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  #31  
Old 02-08-2014, 03:31 PM
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JonesLawnCareWV JonesLawnCareWV is offline
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Join Date: May 2013
Location: Charleston WV
Posts: 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by TPendagast View Post
IF I were you,
(I'm going to assume you have a pick up or trailer already)

I'd get one of those ferris hydrocut mowers and a sulky, it's the closest thing to a BOP mower you are going to find.

It's simple, professional grade and will last a while,,,and it'll be pretty cheap.

Let's say that's $4,000 (I don't have the price right in front of me)
then you get yourself a general liability paid in full for a year…lets say
that's $2000
you need some operation capital…$3000 should do it
Weed whacker, blower, and some other random supplies
another $1200.00

It's best to get some software to manage your business too…so Id calculate another $1000 for that.
Already have a 4x8 Harbor Freight trailer, though I'm trying to replace it. I don't like my trailer dancing down the road behind me. Looking at a Leonard's 5x8, 24" mesh sides, A frame tongue w/ swivel jack, 15" tires, ramp gate, 3500# axle for $1099.

With reference to the Ferris mower - my fathers boss actually has a very large property on which I did an INSANE mulch install last year (got skimped and paid $100 for mulching a 60ftx10ft flower bed on a hillside, haven't went back since). He has either a 48" or 52" Ferris belt drive that probably 10 years old that he's been trying to sell. He replaced the old belt drive with a brand new Ferris hydrostatic of the same size which he claims he despises. I asked him a week ago what he would want for the old belt drive model and his response was "Do some work for me this summer and you can have it. Or maybe even this stupid hydro POS that I can't stand using". So I may have a commercial WB lined up, considering he doesn't expect some ungodly amount of work to be done for it. Hopefully he understands how 'dickish' he treated me last summer by having me do that mulch job (albeit I was naive and had no idea how to price a mulch job and just asked him to pay me what he felt was right, which turned out to be $100 for two 9 hour days on a hillside in 98 degree July sun)

As far as the software goes, are you referring to routing softwares, landscape design softwares, or just an accounting software? My plan as of right now is to use QuickBooks to manage my finances this year and toss the old paper log I used last year. I would love to get a landscape design software so I could do some 3D modeling of a planned flower bed, but in all honesty, I don't know how many install jobs I will even net this year. Only managed 2 from existing maintenance customers last season.
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  #32  
Old 02-08-2014, 04:34 PM
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TPendagast TPendagast is offline
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Location: Wasilla, AK
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JonesLawnCareWV View Post
Already have a 4x8 Harbor Freight trailer, though I'm trying to replace it. I don't like my trailer dancing down the road behind me. Looking at a Leonard's 5x8, 24" mesh sides, A frame tongue w/ swivel jack, 15" tires, ramp gate, 3500# axle for $1099.

With reference to the Ferris mower - my fathers boss actually has a very large property on which I did an INSANE mulch install last year (got skimped and paid $100 for mulching a 60ftx10ft flower bed on a hillside, haven't went back since). He has either a 48" or 52" Ferris belt drive that probably 10 years old that he's been trying to sell. He replaced the old belt drive with a brand new Ferris hydrostatic of the same size which he claims he despises. I asked him a week ago what he would want for the old belt drive model and his response was "Do some work for me this summer and you can have it. Or maybe even this stupid hydro POS that I can't stand using". So I may have a commercial WB lined up, considering he doesn't expect some ungodly amount of work to be done for it. Hopefully he understands how 'dickish' he treated me last summer by having me do that mulch job (albeit I was naive and had no idea how to price a mulch job and just asked him to pay me what he felt was right, which turned out to be $100 for two 9 hour days on a hillside in 98 degree July sun)

As far as the software goes, are you referring to routing softwares, landscape design softwares, or just an accounting software? My plan as of right now is to use QuickBooks to manage my finances this year and toss the old paper log I used last year. I would love to get a landscape design software so I could do some 3D modeling of a planned flower bed, but in all honesty, I don't know how many install jobs I will even net this year. Only managed 2 from existing maintenance customers last season.
My advice;
Ignore his sickishness and negotiate for BOTH mowers.

Heck mow his lawn too.
Belt drive makes a sweet back up mower.
But that hydro POS….you want it.

It's like field of dreams… build it and they will come.

Now what you have to do is make this guy realize
1) you can ONLY work for him all summer….there would be no point.
2) you aren't going to pay for any materials for anything.

so negotiate the work….even mow his lawn

but to walk away with those mowers with no money out of pocket is something you want to do.

If nothing else…get the hydro… work out those negotiations.

anyhow

you still need insurance and a trailer…. family members don't want to pay you they can pay your insurance and buy you a trailer and some weed whackers…. anyone who doesn't pay up or contribute something just "forget to do their yard"
dont outright refuse… Oh yea right… Ill get to that… (just as soon as they get to paying you)

At least the dicky boss has something of value you can trade for.

