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tiedeman
11-19-2004, 11:32 AM
Heard from my buddy dcondon last night that a local hydroseeding company was going out of business. They did some nice work especially with hardscapes. He has been in business for probably 5-7 years

Then talked with another LCO lady earlier in the week and she is slowly going to cut back on who she offers services to. She has been in business for probably close to 20 years.

Smithers
11-19-2004, 11:35 AM
Troy, more money for you???? you might need to hire people to handle the boom in your area payup payup payup

tiedeman
11-19-2004, 11:39 AM
I know!!! :) I want to go solo again next year, but this has me second guessing about whether to go back to crews again. I will probably still stay small and only accept about 10-15 new customers next year. I know my limits :)

Lux Lawn
11-19-2004, 11:50 AM
I know!!! :) I want to go solo again next year, but this has me second guessing about whether to go back to crews again. I will probably still stay small and only accept about 10-15 new customers next year. I know my limits :)

How many employees do you have now?

tiedeman
11-19-2004, 11:52 AM
Last year I had 3 employees (2 full, and 1 part time).

This yearI downsized the travel accounts and stopped taking on new accounts and I had one part time guy help me out for about 2 months (working maybe 10 hours a week).

Next year I plan on not hiring anyone on, and just doing it myself.

tiedeman
11-19-2004, 11:53 AM
I need to stop being so lazy, and start doing a lot of the work myself again.

65hoss
11-19-2004, 11:59 AM
Good plan. I did that myself. I started specializing in areas others know nothing about or don't have the equipment for. That is the real high profit areas.

Expert Lawns
11-19-2004, 01:26 PM
I hope to be doing the opposite. I want to hire on 2 full timers to take over the physical labor duties. This way I can spend time bidding and advertising. Also, I'd like to get this pesky "college" thing over with. I'm 25 and still have 2 years left. Sucks only being able to take 6-10 credits at a time. Any advice for me when I hire on a crew for next year?

LwnmwrMan22
11-19-2004, 03:29 PM
I hope to be doing the opposite. I want to hire on 2 full timers to take over the physical labor duties. This way I can spend time bidding and advertising. Also, I'd like to get this pesky "college" thing over with. I'm 25 and still have 2 years left. Sucks only being able to take 6-10 credits at a time. Any advice for me when I hire on a crew for next year?


Don't do it. Drop out of college, go into the lawn business and go balls to the wall yourself, never look back.

Best thing I did 14 years ago was drop out of college.

Second best thing I ever did was finally get rid of my last employee last year.




Tiedeman, do worry about those other LCOs getting out of the business. You may not have a real true idea as to why they're gone, even if they came right out and told you. Not to put you down, but through the years I've learned people usually have something to hide.

If you worried about all the accounts that switched hands every year, or the ones that dropped the LCO, or the LCO dropped for whatever reason, shoot.. you'd be nuttier than B.Gedd. :)

Expert Lawns
11-19-2004, 04:52 PM
Don't do it. Drop out of college, go into the lawn business and go balls to the wall yourself, never look back.

Best thing I did 14 years ago was drop out of college.

Second best thing I ever did was finally get rid of my last employee last year.

I wish you were my high school guidance counselor. The only reason I'm not going balls deep in lawn care is that I hope to move out of state after college. I would like to start a life and family somewhere.....well, I guess ANYWHERE but here.

wriken
11-19-2004, 05:13 PM
Heard from my buddy dcondon last night that a local hydroseeding company was going out of business. They did some nice work especially with hardscapes. He has been in business for probably 5-7 years

Then talked with another LCO lady earlier in the week and she is slowly going to cut back on who she offers services to. She has been in business for probably close to 20 years.

That will be good for me, I'm trying to swing a hydoseeder this winter.
Is that the one between clare/farwell?

tiedeman
11-19-2004, 05:16 PM
yup, that one wriken. The one guy that I had work for me part time this year used to work for them and he always talked about how he would never receive a paycheck for weeks because their were a lack of funds. And sometimes when he got paid he wasn't paid the full amount, just a lot of promises. That is one of the reasons why he left.

Heck, he might even sell you his hydroseeder

Sean Adams
11-19-2004, 05:25 PM
I think anyone who went to college in this industry has certain points in time where they regret the time it took away from their business. However, now, years later I am glad I finished. Everyone is different though.

