on the LED wire frame stuff after the last big failure. Having to spend time trying to search for that lone bulb that went out and killed half a strand of lights is going to be frustrating. The unsealed LED bulbs have poor longevity and the newer wire frame stuff is going to be hell to keep lit and running.

PlantscapeSolutions
08-24-2014, 01:06 AM
This will be the first season where my website was worth a crap. Organically I'm on the first page of Google in my lawn top dressing category and usually hold one of the top spots. I'm hoping to creep up to the first page of Google before November gets here. I'm making some YouTube videos to link to my holiday lighting page. Hopefully some extra content will help.

PlantscapeSolutions
08-27-2014, 10:33 PM
Wow, I just got a mass email from Stacy with Brite Lights of Houston and her husband Carlos passed away unexpectedly. Not sure what happened but hopefully she will be OK. They have a pretty large operation and as some of you know were a distributor for HD last year. I don't think Carlos was even 40 years old.

greenbaylawns
08-29-2014, 01:24 AM
Wow, I just got a mass email from Stacy with Brite Lights of Houston and her husband Carlos passed away unexpectedly. Not sure what happened but hopefully she will be OK. They have a pretty large operation and as some of you know were a distributor for HD last year. I don't think Carlos was even 40 years old.

Wow!! Thoughts out to Stacy and her family. I meet them once in Omaha at a convention.

PlantscapeSolutions
09-04-2014, 01:10 PM
You would think Scott would have sent an email thanking Mike for years of dedicated service or something. Things must have really not gone well with Mike departing. He was really the glue that helped hold the place together over the years so I'm really surprised not a single word has been said thus far.

I'm sure the average lifespan of an HD member has been awful compared to places like Decor that stick to the traditional lighting. I can't imagine Brite Ideas is much better. They also pretty much let you buy without a membership now as well and have no stellar greenery line.

I think the whole wire frame/LL type stuff is just not sustainable and the high end market really has no use for that stuff here in Texas. I just have a few wire frame/LL clients and pass on selling any more stuff if people inquire about it. The fact that one bad bulb now kills a large section of a display and requires a Magic Box to find the bulb is just crazy. I frickin dread taking stuff out of the boxes to inspect it every year.

Some of the guys who did get big into the LED wire frame stuff were really struggling last year to keep everything lit and customers from getting pissed. As the non-Always Lit Technology stuff ages it's bad reliability is only going to get worse. It's going to get to the point where your customs will not be willing to pay to put the stuff up anymore. Your going to end up having to shell out some money to entice people to switch to C9 stuff.

I have no intention of selling any BI or HD wire frame stuff but it would be interesting to hear from any BI guys how things have gone over there the last few years. BI has contacted me several times trying to get me to buy from them so I'm sure they have also struggled to build up and maintain their member numbers.

For anyone checking out the holiday lighting forum and pondering getting into the biz I would tell you to follow the C9/greenery plan and avoid the temptation to deviate.

CleanCut1
09-19-2014, 07:59 PM
I switched from HD to Bite Ideas two seasons ago and have been very happy with everything. I replace a few bulbs in their wire frame products here and there (about the same replacement rate as C9's), but no major issues like with HD. When a bulb goes out the rest of the strand stays on.

BI added mixed noble garland and wreaths this year and is said to be the same as HD. My pre-order should be shipped next week. I can let you know how the MN looks once received.

PlantscapeSolutions
09-19-2014, 08:29 PM
I switched from HD to Bite Ideas two seasons ago and have been very happy with everything. I replace a few bulbs in their wire frame products here and there (about the same replacement rate as C9's), but no major issues like with HD. When a bulb goes out the rest of the strand stays on.

BI added mixed noble garland and wreaths this year and is said to be the same as HD. My pre-order should be shipped next week. I can let you know how the MN looks once received.

I think the way they ditched the "Always Lit Technology" was all about making more short term money at the expenses of the end user. From the feedback Mike had given me the "Always Lit Technology" may very well have doubled the cost of the unsealed light strands for metal frame use.

You know those unsealed LED strands probably cost all of $2 to $3. They probably saved $1.50 per set which let them pocket $25,000 which covered some of the costs of the LL light strands that they paid for. The fact that Brite Ideas, Home Depot, Walmart, and every other Tom, Dick, and Harry sells some sort of Always Lit Technology tells you HD is the lone wolf doing something awry that is going to blow up in their face.

I will have pictures of new greenery available from Vickerman next year (hopefully) that targets HD's line as well as pictures of Christmas Designers new line next week hopefully. CDI is also getting into the big wreaths now with much more heavy duty frames from what Trish was saying. Jason with CDI is here in Texas only a few hours from me and is sending me some stuff on Monday. Can't wait to see it.

PlantscapeSolutions
09-24-2014, 09:23 PM
Here are some samples of Christmas Designers new greenery starting from the top. They still do the three year warranty on the lights that most companies dropped if they ever did it to begin with.

