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View Full Version : Too Funny!! LCO vs. Grass Cutter


MMLawn
10-15-2004, 01:54 PM
I'll keep it short but it is funny, at least to me because I think it shows the difference in a TRUE LCO and someone just cutting grass.

Okay, yesterday it had rained and I was ahead anyway because I cut more on Monday than I normally do so I didn't start cutting until 2PM. I get to my last customer late in the day and at the house right next door there is this 20 something year old cutting that lawn. Now I don't call folks "scrubs" because EVERYBODY started somewhere. BUT this kid and I say that only because I'm much older is already half way through cutting this lawn. He is using the oldest (at least 10-15 years old and had what looked like a 3.5HP engine) most rusted Snapper 21" push mower that I have ever, ever seen, I personally wouldn't have paid $5 for it at a yard sale it was so bad. The lawn is less than half the size (1/4 acre) of my customers (3/4 acre) and mine has 240' of wooden fence and his has no fence, and the reason I know the size is because I measured it as I quoted them also after I started my customers and they saw my work and my customer telling them how great I was. Well, I pull my truck and trailer up behind his Ford Explorer (he opens the back window and his push mower sticks out the window). I take my time because it' so nice outside. I drop the gate put on my Peltor Headset to listen to some talk radio while I cut, fire up the ZTR pull off the trailer and head the to back yard (I always cut the backyards first) and I am cutting away. Every once in a while I look up and see the kid pushing away. Anyway I finish my entire yard, trim the entire fence and edge all the concrete and am blowing everything off and I look up and the kid is just now finishing his cutting only. I noticed that when I was edging that he was watching me. Because I had stick edged the week before I was really only shaping it up with one of my Redmax trimmers this week and of course was walking very fast doing it as we all probably do. So I pack everything up and decide to get in the truck and just watch the kid for a minute. He goes over and opens the window and gets his Craftsman Hand Held blower out and his Weedeater brand curved shaft trimmer out. You can tell that this lawn has not really been edged before as it should be. SO I watch and I guess he had tried to take a lesson from me and turned tha curved shaft upside down to edge and MAN was it funny. He was trying to edge and he was going in every S direction you can think of and trimmer line was flying! He finally turned it back over and "trimmed" at the edge inside of actually edging. I didn't stay to watch the rest!

I guess the real thing that hit me was that I did 2X the work he did in half the time mainly because I actually had the right equipment to do it. Plus I have to think that my many years of doing this helps me work Smarter, thus faster also.

Of yeah, the owner of this house, went with the kid because he was $5 cheaper than me. :p

scott in the soo
10-15-2004, 02:36 PM
it amazes and puzzles me to hear lco's putting down other lco's.. why not concentrate on your own work..

maybe the owner of the house got him because he does better work than you....

MMLawn
10-15-2004, 02:40 PM
it amazes and puzzles me to hear lco's putting down other lco's.. why not concentrate on your own work..

maybe the owner of the house got him because he does better work than you....


YOU missed the WHOLE point then. Because a kid riding around with a 20 year old rusted mower and homeowner blower & trimmer, with NO Business License, NO Insurance ISN'T and LCO...he is as I said a GRASS CUTTER and there is s huge difference my friend.

Flex-Deck
10-15-2004, 02:45 PM
MMLawn - Do you know he had no insurance or are you guessing - Do you realize that you think you are efficient because he has a rusted pusher. I bet I could make your equipment look like dinasoures.

mbricker
10-15-2004, 02:47 PM
it amazes and puzzles me to hear lco's putting down other lco's.. why not concentrate on your own work..

maybe the owner of the house got him because he does better work than you....

Scott are you missing something? Didn't MM just refer to the crummy edging the boy was doing next door? Etc?

The young man next door is cheaper because he doesn't know any better, and we all have to compete with these guys. It hurts our bottom line because we will often have to "adjust" our pricing to stay competitive. And we have to stay "competitive" with these idiots doing inferior work, because of idiot customers who are incapable of recognizing the difference between good and poor work.

And this my friend, is not "putting down" other lco's, it is recognizing some of the realities of this business.

TURF DOCTOR
10-15-2004, 02:48 PM
First let me say i am above nobody, when i started i drove a ford ranger 600 bucks,murray rider, trimmer i can not remember was not much.My trailer was homemade,junk but i was determend to make it.

