Downsizing saves money

Discussion in 'General Industry Discussions' started by David Haggerty, Oct 27, 2011.

  1. This year I lost my biggest account, Sugarcreek Packing in Dayton Ohio. Plus two of the board member's homes one in Beavercreek, the other in Springfield. I also had to stop mowing a little daycare across the street from Sugarcreek.
    All together it was about $25,000. I had tears in my eyes! I laid of my Son. And worked solo at what I had left.
    So now it's the end of the year. My wife who is an accredited accountant/bookkeeper/tax preparer, says I profited MORE this year than before! And I'm doing less work!
    Eliminating payroll was the biggest savings, but that was less than $10k. It was putting an extra 100 miles a week on my truck. And it's a bit of a fuel hog at 10 MPG.
    I thought maybe my wife was just trying to make me feel better, because I couldn't figure out where the savings was. But taxable income is UP! And the figures don't lie. The truck is now paid off, so I actually have fewer deductables.

    The lesson I learned was LISTEN TO YOUR ACCOUNTANT. She'd been complaining about overhead for years. Now I'm working less, less wear $ tear on the equipment, and the life expectancy on the truck is about doubled!

    Any comments or experiences along this line?
     
  2. zak406

    zak406 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,519

    I'm curious ofwhat your making now vs before and also how many hours / jobs you do a day? Also any winter work?
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  3. Exact Rototilling

    Exact Rototilling LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,354

    Not surprised one bit.

    Do you mainly mow with some landscape maintenance?
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  4. ralph02813

    ralph02813 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,041

    Every once in a while I argue with myself about getting a trailer - right now I put everything in the back of my truck - well not everything, I have organized my work week to nimimize gear on the truck, thus saving gas and having to buy that trailer. My argument against the trailer is I have got to get a good one with brakes otherwise I'd burn through brakes on the truck - and you know they aren't cheap.
    I hate the thought of having to unload my stuff daily - the lazy side of me I guess - so I can see myself like so many guys having everything I own in the trailer - what next buy a gas station - so that's my thoughts on upsizing.
     
  5. zak406

    zak406 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,519

    I used to do what you did, just the truck thing. Ill never go back what a pain in hte ass putting the stuff in the back of a truck is. It got to the point were we almost lost our first cub walk behidn because it was getting to close to being dropped off. As for brakes, pads are cheap and even at taht with my 6x12 I dont go through them any faster than normal. I was also able to shave 10 mins off a stop with out using the back of my truck, between unloading and reloading and throwing grass in my bed instead of garbage cans it was one of the best investments i have ever made. Next year im going to an enclosed 7x16
     
  6. ralph02813

    ralph02813 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,041

    okay, I gotta think Again!
     
  7. Exact Rototilling

    Exact Rototilling LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,354

    The debate on just a truck or truck and trailer is debatable depends on what size.accounts you run on solo or.crew and equipment. A properly set up truck can.be faster than a.trailer ....just.need.to.have it rigged up so your not wasting.time with.load and.unload.drill.

    ...anyhow the evidence has always been a solo can most always make more per.hour.than a.crew especially on smaller properties.

    Problem with solo is it can.be.a near.death.March during peak.load. And one is in a.serious pickle when you get sick.or.injured. taking.any real.off.time.is a major pita.
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  8. ralph02813

    ralph02813 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,041

    @axact, I tend to agree, on my truck I always carry my 36 ferris wb, redmax blower and whacker- chain saw and hedger. And, gas of course.
     
  9. zak406

    zak406 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,519

    A properly set up truck can be effiecent no doubt. But when your using a pick up truck and homemade ramps or tractor supply ramps it will never be quicker. At ralph with what you have you could get away with a 5x8 5x10 trailer and it would be a load easier. THe over head is not that much, my trailer was 1600 dollars for a 6x12 and its 6 dollars a year to register if you divide that into one year of work its 133 dollars a month and its all paid off! But lets say you cut 20 yards a week and you save lets just say for the sake of discussion 7 mins per yard, thats 20x7= 140 mins per week. Lets say it takes you 45 mins to cut a yard. you could cut three more yards a week with that 140 mins saved, which easily pays off your inital investment, brakes, and any extra fuel you burn. Thats all within a year!
     
  10. ralph02813

    ralph02813 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,041

    @zak406 thanks for the additional thoughts - I picked up an old cox 5x8, it is in great shape, it has been on block in a garage for 10 years - no dry on the tires at all for $200 I was going to maybe put it on the road next spring for mulching and fertilizer stff to see how it worked out, but giving me an extra 140 mins a week sounds better the good - I love saving time I just bought a new hedger - redmax 40" single blade, it should knock a lot of time of my hedge and bush trimmer - you are right time saved is money earned.
     

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