1. New garland with mixed foliage and pine cones.
2. New mixed foliage wreath with pine cones to match.
3. This shows their 9" plain garland next to the new 18" garland. Even the 9" has more density this year and the 18" super thick.
4. Left- wreath to match 9". This also had more density the older material. Right- wreath to match 18". This has really good density
5. Regular wreath to match 9" garland.
6. Wreath to match 18" garland

I'm still waiting on the new Vickerman sample

PlantscapeSolutions
10-01-2014, 11:19 AM
Here are some samples of Christmas Designers new greenery starting from the top. They still do the three year warranty on the lights that most companies dropped if they ever did it to begin with.

1. New garland with mixed foliage and pine cones.
2. New mixed foliage wreath with pine cones to match.
3. This shows their 9" plain garland next to the new 18" garland. Even the 9" has more density this year and the 18" super thick.
4. Left- wreath to match 9". This also had more density the older material. Right- wreath to match 18". This has really good density
5. Regular wreath to match 9" garland.
6. Wreath to match 18" garland

I'm still waiting on the new Vickerman sample

I was just looking at my packing list on my sample set and on #4 I have a goof up. It's the same wreath they ended up sending me two. One was just squished to the point where it didn't even look like the same wreath. Opps.

PlantscapeSolutions
10-01-2014, 11:38 AM
Any of you guys getting ready to do filtered direct mail should be able to get 25% off if you call InfoUSA 866-372-2550 and ask for Patience Williams. Just tell her David with Plantscape Solutions referred you. InfoUSA is one of the biggest direct mail companies and really can filter your results the way you want them to be. Don't ever use the default mailing list any post card place offers for cheap or nothing. Those list's will really waste your money. I learned this years ago when I had the post card place I was using send me the list so I could take some random address samples.

My target market is homes in the multi-million range working down to $800K. I only target people who have been in their house 15 years or less which happens to be about 93% of the homes. In my target market 34% of the homes are either new or they have changed hands in the last year which is great. That's about 1700 new people in my target market which covers 5,000 homes. Do any of you other guys target your customers? I could never do the USPS every house deal that works in some markets.

Cactusmailing.com is the place I use for my card printing. They are in AZ and I'm in Texas but you don't have to deal with local people. Most of the time you will pay a premium to use some local place that is not mega high volume. They have bad azz printing resolution and user a higher grade of card stock by default then other place do. They beat the pants off the unnamed advertiser on this site. Call them and ask for Joe!

PlantscapeSolutions
10-12-2014, 02:51 AM
Here are some 9' x 16" samples from Vickerman of the Cheyenne Pine and Camdon Fir. I used the 14" last year but am considering using the 16" this year. For some reason the Camdon version has more lights then the Cheyenne on the 16" version but on the 14" version the bulb count is the same.

PlantscapeSolutions
10-25-2014, 12:06 AM
I just put up my first home of the year last week. Last year it was a 911 install and I didn't have time to come up with a way to put lights on his peaks that I liked. The peaks had a stone cap on them and I didn't want to glue down 40 clips every year.

This year I painted some metal flashing and attached it and it worked great. Next year the new peaks will be super fast to install and remove.

TexasFire221
10-27-2014, 04:41 PM
Why could you not do the EDDM and hit all homes in a route? I think your missing out when your only hitting homes over $800,000. My first year I tried to hit a target audience, it didnt work for me at all.

PlantscapeSolutions
10-27-2014, 05:19 PM
Why could you not do the EDDM and hit all homes in a route? I think your missing out when your only hitting homes over $800,000. My first year I tried to hit a target audience, it didnt work for me at all.

I really want the bigger jobs and so far it has worked well. I know your in the Georgetown and points west market. That an older more conservative demographic. In Austin you have a huge market of super high end homes with younger new money people. The high end construction is going going full blast.

Did you target all upper end homes or just homes at a certain age or where the owner had not been in the home for a decade or more. I really used a lot of filters.

Thisjm
10-29-2014, 11:33 PM
Here are some 9' x 16" samples from Vickerman of the Cheyenne Pine and Camdon Fir. I used the 14" last year but am considering using the 16" this year. For some reason the Camdon version has more lights then the Cheyenne on the 16" version but on the 14" version the bulb count is the same.

Do you have any thoughts on the Mixed Country? I'm doing a large gazebo that is part of a village-wide Victorian/Charles Dickens Christmas and am considering using it, or the Cheyenne.

PlantscapeSolutions
10-29-2014, 11:55 PM
I've only used the Cheyenne so I don't have any experience wit the Mixed Country. You might want to ask Dara at ccbydara.com for her opinion and see if she has ever sold any.

Thisjm
10-30-2014, 12:30 AM
Thanks, I have been working with Dara who is great! She recommended the Cheyenne and had mentioned you used it a lot. I like it but as I am working on my design tonight and exploring their catalogue, the Mixed Country is calling to me aesthetically. I'll definitely ask Dara her thoughts too.