As far as employees vs. solo - tough call - only the individual knows what's best for his/her situation. At times I was wondering if having my employees was worth some of the hassle I dealt with. But most of the time I was pleased with my decision becasue it allowed me to do what expert said - manage, grow, etc....

Mdirrigation
11-19-2004, 06:08 PM
Drop out of college , you will never go back, yes you can make money in the lawn care business , but you will do so much better with a education especially business related courses. Grass will always be here , finish college .

Randy Scott
11-19-2004, 06:16 PM
What's going to happen to you solo guys when your body can't take it anymore? Gonna be a little late to try to build and grow a business or get past the headaches of small 3, 4, 5 men companies. I guess you have to do what you think is right. I'm just hoping to be making the right choice of growing a company into something so I don't have to do some crappy fall cleanup in the rain when I'm 50 years old.

tiedeman
11-19-2004, 06:39 PM
I plan on going back to crews, just not this year or next year, I have my reasons, mostly finanicial.

I enjoyed having the crews, but I didn't plan for them properly over the years that I had them. I just need to get back to basics, plan better, and have a better system in place for when I bring back the crews. Heck who knows, I might have them back next year...you can never tell

Randy Scott
11-19-2004, 06:45 PM
I plan on going back to crews, just not this year or next year, I have my reasons, mostly finanicial.

I enjoyed having the crews, but I didn't plan for them properly over the years that I had them. I just need to get back to basics, plan better, and have a better system in place for when I bring back the crews. Heck who knows, I might have them back next year...you can never tell



I see. Sounds like a good plan.

jim dailey
11-19-2004, 06:53 PM
What's going to happen to you solo guys when your body can't take it anymore? Gonna be a little late to try to build and grow a business or get past the headaches of small 3, 4, 5 men companies. I guess you have to do what you think is right. I'm just hoping to be making the right choice of growing a company into something so I don't have to do some crappy fall cleanup in the rain when I'm 50 years old.

WHOOOOAAA!!! I am 55, and will work you to the bone...right beside ya, too. How much longer? I bet ya 8-10 years, it runs in the family. Already retired once, good investments and own several properties have me on top of the ball. When the physical becomes a problem, I'll either hire the younger set or sell out. Yes, I go 6-7 days a week, 10-12 hours a day. It's all in the heart, head and the muscle. I can still put my own body weight over my head, 10 reptitions. Take care everyone, Daytona here I come !!!

Expert Lawns
11-19-2004, 07:00 PM
good way to look at it Tiedeman. At least you have a plan; start there. Just remember that there is nothing that can hold you back in life.........................................unless you are a tree killer

green with envy
11-19-2004, 07:19 PM
Are they a Hydroseeding company or do they do Hardscapes ??

I am a hydroseeding company and I do not do hardscapes!!

I do Hydroseeding, some lawn maintenance, Weed and feed and Ground prep.
That's what I know and that's what I do.

I think that a huge trap that allot of people are falling into is that they get into things that they don't know enough about. especially brick work and water features. You have to know what your doing and what your numbers are to truly compete in the market.

the other explanation is.. they just weren't that good at it.

my 2 cents.

MIke

tiedeman
11-19-2004, 07:50 PM
Are they a Hydroseeding company or do they do Hardscapes ??

I am a hydroseeding company and I do not do hardscapes!!

I do Hydroseeding, some lawn maintenance, Weed and feed and Ground prep.
That's what I know and that's what I do.

I think that a huge trap that allot of people are falling into is that they get into things that they don't know enough about. especially brick work and water features. You have to know what your doing and what your numbers are to truly compete in the market.

the other explanation is.. they just weren't that good at it.

my 2 cents.

MIke

I think his major mistake was price and under bidding big time. For example, they did a hydroseeding job for me this past spring, approx 7,000 sq ft, prep-work, 15 yards of black dirt, and first fertilization application for only $925.00

I do admit thought, he did a marvelous job with hardscapes, very impressive, but again he bid things way too low.

tiedeman
11-19-2004, 07:51 PM
good way to look at it Tiedeman. At least you have a plan; start there. Just remember that there is nothing that can hold you back in life.........................................unless you are a tree killer

I was wondering when you were going to bring that up








tree hugger :waving:

Doster's L & L
11-19-2004, 07:53 PM
I hope to be doing the opposite. I want to hire on 2 full timers to take over the physical labor duties. This way I can spend time bidding and advertising. Also, I'd like to get this pesky "college" thing over with. I'm 25 and still have 2 years left. Sucks only being able to take 6-10 credits at a time. Any advice for me when I hire on a crew for next year?


