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Old 10-21-2012, 03:53 PM
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inzane inzane is online now
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i already feel burnt out!

was wondering how some of you managed to work other jobs while still building up a lawn care business to go full time? i need to find another job that is more flexible that will allow me to have time to take care of my accounts. i work overnight shift 11pm till whenever i'm done, and most days it seems like way to many hours to even manage a side business with now. on friday i worked from 11pm to 10a.m. at my other job and went straight for my equipment to continue on working till 5pm. i do that a few times a week. the rest of the days i gotta get up after a few hours to pick up my kid from day care. i have a hard time answering the phone because i'm either sleeping or working.

putting in a notice at my job at the start of next year. my wife works, and i have a litte saved.. 17k. my truck and equipment will be payed off by that time. may take a little out the 17k to get a walk behind. i need to find some type of job making around 150 to 200 a week to supplement the wifes income while i get this business going. i can't lie, i'm a bit nervous, but i hate the overnight shift life so much, i'd probally rather lose everything than to spend another 7 years doing it. we are not even gonna have good health coverage at that job anymore, which is all the more reason for me just to leave it behind.. my doctor says i'm shortening my life by what i'm doing, but what does he know.. :laugh
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  #2  
Old 10-21-2012, 04:06 PM
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DiSantolandscaping DiSantolandscaping is offline
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its hard work. I work 47 hours a week at my full time job, then i go and mow from 5pm tilldark all summer long, and even most weekends im doing something. You just gotta push through it or choose which one yu would like to do more.
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  #3  
Old 10-21-2012, 05:30 PM
aka lawn aka lawn is offline
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If is hard. Just got to push. I am in the same boat as you work midnights. Run lawn care. Not married but have a girlfriend that has two kids that are involved in everything. It is not easy just got to have the drive to success it will pay off in the end. That is what i am looking for. I am a couple years before i can quit my night job.
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Old 10-21-2012, 05:42 PM
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easy-lift guy easy-lift guy is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inzane View Post
was wondering how some of you managed to work other jobs while still building up a lawn care business to go full time? i need to find another job that is more flexible that will allow me to have time to take care of my accounts. i work overnight shift 11pm till whenever i'm done, and most days it seems like way to many hours to even manage a side business with now. on friday i worked from 11pm to 10a.m. at my other job and went straight for my equipment to continue on working till 5pm. i do that a few times a week. the rest of the days i gotta get up after a few hours to pick up my kid from day care. i have a hard time answering the phone because i'm either sleeping or working.

putting in a notice at my job at the start of next year. my wife works, and i have a litte saved.. 17k. my truck and equipment will be payed off by that time. may take a little out the 17k to get a walk behind. i need to find some type of job making around 150 to 200 a week to supplement the wifes income
while i get this business going. i can't lie, i'm a bit nervous, but i hate the overnight shift life so much, i'd probally rather lose everything than to spend another 7 years doing it. we are not even gonna have good health coverage at that job anymore, which is all the more reason for me just to leave it behind.. my doctor says i'm shortening my life by what i'm doing, but what does he
know.. :laugh
I admire your courage to break away from your current work schedule. Your doctor may well be correct, however as long as you pace yourself for the balance of the year I believe you will make it. Pleased to hear that you have a reserve fund built up, that your truck and other equipment will be paid off as well. I wish you the best.
easy-lift guy
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  #5  
Old 10-21-2012, 07:26 PM
32vld 32vld is offline
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You know how much money you need to make it.

I work MWF evenings 4 to 9:30. Sat 8 am to 4 pm.

I get a good nights sleep before I service my customers. I only have two days of landscape work a week. I could see myself giving up Saturdays as I close in on a 40 hours of work a week. Don't think I'll give up the three week nights. Steady money for the off season and I can call in sick when it snows.

So maybe you need to find a second job 2nd shift instead of 3rd shift that you are on, and 20 to 30 hrs a week.

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  #6  
Old 10-21-2012, 09:19 PM
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inzane inzane is online now
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well, my work has a 4 day work week schedule that i have tried to get on. gonna try again, but this time i'm giving them an option.. move me or 2 week notice. it would be sunday through wed. 1pm to 1a.m. then i'd have thursday friday and saturday off. i can get alot done with 2 full days off during the week and saturday as well. i bet i could make it for another year that way. i have a feeling my job would be thrilled if anybody quit because it seems like they want less workers with more hrs rather than more workers with only 40 hrs or so.