I'll be using about 100' of garland on this gazebo (http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/dam/assets/120731065442-hideaways-finger-lakes-gazebo-horizontal-gallery.jpg). I'm getting my feet wet here, any tips for the installing it? I will likely go the obvious route along the railing.

I have been trying to come up with a less obvious approach to distinguish this year from previous (inconsistent) years with wally world garland in the same place. I was thinking of going up the stairs and framing the archway and using wreaths/swags around the perimeter instead of garland but a 24" wreath would jeeuuust fit and would probably feel too tight. Care to share how you would fasten along the archway?

PlantscapeSolutions
10-30-2014, 01:53 AM
Thanks, I have been working with Dara who is great! She recommended the Cheyenne and had mentioned you used it a lot. I like it but as I am working on my design tonight and exploring their catalogue, the Mixed Country is calling to me aesthetically. I'll definitely ask Dara her thoughts too.

I'll be using about 100' of garland on this gazebo (http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/dam/assets/120731065442-hideaways-finger-lakes-gazebo-horizontal-gallery.jpg). I'm getting my feet wet here, any tips for the installing it? I will likely go the obvious route along the railing.

I have been trying to come up with a less obvious approach to distinguish this year from previous (inconsistent) years with wally world garland in the same place. I was thinking of going up the stairs and framing the archway and using wreaths/swags around the perimeter instead of garland but a 24" wreath would jeeuuust fit and would probably feel too tight. Care to share how you would fasten along the archway?

Sometimes you have to get creative. Zip ties on railings or similar objects or adding some discrete screws to the arch and using safety wire are the options I use the most.

Thisjm
10-31-2014, 12:07 PM
Thanks. I'll always try to not use screws but I can see where it may be unavoidable sometimes.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-04-2014, 02:17 AM
Last year I was real surprised that Home Advisor was pretty silent and sent almost no leads my way. It was a real dud last year. This year I already have about four leads and just landed this house for an almost $3500 job.

I really think this year is going to be the best ever. I'm pretty motivated to sell, sell, sell this year. I'm going to look at Home Advisor lead number five tomorrow. It's a person who was using the Longhorn/Christmas Decor franchise. Their prices went up again and the customer headed for the door. I picked up three Decor customers last year.

Tomorrows bid should be of a decent size as well.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-05-2014, 11:48 PM
My new customer count is at six and my goal is 20. My direct mail hits on the 14th & 20th and I have PPC in place where I'm on the top of the page with the full width ads and not the small ones down the side.

The PPC is a first time thing for holiday lights and I will see how it goes. Last years PPC companies are back this year so I assume it worked for them.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-11-2014, 10:59 PM
I just noticed Christmas Designers has their 70 light 5mm conical listed on their retail site for $11.95 with free shipping on orders over $175. I was just checking for the heck of it to see what they retail them for and found them on sale for cheap. To get a three season warranty for $11.95 seems like a great deal and is less then the usual wholesale price. Since this is a retail price I'm talking about nobody should care so let me make that clear.

hotrod1965
11-11-2014, 11:06 PM
For comparison. Our wholesale price is fairly lower than that. The difference is we have a tiered warranty. 100% year one, 50% year two, 30% year three.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-11-2014, 11:11 PM
For comparison. Our wholesale price is fairly lower than that. The difference is we have a tiered warranty. 100% year one, 50% year two, 30% year three.

This season this section has been extremely quite. Do you have anyone of the regulars on here who have any multi year track records with your lights.

hotrod1965
11-11-2014, 11:33 PM
There's folks here that have bought.

Keep in mind, if it's LED strands that are sealed and rectified, it comes from one of two factories. So you have a 50/50 shot that our lights are identical to what you are buying now. The other factory, also has a very good reputation, so you are not going to lose buying this style of light, no matter who you purchase them from.

hotrod1965
11-11-2014, 11:42 PM
In fact, they look just like this: http://youtu.be/oVZ0eTKcDEQ?list=UUFGZEF0_g02q6g7swJk8Q4g

PlantscapeSolutions
11-15-2014, 03:25 AM
My workers are both around 30 years old but I'm the only one with balls big enough to hang by the tip of my boot and a few finger to string up a dormer.

Same goes for climbing down on a small over hang 35' off the ground on a cold windy day. The first year I used my 40' ladder but then decided the second year to be more daring. This house has 550' of C9's plus garland and is really amazing. This is about a four million dollar house.

Weekend cut easymoney
11-15-2014, 03:40 AM
Forgot to put you in touch with my brother in law..needs 8 or 10 light fixtures. In driftwood..down in Sierra west off yorks crossing.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-15-2014, 08:28 AM
Forgot to put you in touch with my brother in law..needs 8 or 10 light fixtures. In driftwood..down in Sierra west off yorks crossing.

One of my friends has a lot on that neighborhood. It's about 10 minutes away from me.

