Register free!
Search
 
     

The Green Industry's Resource Center


Click for Weather
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #51  
Old 07-13-2012, 10:09 PM
White Gardens's Avatar
White Gardens White Gardens is offline
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Bloomington IL
Posts: 6,644
Quote:
Originally Posted by coolluv View Post

I beat myself up all the time because I feel like I'm not growing as fast as I should based on the people around me. I work my butt off by myself because I can't hire anyone until I have the work to justify it. I guess when I see so many companies growing like weeds and new startups growing like weeds it makes me jealous.


Dave...
Really, I have been in the same situation. This year I finally hired on a couple guys for part time help and it's help boost production and pushing me higher in growth.

The biggest problem with my business is that most of my clients, if not all, keep saying they really appreciate they have someone that knows what they are doing and I'm not a company sending out college kids or simple lackies who don't know what they are doing.

This really sucks as I'd like to eventually step back and take a management role. But in the some token, I've started to really amp up my pricing for services and making more for my time than ever before. Basically, because people truly want my services, I'm not bidding against others. Am I taking advantage of my customers though?, no. I might be on the high end but nothing outrageous.

So, keep it small and keep it real. I've centered my business on creating long-term relationships with my customers and not a high volume, get it done as fast as you can so I can send a bill type of service. This type of business plan is a slower growth plan, but it's now starting to pay off after 7 years.

Consider yourself lucky also. With a crazy drought year, you can absorb the impact better than larger businesses.

....
__________________
White Gardens On Facebook.......WG Thread......Greencare For Troops......... mywhitegardens.com(under construction)

2005- Completion of University of Illinois Master Gardner's Program.
Reply With Quote
  #52  
Old 07-13-2012, 11:24 PM
BOSS LAWN 2343's Avatar
BOSS LAWN 2343 BOSS LAWN 2343 is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Brooklyn Park, MN
Posts: 491
The drought has really only affected about 30% of my weekly accounts. If I drive to the property and it doesnt need to be cut, I call them to skip the mow.

Then again, it has also affected the one time mowing calls. It is easier to cut dry though..
__________________
Summer


93 F150
94 Chevy 1500 8'6" Western
96 GMC 1500 7'6" Western
98 Chevy 8'6" Western

8x30 Tandem
6x12 Single

Snapper WB Z-Turn 48" (Trac-Vac)
36" WB John Deere Z-Turn (Trac-Vac)
John Deere F510 Z-Turn 38"
Toro Personal Pace 21" Mowers
12,000 sq. ft Shop

21 year old

Youtube: www.youtube.com/BOSSLAWN2343
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Derrel...5569495?ref=hl
Reply With Quote
  #53  
Old 07-14-2012, 07:15 AM
Snapper Jack Snapper Jack is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: weaverville, NC
Posts: 516
While on vacation up north, up state NY and Pennsylvania where hit by the drought badly and cutting the grass way to short didn't help matters.
Reply With Quote
  #54  
Old 07-14-2012, 03:36 PM
whosedog's Avatar
whosedog whosedog is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: northern nj
Posts: 730
NJ isn't doing too good either.Thank God I only do this on the side (saturdays only) because if this was my bread and butter my family would be starving.After non stop rain till June,we were cutting like it was springtime;then it just stopped raining.I took a drive yesterday and all the lawns are toast with only a few weeds popping up.Too bad the US government doesn't offer landscapers insurance the way it covers farmers who lose their crops due to drought.We need some tropical storms to soak the ground for a few days;these scattered thunder showers don't do much good;next thing you know the trees will be dropping their leaves.My son is doing little bush and tree jobs;I'm making some money trading a few stocks (CORN,MOS,AGNC) I actually am doing pretty good so far made 4G,started learning about options and am doing well with them so far.
Reply With Quote
  #55  
Old 07-14-2012, 05:36 PM
Duekster Duekster is offline
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: DFW, TX
Posts: 7,971
Quote:
Originally Posted by whosedog View Post
NJ isn't doing too good either.Thank God I only do this on the side (saturdays only) because if this was my bread and butter my family would be starving.After non stop rain till June,we were cutting like it was springtime;then it just stopped raining.I took a drive yesterday and all the lawns are toast with only a few weeds popping up.Too bad the US government doesn't offer landscapers insurance the way it covers farmers who lose their crops due to drought.We need some tropical storms to soak the ground for a few days;these scattered thunder showers don't do much good;next thing you know the trees will be dropping their leaves.My son is doing little bush and tree jobs;I'm making some money trading a few stocks (CORN,MOS,AGNC) I actually am doing pretty good so far made 4G,started learning about options and am doing well with them so far.
Think about all those guys depending on this to feed their families
Reply With Quote
  #56  
Old 07-15-2012, 07:14 AM
coolluv coolluv is online now
LawnSite Silver Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Atlanta
Posts: 2,271
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelly's Landscaping View Post
coolluv that post made for an interesting read. I guess I'll start with contracts all my accounts are under contract in fact here you have to renew them each season because the seasons are so spread out you tend to lose the connection. But contracts here are ņ la carte you pay for what service you use and this has extremes but it's more from our location and our winters and the length of the season. The seasons starts mid March and goes into Dec so the money comes in very light in the beginning of the season. To better explain that say we take in 240k this season and that's a good guess we will get the first 120k up till around August 20th or 30th the remaining half of the income will come in in just the last 4 months which then you need to save and plan because winter last a long time.