i took this night job in 04 so i could do a lawn care business. had to pick between that and lawn care after 2 seasons, but i feel like i made to many mistakes trying to be a LCO last time. thinking this could be the right time.. having all my stuff paid for and having added chem apps to my list of services are both gonna make a huge difference, as well as much better web presence.. the bad economy may offset all this though.. haha. its good that the season is comming to an end so i can have more time to plan all this out. gonna be taking some vacation time as well.
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  #7  
Old 10-21-2012, 09:37 PM
C Jovingo Landscaping C Jovingo Landscaping is offline
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I work construction during the day 8-12hrs a day not counting drive (1hr avg round trip). We get shafted on windshield time. We meet at shop at 6:30am & our time don't start til 7:30. We get trucks ready & discuss where we are going & what we are doing. On the road by 7am avg drive 30 mins. If we get to site before 7:30 our time starts when we get there. Then our time ends when we are done working, so off the clock for drive back to shop. I know this is illegal & BULLSHIZZ but boss says in this economy the money is not in the contracts. Anyways, I never know when I'll be home Mon-Fri, so I do my mowing on weekends. Half day Sat & 10 am til dark on Sun. Can't take on any new clients with current fulltime work schedule. Wish I was home by 4pm Mon-Fri so I could schedule mowing during the week or had 2nd/3rd shift job.

Here is my situation & plans for spring. The caulking company I work for is small & I am the Sr employee (1 of 3 employees), only been there abt 1yr 4months. There were 4 employees when I started & 3 were let go by the time I was there 6 months. The 4th guy quit couple months ago. High employee turn over because boss treats them like cr@p. He treats me different (respects me) because I own my own business. Come early next year I'm gonna tell him I'm gonna give the lawncare a shot fulltime & will work for him part time. At the begining of season maybe working for him Thurs & Fri. Possibly some afternoon/evenings caulking some stuff. The income from him will help in the beginning, so hope he goes for it. If not I got some connections with other caulk companies that I have talked with on construction sites that will use me part time. 1 being a solo caulker that alot of times could use help but doesn't always have enough work to keep an employee full time.

Best of luck to you...I know I'm gonna need it come spring!
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  #8  
Old 10-21-2012, 10:59 PM
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inzane inzane is online now
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atleast you have an option of going part time. my job is weird about that.. i started out temp to hire the first year, then have stayed on another 7. mostly on the night shift and they can't work nothing out. all i do is build freight orders, i stack 50 to 60 lb boxes all night long.. it totally sucks. i'm 37 years old, and it totally has gotten me nowhere (did have major shoulder surgery and a 7 month vacation last year though!). my problem has less to do with the amt of lawn care work i have which is hardly enough, but more or less the amount of time i sleep, because i just can't make myself adjust to the night schedule anymore.. my body is fighting it bad. i think i have a fear that i'm gonna give up on lawn care again like i did 7 years ago, and i know 100 percent that this is what i want to do (for myself, not working for a company), i can't think of anything else work wise that i enjoy this much.. thats what keeps me going everyday.




Quote:
Originally Posted by C Jovingo Landscaping View Post

Here is my situation & plans for spring. The caulking company I work for is small & I am the Sr employee (1 of 3 employees), only been there abt 1yr 4months. There were 4 employees when I started & 3 were let go by the time I was there 6 months. The 4th guy quit couple months ago. High employee turn over because boss treats them like cr@p. He treats me different (respects me) because I own my own business. Come early next year I'm gonna tell him I'm gonna give the lawncare a shot fulltime & will work for him part time. At the begining of season maybe working for him Thurs & Fri. Possibly some afternoon/evenings caulking some stuff. The income from him will help in the beginning, so hope he goes for it. If not I got some connections with other caulk companies that I have talked with on construction sites that will use me part time. 1 being a solo caulker that alot of times could use help but doesn't always have enough work to keep an employee full time.

Best of luck to you...I know I'm gonna need it come spring!
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  #9  
Old 10-23-2012, 12:24 PM
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TPendagast TPendagast is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C Jovingo Landscaping View Post
I work construction during the day 8-12hrs a day not counting drive (1hr avg round trip). We get shafted on windshield time. We meet at shop at 6:30am & our time don't start til 7:30. We get trucks ready & discuss where we are going & what we are doing. On the road by 7am avg drive 30 mins. If we get to site before 7:30 our time starts when we get there. Then our time ends when we are done working, so off the clock for drive back to shop. I know this is illegal & BULLSHIZZ but boss says in this economy the money is not in the contracts. Anyways, I never know when I'll be home Mon-Fri, so I do my mowing on weekends. Half day Sat & 10 am til dark on Sun. Can't take on any new clients with current fulltime work schedule. Wish I was home by 4pm Mon-Fri so I could schedule mowing during the week or had 2nd/3rd shift job.