Weekend cut easymoney
11-15-2014, 06:04 PM
One of my friends has a lot on that neighborhood. It's about 10 minutes away from me.

Kinda figured you were someplace around there....maybe toward kyle ....I'll take your main number off the website and get it to him

PlantscapeSolutions
11-16-2014, 09:25 PM
I'm up to 10 new customer so far and counting.

TexasFire221
11-18-2014, 05:07 PM
Phone is ringing off the hook. Sold a few handful already and guys are installing like crazy. Have 12 appointments from a run of 2,000 post cards scheduled for tomorrow and Friday. Have 9000 cards that hits today and tomorrow so I'm sure my phone will be ringing off the hook. Trying to pre screen a bit better this year so I'm not making wasted meetings. Best job this season so far came from a letter I sent out to customer I didn't get last year. Was a simple letter stating we didn't get your business last season but would love to this season. Family had moved, but the folks that moved in spent a few thousand so that was nice. Lost a record number this season though. Lost of divorces and lost jobs, but im not worried at all. Looking great so far.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-18-2014, 10:19 PM
Glad to see someone post up. Been dead on here. I'm assuming everyone is crazy busy.

TexasFire221
11-20-2014, 10:21 PM
I'm tired already. Sold a few more. Have 17 appointments on the books for the next few day one being a HOA so thats going to be nice. New guys are doing really good and thank god the weather has been nice. 100% chance of rain for Saturday though.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-21-2014, 02:31 AM
I'm assuming everyone is stupid busy and that is why the forum is still so dead. Not having David G posting up also takes the wind out of the sails. I have never seen things as crazy as they are this year. Between postcards and a PPC campaign I'm getting 3-5 calls per day. I started getting calls and selling jobs on November 1st and this never happened in the past.

Here is a shot of the home I did to start the day today. This came from Homeadvisor.com. I sealed the deal via email late at night before I even talked to the guy. This was a nice little $3400 job.

The bows and wreaths I use beat my competition easily.

TexasFire221
11-21-2014, 08:56 AM
I sent out too many post cards. I get 30-40 calls a day. Ill have to remember this next season.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-21-2014, 09:16 AM
How many of those calls are actually decent homes that turn into estimates for at least $1000 or more and are not will you hang my lights or other crap calls.

TexasFire221
11-21-2014, 09:19 AM
Im scheduling 15-18 estimates in a day and who cares if they are over $1,000 or not? Im weeding out the tire kickers from the get go and have had very very few "will you hang my lights."

TexasFire221
11-21-2014, 07:17 PM
Sold 3 today and scheduled many more estimates for next week. Really need to just stop taking appointments, if I sale most of these I wont be able to keep up at all.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-23-2014, 10:25 PM
I've only had three hang my lights calls. I'm at about $36K and with takes down should be past the 40K mark. Not sure if I'll hit my 60K goal but I'm trying. With lots of people on vacation this week should get a lot of traffic.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-24-2014, 12:28 AM
I just did my HD inspection for one regular house and one 10K Griswold house and was surprised to see only one LL that I had to trouble shoot. I dread the inspection and really put it off longer then I should have.

Hope Landscaping
11-27-2014, 09:56 PM
I still have one to trouble shoot from last year. I put off buying the commercial tester now they're hard to find at a decent price. Dang it!

TexasFire221
11-28-2014, 01:44 PM
Most of my displays and light links are all fine with no issues. Have had some great days selling. still have tons of appointments on the books for this weekend and next week. On Tuesday I sold a few and Wednesday I had 10 appointments and sold the first 8. Eight sells in a day is a new record for me so that's nice. Couple guys are off for a long thanksgiving weekend but have a couple out working today so we are getting stuff done for sure. Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-29-2014, 05:23 PM
Nothing more fun that putting a 6' wreath up 40' high. The wind was gusting to 20 mph but the building was blocking part of the wind until I had to climb off the top of the ladder onto the roof.

The standoff on the top of the ladder has schedule 40 PVC extension on it that work great for giving you the space you need to mount a large wreath with a bow. Regular extensions only work well for small wreaths.

The front of the building has a wall to keep you from going over the edge but the right side has none. I was walking backward untangling the power and when I looked behind me I realized I was about 100 (few steps only)' from the edge. I was like "Oh Crap" too close for comfort.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-30-2014, 02:18 AM
I've added Brite Ideas to the list of places I buy stuff from. I had mentioned years ago that I thought patent infringement was part of the reason for the name change at HBL and that suspicion was confirmed by a person who was in the know at HBL at the time the place had the warranty meltdown and name change.

It sounds like between the "Always Lit Technology" patent infringement lawsuit and the burden of all the stuff under warranty that failed it was easier to just dump the companies liability and start fresh then to deal with the mountain of impending debt.