MMLawn
10-15-2004, 02:54 PM
MMLawn - Do you know he had no insurance or are you guessing - Do you realize that you think you are efficient because he has a rusted pusher. I bet I could make your equipment look like dinasoures.

I don't know what the F$#% your deal is FLEX-DECK as you have tried to slam me in my last 2 post and I let the first one slide. I don't even know you, never talked to you but I can assure your sorry @SS that I could care less about you, what you have "invented" and your WONDERFUL homemade wide area mower on your John Deere tractor or that you are stupid enough to cut grass for $17 an acre and I've been in business twice your 13 years!

Let's see...he had a rusted 20 year old push mower, $150 worth of homeowner trimmer and blower all hanging out the back window of his car....YEAH I am assuming he doesn't have Commerial Liability Insurance jack@ss!

Evergreenpros
10-15-2004, 03:01 PM
What I noticed is that somebody with the worst equipment only has to under bid a pro by $5 and he gets the job.

scott in the soo
10-15-2004, 03:02 PM
mmlawn,

i think instead about worrying about "flexdeck" and other lco's you should just worry about your own business..

you seem like a very angry person,, were you picked on as a child????

MMLawn
10-15-2004, 03:06 PM
mmlawn,
were you picked on as a child????


If I was I whooped that @$$ :cool2:

Avery
10-15-2004, 03:50 PM
Those are the guys that stay in this business just long enough to drive prices down. That are not only hurting themselves but the industry as well.

MMLawn
10-15-2004, 03:51 PM
Hey Scott when you ding somebody have the guts to sign it! Cause I sure signed your Ding!

MMLawn
10-15-2004, 03:52 PM
Those are the guys that stay in this business just long enough to drive prices down. That are not only hurting themselves but the industry as well.


Exactly Avery!

oneandonlyjojo
10-15-2004, 04:04 PM
I don't know what the F$#% your deal is FLEX-DECK as you have tried to slam me in my last 2 post and I let the first one slide. I don't even know you, never talked to you but I can assure your sorry @SS that I could care less about you, what you have "invented" and your WONDERFUL homemade wide area mower on your John Deere tractor or that you are stupid enough to cut grass for $17 an acre and I've been in business twice your 13 years!

Let's see...he had a rusted 20 year old push mower, $150 worth of homeowner trimmer and blower all hanging out the back window of his car....YEAH I am assuming he doesn't have Commerial Liability Insurance jack@ss!


dont assume anything. and u make yourself look like a moron because u are making fun of him but even u said everyone needs to start somewhere. how do u know next year he wont have brand new equipment and all his license/ins. or maybe its his 3rd uncle and doing a favor. people need to mind there own business

olderthandirt
10-15-2004, 04:39 PM
Well MM looks like the cost of livings going up in your area,

MMLawn
10-15-2004, 04:50 PM
Yeah I guess so Mac.

Wreak
10-15-2004, 04:53 PM
You can look at it 2 ways.

MM was just making a post about something he thought was funny. This might be something that some of you need to have been there to see to appreciate MM's thought process. Is everybody pissed that mowing season is coming to an end?

Good post MM, it sure does put things in to perspective. But on the flip side...Maybe that rusty mower is going to get replaced with something brand new next season, the craftsman blower and weedeater trimmer might also get replaced. But it sucks that these type of guys will take away customers just to pay a cheaper price but in the long run they'll realize that they made a mistake for getting rid of an LCO that has nice equipment that makes their lawns look nice and that can get done in 15 minutes.

MMLawn
10-15-2004, 05:10 PM
You can look at it 2 ways.

MM was just making a post about something he thought was funny. This might be something that some of you need to have been there to see to appreciate MM's thought process. Is everybody pissed that mowing season is coming to an end?

Good post MM, it sure does put things in to perspective. But on the flip side...Maybe that rusty mower is going to get replaced with something brand new next season, the craftsman blower and weedeater trimmer might also get replaced. But it sucks that these type of guys will take away customers just to pay a cheaper price but in the long run they'll realize that they made a mistake for getting rid of an LCO that has nice equipment that makes their lawns look nice and that can get done in 15 minutes.


THANK YOU WREAK!!! You GOT it! I was simply pointing out that it hit me as funny and I think anybody else that had been there and esp saw him fighting that trimmer trying my way of edging that was clearly new to him would have been laughing too. I was laughing at HIM, NOT his equipment. I also was pointing out though that because of that equipment that I was better equipped and prepared for the work we were doing and I did more than twice the work he did in faster time because he was in over his head really... and even left stripes.