Here is my situation & plans for spring. The caulking company I work for is small & I am the Sr employee (1 of 3 employees), only been there abt 1yr 4months. There were 4 employees when I started & 3 were let go by the time I was there 6 months. The 4th guy quit couple months ago. High employee turn over because boss treats them like cr@p. He treats me different (respects me) because I own my own business. Come early next year I'm gonna tell him I'm gonna give the lawncare a shot fulltime & will work for him part time. At the begining of season maybe working for him Thurs & Fri. Possibly some afternoon/evenings caulking some stuff. The income from him will help in the beginning, so hope he goes for it. If not I got some connections with other caulk companies that I have talked with on construction sites that will use me part time. 1 being a solo caulker that alot of times could use help but doesn't always have enough work to keep an employee full time.

Best of luck to you...I know I'm gonna need it come spring!
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"The money is not in the contracts" I guess that's all relative.

I'm not familiar with Ohio Labor law. but most states dont vary too widely on this. If the employer requires you to report for a time and place of work, then you pay starts there. He could require you to show up directly to the work site, but if you are driving a company truck and/or equipment there, then I guess thats why you reporting to and from the shop. So he is illegally not paying you for hours worked.

Here's where the world of suck comes in. You can report this to the dept. of labor, but if things are as razor thin as he claims they are, this could shut down the company and put everyone out of a job? then you shot yourself in the foot.
But it really bugs me to think, that the employer is actually DEPENDING on that very line of thinking in order to pull off what he is pulling off.
(man that actually does bug me)

anyway back to the issue of working one job and servicing clients of the OP.

The leap from employment to entrepreneur is a big one, IF you have a working spouse, Id say do it, but a girlfriend, hmmm that's not as solid of a deal.

It sounds like 200-300 more a month would be all you need to "make ends meet" with this 'side job'. But 300 more a month translates to an extra 1000 per month of lawns cut (factoring a short season and overhead costs)

Can't you just step up your volume and cut that much more grass if you were totally self employed?

$1000/mo is $250 per week, which would be 5 more $50 lawn cuts, is that really going to be that hard to get? Assuming you quit the job and just mow full time. Trying to hold on to a few hundred bucks from another source, other than yourself might actually be your stumbling block.

I don't know your area or what the opportunities are like, but heck 5 more lawns or no sleep and no time for family? I'd choose 5 more lawns, and marry the girl! edit: my bad, you already married the girl, good job!
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Old 10-23-2012, 09:14 PM
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inzane inzane is online now
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i'm definetly married with a 2 year old. funny thing is that when i mowed in 2004 i tried to make the jump, had a girlfriend who helped pay bills and we split mid season and it definetly prevented me from going full time. me and my wife have a good relationship and she has my back. night shift puts a little bit of a strain that i would fear that in the future can destroy a marriage. (everybody who has been at my job for 10 years is divorced, i'm reaching the 10 year mark soon)

the seasons in georgia aren't to terribly short, and i do offer lawn apps which helps. if i had the 5 more accounts to mow i would feel confident that i'd be fine, but its getting them which might be hard. i'm in a good area to be in this business, i'm in the middle of many residential subdivisions, upper middle class type areas. tons of competition, tons.. so its gonna be hard to stand out, offering applications will help, and getting back to people fast with estimates has helped so far, because one complaint i get is that other companies never show up or call back.

without the extra money from the night job it will be harder to put money into advertising, however i am gonna stay with that through febuary and put another round of post cards out for the spring.. and other than that gonna rely on google. i'm working on website SEO and i'm ranking higher and higher on the search for lawn care in my area every few weeks. this is how i've gotten most of my calls.. but i started so late in the season.. i made sure i was fully legit, fully licensed and insured before i even advertised. i print off some nice looking flyers on my own and will definetly have some days out on foot putting them out this spring.

i just think the worse thing that can happen is it doesn't work, i got some savings.. and i just take my ass to the temp service and work in a warehouse for 10 bucks an hour and mow part time till i can figure something out. having a kid and daycare arrangements to make always makes things a little harder.. my wife gets another promotion to office manager at her job soon enough, so thats gonna ease the pain alot too..

Quote:
Originally Posted by TPendagast View Post
The leap from employment to entrepreneur is a big one, IF you have a working spouse, Id say do it, but a girlfriend, hmmm that's not as solid of a deal.

It sounds like 200-300 more a month would be all you need to "make ends meet" with this 'side job'. But 300 more a month translates to an extra 1000 per month of lawns cut (factoring a short season and overhead costs)

Can't you just step up your volume and cut that much more grass if you were totally self employed?

$1000/mo is $250 per week, which would be 5 more $50 lawn cuts, is that really going to be that hard to get? Assuming you quit the job and just mow full time. Trying to hold on to a few hundred bucks from another source, other than yourself might actually be your stumbling block.

I don't know your area or what the opportunities are like, but heck 5 more lawns or no sleep and no time for family? I'd choose 5 more lawns, and marry the girl! edit: my bad, you already married the girl, good job!
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