The contracts that pay yearly in 12 payments are so foreign to people here I doubt I could sign any. You do see something like that with snow where some pay a set amount each month for the winter. The smart contractors seem to do a mix ņ la carte and set price so if it snows like crazy they protect themselves and if its light the protect themselves the other way.

As for the employees they expect to get laid off here in the winter so a slow down mid season doesn't have the effect that it would on someone that demands a check 52 weeks a year. As far as starving I pay well but one thing I see it doesn't matter what I pay them certain mind sets will blow the entire check every week and then some and can not save a dime despite have 800-1200 dollar weeks in spring. It's pathetic but perhaps a relief as well at least you know they are never going to be your competition because they will never save up to go out on their own.

As for what we will do grin and bare it I lost probably 750 dollars in cuts in the last 3 days. It's not catastrophic but you get 6-8 weeks of that and it can be. Doesn't take much before that number jumps to 2000 a week in lost cuts. It did just that in 2005 here that year is etched in my mind we had a terrible start the snow took forever to melt was April 9th when we got our first clean up in. So we lost like 20k that spring then we had over 40 days with no rain lost like 10k in cuts in August then Sept was nearly as bad. And then for spite it rained for 9 days in a row the 3rd week on Oct lost the entire week. Then we had early snow we would have to wait for it to melt then go out and get hit again this went on through Jan we finally gave up and did are last fall clean ups Feb 1st. So I think if I can survive that 60k F U from mother nature I can deal with this dry spell. Now if it doesn't change for 2 months that's real pain and then yes bye bye owner pay checks or at the least they will get slashed.
Thanks for the explanation. I bet you could sell contracts to certain customers. Its finding those customers that's the hard part. My area is no different and getting those customers takes time. Its just the route I want to follow.

Dave...
Reply With Quote
  #57  
Old 07-15-2012, 07:22 AM
coolluv coolluv is online now
LawnSite Silver Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Atlanta
Posts: 2,271
Quote:
Originally Posted by White Gardens View Post
Really, I have been in the same situation. This year I finally hired on a couple guys for part time help and it's help boost production and pushing me higher in growth.

The biggest problem with my business is that most of my clients, if not all, keep saying they really appreciate they have someone that knows what they are doing and I'm not a company sending out college kids or simple lackies who don't know what they are doing.

This really sucks as I'd like to eventually step back and take a management role. But in the some token, I've started to really amp up my pricing for services and making more for my time than ever before. Basically, because people truly want my services, I'm not bidding against others. Am I taking advantage of my customers though?, no. I might be on the high end but nothing outrageous.

So, keep it small and keep it real. I've centered my business on creating long-term relationships with my customers and not a high volume, get it done as fast as you can so I can send a bill type of service. This type of business plan is a slower growth plan, but it's now starting to pay off after 7 years.

Consider yourself lucky also. With a crazy drought year, you can absorb the impact better than larger businesses.

....
Thank you for confirming what I believe. When I first started this I was the same way. Blow through the property as fast as I could and get to the next one. Now I take my time and make sure everything looks good before I leave. I'm not in a hurry because the customer is paying for my time. I'm not on beat the clock.

I have less customers but each customer is more profitable. They love the landscape and the work I do and they know they get their moneys worth. I'm not cheap either. I have to cover the costs of the time involved. But I have a whole lot less stress because when I do hear from a customer its because they are complimenting me not complaining to me.

I know it will take time but it does get frustrating sometimes.

Dave...
Reply With Quote
  #58  
Old 07-15-2012, 07:42 AM
mpriester's Avatar
mpriester mpriester is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Dunbar, Pa.
Posts: 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snapper Jack View Post
While on vacation up north, up state NY and Pennsylvania where hit by the drought badly and cutting the grass way to short didn't help matters.
im in pa and its been raining off and on the last couple days. i'm small with only 20 accounts but only 1 of my accounts is about half brown, i started cuting them a little high when it started warming up. hopefully the rain will help. i have noticed a lot of leaves falling. The one time mowings have dropped off alot. i'm lucky to have another business that is seasonal as well and its starting to pick up. Who knows maybe we will have a real winter this year.
Reply With Quote
  #59  
Old 07-15-2012, 10:26 AM
Kelly's Landscaping's Avatar
Kelly's Landscaping Kelly's Landscaping is offline
LawnSite Gold Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Milford CT
Posts: 3,543
They have been predicting rain here for today for the last 5 days they even raised the % from 30 to 50 starting at 6am. So I wake and now it starts at 4pm maybe. That is what is so frustrating the last 5 or 6 rain days never happened and I have little faith this will either all the big cells are going pass to the north of us. We need a nice 2 day tropical storm that gives a month or twos rain in a day. It's one advantage we have over the mid west we do get a dozen would be hurricanes that just have mild winds and tons of rain each year coming up the coast. Just one of them and my problems here will be solved for 3 weeks.
Reply With Quote
  #60  
Old 07-15-2012, 07:03 PM
Kelly's Landscaping's Avatar
Kelly's Landscaping Kelly's Landscaping is offline
LawnSite Gold Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Milford CT
Posts: 3,543
Seems silly but the old trick of washing your fleet to anger the rain gods has worked once again. Spend Saturday washing a trailer and 3 of the trucks and just got rewarded with about 2 hours of medium to heavy rain with a change for more tonight. Going to be in the 90s this week that was really needed now 2 more weeks and our traditionally driest month ends.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump





Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ©1998 - 2012, LawnSite.comô - Moose River Media
All times are GMT -4. The time now is 08:21 PM.

Page generated in 0.08736 seconds with 8 queries