1st year!!!

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by michindi, May 12, 2004.

  1. michindi

    michindi LawnSite Member
    Posts: 98

    Im just curious how your first year in business went for you. Did you lose alot of customers gain alot? Lets hear your experince in the first year...
  2. michindi

    michindi LawnSite Member
    Posts: 98

    No takers on this one??
  3. twins_lawn_care

    twins_lawn_care LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 932

    First year in business,
    Worked too much,
    didn't make enough,
    had a loss overall,
    and at the end of the year, totalled our work vehicle.

    Other than that it was a good year!

    Actually, that about sums it up. The key to the first year for me was all that I learned. First year was horrible, but necessary for me to be as successful as I am in my second, and on after that.

    Hang in there, and don't expect too much. Just take everything as a learning experience.
    Good luck with it!
  4. Wells

    Wells LawnSite Member
    from SLC UT
    Posts: 0

    Gained a lot of customers, most from referals.
    Put most of the profits back into the business,
    Made some mistakes but learned from them.
    Overall was a good year.
    Wouldn't trade the experience for anything.
  5. travis strecker

    travis strecker LawnSite Member
    Posts: 97

    just started and already got 7 yards
  6. greenedge

    greenedge LawnSite Member
    Posts: 73

    I started Aug of 2003' Now have 22 regulars and 5 on calls. I too learned about everything you should and should not do.
    1. Never take another landscapers business card of a door!
    2. Never give a price without looking at the job!
    3. Don't worry about the crew doing the yard across the street from your house, you might be the next lawn service for that neighbor!
  7. michindi

    michindi LawnSite Member
    Posts: 98

    Great advice all... Thank you! I guess Im just getting down on myself a little because every time I get a new or two yards it seems like I always lose a yard or two.....I just cant get up. But ohwell

    CDJLANDSCAPING LawnSite Member
    Posts: 8

    This is my second year, first year full time and let me tell you about customers. All 8 of my customers returned from last year which made me happy. I figured that i was doing something right. I just lost one of them this week because he he has dandylions in his yard and wanted to know why they were taller than the grass that i had "cut" 3 days prior. He couldnt understand that dandylions grow much faster than grass. I might add that he just showed up at my house with polaroid pictures. He was trying to accuse me of not cutting his lawn. So I did what any self respecting landscaper would do I raised his rates. And then i get another unannounced visit to the house and things got ugly from there.
    New customers can be just as bad. There is 3 types of new customers. 1. price shoppers 2. people so demanding they cant find a landscaper that will deal with them for very long. 3. My favorite, the one that treats you like you are just some low life hired help. For whatever reason i was blessed with one of each this year and needless to say they are not on my route anymore.
    I now have 20 very good customers and they are all very happy with my services. And i am also in discussions about abtaining 3 gas stations. I think starting in January i am going to target gas stations.
  9. Birddog Lawncare

    Birddog Lawncare LawnSite Member
    from Ohio
    Posts: 73

    My first year goes like this. I paid cash for all of my equipment, wanted to start small went with a used 36wb, new Stihl bp blower, stick edger and picked up a used Stihl trimmer. Well I've had a rock hit my widshield that cracked it, bill was $300 for new windshield. My wife was driving my truck that I just purchased in Dec. 03 (2001 Chevy 1500 ext cab) and side swiped a concrete beam in a parking garage. Ins. Deductible was $250. Last Saturday it was raining like cats and dogs and trying to unload all the equipment off trailer and in a hurry locked my keys in the truck, no spare, had to pay dealer $30 to have key made. My Stihl trimmer broke on Friday night, took to dealer to have repaired and bought new Stihl trimmer. I jack knifed my trailer on Saturday and damaged the same bed side, I thought that I could put it off for a few weeks, it was just six weeks ago that I had it repaired. Driving home yesterday and fuel pump goes out, $$$, had to pay wrecker $50 to tow back to dealership. Still waiting on estimate and hoping it's covered under warranty. To make matters worse, had an old lady call Fri. night wanting an estimtate on the other side of town, I call her back on Sat. evening and she hired a ******** kid that lives next door. (literally) I wake up this morning and take a shower in ice cold water, guess my hot water heater is going out. Starting to wonder if I'll ever catch a break in my life.
  10. laborador

    laborador LawnSite Member
    Posts: 148

    Thats your bad points, how about tell us about your good points to get all the first year people motivated

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