PlantscapeSolutions
11-30-2014, 04:12 AM
I think I'm at 16 new customers and hope to bump the number to 18 by tomorrow. I'm at 42K in sales. I think I will hit my 20 new customer goal but may end up closer to 50K in sales by January when everything comes down. We're in the home stretch where by next weekend sales should hit a wall. Hopefully there will be some 911 party coming and needs my lights up yesterday calls this week.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-02-2014, 02:31 AM
Crept up to 47.5K in sales and sent out a bunch of estimates tonight. Picked up a HOA entrance with 720 C9's. I may just hit my 60K sales goal. My credit card bill is going to scare the crap out of me when it shows up.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-03-2014, 02:50 AM
Monday I got six promising calls and thought for sure I'd land something but got crap. Tuesday was a new day. A we'll do it next year customer became a do it ASAP with their $2100 estimate and the neighbor said yes to their $2900 estimate. I think I have another deal to seal as well. My 60K goal is getting closer. Holiday lighting is just crazy.

There is no other work that only happens for such a brief period where people will spends thousands for something that will be in storage 10 months of the year. Got to love it if your able to ride the wave.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-07-2014, 02:57 AM
I have surpassed my goal of 20 new customers and hit the 23 mark. This last week ended really well with two homes in the 400 - 500 C9 range. This may be my last year for postcards. My PPC advertising worked really well and I should easily go from the top of page two of Google to page one by next year. Ten of my new clients were from referral or they were existing clients from other services I offer.

My sales will be past 60K for installs and probably around 70K in January with take downs. Pretty happy about how things have gone this season. The average home value of my target market this year was about 1.75 million.

Stuttering Stan
12-07-2014, 12:32 PM
Congratulations on your success this year. Sounds like you have been extremely focused and determined to reach the 60k goal. I must admit that I am envious and have enjoyed reading your posts. I'd like to pick your brain after the season. Keep up the good work.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-07-2014, 02:21 PM
Congratulations on your success this year. Sounds like you have been extremely focused and determined to reach the 60k goal. I must admit that I am envious and have enjoyed reading your posts. I'd like to pick your brain after the season. Keep up the good work.

Austin is probably one of the best cities in the United States to be in when it comes to the economy. Austin has started to become another city where the oil industry has a presence. Health care has developed a presence here and as always technology is big here with IBM, Google, Intel, Freescale, AMD, and well over 100 other companies being located here or having some sort of presence.

I still get the occasion call from somebody who is offended that lighting their house can be over a grand or a tree can be over $500. I had a lady just yesterday call about a tree lighting price who lived next to a home we lit.

I didn't even make it past telling here the lights could easily be $300 not including the install and she couldn't get off the phone fast enough as thought I was doing her some injustice. She can call around and get in touch with reality and realize it's not 1960 prices anymore. The homes in the area are all one million plus so obviously they are making some money but God forbid anyone else gets a chance to earn any.

I should have some really good picture to start posting next week.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-07-2014, 04:37 PM
Up to 24 now

PlantscapeSolutions
12-07-2014, 08:37 PM
Now at 25 but I'm sure this is about it.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-07-2014, 09:27 PM
I ended up with 500' of free SPT-2 wire that I thought I would have for years to come. I was low on wire and was going to have my guys pick some up at the irrigation place since my supplier was out.

I had modified SPT-2 plugs in a pinch years ago to accept SPT-1 wire and just realized if you shave off the four raised ribs in the SPT-1 plugs they become SPT-2 plugs.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-10-2014, 12:35 PM
Now at 26 and it was the ladies financial planner who hired me. She only deals with very wealthy clients so this could be a great connection. the planner has a radio show and has been on the news with a show as well.

TexasFire221
12-10-2014, 08:42 PM
Im not sure where im at exactly but mid 40's I would guess. Best year ever. Even sold a nice 1,200 ft C9 job tonight via the phone. We decorated his moms home and she pushed him to use us. He even sent me the proposal he got from a local company, we are $3000 more expensive and he still used us. Turned out to be a wonderful season.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-12-2014, 10:15 PM
Im not sure where im at exactly but mid 40's I would guess. Best year ever. Even sold a nice 1,200 ft C9 job tonight via the phone. We decorated his moms home and she pushed him to use us. He even sent me the proposal he got from a local company, we are $3000 more expensive and he still used us. Turned out to be a wonderful season.

Did the other company bid incandescent or did they just not know how to bid stuff. I've seen a few stupid bids that would have been below cost that just didn't make sense.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-12-2014, 10:40 PM
Here is the write up about my company on Hot on Austin http://hotonaustin.com/2014/12/11/heavenly-peace-with-holiday-lights-eliminate-the-dangerous-tangled-job/. I'm at the top of page two on Google organically and should easily displace somebody in the near future and be on page one.

My plan is to creep up page one and end up near the top. I did another job today and just got past the 60K mark mark. I should be around 75K with take downs and have crushed my 60K goal. That should work out to be an average ticket of $1530 including new and existing customers.

