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Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by lawnguy48, Aug 30, 2011.
Because nothing else compairs and they have really cheap blowers
Just busting your balls a little.
Three thousand to me is taking a short cut, my suggestion is to keep working your job and keep saving money until spring,
you may just have enough time to put aside an extra thousand and I can assure you that it will come in handy.
I personally wouldn't do it with less than 8 thousand although when I did I had 5...
It's barely enough and that was ten years ago, as was said you still need a truck.
Do as you like...
so if I had 4500 to spend what would you buy.
I would add just a little more, but stay reasonable until the business is up and going and paying for itself. Very good equip can be found used if you are careful--I do it all the time. However, for a startup, I'd suggest a 21" self propelled--personally I think it's hard to beat a Honda engine--at least on the lower end mowers. Echo 225 or 230, Kawasaki ?, Stihl ? Husqvarnia 223 for trimmer--any of these would be good--get a good brand but not the heaviest and most expensive. A Echo/Stihl/Husqvarnia handheld blower.
You should be able to get all this new for about $800 (+ or -). Watching craigslist, classifieds, and garage sales, all this could be bought for much less if you are careful. Then either an inexpensive pickup, or small trailer/car (pickup) as your hauler.
Get the money comming in, see if you want to continue the business (most startup business fail the 1st year), build a customer base, then add equipment, using the old for backup.
One of the important things that I would recommend is checking around to where your closest mower dealership is (then asking yourself if you can stand purchasing his products (very important thing as well)). I know you will be buying a used WB or ZTR but get new hand helds. Buy these from that dealer because eventually you WILL be buying a new mower and if you've already built a repor with him, extra little discounts may occur as well as priority for repairs because of the "loyal customer" tag.
On used vs. new handhelds...these things are used and abused by folks. You buying a used blower or weedeater is just sending money out the window. It may run great the first season (or half if you're fortunate). But soon after that you'll find yourself replacing things here and there, enough to possibly drive your costs up. So with those two things being said here is my list:
Trailer: 1000 @ 5x10 w/3600lb axle (Hustler trailer company can make custom trailers)
Mower: ~2000 (I would start at a 44-48" deck, any smaller you'll most likely lose money)
Handhelds: ~600 (300 for Shindaiwa T242 trimmer and 300 for a good hand held blower)
If you must get a push mower: 120 (Craftsman - which you really shouldn't need. I say this because you will have to either run through the lot possibly missing pieces of lawn or have to charge enough to make it worth your while. If you can AT ALL help it, don't bid on lawns that don't have a full size gate or double door gate for fenced in property).
What kind of vehicle do you have for pulling this equipment? Is this something you'll have to get immediatly? On this subject if you have something like a little Mazda or Toyota just leave it be for right now and do with what you've got. A standard small pickup will pull 3500lbs all day long with no problems. If you don't have something yet, then look for a Tacoma or Mazda 4 cyl. Rake the money in first with what you're saving then when that's ready to pay cash (or mostly cash) then jump up to the toys. You DON'T want to start out with more debt than you absolutely have to.
Just my two cents. If I had to do it all over again I'd do it the same way I told ya.
Being my first year out with my own accounts, I'll say its rough, my company is just finally starting to turn a profit. Here is what I've purchased in order
Exmark 21in no drive - $600
Truck: $5,500 1998 Chevy 3500 6.5L diesel with a snow plow(Wasn't so much as want but needed to upgrade from my old 94 Dodge, which had almost 200K on her and was eating coolent, plus Army bonus came in though it would be nice to have a better truck)
Toro Proline 44in belt drive - $500 (got it off a friend, it was just sitting around so he'd rather see it used than rust away)
Stihl FS85R- Free, buddy was throwing it away cause the clutch was gone in it.
Kawi 27- $220, bought to use instead of the stihl, don't like it as much
Huskqurava 125 - $118, ebay find
5x8 trailer - $500, craigslist
Scag 48in hydro wb - $1000 scooped this from a auction, it needed some help
7.5x16 trailer - $910, craigslist
KM 90 - with a tiller and string trimmer attachment $600, the old FS 85 just crapped out one day wouldn't start again.
Thanks alot i guess its time to start looking to see what i can find!!
Well, it's not about that, I think you can figure out where and how to spend it.
What I am saying is keep saving from here until the very last moment, keep saving.
Believe me I think you will need it, every penny of it.
And if you don't, you'll still be glad you have it.