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  #11  
Old 10-22-2013, 03:25 PM
metalsasquach metalsasquach is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Clio, mi
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Wow I never thought of it that way, that's very smart and sounds a it may be a better route. The reason getting a loan from my credit union was because I was focused on used equipment because I wanted to avoid to much money going out. But your story of how everything panned out for you sounds like something I should consider. Thank you again.
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  #12  
Old 10-22-2013, 07:15 PM
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BckYrdLmbrJk BckYrdLmbrJk is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TuffTurfLawnCare View Post

After having a long conversation with one of my clients (who is very well off) who has started and sold a few companies that pay for his lifestyle in his $500k home, he helped me realize my strengths and weaknesses. It was from this objective review that I realized the importance of communication skills. Anyone can get a mower and cut grass. Not everybody can sell and articulate why you should be the the guy who services the owners property. I think the largest part of being successful as a business owner is being able to clearly and intelligently communicate with the customer. To be able to gain trust, and nearly befriend your customers almost immediately. After one season I regularly have clients that hand me blank signed checks and just tell me to fill it in as needed. They don't do that because I make nice straight stripes in the grass, they do it because they trust me, arguably like family. I never worry about my clients leaving me to save a few bucks. Often I am more expensive than the other companies that are also in the area, but my clients are loyal to me, as I am them.

Recently I was in the hospital for a week. I skipped every account I had. I called them all and let them know I was unable to service their properties that week. I offered to sub that weeks work to another company I know to get the lawns done and not one customer took me up the offer. Nobody wanted anyone but me on the property, 3 of them sent me get well soon cards to my hospital room. A couple sent me checks for service even though I didn't perform the work. When I called them after I got the checks, they said to keep the money as a bonus and get caught up when ever I could.

My point is this. Don't focus solely on the work. it takes just as much effort and skill to keep good customers. I think many over look this and for that reason they fail or otherwise always complain about loosing customers.
This. Great post. Something I'm always working on. I know how it is having to take time off in this industry due to health. No fun at all. I hope you're feeling better!
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  #13  
Old 10-22-2013, 09:28 PM
newguy123 newguy123 is offline
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Are you planning on snow plowing? If not I would go with a Ford Ranger, 10 foot trailer with a 36" mower and a push mower. Very basic, yet productive set up for residetials 12K sq ft and less.

Feel free to inbox me as needed.
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  #14  
Old 10-22-2013, 09:56 PM
metalsasquach metalsasquach is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Clio, mi
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Snow plowing is something I will offer after the next lawn season if all goes well. I just don't want to much to soon, i know next winter is a year away but I want a full grasp on lawn care and a solid customer base before I venture into deeper waters. But its defiantly something I'm interested in if I wanted my business to produce money year long in the future. which is the whole goal (replace current job eventually)
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Last edited by metalsasquach; 10-22-2013 at 10:00 PM.
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  #15  
Old 10-23-2013, 11:34 PM
metalsasquach metalsasquach is offline
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Location: Clio, mi
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Anyone use a cub cadet ztr before? I was at my local store that sells farm/lawn equipment and they had allot of John Deere and cub cadets. They all looked nice, with all different sizes (I originally went to see the walk behind) but the cub cadets were so much cheaper. Any reasoning? They have new looking (not sure year) cub cadet 42"for $1900, if I could score a nice ztr for cheap with a standard push for the extras the ztr misses.. Would that be a bad first setup? Or stick with a walk behind? Remember I'll be doing small residential yards.
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Last edited by metalsasquach; 10-23-2013 at 11:39 PM.
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  #16  
Old 10-24-2013, 12:02 AM
clipfert clipfert is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Eastern PA
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Start off by getting some customers first. That is the hard part. Why buy equipment that you don't even know you will need. You will also know what you need. You can find what you need on this website or Craigslist being sold by guys that bought equipment they did not have customers for.
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  #17  
Old 10-24-2013, 12:44 AM
metalsasquach metalsasquach is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Clio, mi
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Since nobody needs mowing anymore in Michigan, focusing on all of the aspects of advertising I can during the winter and being prepared for spring sounds smart to me. I'm bound to land a few people by spring comes, even if I didn't have many at first I could still afford the overhead either until I got more people or even approaching people in the community with UN kept yards and just saying "hey I'm Jon, and I've been taking care of done of your neighbors, let me know if you ever need anything".. And leave then my card. I don't think buying to be prepared is a bad thing especially since I'll have my advertising ready and rolling out early.
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  #18  
Old 10-24-2013, 10:17 AM
TuffTurfLawnCare TuffTurfLawnCare is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Pittsburgh (South Hills)
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Most of the stuff you will find at a farm and fleet, tractor supply, home depot, Lowes, etc will be homeowner grade equipment designed to mow one yard a week. It will wear out quickly and probably not have a good ROI. Go to a dealer that sells pro equipment, Exmark, Walker, Wright, Gravely, etc. Take a look at what other LCO's in the area have on their trailers. Its rare in this area to see cubcadet. I have only seen one guy here with Cub Cadet mower.

If your looking at smaller yards, then a 36 or 48 Hydro Walk behind with a sulky/standon/etc is a good bet. Pair it with a pro 21" push mower and pro hand helds and you should be able to run a couple years without a single breakdown. Just keep the blades sharp and the maintenance caught up.

This is another reason to a couple dealers. They know the area your in and have more than likely gotten a few companies up and running by selling the right equipment. I went with an Exmark 48 hydro walkbehind mostly because the dealer is great, and I love the ECS controls on the Exmarks. Go talk to different dealers, kick tires and look at the costs and purchase plans.
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Just like everyone else on here, I have stuff that cuts, whacks, mows and blows. And way to haul it around.
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  #19  
Old 10-24-2013, 12:42 PM
metalsasquach metalsasquach is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Clio, mi
Posts: 16
Thanks for the reply, I was looking at the local John Deere dealer for fun and that's where I seen what I did. Cub cadet was probably residential quality judging by its price and condition. I didn't talk to any sales people to ask but I came here for an honest opinion because a salesmans job is to sell.
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