The mower(s) will more than pay for with value than the work he screwed you out of last season…. and the hydro will last you years.

Put up with the old snob, for now…. plus… he also your dads boss….dont rock the boat!
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  #33  
Old 02-08-2014, 04:34 PM
PaperCutter PaperCutter is online now
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Northern VA
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http://wvsbdc.wvcommerce.org/default.aspx

That's a link to your state's Small Business Development Center. It's no cost to you and if it works the same as it does in VA, they'll sit down with you and help you figure out everything you need to know to run the business side of your business, and possibly even hook you up with a local mentor. You sound like you're overwhelmed and a little freaked out, go make use of this resource. You'll feel a lot better.
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  #34  
Old 02-08-2014, 04:57 PM
JeffH1 JeffH1 is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: North Canton, OH
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I'm 20 and I'm in the same boat as you. I'm a little bit better off financially because I've been working close to 70 hours a week the last year and a half as well as mowing a couple of lawns...but I'm so overwhelmed by all the steps you need to take to even get started and all the expenses and hoops you have to jump through to even become a business. Their is just sooooo much crap that you have to do to make sure your a** is covered that I really don't even know where to start. Thank god my brother in law has his own construction business. Every time I think of something I don't know about(which is basically everything as far as initially starting the business), I write it down. The last time I talked to him was on Thanksgiving and I've already got about two 8x10 pages of notebook paper worth of questions and other stuff to talk to him about.

I've been reading a lot before I've been going to bed(I bought some business and other landscaping books at a local bookstore) and some nights I just get so overwhelmed because their is just soooooooooooo much to take in that I just have to put the book down and go to bed because I can't take it anymore.
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  #35  
Old 02-08-2014, 04:59 PM
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JonesLawnCareWV JonesLawnCareWV is offline
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Join Date: May 2013
Location: Charleston WV
Posts: 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by PaperCutter View Post
http://wvsbdc.wvcommerce.org/default.aspx

That's a link to your state's Small Business Development Center. It's no cost to you and if it works the same as it does in VA, they'll sit down with you and help you figure out everything you need to know to run the business side of your business, and possibly even hook you up with a local mentor. You sound like you're overwhelmed and a little freaked out, go make use of this resource. You'll feel a lot better.
I am freaked out. I'm stepping out into the real world without any assistance or support from family, aside from my fiancee. I'm determined to succeed even without their help. One of these days when they need something, I'll still help them, but I'll be sure to throw it out there that they never believed in me. Sometimes all a person needs is some genuine support from their family, ya know?

Thanks for the resource, hopefully it will be beneficial. Most of the resources I've sought tell me what I need, but don't give any indication of how to get it and no interest in helping. Aside from the fine members of LawnSite, ofcourse. They're more help to me than anyone!
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  #36  
Old 02-08-2014, 05:02 PM
PaperCutter PaperCutter is online now
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Northern VA
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When I made my appointment with the SBDC office when I started my business, I budgeted 90 minutes for the appointment and booked a sales call afterwards. She was so incredibly helpful that I actually felt BAD that I had to leave. I felt like she would've kept throwing info and resources at me for another few hours.
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  #37  
Old 02-08-2014, 05:08 PM
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JonesLawnCareWV JonesLawnCareWV is offline
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Join Date: May 2013
Location: Charleston WV
Posts: 250
Sounds like I need to schedule an appointment with them then. That will be my first action after I get out of classes on Monday. Thanks for the info. Seems prospective!
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  #38  
Old 02-08-2014, 05:45 PM
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TPendagast TPendagast is offline
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Join Date: May 2008
Location: Wasilla, AK
Posts: 3,062
Quote:
Originally Posted by JonesLawnCareWV View Post
I am freaked out. I'm stepping out into the real world without any assistance or support from family, aside from my fiancee. I'm determined to succeed even without their help. One of these days when they need something, I'll still help them, but I'll be sure to throw it out there that they never believed in me. Sometimes all a person needs is some genuine support from their family, ya know?

Thanks for the resource, hopefully it will be beneficial. Most of the resources I've sought tell me what I need, but don't give any indication of how to get it and no interest in helping. Aside from the fine members of LawnSite, ofcourse. They're more help to me than anyone!
Sounds like they believe in you mowing their lawn for free.

If they don't help you, just convince them you failed and your out of business and go mow 7 lawns that will pay.
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  #39  
Old 02-08-2014, 07:00 PM
WenzelOSLLC WenzelOSLLC is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Maplewood, MN
Posts: 330
I may have glossed over this part seeing how Im on my phone but you say you love the industry and doing the mowing and everything.

Thats great but maybe the ownership part isn't in the cards right now. Get a job with an established company and go from there.
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  #40  
Old 02-08-2014, 07:27 PM
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unkownfl unkownfl is offline
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Location: Orlando/Windermere
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If you're concerned in protecting your parents and yourself it may be best to switch over your "business" into a LLC. It's no where near the same as being insured as in it's not going to settle any claim but it will separate you personally from a business.
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