PDA

View Full Version : The future of LCO's


out4now
12-15-2004, 07:35 PM
Give your perspective. Mine is this, some company will decide to offshore to China and build cheaper equipment then even more scrubs will pop up and prices will go even lower with the changing market. I can't believe no company has done it already to offer a ZTR or a good walk behind really cheap to capture market share. I think it's a matter of time. Once one manufacturer does it with real success the rest will have to follow. What do you guys think?

packerbacker
12-15-2004, 07:39 PM
So you want the price of equipment to go up?

RedWingsDet
12-15-2004, 07:43 PM
So you want the price of equipment to go up?

I wouldnt mind it, It would be better, it'd keep the prices at a decent rate, and keep scrubs out of business. Im not saying I want every mower to be 50 grand, but a little price hike wouldnt hurt the big guys, Im not a big guy, but i'd be willing to spend a good amount of cash on something if not alot of people had it. If ya know what I mean :)

out4now
12-15-2004, 07:47 PM
No, just saying that I think this will be the trend in the future. Everyones going like Wal-mart. I think one thing that does help you guys a bit is that the cost of real good equip is so high. It keeps some of your would be competitors out. If the price of equip. gets much higher I don't see how any LCO could actually make it.

out4now
12-15-2004, 07:47 PM
Premier beat me to it.

packerbacker
12-15-2004, 07:48 PM
I wouldnt mind it, It would be better, it'd keep the prices at a decent rate, and keep scrubs out of business. Im not saying I want every mower to be 50 grand, but a little price hike wouldnt hurt the big guys, Im not a big guy, but i'd be willing to spend a good amount of cash on something if not alot of people had it. If ya know what I mean :)





How do you know it would keep them out? We are talking about guys who DONT pay taxes, they DONT pay insurance, they DONT pay for lisencing. You would think they would have more money to purchase the equipment then guys like us who drop 10-12,000 a year in taxes. Seems backwards to me.

And even if he did have a point, jacking up the price will keep nobody out, it will just open up the "used" equipment market more.

YardPro
12-15-2004, 07:50 PM
scrubs will still be out there on old lowe's mower's and other mtd's and craftsman's etc.

lawnrangeralaska
12-15-2004, 07:52 PM
Kind of looks like your going out of business since your selling your equipment. And the equipment you do have is kinda crappy. To me it doesnt look like you could afford to buy a ztr for anymore then they are now, or even buy one now matter of fact. Don't be so hating with scrubs, how did all the other companies start up? A lot of them started as scrubs an gained knowledge an experience. And they grew into a big operation.

packerbacker
12-15-2004, 07:53 PM
scrubs will still be out there on old lowe's mower's and other mtd's and craftsman's etc.






Thats true, no matter what happens there is always someone else out there.


Some people here tend to throw the word scrub around freely. The fact is they will always be out there and the best way to take care of them is to mind you own business and do the best job you can. Prove to your customers that they NEED you and not the "scrub".

If we do that then everything else will fall into place.

packerbacker
12-15-2004, 07:54 PM
Kind of looks like your going out of business since your selling your equipment. And the equipment you do have is kinda crappy. To me it doesnt look like you could afford to buy a ztr for anymore then they are now, or even buy one now matter of fact. Don't be so hating with scrubs, how did all the other companies start up? A lot of them started as scrubs an gained knowledge an experience. And they grew into a big operation.





Take a good look at yourself before you start judging others here.

RedWingsDet
12-15-2004, 08:10 PM
Kind of looks like your going out of business since your selling your equipment. And the equipment you do have is kinda crappy. To me it doesnt look like you could afford to buy a ztr for anymore then they are now, or even buy one now matter of fact. Don't be so hating with scrubs, how did all the other companies start up? A lot of them started as scrubs an gained knowledge an experience. And they grew into a big operation.


LOL. Alright, but hey, Im lisenced, insured, LLC company, I did have another trailer but I sold it, I also had a 1997, 50" Dixie Chopper and a 1998 36" gravely, but sold those also. And I have alot of stihl equipment, 4 mix trimmer and edgers, and mag 420 blower. No im not going out of business, Im taking the money I earned this year to buy bigger better equipment next year. Im getting an 18foot enclosed trailer, and a stander and a 36", or a 48" wb hydro and a 36", and a 2002 f350 diesel. Bascailly only thing holding me back from the f350 is i dont want to have 4 trucks sitting around so I want to sell atleast 2 of the ones I have now, then get the f350. And i want to wait until spring to buy the other equipment so I dont have stuff sitting around for 4 months. In 5-10 years I plan on being a good reputable landscaping/lawn maintence company. And im 5 years I want to open up a Construction company and a concrete company, and 5 years after that open up a roofing company. Im planning for the future, and im planning big. I want to dominate the industry!