Hey Expert. Keep on sticking it out on the college thing. I wish i had done that a year and a half ago..... actually about 6 yrs ago. When i was 18, after graduating H S, i started mowing for myself. When i was 21, i had about 80 accounts and i was well pleased with the work coming in. At about this same time, i decided i wanted to go to college and learn more about landscaping. When i got to school, i didnt expect all of the homework id be having to do, so i cut back my work to about 55-60 accounts. after about 1.5 yrs of schooling, i decided that i wanted to upscale my work, mind you, in a small town. So i stoped going to school and put a large effort to building a more upscale lawn care and landscaping business where "one call will get you a perfect lawn and a brand new landscape and we'll even maintain it!" Turns out, most of the people here dont want to spend the kind of money that it takes to get what i want to offer. Now, here i am, 24, this is my first semester back in a year and a half, and it SUCKS trying to get back into the swing of studying all the time. I mean, IT REALLY BLOWS!!!! Just keep your nose on the grindstone and make it through, get that degree you're after so you'll have it behind you. THEN you can look back on it and be glad its OVER WITH!

On a more personal note... Im going on a little bit different route. I plan to join the Army Guard and hopefully will become a pilot in the Apache (one of the bad assest attack helicopters in the World). From the time i enter Basic to WOCS graduation is 2 years. After this i will have most of my tuition paid for by the Army. Then i would like to go to school at UT Knoxville and get a Golf Course Mgt or a Landscaping Degree there. While learning about this in class, i'll be working at a golf course, learning everything about mgt on a hands on perspective.

Whatever you do, my friend, Good luck!!

Expert Lawns
11-19-2004, 07:59 PM
Doster's, very nice post....

good luck in the Army my man, those helio-chopters are badazz, i have a buddy that services them.

tiedeman, don't worry, i could never forget one of the most prolific tree killers of all time

tiedeman
11-19-2004, 08:30 PM
http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?t=78487&page=3&pp=10&highlight=Dad

wriken
11-19-2004, 11:23 PM
I think his major mistake was price and under bidding big time. For example, they did a hydroseeding job for me this past spring, approx 7,000 sq ft, prep-work, 15 yards of black dirt, and first fertilization application for only $925.00

I do admit thought, he did a marvelous job with hardscapes, very impressive, but again he bid things way too low.

thats one of the many reasons I go with crew/crews, let the young guys work, plus you can usually generate more cash flow to buy things for business, Like a hydro seeder, with crews I could by a hydro seeder, let it set and work it at my bid price, not lowballing a job. I don't have to live completely off hydro seeding income, but work it at my price. Its a service that not everyone does, especially where I'm located at, matter of fact, I can't think of one close by. With crew/crews it makes me available to bid,get supplies,paperwork done, to expand the company. This summer I ran for the most part a 3 man crew, probably will run 2 crews next year, especially if some of the Clare LCO's are slowing down, or getting out of business.

LwnmwrMan22
11-19-2004, 11:36 PM
What's going to happen to you solo guys when your body can't take it anymore? Gonna be a little late to try to build and grow a business or get past the headaches of small 3, 4, 5 men companies. I guess you have to do what you think is right. I'm just hoping to be making the right choice of growing a company into something so I don't have to do some crappy fall cleanup in the rain when I'm 50 years old.

Got a couple of sons coming up that are wanting the business, or so they say.

I too have invested in real estate.

And have had retirement plans running since I was 18.

Over the years I've worked into very easy-to-maintain properties, with charging a fairly decent price.

mtdman
11-20-2004, 08:18 PM
Personally, I'm looking to add more services and diversify. The more the merrier, I say. I like getting in to stuff I don't normally do, it adds income, and gives me some variety.

I'll write more later.

:D

Mo Green
11-20-2004, 08:27 PM
Personally, I'm looking to add more services and diversify. The more the merrier, I say. I like getting in to stuff I don't normally do, it adds income, and gives me some variety.

I'll write more later.

:D
Very true. Sometimes the same old thing over and over again gets very boring. I keep telling my wife this, but she doesn't get it.