Hope Landscaping
12-12-2014, 11:09 PM
Nice write up! Did they reach out to you or did you pursue the publicity? They used some great pictures too.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-12-2014, 11:24 PM
Nice write up! Did they reach out to you or did you pursue the publicity? They used some great pictures too.

They were just looking to interview a company and I suspect she came across my Google PPC ad which was the big as on the top not the waste of money ads down the side. You have to be the guy willing to pay the most per click to stay on the top. We had to up our bids multiple times to stay king of the hill but it was easily worth it.

I'm pretty confident I will be on page one of Google shortly and creep towards the top. I have a ton of pictures that I need to take still for my website.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-13-2014, 12:54 AM
I had the wreath hand garland done in custom red & white colors. Because of the neighborhood this is a 2 million dollar home. The tree was going to be red & white 5mm's but they sold out.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-13-2014, 12:58 AM
This house is very close to the last picture and is about a 2.5 million dollar spread. It had a few challenging areas to get to. It had a ceramic tile roof.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-13-2014, 01:01 AM
This house is in the three mil plus range. 497 C9's. Very well landscaped.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-13-2014, 01:05 AM
This is more like a 2.2 mil house. There are too may tree's and no way to really get a great shot.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-13-2014, 01:21 AM
I need to retake this shot. It was too dark by the time I got to the house. These people got the house in 2009 for only about 800K. It would easily go for about 2 mil now.

I made the balls using the frames you can buy and used jumper cables to hang them. The balls are brilliant multi color balls but the camera can't deal with all the light. I need to get a picture with a lot more background light.

I did a dozen balls for $1080 or $90 each as an experiment. Next time the balls will be more like $145.

The people had paid a company called Top Choice $900 to do the lights the year before. They had used all incandescent on the house, bed stakes, and tiny balls in the tree's. I don't know the exact number of amps but it was over 30 amps.

The lights would turn off after a few days and the company would take three days to come out to look according to the customer. Top Choice told them they did not have an electrician on staff and gave up from what the customer said.

I found the ends of wire runs with no tape or slide plugs. In one area they used slide plugs like they should and then in other areas they were wire nuts. I replaced everything with LED.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-13-2014, 09:22 PM
In my opinion having great sales literature is not important anymore. People are living in such a text and email type world that all you need is a great website and you can often sell right over the phone. I had many people text me pictures of their homes and I used Google Earth Pro and Google Street View to do their estimates.

As little as a few years ago you could not get away with this but now you can. I was too busy to meet people in person after mid November and sold all my jobs without even going to see the people. If you have a crap website your not going to get peoples confidence level to the point where you can sell this way.

I would say having a great website is more important then ever. I need to move up just one spot to be on the first page of Google which will happen easily in the near future. I'm shooting for the middle part of page one of by next season.

A great website coupled with great SEO is important and that has been my focus the last few months. Next year I will probably drop doing any direct mail and just go with my website and PPC. PPC worked very well for me this year and had a lower acquisition cost then doing mail. The world is going digital where print stuff doesn't pack the punch it once did.

gqnine44
12-14-2014, 12:02 AM
Hi David- I checked out your website. It is very nice and full of a lot of good content. Our company is relatively new to the Christmas Light market and just start custom making strands last season. We were pretty busy this year doing lights mainly for existing lawn care customers. We are still learning as we go. Pricing is one of the biggest areas we need to learn. I am really not sure how we compare to the other light companies in town. I noticed on your website you say you sell c9s of $3.15 a foot. Does that include installation? And I assume that is on 12" spacing.

We have been selling closer to $4 a foot for c7s on 12" spacing plus installation. On installation I just basically figure how long I think it is going to take based on difficulty and then charge $50 per man hour.

Any insight on pricing jobs. Thanks for your posts.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-14-2014, 02:57 AM
Hi David- I checked out your website. It is very nice and full of a lot of good content. Our company is relatively new to the Christmas Light market and just start custom making strands last season. We were pretty busy this year doing lights mainly for existing lawn care customers. We are still learning as we go. Pricing is one of the biggest areas we need to learn. I am really not sure how we compare to the other light companies in town. I noticed on your website you say you sell c9s of $3.15 a foot. Does that include installation? And I assume that is on 12" spacing.

We have been selling closer to $4 a foot for c7s on 12" spacing plus installation. On installation I just basically figure how long I think it is going to take based on difficulty and then charge $50 per man hour.

Any insight on pricing jobs. Thanks for your posts.

I also started by just targeting my existing client base in 2009. It wasn't until about 2011 that I started to decide to grow the business more. At first I was doing the whole holiday lighting thing but wasn't that enthused about it.

Once I moved away from trying to sell any of the HBL/HD stuff that required inspection prior to installation selling lights became more of a fun challenge and less of a chore.