So dont tell me to look at

mtdman
12-15-2004, 10:22 PM
There is no future for the Lawn Care industry. Prices will only keep going down with more competition. If you are in business now, quit while you still can. Especially if you live near me. Please.

:D :D

RedWingsDet
12-15-2004, 10:25 PM
There is no future for the Lawn Care industry. Prices will only keep going down with more competition. If you are in business now, quit while you still can. Especially if you live near me. Please.

:D :D


I know what you mean... Around here (GP, HW, SCS). I see atleast 50 LCO's a day. NO JOKE either. Im not sure where your based but I see what your saying.... However, I've found that lawncare is good for advertising for landscaping and whatnot and pays the bills, where you can use the addons and landscaping stuff as profit and really make a killing.
:cool2:

impactlandscaping
12-16-2004, 01:58 AM
Well I guess nobody has heard Murray Inc. has filed chapter 11. No one wanted to buy their company after many months of trying to sell. They supply Lowe's , Wal Mart, and Sears to name a few. It's funny to see how some of the big boxes are trying to "sway" potential entry level buyers toward their products, like the "zero turn rider" from Sears for $ 3500.00, using wording like " commercial quality" and "commercial features". These machines would not hold up under real world conditions for more than a month..lol..the only thing Home Depot, Sears, Wal Mart and Kmart have going is people can use their in store credit card to purchase mowers. That's where many fly by night guys get into "business". They have no collateral or commercial credit, but that HD card with 0% for 12 months, and then 25% interest gets em every time.

slicklawns
12-16-2004, 11:48 AM
Out4now what prompted you to write this thread. Was it an article you read about jobs etc being outsourced to China or a scrub underpricing you ,giving you the time to read that article.

Landscare
12-16-2004, 12:08 PM
I used to be what you would describe as a scrub, now I have over 125 commercial accounts doing almost 1 million a year in business. Scrubs are what this business is all about. Its the Cinderella story a guy who starts his company with a push mower and a dream... and turns it into a big operation.

Raising the prices of mowers will just hurt everyone, profit margins are thin for the bigger companies as well as the "scrubs" raising prices are not going to make any difference to any one. Any smart company is going to pass the cost to the customer, "scrubs" and corporations alike.

thats just my 2 cents

chevyman1
12-16-2004, 12:26 PM
don't start problems with premier...it's not worth your effort and writing back to him means you lose valuable seconds of your life you can't get back. he had the mowers for about a month, or should I say he took pics of across the street of a neighor's equipment? :p

cutnedge
12-16-2004, 12:50 PM
I can't believe no company has done it already to offer a ZTR or a good walk behind really cheap to capture market share.
It's been happening for a long time now. It's my guess that the company that made the commercial mower you're using right now also offers a less-expensive homeowner model.

richard coffman
12-16-2004, 01:11 PM
I don't see where there will be an end of the lawn care industry unless there isn't any more grass. I'f you haven't noticed, The price of steel for the last little while is going up more every year. this hits the manufactors and return, they have to pass that buck back to us. I was out looking at a nice 7x14 foot trailer from lone peak trailers that sell BigTex, he quoted me for this years model $1,345.00, the 2005 models will be $1,598.00 for the same exact item. I'd shurly hate to see more factory's going overseas, i believe that doesn't help our industry or the customers that works there to pay for there house payment and have us service their lawns. My theory is simple, "You can't change the past, you have no idea what the future holds, but the present is the only time you can make a difference."make it count!!

Respectfully,

Richard/Owner :D :D :D :D :D

brucec32
01-01-2005, 01:02 PM
Nice love of free markets there. Keep artifical barriers to entry up so you can compete. <shaking head>

Instead of looking to silly artificial ways of keeping your prices high, why not the following?

1. Enforce immigration laws so that the prevailing wage for workers isn't below the poverty level. You might actually be able to find Americans who aren't human debris to work for you then. When your competitor is out there hiring vanloads of Latinos for $7/hour, that lowers your wages if you're patriotic and playing by the rules.

2. Enforce payroll tax laws so that guys paying cash under the table go to jail when they cheat. They can undercut you by 30% or more in labor costs by breaking the law.

3. Enforce/require/encourage proper insurance and licensing so that only responsible people are in the business. You have to get a license to apply fake nails to women's hands. Yet we turn yahoos out on the street with 4,000 lb trailers and no insurance that is valid (consumer policy will be void), and onto lawns near homes with potentially deadly machines. You are much more likely to do damage with your vehicle or mower than with the chemicals you spray on a lawn, yet only the chem applications see much enforcement.

All that said, if any of you believe a 16 y/o kid was able to obtain commercial liability insurance, you probably don't have it yourself, because you'd know that they dont' just hand it out like candy to anybody.

