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Kohls Landscaping Co
06-09-2003, 10:56 AM
Hi. I have been using statement sheets to write out bills and then send one copy to the customer. I'd like to start putting everything on a computer and then print out the bills and send.

What computer programs would you recommend using and what are the benefits/drawbacks to the individual programs? Also, I would prefer not to spend a whole lot.

One last question.... anybody sending bills over the internet yet??

Thanks for the help!

The Green Way
06-09-2003, 12:26 PM
EDIT - CANNOT ADVERTISE ON THE SITE

gogetter
06-09-2003, 02:44 PM
I use Estimates & Invoices. It's like $25-30 at Office Max.
So far it does what I need it to.
It's definately a step up from handwriting them like you are.
It helps me keep track of different stuff. It has a few reports that I can view or print that are helpful.
It look more proffesional then handwriting.

At some point, when I have more customers or when I start doing applications, I may upgrade to a more industry specific program like GroundsKeeper or the like. But for now I'm content with what I have.

glenjr10
06-09-2003, 03:10 PM
I use Groundskeeper Pro, and love it. I also used to do the manual invoices, but as i grew, it became complicated. Everything for me is on computer, and very simple. www.adkad.com there is a free download. It runs around $350 to buy

Green in Idaho
06-09-2003, 07:19 PM
1) If you want the cheapest thing available it's designing your own in Excel or using a template in Word.

2) If you want a sophisticated solution: QuickBooks Pro.
It dooes what you are looking for and then some.

3) If you want the best and most cost effective, use a bookkeeper/accountant to it ALL for you. i.e. you can drop off (or e-mail) route sheets once a week and your check carbons at the end of the month. And then POOF! a week later the invoices have been sent out and you have reports on the month's income.

Meanwhile you continue mowing and making money instead of kiling your time trying to figure out some software program that has to be updated every 2-3 years. Look on this site and others and you will see how many problems and you can estimate how much TIME people waste figuring out their software programs.

At the end of the year you ask for a tax return and POOF they produce a business tax return (personal return too if you need it).

In the same time you spend figuring it out and then the time to do it every month you could instead be mowing turf more to pay for the service and then some. OR you could be fishing!

Service providers are to LCOs what YOU are to your customers.

How can one go out and sell your services of specialization on Monday and by Tuesday the same person is trying to do exactly what they are asking their prospects not to do????

mtdman
06-10-2003, 12:19 AM
I just use QuickBooks. No pro. I don't need time tracking or whatever else they offer for an extra $100 for the pro version.

I used to hand write my statements for the first 3 years. Talk about a waste of time. Then I went to the QuickBooks statements. I try to get a lot of prepays to eliminate statements entirely. I would like to further simplify it by sending statements by email, or doing an online statement. Whatever can cut your time sitting at the desk folding/stuffing/stamping is good for me.

BSDeality
06-10-2003, 01:10 AM
I'm demo'ing Gopher2003 right now, its great, i don't mind paying $300 for some software that will keep track of everything it does. Hopefully there will be an option soon for online-bill sending and paying.

Green in Idaho
06-10-2003, 12:07 PM
Originally posted by mtdmaster
I would like to further simplify it by sending statements by email,

QuickBooks Pro & Premier allow you to e-mail statements and invoices. But that costs more. More than your postage? Probably not.

It also allows online customer payments.

The Green Way
06-10-2003, 01:18 PM
EDIT - CANNOT ADVERTISE ON THIS SITE

Kohls Landscaping Co
06-10-2003, 01:50 PM
Thanks for the help guys! I'm gonna look into the programs that were mentioned and find one that would work well for me. Thanks again!

dfor
06-10-2003, 07:11 PM
Ditto what gogetter said. I've been using it for 4 years and have been perfectly happy.

LB Landscaping
06-10-2003, 09:22 PM
Quicken home and business works good for me. You can customize invoices to fit just about any job. Pretty user friendly too.

AztlanLC
06-11-2003, 12:04 AM
Do yourself a favor and try gopher2003