For installs I try to factor in at least $225-250 even if you just want 100' of lights up that are easy to install. I would say for bigger jobs the install could be any where from $1.2 a for labor to $3.

hotrod1965
12-14-2014, 10:43 PM
This is HUGE. in a few years, this will be the only way installers will get new business. The last year I did installs, the only leads I got were from my website....

Here's a little video I did last year talking about this same thing http://youtu.be/KNOwfwSFCmU

In my opinion having great sales literature is not important anymore. People are living in such a text and email type world that all you need is a great website and you can often sell right over the phone. I had many people text me pictures of their homes and I used Google Earth Pro and Google Street View to do their estimates.

As little as a few years ago you could not get away with this but now you can. I was too busy to meet people in person after mid November and sold all my jobs without even going to see the people. If you have a crap website your not going to get peoples confidence level to the point where you can sell this way.

I would say having a great website is more important then ever. I need to move up just one spot to be on the first page of Google which will happen easily in the near future. I'm shooting for the middle part of page one of by next season.

A great website coupled with great SEO is important and that has been my focus the last few months. Next year I will probably drop doing any direct mail and just go with my website and PPC. PPC worked very well for me this year and had a lower acquisition cost then doing mail. The world is going digital where print stuff doesn't pack the punch it once did.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-14-2014, 11:11 PM
This is HUGE. in a few years, this will be the only way installers will get new business. The last year I did installs, the only leads I got were from my website....

Here's a little video I did last year talking about this same thing http://youtu.be/KNOwfwSFCmU

I didn't make it through the whole video but I would say that good SEO is a must or you can have a great website that nobody can find.

The PPC works but hire a professional to super focus where your clicks will come from. Other wise you get clicks from the middle class areas that can't even afford you. Finding good website and SEO people is very hard. Everyone claims to be the best but most of the time they are just scamming you.

hotrod1965
12-14-2014, 11:21 PM
The nice thing about Christmas light installers, is the web traffic competition is pretty small. There are not a lot of competing key words for "Detroit Christmas light installer". So if you build your site well, it will show up high in the organic listings.

Also, if you are not listed in Google Places yet.... DO IT! It's free.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-15-2014, 12:06 AM
Here the golden key phrase is Christmas Light Installation with 20,200 searches. Here is the breakdown of searched Keywords. You need to be careful or will end up with a term that attracts people looking for light displays to check out which we have around here. You may also attract people looking to buy lights online. The wrong terms can get you a lot of expensive clicks.

I already have plans to break down my holiday lighting section into separate areas and add more content. I'm going to add a incandescent versus LED section. People often think LED is over priced by the sales person and jump to incandescent thinking it's a bargain. I'm trying to shed some light on how incandescent is actually marked up way more then LED and even thought it costs less it's marked up several times over more and your really over paying for unreliable cheap lights. Incandescent would have to be 60-75 cents a foot retail to equal the retail markup on LED at most places.

I would say the 1500 hour rated incandescent often fail at just 100 - 300 hours. The bumping around during installation and removal takes a toll on the weak filaments. Broken glass is going to be the norm on your average take down that involves a few hundred bulbs.

I'll have even more info then this. I want to make people really think hard about why LED is a better value.



November December

holiday lighting 1,900 1,300
installing holiday lighting austin
holiday lighting austin
christmas lighting austin 20 20
austin christmas lights 720 2,900
christmas lights services 30 40
installing holiday lighting
christmas light installation austin 590 320
christmas light installation 12,100 8,100
outdoor christmas lights 27,100 22,200
how to install christmas lights 720 590
christmas lighting 3,600 3,600
holiday lighting company 590 30
christmas lighting companies 140 40
christmas lights company 170 90
christmas lighting company 110 90
chirstmas lights 590 880
holiday lights 14,800 18,100

PlantscapeSolutions
12-16-2014, 11:57 PM
Hell, I mentioned good SEO and I jumped up three spots. I went from page two at the top to page one and jumped over three companies. I think the Hot On Austin article that was done on my company that was back linked to my site gave me a boost. Just today I added some info to my site so it's back linked to the article.

I'm also in the process of breaking up my holiday lighting section into separate sections to avoid have any pages that are too long. Plus I want to add more material and need the page space to do it. I plan to do my best to make a run towards the number one spot before next year. The number one company is only there because they get a lot of traffic not because they actually have any content.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-18-2014, 06:57 PM
We all know Holidynamics marks up the shipping and has some of the most expensive shipping you will find in any industry. Even I was shocked to see my bill for the tiny box that weighed probably under a pound was about $37.50.

Luckily the replacement parts in this box are the only thing I had shipped from HD this year. I'm not into the wire frame stuff anymore but the one Brite Ideas order I had that weighted 37.45 pounds cost me only $49.56 to ship this year.

Thank you for not raking me over the coals Chad.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-18-2014, 07:01 PM
We all know Holidynamics marks up the shipping and has some of the most expensive shipping you will find in any industry. Even I was shocked to see my bill for the tiny box that weighed probably under a pound was about $37.50.

