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  #31  
Old 10-19-2011, 11:34 PM
newz7151 newz7151 is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Tejas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moneyclass View Post
Oh trust me if i could start it now I definitely would but i live in ohio and its going to be snowing prolly in a few weeks. So what i was going to do while we are going to be in winter for the next few months is learn the biz since I dont know to much about it.
If you're not going to start off shoveling snow, what do you think you are going to do next winter when the grass is covered by all that white stuff? Sure can't claim unemployment from your-self. Grab a shovel or buy a walk behind and get to moving (what i understand they call up there) "white gold".
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  #32  
Old 10-20-2011, 12:16 AM
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cpllawncare cpllawncare is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Greenville, SC
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I would say judging from your post your not ready for self employment! If your not willing to get going and get going now you will never be ready "LATER" as you say, time is money in this business! there is no room for procrastination if your truly a entrepreneur.
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  #33  
Old 10-20-2011, 09:39 AM
superdog1 superdog1 is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Lebanon, PA
Posts: 218
I started this year and........

I got the same idea you had in March of this year. I read everything I could find and then re-read it just to be sure it sunk in. The first rule is this:
Everything everyone on here said would happen did, and then some!!!!

I ended up working all summer. I did NOT make the big $$ I thought I would. I busted my ass from sun up till sun down. In the end, I had to buy another mower (My Cub Cadet RZT died 1/2 way through the season) to the tune of $7000 for a Scag Vride 54". As it turned out, I made just enough to live and put gas in the mowers.

My only saving grace was that my house and truck are paid off. With that in mind, I did a lot of work by hand that others wouldn't touch without machinery. I learned the hard way, as everything went wrong no matter how hard I planned ahead. I went over and above what other LCO's were doing to make my clients happy. While the customer was smiling, my bank account wasn't, as they quickly learned to take advantage of my goodwill. There was always just this one little extra thing the client would ask me to do for free. It could be as simple as removing a few branches they cut down and piled up to one lady who wanted me to trim all of her bushes for nothing, as she felt I should include that for all the big $$ she was paying me ($25 a cut, inside a fenced in yard where the grass was always 10 feet high because her 3 dogs were crap factories and it had to be bagged and removed EVERY time, not to mention the little "Doggie" land mines I had to mow/walk over).

I think next year will be a little better, BUT, it was a really expensive first year learning curve. Some advice I can give you is that you DO NOT have to take every single person who calls you. You will learn very quickly if a location is not worth your time. They could be slow pay, perhaps always leaving all of the kids toys all over the yard (Which you will have to pick up to do a decent job). Maybe they will always wait until the yard is 10" high before they feel it is time to have it cut (This will save them $$ and cost you a LOT!). Do not be afraid to tell the customer that they need to pay you more or find another LCO!

I do know that it seemed like a really easy thing to do, I mean, after all, how hard can it be to cut some grass and get a check right? Let me tell you, that is only 1/10 of what it takes to do this. I especially love when it rains for 3 or 4 days straight and all you can do is sit there and watch out the window wondering if it will ever stop? I also love the calls for "one time cuts" because the house is for sale or they are on vacation or their mower is broke, whatever.... you get there and find out it hasn't been cut in 2 months and they only want to pay you $20. You almost have to do it, as you just wasted the time and gas to get there!!!

Look, it's not all doom and gloom and obviously others do it and make a living at it, but you can bet it's not easy and unless you work for someone else for a year or two and learn the ropes, you are about to enroll in the good old "School of hard knocks" and will earn a nice little diploma for it, Lol
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  #34  
Old 10-20-2011, 10:47 AM
moneyclass moneyclass is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by stickleylawncare View Post
I wouldnt step on another persons property unless you can afford some kind of business insurance, even if its the cheapest you can find. If you only have 5-6 accounts, just takes one small accident, one broken window.. dinged car etc and you are down for the count when you are just starting out.
What is a estimated cost of insurance?
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  #35  
Old 10-20-2011, 10:52 AM
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stickleylawncare stickleylawncare is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Ponte Vedra Beach, Fl
Posts: 170
Quote:
Originally Posted by moneyclass View Post
What is a estimated cost of insurance?
You can probably get a basic general business liability insurance for 300-700 a year. Just shop around, check Travels, Blackbear, USAA, Statefarm, Nationwide, etc.
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  #36  
Old 10-20-2011, 11:01 AM
moneyclass moneyclass is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by superdog1 View Post
I got the same idea you had in March of this year. I read everything I could find and then re-read it just to be sure it sunk in. The first rule is this:
Everything everyone on here said would happen did, and then some!!!!

I ended up working all summer. I did NOT make the big $$ I thought I would. I busted my ass from sun up till sun down. In the end, I had to buy another mower (My Cub Cadet RZT died 1/2 way through the season) to the tune of $7000 for a Scag Vride 54". As it turned out, I made just enough to live and put gas in the mowers.

My only saving grace was that my house and truck are paid off. With that in mind, I did a lot of work by hand that others wouldn't touch without machinery. I learned the hard way, as everything went wrong no matter how hard I planned ahead. I went over and above what other LCO's were doing to make my clients happy. While the customer was smiling, my bank account wasn't, as they quickly learned to take advantage of my goodwill. There was always just this one little extra thing the client would ask me to do for free. It could be as simple as removing a few branches they cut down and piled up to one lady who wanted me to trim all of her bushes for nothing, as she felt I should include that for all the big $$ she was paying me ($25 a cut, inside a fenced in yard where the grass was always 10 feet high because her 3 dogs were crap factories and it had to be bagged and removed EVERY time, not to mention the little "Doggie" land mines I had to mow/walk over).

