Originally Posted by MegaViper
I just started a new lawn service in Port Charlotte Florida. I plan to cover Punta Gorda, Port Charlotte, North Port, & the Deep Creek area. I used to have a lawn service here 2003-2005 until we moved back up north because my wife hit a downed power line in hurricane Charley and didn't want to stay another season. She was in the hospital for 3 days and has heart valve damage from it. She is in good shape though.
Well we finally moved back and bought a house with cash from the equity of our home up north that we sold. I have purchased about $7000 in lawn equipment that is fairly new with a 48" Zero turn Bad boy and all. So I know how the lawn service business works. But I'm not getting any calls. I'm all over Google at Florida's Suncoast Lawn Care Service. And twisted the name about 5 different ways to show up in Google. I'm in the local papers at $140 a month and even the business service directory color big ad twice a week. But I have gotten only 3 calls in 3 months. And none of them want monthly service. They want it cut for $15-$20 a cut and you know how that goes. You can drive out there once a month in winter wasting fuel and the grass can be 6 inches high and they want to wait until next week. But when it's by the month they want it cut every week. I want monthly accounts but I can't seem to even get that. I offer $65 a month for straight lots, and $75 for corner lots and I'm not getting anything. How do you guys stay in business with $4 a gallon of gas?
What are the going rates in SW Florida? I used to charge $60 and $70 in 2003 and people paid. You would think it has went up by now since fuel prices are way up... I see people offering to mow lawns for $12 in Craigslist here.
You should of done your "Do Diligence." You missed the boat by moving to the wrong area of Florida. You went just a tad too far South and should have stopped in Northern Sarasota County instead of Charlotte. Do a Simple Demographic comparison and your mistake should be very apparent. Sarasota has the second highest disposable income per capita in Florida only after Collier county. However cost of living in Sarasota is lower than Collier so Sarasota County is the best area for Income to cost of living ratio. Charlotte County has the LOWEST income per capita of the Coastal Counties. Poor Charlotte is just that POOR or a Broke area. Just look at the number of house you can buy for $ 30 & $ 40 K. Anywhere else they are 150 K or more.