Luckily the replacement parts in this box are the only thing I had shipped from HD this year. I'm not into the wire frame stuff anymore but the one Brite Ideas order I had that weighted 37.45 pounds cost me only $49.56 to ship this year.

Thank you for not raking me over the coals Chad.

Amanda at HD is checking to see if there was any error on my rate. I had emailed her that the rate seemed pretty jacked up for such a tiny light weight box. If they cut me a break due to an error I will give them due credit. I would think 20 bucks would be more reasonable. I realize UPS has a shipping minimum fee which is probably one pound.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-18-2014, 07:33 PM
Amanda at HD is checking to see if there was any error on my rate. I had emailed her that the rate seemed pretty jacked up for such a tiny light weight box. If they cut me a break due to an error I will give them due credit. I would think 20 bucks would be more reasonable. I realize UPS has a shipping minimum fee which is probably one pound.

The shipping has been reduced to about 20 bucks. Thank you Amanda. I would recommend checking your shipping rates. I had this issue in the past also.

hotrod1965
12-18-2014, 07:59 PM
yikes. That's expensive.


I would recommend to anyone that does a fair bit of shipping, to look into getting your own UPS account. They give you a price break based on volume, and anyone that ships UPS can bill to your account. A lot of our bigger customer have their own account we just bill to.

Ducke
12-19-2014, 08:07 AM
I stopped use Holiday Decor for the same reason, they had a minimum freight rate of $100.00 to Canada so I went to Christmas designers which had much better rates. But I have now found a supplier here in Canada Big Star Lights which works out so much better. Now I just need a Canadian supplier for my greenery.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-19-2014, 09:49 AM
I stopped use Holiday Decor for the same reason, they had a minimum freight rate of $100.00 to Canada so I went to Christmas designers which had much better rates. But I have now found a supplier here in Canada Big Star Lights which works out so much better. Now I just need a Canadian supplier for my greenery.

You need to check with Dara at ccbydara.com. She can get you a better rate for greenery products from Vickerman (Minnesota) then you could get otherwise. I like the Camdon Fir line the best. I like the Cheyenne Pine for the mixed line with pine cones.

The only thing I don't like about the Cheyenne Pine line is the garland in my opinion needs twice as many lights. I may experiments with buying extra matching lights and see how much of a pain it is to add more.

Adding more lights to greenery or getting experience at restringing is something I need to get more experience with anyway.

She also might be able to get you some deals on products from Reinders in Wisconsin. These places should have good shipping rates because of volume and the fact they are both closer to the border.

Talk to Dara and I bet she can help you out. Don't bother with her website when searching for anything just call her and tell her what your looking for.

Ducke
12-19-2014, 04:23 PM
Thank you David. I will have to check her out for next season pre booking.
My season here is basically done other than maintenance and take down..
Had a good season kept my customers from year one and gained 5 more without doing any advertising at all. Now got to start planning for next season as well as get back on marketing the lawn care.

thanks again and Merry Christmas

Graham

PlantscapeSolutions
12-21-2014, 02:14 AM
Here are more pictures of mostly new client's homes and one HOA.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-22-2014, 01:47 AM
I'm still trying to get pictures of the new clients homes that are website worthy. The garland in the first picture is the 16" Camdon Fir and the matching wreath is a 60" with a nylon bow.

Ducke
12-22-2014, 08:24 AM
Very nice work Thumbs Up

Stuttering Stan
12-22-2014, 09:29 AM
What type of light is in the last picture? It looks too big to be a C9.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-22-2014, 05:55 PM
What type of light is in the last picture? It looks too big to be a C9.

It's C9 but the camera is having trouble focusing. This is a common problem when the light gets too low.

gallihergreen
12-22-2014, 11:56 PM
That home in the first and last picture is beautiful.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-23-2014, 01:09 AM
Running low on great new pictures. I still have some new homes with no pictures taken yet but I may call it quits. The best website pictures have been taken already. I was past the prime picture taking hour when these shots were done. If they were not limestone homes that reflect light well it would have been a lost cause.

I was happy to finally sell a job where I was able to use the teardrop garland. I like the stuff but it's been a hard sell. Hopefully having some more pictures on my website will help.

My website is in the middle of a upgrade on the holiday lighting section.

PlantscapeSolutions
12-23-2014, 10:08 PM
OK, I do have one more good picture. This is a client I picked up last year. He had some LED Minleon C9 light from his last house in Oklahoma and I reconfigured them and added about 100' more feet. He also had about 25 sets of LED mini lights.

Sometimes you can do OK with customers who have their own lights from another house is they were professionally done. This is about a $750 install which is not a bad deal. I have another customer who had their own Light Spheres and they ended up being about a $825 install and $825 removal client. Then I sold them all new light sphere's the next year which was about $2300.

90% or more of the I have lights calls are crap but screen those calls because you may cast aside a job that would have been well worth doing.