Hello everyone!! New to the site and business and wanted to share a little about my plans, hopes and aspirations. I'm living in Elwood, IL and purchased a new home a year ago this month. The builder sold it to me "as is" and everything was severly below grade and covered in 6' weeds with pretty yellow flowers. About 2 months after I moved in the police came after me to do something about the weeds so I started getting bids for landscaping. The cheapest bid I got was still far beyond my price range so I sought the help of family with equipment that could help me to get it done. I started my research at Gardenweb.com and got a lot of good help from those folks. I'll be eternally grateful to several members (one of whom frequents this forum) for their advice. So after 176 tons of topsoil, 22 tons of sand, 150 feet of drain tile, 4 trees, 40 pounds of grass seed, 1 ton of compost, 400 lbs. of soybean meal, and 700 sq.ft. of pavers I've decided this can be done. I've got two accounts without trying, one a neighbor and the other a friend both looking for full rehabs: grass, trees, pavers and retainers...the works. I'm currently working full time 10 hours a day, 6 days a week on first shift and am trying to find a job on midnights 5 days a week. I've received two offers for second shift but that will cut into my daylight hours. I'm selling my car (believe it or not I owe less than it's worth, ImpalaSS Indy) to free up an additional $550 a month in debt. I'm also going to roll my profit sharing plan at work into a small business IRA which I can borrow from interest and tax free and pay back over the next five years. That will give me over $20k in start up capital plus the help of family. I have a brother in law with 30 acres who grows alfalfa hay for farmers. He's going to allow me some of his acreage to grow trees and bushes to use in my landscapes. He also has a barn that he'll allow me to use in exchange for some work around his small farm (which I would have done anyway if he'd asked). I love to be outdoors and I love getting up at the crack of dawn and working hard. I'm tired of doing it for someone else and while my employer has been good to me some of his ethics and decisions are questionable and I'm ready for a change. My area has several lawncare and landscape companies but most are located close to Chicago. I'm at the extreme south end of the suburbs and the area has been exploding with new construction because of a new highway coming through. 5 of 6 of the landscape companies I spoke with when I was shopping for quotes were located 30-40 miles away. The market is definately there as folks who lived up North are selling their $500,000 homes and moving toward a little peace and quiet. They're going to be looking for someone to mow and trim and I want to be first in line! Sorry for getting so long winded. Anyone who read this through deserves a gold star. Peace, Adrian P.S. A shout out to DCHall!! Thanks for you help!!!