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lush&green
11-21-2004, 01:48 PM
Just wondering how many liscenced applicators here are the sole "Employee" operators. If so how many accts/sf do you have, equipment and so on. Are you HAPPY? lol Tim

Green Dreams
11-21-2004, 07:32 PM
I have been at it for almost 5 months now. I have about 25% of the customers I need to do okay. I can't wait to be able to afford a gal to take of the office part. I made a tv commercial that debuts this week. I know this is the wrong time of year,but I hope the exposure helps me in the spring. Stay tuned...lol

ThreeWide
11-22-2004, 09:07 AM
I started this in April 04.

My current business involves both mowing and fertilization/weed control. I only have about 15% of the revenue that is required to make this sustainable as a full time job. Next year should be much better because referrals have already started happening.

Long term I plan to drop mowing completely because of equipment maintenance, labor involved, and lower profit margin.

Fertilization is simply a better business for a solo operator IMO.

mwallingford
11-22-2004, 09:13 PM
I'm a retired high school business teacher. I've been in business for 4 years. I have been fortunate to pick the customers I want to take on. How lucky I have been. They're all good people. I don't have to send out bills at the end of the month (just once in a while on some), I probably don't have to drive over 10 miles to see any of them, and each year I continue to get calls from TGCL customers. TGCL has to drive 50 miles to get to my community. It seems that cusomters like knowing that the same person will be there on each application. I'll never let it grow to point where I have to worry about it. Besides, I like to ride my Harley too much.

Being born and raised in this community has obviously made it that much easier.

Drew Gemma
11-22-2004, 11:48 PM
Good friend does fert and squirt solo he has ran his own operation for 10 years he has about 900 accounts. Last year he bought a turf tracker, he's got a nice company van, truck all the equipment. He said took five good season to be comfortable that means in ohio rain in june july and august. He also does aerations for current clients only. Hope that helps.

James Cormier
11-23-2004, 06:45 PM
Good friend does fert and squirt solo he has ran his own operation for 10 years he has about 900 accounts. Last year he bought a turf tracker, he's got a nice company van, truck all the equipment. He said took five good season to be comfortable that means in ohio rain in june july and august. He also does aerations for current clients only. Hope that helps.


Solo, doing 900 customers, holy crap....I dont think one guy can do that, unless he only does 2 apps a year.

Im solo, been squirtin for 19 years now, 10 on my own. Im at 350 thats a good number for me, I added services on to my program to raise my avg $$ per customer, its right around $545 per year.

No plans to grow much bigger than maybe 2 techs, so I can get off the road, maybe with 2-3 years that will happen. Budgeting for each tech to do 450 lawns each.

trying 2b organic
11-24-2004, 08:29 PM
I think that number will work. For what its worth the outfit I used to work for had 6000 fert and squirt customers with 12 techs doing the running around. So that re-enforces your estimated numbers.

rkk95
11-25-2004, 09:04 AM
Solo, doing 900 customers, holy crap....I dont think one guy can do that, unless he only does 2 apps a year.

Im solo, been squirtin for 19 years now, 10 on my own. Im at 350 thats a good number for me, I added services on to my program to raise my avg $$ per customer, its right around $545 per year.

No plans to grow much bigger than maybe 2 techs, so I can get off the road, maybe with 2-3 years that will happen. Budgeting for each tech to do 450 lawns each.

James, my avg price per customer is about the same as yours, I do 6 apps per year, I also do aeration and lime but those services are sold on an"as needed" basis each year and are not calculated in the avg price. You say that you added services to your program. I am curious as to what you added,
I don't reply on this site much anymore because of all the negative people, but I am always interested in what you have to say.

Green Dreams
11-25-2004, 10:41 PM
negative people motivate me..

I am shooting for 400 customers per man. After 5 months, its still me and my hundrednsumthin'...

James Cormier
11-26-2004, 09:58 AM
James, my avg price per customer is about the same as yours, I do 6 apps per year, I also do aeration and lime but those services are sold on an"as needed" basis each year and are not calculated in the avg price. You say that you added services to your program. I am curious as to what you added,
I don't reply on this site much anymore because of all the negative people, but I am always interested in what you have to say.

My avg price per customer is reached by takin my overall gross sales and the divide by the unumber of customers, so all services I do are included.

Here is a list of what I offer

5 app program
core aeration
aeration & seeding
slice seeding
Lime
Grub control- even though its optional, I dont let people skip it, 99% take it

New for this year ( 2004 )
2nd crabgrass control ( post control )
Mosquito Barrier
Disease preventive ( fungi )- dropping for 05+
Mulch bed pre emergent, & post emergent control

New for 2005
Turning the mosquito program into a mosquito & Tick program.

rkk95
11-26-2004, 09:37 PM
I think that we both have the same program, I just add grub control and that makes it a 6 app program, like yours it is optional, but no body skips it. Do you spray the mosquito control on the lawn and shrubs? I do a flea and tick control on the lawn areas only. I do aeration, and I tell the customer if they get seed I will spread it while I am there, at no charge. How much do you charge to provide the seed and spread it? Do you have any problems with customers saying that they don't see any difference after you put down the seed?

James Cormier
11-27-2004, 06:43 PM
I think that we both have the same program, I just add grub control and that makes it a 6 app program, like yours it is optional, but no body skips it. Do you spray the mosquito control on the lawn and shrubs? I do a flea and tick control on the lawn areas only. I do aeration, and I tell the customer if they get seed I will spread it while I am there, at no charge. How much do you charge to provide the seed and spread it? Do you have any problems with customers saying that they don't see any difference after you put down the seed?

Mosquito Barrier gets sprayed everywhere, lawns,shrubs,trees, house, decks,driveways the more the better, There are some great threads on that program further back, you should be able to find it with a search

My seed charge ( general overseeding with Blue/rye/fescue ) is $3.00 per lb. I just use the sq ft and give the customer a estimate on how much I use, but the final price is only set once its applied and I know how much I have used.

I only doing aer & seed or slice seed if they sign up for 1 years service, starting the date we seed. That way I have good control over how well it works, I take soil samples every few weeks after seeding to see how the watering is going. IVe only had to re do a few over the past few years. I try to charge alot for this so the customer feels they have something to lose if they dont water.