Going Legal and need advice
Last season I was off the books and was pretty successful while racking up equipment. I had about 23 accounts. This season I am wanting to go legit and go big. I have the equipment already, a little older but I am planning to replace it as the business grows.
I will use this thread to continue to ask questions, but the main question I have right now is if I am having a brilliant idea, or if it is not a good idea at all.
Last season, I got alot of customers because they liked seeing a teenager (I'm 16, 17 in march) out working instead of just sitting on his butt. I realize that not everybody would want a young kid doing this kind of work, but I think I was successful because I am 6', 205, full beard, live in the gym for football... you get the picture. What Im getting at, when the people saw me, they thought I was out of college trying to make a start in life/trying to pay for college. When they talked to me and got to know me, they were shocked I was in high school for one, and they loved the fact that I was out there working my butt off. (lots of lazy kids in my area haha) My slogan was "An honest, hard-working teenager looking for work". I think that my age and "get it done right or not get paid" attitude was a key to my success.
I also think that being young and advertising as a teenager on my flyers (the slogan), lost me a bunch of potential business because they didnt the risk of a kid working on their yard and just threw the flyer out. I think that becoming a legitimate business and being able to advertise being licensed and insured will help in that area.
I am banking on door-to-door advertising, and that the niche that I have with my age will get me a bunch of yards, while being insured and a legitimate business.
My question is, should I further play with the niche and name my business "Panther Lawn Care, L.L.C.", and have a football helmet on the trailer with my number with quote, mimicking the local high school I go to? (See attached pics). Maybe make a deal with my coach for home game tickets, and give them out free to my clients as a perk? (which in turn would increase game attendence and concession sales).
Or would this have a more negative than positive for me being young, even though Im licensed and insured? Should I go with something safer and more professional like "D&W Lawn Care, L.L.C."?
Trying to get all this figured out and set up to get the business side set up so I can start advertising before the grass starts growing.
Also, been researching on the site about starting up, and I notice that there are tons of "Im starting up and am expecting to make a million" threads and members get annoyed by these. I am going try my best not to sound like this. I have the equipment to start already from last year and no debt. Ive got a good amount to start up again with, to cover setting up the business and advertising and operating costs until the money starts to flow again. I'm not expecting a million, but am wanting 15-20 an hour for me, which is a heck of alot more that what I can make working minimum wage, which is my goal. I have an expense calculations thing set up in Excel that I would like to have checked to make sure its sound. (used it last year to just make sure I wasnt losing money) (mower use, maintenance, fuel burned, etc. by minutes machined used). I understand this isn't a gold-mine, and not everything earned is profit, its hard work that could have high reward if done right, but I like the work.
Also, I understand I cant open a business at my age. Been reading through this and am going to get one of my parents to sign for the corporation, and then I would be an employee. I read somewhere on here that a minority owner of a corporation (woman), could get tax breaks, so I will most likely ask my mom to help me. Any help on this will help and is welcome.
But for right now I would like to get the name straight first.
Sorry for rambling,