MMLawn
10-15-2004, 05:15 PM
Again DING all you want as I'm sure the kiddies on here will continue to....But at Least TRY and BE A MAN AND SIGN THEM!!!

Thread Date Comment
NEG Too Funny!! LCO vs. Gra... 10-15-2004 04:10 PM
NEG Too Funny!! LCO vs. Gra... 10-15-2004 03:53 PM

JPLAWNSERVICE
10-15-2004, 05:16 PM
[QUOTE=MMLawn] I was laughing at HIM, NOT his equipment.

That makes it o.k. then. For a minute I thought you were making fun of the equipment.

SunSwept
10-15-2004, 05:32 PM
Very interesting how this one thread is shaping up.

I have been reading lawnsite for a couple of years. It doesn't take long for someone to post a thread concerning pricing, "scrubs", and equipment. What I like to call "comparison" posts.

For those few of you who have read the 30-some-odd posts that I have made, you already know that I am a computer geek by profession (25 plus years) and work at lawns on the weekend. I can assure you that prices/wages have changed like you would not believe in the computer field too. I have lost nearly half of my 'revenue' (I am an independent contract programmer) since 1998. It hurts. Many industries are going through this and have been for some time.

As for the name calling and the comparisons and such ...

Walmart's BIGGEST selling point is "rolling back prices". They will absolutely beat ANYONE's price for the same item. Circuit City and Best Buys do the same thing with any advertised price of similar items. PLUS they will give you an additional 10% of the difference.

I often wonder (from reading posts on Lawn Site) if the board of directors of K-mart or Target or Sears, etc call Walmart names or whine/cry about prices and whether they have insurance, are using new equipment, or have bigger stores. Seems to me that these industries find a way to survive (even turn a profit) and still compete.

Have I been beat by prices? YES. What did I learn? That I can't win all of them no matter what I do.

I also notice that the ones who do the most complaining about pricing, "scrubs", teenagers and PITAs are also the ones who scream the loudest that they are PROFESSIONALS. Sorry, but the professionals I have worked with (and I have programmed for many fortune 500s) don't whine when they get beat by the competition. They find ways to win the bid the next time because the ALWAYS review what happened and why they were beaten.

What I am saying is that I log on to Lawn Site to find ways to improve my own business from seasoned professionals who are willing to help out a light-weight like me and they aren't afraid to help me and others because they ARE professionals. It is sad that I run into the immature name-calling and the mine-is-bigger-than-yours comparisons. So the guy was doing a poor job. Did you do anything to help him?

And, just for the record, my first 2 months of lawns care I used a Murray 21-inch push that was 12 years old and a weed eater that I got from a pawnshop for $65. My blower was electric and I had to use two extension cords to get all of the sidewalks. All of this was packed into a minivan.

OK, professionals ... I know who many of you are and THANK YOU. I will continue to watch for your posts and learn. For you whiners ... I will continue to be amazed. And I also must comment on one post in this thread ... Yep, it seems as though $5 is the magic number to get beaten by. It certainly is mentioned quite a bit.

fcl01
10-15-2004, 05:40 PM
great thread MM.
as for the people jumping on MM for laughing at the guy, at least he was casual about it in the truck. whereas i would have been rolling around on the road laughing and pointing!

i can see it now, ding, ding, ding, ding, ding!!
oh well, at least im honest! :waving:

Dan

oneandonlyjojo
10-15-2004, 06:39 PM
Very interesting how this one thread is shaping up.

I have been reading lawnsite for a couple of years. It doesn't take long for someone to post a thread concerning pricing, "scrubs", and equipment. What I like to call "comparison" posts.

For those few of you who have read the 30-some-odd posts that I have made, you already know that I am a computer geek by profession (25 plus years) and work at lawns on the weekend. I can assure you that prices/wages have changed like you would not believe in the computer field too. I have lost nearly half of my 'revenue' (I am an independent contract programmer) since 1998. It hurts. Many industries are going through this and have been for some time.

As for the name calling and the comparisons and such ...

Walmart's BIGGEST selling point is "rolling back prices". They will absolutely beat ANYONE's price for the same item. Circuit City and Best Buys do the same thing with any advertised price of similar items. PLUS they will give you an additional 10% of the difference.