Yet another "persona" that I suspect has been created by lawnsite or even just a cybercitizen just to stir up topics. I know of at least two others, the ones with the crazy story a day to share here. I'm afraid it's getting hard to seperate the wheat from the chaff here lately.

Albemarle Lawn
01-01-2005, 01:54 PM
MERCEDES BENZ IS BUILDING A FACTORY IN CHINA to build the E-Class sedans, a premium $55,000+ car.

Yes China can build mowers, I'm surprized they haven't yet.

Realistically, it won't be a no-name that starts building in China. It will be a known name, like Toro maybe, with big connections and a good name to deter superstition about quality.

But in the big picture, equipment is just one cost. Yes it will give more people access, the guy who already has an old pickup truck can now enter the market easier.

For legit big lawn care, the big costs are fuel, workers comp, vehicles, real estate, and wages. Equipment is a big one but just one cost.

Realistically homeowner equipment (not commercial) is more likely to be made in china just because it is sold in much larger quantities, thus can really capture the gains to be had from mass manufacturing, marketing, and transportation.

KB

Sir mowsalot
01-01-2005, 02:10 PM
This same discussion no doubt took place many years ago when riding mowers were invented. Think about it, homeowners can buy riding mowers and easily do their own lawns, but alot dont. Same thing if cheap ztrs come out. Fact is, rich people can afford to pay to have thier lawns done , and if they have the money they will hire the best. Old ladies , and old men . single moms, will still want their lawn work done. If scrubs can buy cheap ztrs some day, they still will have to do quality work, or they will be fired, and if they do do quality work then in no time they wont be scrubs anymore, and be buying good quality equipment,and running a lco. imo, i dont think its anything to even worry about.
.

yrdandgardenhandyman
01-01-2005, 02:39 PM
The only thing to worry about is the hundreds of thousands of unemployed ex factory workers out there with the Craftsman or even the John Deere LT, (Many homeowners are impressed with the John Deere nameplate.), undercutting cause they've got a family to feed too, and can't do it on a McDonald's salary.







Be American Buy American Hire American
In time of war it is treason to tell the rest of the world that their workforce is better than the American workforce. That's just a lie.

osc
01-01-2005, 07:03 PM
Residential lawn care looks good for the future. Why? Because the Babyboomers are aging. This is the largest segment of the population, a cycle that happens every 40 years or so. By 2010 nearly all of them will be over age fifty. We will begin to have a situation where retirees outnumber the workforce.
A great number of them will not cut their own lawns.

dwc
01-01-2005, 10:45 PM
Scrubs kill this industry no matter if they will be able to buy a cheap mower with a name no one can pronounce or if they will go to the big blue store and buy the murray that's on clearance. They could care less about quality. Its all about them thinking Mrs. Jones will pay that $12 to have her lawn mowed and how that that $12 will buy them something extra when they go to buy the murray.

This industy should be like the rest of the service industry and charging 60-75 an hour with a 1 hour minimum. The plumber has been here at my house a couple times to rooter my sewer line and it took him all of 15 minutes, but when he came to the door the check was for $60 not $15.

Scrubs don't last long usually, but there are 40 million more lined up to take their place when they "retire" so the cycle just repeats.

ezlc2004
01-01-2005, 11:18 PM
The people you are calling scrubs were mowing lawns years before this industry become what it is today. Our customers are hiring us for who we are and what we do, not what kind of mower we use. Just a thought. Don't lose focus worrying about "scrubs". :help: :help: :help: :help:

dwc
01-01-2005, 11:53 PM
SCRUB = someone who operates a commercial mowing business (mowing lawns other than their own for a profit) and does this "under the table" by not paying taxes, having insurance, hacks up every yard that they mow, gives legitimate company's a bad name, and ruins pricing for the industry.
Do you have to spend 50K in equipment to have a legitimate business? NO! If they have been in this business for THAT many years and are still a scrub, then they are not a very good businessperson.
I do not worry about scrubs, my customers know that I am well above that level and they get what they pay for, but it is just sad that there has to be that much money left on the table because someone thinks they are going to get rich quick.
I had a customer that pays $30 tell me that they had an offer on a door hanger on their door for $20 but they stayed with me because they know the difference. New potential customers do not though.

Frontier-Lawn
01-02-2005, 12:03 AM
I wouldnt mind it, It would be better, it'd keep the prices at a decent rate, and keep scrubs out of business. Im not saying I want every mower to be 50 grand, but a little price hike wouldnt hurt the big guys, Im not a big guy, but i'd be willing to spend a good amount of cash on something if not alot of people had it. If ya know what I mean :)

other words you want a person who wants to start a lawn company, hes got to invest in $30,000+ in equip. your ;) :dizzy: