Getting Started!

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by GeorgiaDawgs, Oct 16, 2006.

  1. GeorgiaDawgs

    GeorgiaDawgs LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    Hey all,

    New to the boards. A few questions. I live about 45 miles northeast of Atlanta, Georgia. I also live about 20 minutes from Athens, Georgia. Which is where the University of Georgia is located. I've been thinking of starting my own lawn mowing business, but people kind of laugh at me when I say so. But yet I see people doing it everyday. I thought I might start small by just doing lawns. It will be JUST me for a while.....so I wanted to ask a few questions.

    How many lawns, realistically, could I expect to cut per day alone, and per month? What should I charge per lawn? What is a reasonable income gross per month could I expect? I have NO equipment of my own yet, but plan to get them before the spring of 2007. I used to cut my neighbors yard and another lady's yard all the time for about $35 each lawn. What are your thoughts? Thanks in advance.

    Nick
     
  2. Tom c.

    Tom c. LawnSite Member
    Posts: 218

    Theres alot of variables here, 1 it depends on what size lawns. ie: small residential or large estate size properties. I would start with residentials, in suburbia for a 50x100 I get 30.00 or 35.00 depending on how much trimming . On larger properties like 1/4 acre or 1/2 35.00-40.00, somewhere in this website you'll find charts on pricing services. Try to achieve a hourly rate of 50-60 per hr.Working by yourself you should be able to do 8-10 lawns per day without busting your hump too much. Say 4 before lunch and then 4 after. Try to route it up so your not driving to much between jobs. To figure out your profit you need to know your overhead ie: Lawnmower costs if you have a payment, gas for equipment and truck, string trimmer, string trimmer line, trailer,etc. Buy commercialy rated equipment!!! dont go to home cheapo or other chain stores hook up with a reputable landscape supply shop and talk to them you can get good financing deals like low int loans on good equipment I got 0% on a bobcat w/b for 24 mths.Last but not least this website is a great place to learn, everyone here is willing to helps H:waving: ope this info helps Good luck!!!
     
  3. apowell18

    apowell18 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 179

    I also am starting out next spring...i am borrowing a scag 36" wb from a buddy who is no longer in the biz...I work a full-time job currently for 50hrs wk...i have estimated that only 20 lawns is all that i can handle by myself(and that takes up all day on saturdays as well as a few days during the week). my minimum will be $30 for mowing...however i've made several hundred this fall by aerating, seeding and fertilization. These are things that will help you out early in the spring, for instance i aerated, seeded and fertilized two yards this past weekend. After the rental of the aerater I netted $200 for 2 1/2 hrs of work, not too bad. I've been going over the numbers nearly everyweek of what to expect as far as gross income for next year and whether or not to purchase all my equipment in the spring or wait until the fall and pay cash. WIth 20 lawns at $35 each i will gross only 20K, not counting all the extras that I will get. 20K is more than enough for start up and all my equipment will be paid in full by this time next year. ok i'm rambling on...
     
  4. Shawnhines

    Shawnhines LawnSite Member
    Posts: 76

    20K at 35$ a cut. Are you putting them on contract and how often? I am also going to be starting the 07 year but I am looking at more towards the fall season...

    Shawn Hines
     
  5. ED'S LAWNCARE

    ED'S LAWNCARE LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 361

    20K is that before taxes, ins, lic
     
  6. Down2EarthLawns

    Down2EarthLawns LawnSite Member
    Posts: 191

    Tom is right. Way too many variables for an acurate response. But if you hustle, get the right equipment, and set the right routes, you can do up to 15-20 day!!!! Seriously I would plan on 10-13 average sized lawns with average driving time (5 min between stops).
     
  7. GeorgiaDawgs

    GeorgiaDawgs LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    Well all this is well and good, but I was thinking that most lawns here are about just barely less than a half acre. So I was thinking of doing 4-5 lawns per day for about $35-40 each lawn. That will be around $200 per day, and about $1000 per week pre tax. That will also be $48,000 per year pre tax at doing 4-5 lawns per day Mon-Friday. What are your thoughts? What do you guys mean "WB"? I have a simple riding lawn mower and a weedeater. I want to get a trailer to hook up to my 6 cyl Ranger, but how much do those cost? Thanks in advance.

    Nick
     
  8. Tom c.

    Tom c. LawnSite Member
    Posts: 218

    A w/b is a walk behind mower,which are very common in this bussiness. A lawn tractor is very slow and cannot turn well on corners! Most walk behinds are zero turn [ you lock abrake lever and it turns on a dime!! You'll have a very hard time with a tractor, And it will not hold up for long. Theyre designed for homeowner use. A w/b is commercially rated= heavy duty, theyre made to work all day, 5-6 days a week. Do yourself a favor buy the right equipment!! If your gonna take on thirty or forty lawns a week that tractor wont last long and then your gonna have 30-40 irate customers. Advertise in the spring like in feb. or march. Save your bucks for a down payment on a good 36in. w/b, if you have a six cyl ranger youll only be able to handle a small trailer like 5x8 then youll need a small 21in for gated yards get a good blower and string trimmer and your all set. P.S. I bought a brand new Bobcat 36in w/b for 2150.00 with 200.00 down and got a 24mth. 0% and pay 78.00 per mth. How can you beat that!!! Look around lots of dealers are looking to sell o6 mowers cause the new ones are due in the spring. Click on the sponsers above!! Good luck Tom :walking:
     
  9. apowell18

    apowell18 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 179

    20K is before taxes and is a rough estimate for posting purposes, i have my actual numbers filed away...but this is my estimate for my first year and does not account for variables such as a month of no rain or a late freeze in the spring. I know I could handle 40 yards by myself with leway if i did it full time...I would definitely recommend aerating in the early spring...I haven't recieved one call for mowing since I advertised in August, however, like I stated before I've made several hundred aerating (probably a total of 10 lawns) this fall and just received two more emails yesterday for aerating. It would be a good way to get a down payment for a WB...

    My first several years i don't plan on putting anyone on contract as it will be part time only and will not rely on the income for my family...however once I do grow enough I will need contracts...
     

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