I often wonder (from reading posts on Lawn Site) if the board of directors of K-mart or Target or Sears, etc call Walmart names or whine/cry about prices and whether they have insurance, are using new equipment, or have bigger stores. Seems to me that these industries find a way to survive (even turn a profit) and still compete.

Have I been beat by prices? YES. What did I learn? That I can't win all of them no matter what I do.

I also notice that the ones who do the most complaining about pricing, "scrubs", teenagers and PITAs are also the ones who scream the loudest that they are PROFESSIONALS. Sorry, but the professionals I have worked with (and I have programmed for many fortune 500s) don't whine when they get beat by the competition. They find ways to win the bid the next time because the ALWAYS review what happened and why they were beaten.

What I am saying is that I log on to Lawn Site to find ways to improve my own business from seasoned professionals who are willing to help out a light-weight like me and they aren't afraid to help me and others because they ARE professionals. It is sad that I run into the immature name-calling and the mine-is-bigger-than-yours comparisons. So the guy was doing a poor job. Did you do anything to help him?

And, just for the record, my first 2 months of lawns care I used a Murray 21-inch push that was 12 years old and a weed eater that I got from a pawnshop for $65. My blower was electric and I had to use two extension cords to get all of the sidewalks. All of this was packed into a minivan.

OK, professionals ... I know who many of you are and THANK YOU. I will continue to watch for your posts and learn. For you whiners ... I will continue to be amazed. And I also must comment on one post in this thread ... Yep, it seems as though $5 is the magic number to get beaten by. It certainly is mentioned quite a bit.


anyone who cries about lowballing read this. happens in every business situation. fact is to succeed u need to put out a product/ service at the lowest possible price that will give u a profit

Flex-Deck
10-15-2004, 07:14 PM
I don't know what the F$#% your deal is FLEX-DECK as you have tried to slam me in my last 2 post and I let the first one slide. I don't even know you, never talked to you but I can assure your sorry @SS that I could care less about you, what you have "invented" and your WONDERFUL homemade wide area mower on your John Deere tractor or that you are stupid enough to cut grass for $17 an acre and I've been in business twice your 13 years!

Let's see...he had a rusted 20 year old push mower, $150 worth of homeowner trimmer and blower all hanging out the back window of his car....YEAH I am assuming he doesn't have Commerial Liability Insurance jack@ss!

You also assume I am a Lowballer because I can make megabucks at $17 per acre on the big wide open deals. You just keep assuming, and a lot of the rest of us will keep mowing. Thanks, Brad

HOOLIE
10-15-2004, 08:15 PM
I don't know if anyone caught the point that the scrub kid didn't really know what he was doing, at least edging-wise. Sometimes we lose out to these kids, and that's life. But since there are no barriers to entry into this business, you compete against all kinds of wackos.

Retailing is entirely different. Some 19 year old kid doesnt' just wake up one morning and decide to open up a Wal-Mart.

Most trades, such as plumbing, heating/ac, auto mechanic, there are standards and criteria that must be met before you can be licensed. Not so for mowing lawns. Imagine calling an electrician, and some teenager shows up. He's not sure how a light switch works. That's the caliber of competition that floats around, lowering our rates and giving the industry a bad rep.

Flex-Deck
10-15-2004, 08:19 PM
I don't know if anyone caught the point that the scrub kid didn't really know what he was doing, at least edging-wise. Sometimes we lose out to these kids, and that's life. But since there are no barriers to entry into this business, you compete against all kinds of wackos.

Retailing is entirely different. Some 19 year old kid doesnt' just wake up one morning and decide to open up a Wal-Mart.

Most trades, such as plumbing, heating/ac, auto mechanic, there are standards and criteria that must be met before you can be licensed. Not so for mowing lawns. Imagine calling an electrician, and some teenager shows up. He's not sure how a light switch works. That's the caliber of competition that floats around, lowering our rates and giving the industry a bad rep.

On the same note, most of us had dad's that sent us out to run the mower in the yard at the age of 10, but they did not send us out to fix the car, electical problems and or plumbing and heating problems.

crawdad
10-15-2004, 09:00 PM
I'll keep it short but it is funny, at least to me because I think it shows the difference in a TRUE LCO and someone just cutting grass.

..... .. there is this 20 something year old cutting that lawn. Now I don't call folks "scrubs" .... BUT ........
Of yeah, the owner of this house, went with the kid because he was $5 cheaper than me. :p

Evidently, the owner, and the kid, are happy, with this situation, so you are the only one unhappy.
The owner is probably thrilled to save that 5 bucks (times at least 4 times a month, thats big bucks now) and the kid is probably bragging about the fifty bucks -sixty bucks a day he takes home with an old 21" mower.
The owner simply doesn't realize, or care, that for 5 bucks more, he could have the attention to detail that you would give it. Maybe all he cares is that the lawn is cut good enough that someone doesn't report him to the city for an uncut lawn. There are people like that.
Crawdad

stxkyboy
10-15-2004, 09:55 PM
The fact is both owners got their grass cut and the other guy got it cheaper...to the owners your still a lawn boy wether u have 100k invested or zero. In fact that guy is making a much better rate of return on his investment than you

GrassBustersLawn
10-15-2004, 10:15 PM
Evergreenpros SAID A MOUTHFUL with "What I noticed is that somebody with the worst equipment only has to under bid a pro by $5 and he gets the job."

Doesn't that just suck!

Mike

Wreak
10-15-2004, 10:48 PM
On that note.....I guess I'm too new or can't find any place that talk about DINGING people.

I'm off to go searching for the DING rating section.

Tonyr
10-15-2004, 11:28 PM
Those are the guys that stay in this business just long enough to drive prices down. That are not only hurting themselves but the industry as well.


What he ^^^^^^^^^^^ Avery Said!!

I personally see these guys a lot, sorry for saying this but, the picture I get from this kids biz description kinda makes me think the forbidden word "scrub", but I didn't call him that though, because calling these types of pros scrubs is wrong, because scrubs really don't effect the industry, market, public perception etc, as I've read here many times, scrubs make us money....can't think how, but who is a scrub, just a hardworking guy trying to survive....just a shame his work standard wasn't more on par to true professionals though....even if he is cheaper. (I got the feeling his work was ordinary ??)

At $5 cheaper his overheads are better than most of ours with expensive commercial gear.....like Avery said, they hang in long enough to keep prices down so we are actually competing against ameteurs, and that is wrong, no biz licence, should mean no commercial cutting, simple as that.
Maybe he IS licenced??
LOL!

Remember, I did not call anyone a scrub, I said I pictured this guy as one, doesn't mean he necessarily is though , so I' not bashing scrubs cause I've learned here we like scrubs, scrubs are our friend, :drinkup: :drinkup: :dizzy:

Just teasing guys, I agree with Avery.... :waving:

all ferris
10-15-2004, 11:32 PM
Great thread! You got flexdeck mouthing off that he can "make mega bucks" with his contraption and then you have a guy talking about dinging. I'm a grass cutt'n LCO. I'll have to keep my eyes on this thread. :drinkup:

Olylawnboy
10-15-2004, 11:40 PM
MM, I'm not trying to bust your balls or anything, but your forgetting or not really grasping the most important statement in your original post "EVERYBODY started somewhere". And it seems the kid was trying learn from you, you know, trying to duplicate your style. That kind of stuff sure builds my ego :)...Oly

chefdrp
10-16-2004, 12:06 AM
that is true. Weall did start someware. I remember watching a LCO in my area that had a ZTR and i had my dads JD 435 lawn tractor. I would try and mow like him but just couldnt do it. I even tryed to make a stripe kit to out do his stripes. That i did do. He had a JD 757 and we all know they dont stripe without a kit. And the LCO talked me into getting a 737 which i did do. He helped me so now when i see a younger lawnboy trying come up in the ranks i help him out. I do help one kid in perticuler. His name is Cody. I remember a thread back last year about how a big company would always point and laugh at a lawnboy and make fun of his mowers. Well oneday the big wig guy broke down or got stuck and that same lawnboy helped the jerk that was alway picking on him. That must have been priceless. we are on here to help eachother, why cant we help out in the real world. your only competition is yourself.

j&c
10-16-2004, 12:55 AM
chefdrp.........well said well said

we all started somehow and I'am sure we all could relate in way or the other with either one of the guys in this and most of us with both from what I've read on several threads.

impactlandscaping
10-16-2004, 01:28 AM
Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery..lol...he probably looked like a monkey trying to hump a football with the trimmer upside down trying to edge...he probably won't be around long anyways,so why worry about it? People who hire people like that are not our target clientele anyway.

Soupy
10-16-2004, 01:32 AM
Great thread! You got flexdeck mouthing off that he can "make mega bucks" with his contraption and then you have a guy talking about dinging. I'm a grass cutt'n LCO. I'll have to keep my eyes on this thread. :drinkup:

You didn't know that $75/hr gross is mega bucks? Oh, I forgot you live in my area...Sorry :)

Just kidding with ya Brad... I know you are making a good living, but your choice of words are hilarious. Mega Bucks to me would put you in John Kerry's tax raise. I know you are not netting that much with that John Deer. You might make that much with all your inventions, but not with that John Deer.

syzer
10-16-2004, 01:40 AM
Evergreenpros SAID A MOUTHFUL with "What I noticed is that somebody with the worst equipment only has to under bid a pro by $5 and he gets the job."

Doesn't that just suck!

Mike

Yeah man, that kind of stuff just hurts!

HOOLIE
10-16-2004, 01:55 AM
I tried to help out one of these "newbies" earlier this year. I was mowing a lawn, and the neighbor comes out. Has some sob story about getting laid off, has a one-year-old, so on and so forth. Living at home with his parents temporarily. So he wanted to know if he could get the job done with the equipment he had. Guy had decent stuff to get started. Well, the next week, my customer abruptly cancelled on me. Didn't think anything of it, because she had just gotten divorced, I figured money's tight.

About a month later I'm going down that street to get to another lawn, and this guy that I helped, he's mowing the lawn of my old customer. I slowed down and just looked at him. He actually dropped the mower and ran back into his house. I thought about impounding his little push mower, but I took the high road and drove on.

Got a good laugh out of it. I can still picture this idiot hauling arse back into his house.

Branchland
10-16-2004, 07:51 AM
I'm not concerned about people like that
Maybe he's just getting started and trying to learn from watching you.
Yes his overhead is smaller to where $5.00 doesn't make or break him. But he works alot harder than you do to make alot less money. And not look as professtional or leave a professtional looking job. But some people don't care about what their yard looks like they just want it cut and cheap.
Somebody else has already said this and I agree. This is not the cliental we (myself anyway) is looking for there for why be bothered by it. He's taking the junk work we would be ashamed to take because the pay is to low or the yard looks like crap and always will because they don't want nothing else just cut it. I have a couple of yards like that and I take their money and give them what they pay for. I will be cutting them loose when I get more of the higher end costmers. A good friend of mine is also a LCO. He has a very thriving business. He told me about a year ago that he wasn't worried about how many LCO's are around our area because there is plenty of work for the ones that want to make it hapen. and it's true. Look at all the McDonald's there is. With another fast fod place on every side of it. They still do great.

SunSwept
10-16-2004, 09:40 AM
Retailing is entirely different. Some 19 year old kid doesnt' just wake up one morning and decide to open up a Wal-Mart.

Most trades, such as plumbing, heating/ac, auto mechanic, there are standards and criteria that must be met before you can be licensed. Not so for mowing lawns. Imagine calling an electrician, and some teenager shows up. He's not sure how a light switch works. That's the caliber of competition that floats around, lowering our rates and giving the industry a bad rep.

True True True. The 19 year old kid DOESN'T wake up and open a Wal-Mart. He opens a BUSINESS that may compete with Wal-Mart or Target or any number of other BUSINESSES including an LCO BUSINESS.

From what I see on here there are two basic camps. The first camp serves the customer and they realize that they have to earn the customer's $$$ by providing a product or service of high enough quality at a price the customer is willing to pay. The customer is the center of activity because they own the BUCK$.

The second camp seem to think that somebody owes them a living at a wage that they decide just because the went and bought all of this fine equipment. I can't tell you the number of times I have seen posts on here about how the customer lives is a fine home in a fine neighborhood and that they are just being cheap because they won't pay such-n-such. "Can't they see that I have fine equipment to pay for?"

Please, do this: Ask one of your trusted friends to use your most expensive mower to cut one stripe in your lawn. Then ask them to cut another stripe using a POS (piece of 5h1+) mower. Have them bring you a blade of grass from each stripe that they cut. Now, you tell me which blade of grass was cut by which mower. If you can do it then more power to you. Find me a customer who can tell the difference. They don't exist. I've said it before and I will say it again ... the blades on my old 21-inch Murray turn round and round just like the blades of whatever you have.

This is a business. There are many ways to conduct business and all that matters is a satisfied (note: the word SATISFIED) customer who is willing to use you again. (Note: I used the word WILLING and not the word REQUIRED.) Your overhead and expenses are entirely within your control and are your problem and your problem alone.