I think next year will be a little better, BUT, it was a really expensive first year learning curve. Some advice I can give you is that you DO NOT have to take every single person who calls you. You will learn very quickly if a location is not worth your time. They could be slow pay, perhaps always leaving all of the kids toys all over the yard (Which you will have to pick up to do a decent job). Maybe they will always wait until the yard is 10" high before they feel it is time to have it cut (This will save them $$ and cost you a LOT!). Do not be afraid to tell the customer that they need to pay you more or find another LCO!

I do know that it seemed like a really easy thing to do, I mean, after all, how hard can it be to cut some grass and get a check right? Let me tell you, that is only 1/10 of what it takes to do this. I especially love when it rains for 3 or 4 days straight and all you can do is sit there and watch out the window wondering if it will ever stop? I also love the calls for "one time cuts" because the house is for sale or they are on vacation or their mower is broke, whatever.... you get there and find out it hasn't been cut in 2 months and they only want to pay you $20. You almost have to do it, as you just wasted the time and gas to get there!!!

Look, it's not all doom and gloom and obviously others do it and make a living at it, but you can bet it's not easy and unless you work for someone else for a year or two and learn the ropes, you are about to enroll in the good old "School of hard knocks" and will earn a nice little diploma for it, Lol
Hey THANKS for your comments I really enjoyed reading it. Yeah you are right it will be the school of hard knocks but I guess I have to go out there and learn it that way. I never even thought about the doggie land mines lol.
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  #37  
Old 10-20-2011, 11:02 AM
moneyclass moneyclass is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by stickleylawncare View Post
You can probably get a basic general business liability insurance for 300-700 a year. Just shop around, check Travels, Blackbear, USAA, Statefarm, Nationwide, etc.
Thanks!! Thats not to bad
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  #38  
Old 10-20-2011, 11:03 AM
moneyclass moneyclass is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 56
Mower help.....With just starting out do you recommend a sit down zero turn mower or a walk behind mower?
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  #39  
Old 10-20-2011, 11:27 AM
Jay Ray Jay Ray is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: d"Iberville MS
Posts: 6,484
Quote:
Originally Posted by superdog1 View Post
I got the same idea you had in March of this year. I read everything I could find and then re-read it just to be sure it sunk in. The first rule is this:
Everything everyone on here said would happen did, and then some!!!!

I ended up working all summer. I did NOT make the big $$ I thought I would. I busted my ass from sun up till sun down. In the end, I had to buy another mower (My Cub Cadet RZT died 1/2 way through the season) to the tune of $7000 for a Scag Vride 54". As it turned out, I made just enough to live and put gas in the mowers.

My only saving grace was that my house and truck are paid off. With that in mind, I did a lot of work by hand that others wouldn't touch without machinery. I learned the hard way, as everything went wrong no matter how hard I planned ahead. I went over and above what other LCO's were doing to make my clients happy. While the customer was smiling, my bank account wasn't, as they quickly learned to take advantage of my goodwill. There was always just this one little extra thing the client would ask me to do for free. It could be as simple as removing a few branches they cut down and piled up to one lady who wanted me to trim all of her bushes for nothing, as she felt I should include that for all the big $$ she was paying me ($25 a cut, inside a fenced in yard where the grass was always 10 feet high because her 3 dogs were crap factories and it had to be bagged and removed EVERY time, not to mention the little "Doggie" land mines I had to mow/walk over).

I think next year will be a little better, BUT, it was a really expensive first year learning curve. Some advice I can give you is that you DO NOT have to take every single person who calls you. You will learn very quickly if a location is not worth your time. They could be slow pay, perhaps always leaving all of the kids toys all over the yard (Which you will have to pick up to do a decent job). Maybe they will always wait until the yard is 10" high before they feel it is time to have it cut (This will save them $$ and cost you a LOT!). Do not be afraid to tell the customer that they need to pay you more or find another LCO!

I do know that it seemed like a really easy thing to do, I mean, after all, how hard can it be to cut some grass and get a check right? Let me tell you, that is only 1/10 of what it takes to do this. I especially love when it rains for 3 or 4 days straight and all you can do is sit there and watch out the window wondering if it will ever stop? I also love the calls for "one time cuts" because the house is for sale or they are on vacation or their mower is broke, whatever.... you get there and find out it hasn't been cut in 2 months and they only want to pay you $20. You almost have to do it, as you just wasted the time and gas to get there!!!

Look, it's not all doom and gloom and obviously others do it and make a living at it, but you can bet it's not easy and unless you work for someone else for a year or two and learn the ropes, you are about to enroll in the good old "School of hard knocks" and will earn a nice little diploma for it, Lol
Yup. The lessons of the first season are priceless, and no way to book learn them. It takes more muscle, blood, sweat, tears, and greasy hands than folks can imagine. This is always with you, but as your skills get honed, the money does improve and you can sometimes recognize chaos personified (customer from hell) at first glance, but not always.

Still, if it's no worse in the morning than it was last night, consider it a good day
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EPA Targets Wood Stoves: Camp Fire Emission Regulation Coming Next
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  #40  
Old 10-20-2011, 11:38 AM
Jay Ray Jay Ray is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: d"Iberville MS
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moneyclass View Post
Mower help.....With just starting out do you recommend a sit down zero turn mower or a walk behind mower?
I used a wb exclusively for a couple of seasons. Low cost, low maintenance, and lost 50 lbs. the first season. Used it a few of times this season. A wb without a sulky will get you on a lawn while it is still too wet and soggy for a rider.

That don't mean you have to do it like that. You get to make all your own decisions.
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EPA Targets Wood Stoves: Camp Fire Emission Regulation Coming Next

Last edited by Jay Ray; 10-20-2011 at 11:44 AM.
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