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  #1  
Old 06-02-2011, 11:41 PM
EasyLabor EasyLabor is offline
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Location: Chicago, Illinois
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Looking to start Lawn Mowing Services what should I start off with??

Looking to start a Lawn Mowing Service in residential properties to start off with. What equipment would be best to start off with? I plan to start off 1-2 men until jobs get bigger. So I am looking for equipment that I can purchase that would complete the job quicker. Also I am looking for tips on starting a lawn mowing service.
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  #2  
Old 06-02-2011, 11:59 PM
mikemat31 mikemat31 is offline
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Haven't been in the business that long but something better than nothing. If i were you I would look at a smaller commercial walk behind to start off maybe a 36in scag and home cheapo 21in finish mower. Redmax ebz 7001 or larger model. And a redmax or stihl string trimmer. I work for a professioal landscaper and he swears by redmax an d scag and hes been in the business for 30+ years. Stihl or husky saws. Youll figure out quick what works best for you
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-16 years old
-3 account
-21" 4hp craftsman lawnmower
-Redmax ebz7001 blower
-Troy Bilt 33cc- combi hedger and string trimemr
-Poulan 28cc hedge trimmer
-Troy-bilt 7hp pressure washer 3100psi
-Craftsman edger
-8hp Murray snowblower
-5.5hp craftsman snowblower
(sorta in the market for a 32in mower for under $800 Pm if you have anything)
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  #3  
Old 06-03-2011, 12:14 AM
topsites topsites is offline
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The biggest problem I have seen in recent years in terms of failure,
is when folks in their excitement accidentally put the cart before the horse.

That having been said...
Procure yourself ALL of the equipment first (or all you can afford, and more is better).
Then get some customers.
In that order.
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  #4  
Old 06-03-2011, 12:59 AM
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MJB MJB is online now
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I'd start out getting my head examined. Because everyone that has a lawn mower will steal your customers, and underbid you. I started 20 yrs ago when you could develope relationships with customers and they are very loyal. People today have no loyalty to you. They won't even pay you on time. Every new customer I get makes me wonder if it's worth it. I'm making new customers prepay me until they have a track record I can trust, I don't wanna do this for free.
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  #5  
Old 06-03-2011, 01:11 AM
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Exact Rototilling Exact Rototilling is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MJB View Post
I'd start out getting my head examined. Because everyone that has a lawn mower will steal your customers, and underbid you. I started 20 yrs ago when you could develope relationships with customers and they are very loyal. People today have no loyalty to you. They won't even pay you on time. Every new customer I get makes me wonder if it's worth it. I'm making new customers prepay me until they have a track record I can trust, I don't wanna do this for free.
What he just said...X5....
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  #6  
Old 06-03-2011, 07:52 AM
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ALC-GregH ALC-GregH is offline
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X10 with what the last two posts said.

You first need a business plan. This will allow you to understand how you NEED to run a business. If you think you're going to go buy a few mowers and be a lawn company, you need to think again. It's NOT as simple as you may think. Chances are, if you don't have a business plan, you have a very good chance at failure. Preparing a business and opening it can take a year or more of time spent doing research. Don't think you'll just jump in a be mowing the first week or month. First thing, you're starting WAY too late. Use this year to do the research on everything a lawn care provider should and needs to know before they open.
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  #7  
Old 06-08-2011, 06:46 PM
Penncare Penncare is offline
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The best equipment to start with is as follows:
1. A primary job with steady income and insurance,
2. little or no overdead,
3. and lastly the best equipment is that which you already own and use.

If you plan on financing everything, incorporate or become an LLC so that when they come take it all back you don't lose the stuff you did own before you decided to start this financed adventure. Most new businesses should start with a set business plan, I don't mean buy equipment, advertise, live the dream. If your plan does not anticipate break even or loss for two years, revise it.
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  #8  
Old 06-08-2011, 09:48 PM
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cpllawncare cpllawncare is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Penncare View Post
The best equipment to start with is as follows:
1. A primary job with steady income and insurance,
2. little or no overdead,
3. and lastly the best equipment is that which you already own and use.

If you plan on financing everything, incorporate or become an LLC so that when they come take it all back you don't lose the stuff you did own before you decided to start this financed adventure. Most new businesses should start with a set business plan, I don't mean buy equipment, advertise, live the dream. If your plan does not anticipate break even or loss for two years, revise it.
That's nice if there was such a thing anymore, around here the only primary job you'll find is micky dees and trust me you don't want that, I was a part time LCO when I got layed off three years ago I'm now full time and loving it, I don't care what anybody says there is still money to be made in this industry regardless of all the lowballers and illegals, you have to separate yourself from them and sell on service and quality not price! Start with a business plan, keep your overhead as low as possible and go out and make it happen!
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  #9  
Old 06-08-2011, 10:22 PM
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Exact Rototilling Exact Rototilling is offline
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Ok second bit of advice in this thread from me. Find out what the going rates are in your area for mowing. I was under the impression when I started 4 years ago that $35 was the minimum price to mow tiny places. That plan didn't work well 4 yeas ago and it's not working now in my area. I really struggled to get decent accounts. I have another profitable business that has essentially paid the bills for the lawn biz the first few years. I was also under the impression that aerations would be 2.5 to 3 times the mowing rate. Again struggle fest ...even though my best aerator pulls 46% to 75% more plugs for better results over the rolling tine units. People don't care they want lower prices.

Turn out this year I have lost more accounts for weekly mowing than ever before on a percentage basis. I have had my lowest response rate to my flyer run this spring. I'm professional, not covered with tattoos, really nice lettered enclosed trailer with graphics and I have good people skills.

Some of my former customers are like family....but that didn't prevent them.from.price shopping since times are tough. One of the full service companies in my area is mowing for cheap. Their application rates for herbicides and fert are so low I don't know how.they are making any money.

Do your own due diligence before you quit your day or night job. Maybe your area is not so bleak.
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  #10  
Old 06-08-2011, 10:27 PM
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Merkava_4 Merkava_4 is online now
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Quote:
Looking to start Lawn Mowing Services what should I start off with??
1. Honda HRC216HXA
2. PowerTrim Edger
3. Stihl Blower
4. RedMax String Trimmer
5. Pickup Truck
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