A few years ago when K-Mart was having trouble they certainly didn't call me on the phone and tell me that they had big stores and big salaries to pay for and that it wasn't fair that I had money but wouldn't spend it in their stores ... I must be cheap because I wouldn't spend a few extra $$$ to purchase from K-Mart. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

ken50
10-16-2004, 10:26 AM
This is a business that will continue to have all kinds of approaches that different guys do business. I get frustrated just like everyone when I see guys running around town with a 21" Craftsman in the back, and doing yards that I feel I could have if he wasn't out there working so cheap. Most of these guys are just guys doing it after work and weekends, just to be able to make ends meet, raise a family, pay their mortgages, or maybe it is the money they make now, to put away for retirement someday. At least they are out there working, and I bet they have days that after working 8-10 hour shifts, they wish they wouldn't have to go out and mow grass, they might rather stay home and watch a game, or spend time with their family. THen you have the kids that are just starting out. At least they have the initiative to go out and try to start their own business. You have to admire them. They are out there with their old rusted mowers, trying to learn from the pros whenever they can. One step at a time, they are trying to better themselves. And they only win the yard by a $5 margin. They are working MUCH harder than we do with our equipment, so they are truly earning the money they make. Do I like competing with these guys? Absolutely not! Does it hurt the overall market? Sure it does! But I think it is just a fact we have to learn to live with, and my hat is off to those of you that take the time to help them out....THAT is what we were all put on this earth to do, help one another. And to help someone out that is your competition...you have my utmost respect.

scott in the soo
10-16-2004, 10:36 AM
man, i am so glad i don't have to worry about my competition like some of you guys do.

SunSwept
10-16-2004, 10:41 AM
This is a business that will continue to have all kinds of approaches that different guys do business. I get frustrated just like everyone when I see guys running around town with a 21" Craftsman in the back, and doing yards that I feel I could have if he wasn't out there working so cheap. Most of these guys are just guys doing it after work and weekends, just to be able to make ends meet, raise a family, pay their mortgages, or maybe it is the money they make now, to put away for retirement someday. At least they are out there working, and I bet they have days that after working 8-10 hour shifts, they wish they wouldn't have to go out and mow grass, they might rather stay home and watch a game, or spend time with their family. THen you have the kids that are just starting out. At least they have the initiative to go out and try to start their own business. You have to admire them. They are out there with their old rusted mowers, trying to learn from the pros whenever they can. One step at a time, they are trying to better themselves. And they only win the yard by a $5 margin. They are working MUCH harder than we do with our equipment, so they are truly earning the money they make. Do I like competing with these guys? Absolutely not! Does it hurt the overall market? Sure it does! But I think it is just a fact we have to learn to live with, and my hat is off to those of you that take the time to help them out....THAT is what we were all put on this earth to do, help one another. And to help someone out that is your competition...you have my utmost respect.


Only a true professional would say something like that. But I am not sure that I agree with one small point ... does it hurt the business? I would say NO, iIt actually helps.

If there was no competition, no need to continually get the lawns done faster and cheaper, would there be the innovations that we have seen in the last few years. Everything from ZTRs to time-release ferts. Each of these was brought to market and was successful because it filled a need to get a job done faster and, hopefully, cheaper.

The need to compete is what fosters ideas and inventions and those who are successful in the business have learn to control costs and experiment with ne ways to do things.

When I see the high-schooler and 'the guy with the Craftsman', I actually am reminded to keep doing a better job, watch my expenses and keep my prices reasonable.

BCSteel
10-16-2004, 11:19 AM
I started off with a 3.5 hp 21" mower.
I also started with a curved shaft weedeater trimmer and a $30 hand held blower.
I had no insurance or business liscence and didnt even know that I needed them.
My truck was a rusted out 81 chevy that didnt pass the road inspection.
I lived on hand outs from friends and soup kitchens.
Now, 6 years later, I earn the living that I want.

MM your post was a waste of space and shows how fragile your ego actually is.

MMLawn
10-16-2004, 12:53 PM
I started off with a 3.5 hp 21" mower.
I also started with a curved shaft weedeater trimmer and a $30 hand held blower.
I had no insurance or business liscence and didnt even know that I needed them.
My truck was a rusted out 81 chevy that didnt pass the road inspection.
I lived on hand outs from friends and soup kitchens.
Now, 6 years later, I earn the living that I want.

MM your post was a waste of space and shows how fragile your ego actually is.


See you also missed the entire point of the post. NOWHERE did I make fun of his equipment. I simply pointed out that he was using poor equipment for the job and that has someone pointed out that he was having to work a LOT harder than I was for less money based on the time it was taking him and was thus much less effecient.

What I did laugh at and would again was watching him try to do something that he had just seen and had no idea how to do it and the fact that the cheaper equipment was making it even harder and that he looked like he was on ice skates for the first time and it was funny!

oneandonlyjojo
10-16-2004, 01:27 PM
See you also missed the entire point of the post. NOWHERE did I make fun of his equipment. I simply pointed out that he was using poor equipment for the job and that has someone pointed out that he was having to work a LOT harder than I was for less money based on the time it was taking him and was thus much less effecient.

What I did laugh at and would again was watching him try to do something that he had just seen and had no idea how to do it and the fact that the cheaper equipment was making it even harder and that he looked like he was on ice skates for the first time and it was funny!


u are an idiot u are making fun of him and his equipment why cant u realize that. where u an expert the first time u attempted to edge. i think someones feelings where hurt cause they lost a customer

MMLawn
10-16-2004, 01:31 PM
u are an idiot u are making fun of him and his equipment why cant u realize that. where u an expert the first time u attempted to edge. i think someones feelings where hurt cause they lost a customer


NOW I understand why YOUR FEELINGS are hurt on this tread newbie! Hell, it hit you where it HURTS..you are a 20 year old!! You probably got the same type of equipment he does too! Or wouyld that be an upgrade for you? :waving: Bet you are one of the Unsigned Dings too aren't you KID?

Advice: Grow up and learn to respect your elders. I've got work boots that are older than you!


oneandonlyjojo
Additional Information
Your Age:
20
Years in business:
5

MMLawn
10-16-2004, 02:15 PM
Hi jojo I did a little more MAC P.I. on you and I think the post below you said on another thread here speaks volumes about you.....

there is no ethics in landscaping almost everyone is a scumbag do what u gotta do to be successful.

MMLawn
10-16-2004, 02:31 PM
and just a couple more....Real High Opinion you have of your profession and others in it...

it was 99% another landscaper stole it so it wont be in any shops of anykind. it has nuttin to do with being lazy to buy a new blower they probably are just cheap and dont wanna shell out $400 TAKE ALL YOUR SMALL EQUIPMENT LIKE BLOWER AND WACKER AND THROW IT IN THE BACK YARD WHEN NOT IN USE

yeah that looks real professional laying your equipment in folks back yard...why not just lock them in the racks....oh yeah you actually have to have trailer with a rack....well YOU could just lock them in your trunk..


and NOW as I said I see why you are SO UPSET about the equipment...your plastic wheels broke off too? Dang, gotta hate when that happens...and BTW that "commerical" 21" mower you "tried" wasn't if it was only $500 new..that was still a hownowner Honda..commerical's they run around $900-$1K....

ive used th "commercial" 21 inchers that are around 500-600 with 6.5 hp honda engine
and my $270 lawnboy works 100x better. rear wheels broke off though. speaking of that anyone know any online sites to get little parts like that cheap?

Lawn-Scapes
10-16-2004, 04:20 PM
SunSwept.. Good posts. It's nice to see some level headed & intelligent thoughts on here once in a while. Thanks.

I started working out of the back of my wife's Omni (hatchback) with a 21" Lawnboy, Weedeater brand trimmer and blower 15 years ago. Heck.. I didn't have insurance until a couple of years ago and thankfully made it through without it. We all started somehow.. just some better and faster than others. I give the kid credit for watching you (MM) and at least attempting to edge. I find it amusing too watching how some others operate... amusing because it reminds me of how far I've come................

DLCS
10-16-2004, 08:00 PM
Ya know the saying" everybody has to start somewhere" is true. If I was in MMlawn's shoes that day and I saw a guy trying to edge like me, I would have been kinda flattered. I believe two things happened, he saw his work was of a lower standard compared to MMlawn's and he was TRYING to improve. I guess to me that shows he wants to do better but maybe he saw that he couldn't edge with what he had for a trimmer? Maybe that would have been an opportune time to explain to the guy, why he needs good quality commercial equipment and to educate him alittle. Maybe he really wants to know the business. I started with a homeowner push mower and trimmer. But after watching other LCO's in my area, I quickly realized what kind of equipment I really needed to purchase.