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I need a building!

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by mtdman, Oct 26, 2004.

  1. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,137

    I work out of a storage area out by where I live. I have a 10 by 30 enclosed space, with electricity, and a large parking space in the rv lot for my trailer. I keep all the equipment in the enclosed space. It has worked well for me for the last 4 years or so since I moved in there. I dig having the space, lots of work area for maintenance and storage. Got the electricity for the power tools. It's seperate from my home, and secure. And there are lots of other companies that work outta the storage area. Asphalt, painting, trucking, a Lay's Potato Chip vendor, and 2 other LCOs, as well as many others. Lots of commercial activity. I am very happy there.

    Today as I am leaving in the morning with the trailer, the guy that runs the place stopped me. It seems that the new policy for all the storage areas this company owns is no automotive fluids are to be kept in any storage area or parking area. This does not include gas and oil in machinery, just containers of gas, oil, fluids, lubricants, etc. Can't be kept in the unit, or in an RV lot. As well as no more than 2 spare tires of any kind.

    Now, this doesn't really bother me that much. It's not so much an incovienence to take the gas cans and oil home and keep it there. And the manager says there won't be any inspections, so even if I keep the stuff in the unit, they'll not know about it. But it worries me that more restrictions are to come, and/or more forceful enforcement of the restrictions. In which case I will be forced to find elsewheres to go. And on top of that, I really am not happy that they are basically biting the hand that runs the place. Without the commercial workers in there, the place would be empty.

    So, one of my long term goals has been to get my own building, whether rent or buy. But it was long term. I am not ready to make that kind of investment any time soon. I would ideally like a big warehouse type building, or barn, etc to keep the equipment in, maybe have an office and area for future workers. Land around here is at a premium, especially with all the new residential areas they are creating out here now. Used to be a lot of unused land on the cheap, but since the building boom started, empty land is expensive and scarce. Not to mention getting the land in a correctly zoned area. I have thought about approaching one of the other lcos and proposing going in together on a building, not sure how that would work though.

    I just hope nothing else changes at the storage area any time soon. It has been an ideal situation until now.

  2. pjslawncare/landscap

    pjslawncare/landscap LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,410

    I know the feeling man. Im lucky to have almost an acre of commercially zoned land behind my home, but Im outgrowing that & will need to find something larger soon. Hopefully I can get some acreage out side of town some day and put everything there.
  3. bottlefed89

    bottlefed89 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 243

    I hear you too, I am currently using part of a warehouse that my dad owns, but I think I've outgrown it in both of our eyes. Id like to have a decent sized metal building, with a big 2 story office section to live in. I'd prefer it to be on some acreage somewhere, but as you said - those are my L O N G
    term goals. Have to have something to dream for though....
  4. crawdad

    crawdad LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,939

    What about renting a barn from an old farmer? I did that for a while, it worked out good for both of us.
  5. grass-scapes

    grass-scapes LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,552

    in the area I am in, Im strapped. Commercial land is very very expensive, and the county puts so many rules in place, you aren't even supposed to store contractor equipment in a residential area. I am having an 8 by 40 storage container delivered early next week. (maybe this week, if the rain keeps up). I have to get the neccesary permits, follow setback rules, etc. If I have an employee, im not allowed to work out of a residential area. I understand some of those rules have a purpose, but can't work out of my house if I have an employee? come on.... At this point, I couldn't afford to stay in business if I had to rent office/warehouse space. IM trying to find agricultural land in my area, but not much for sale, unless I want 100 plus acres. LOL. With agricultural, I can build a house and a private nursury and be legal. Have any equipment I want to on the land.
  6. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,137

    There aren't a whole lotta barns and/or farmers around here any more. Lot of the farmland is being sold for houses, everything in the area around me. I'd have to go 30 min away or so from town to find something, and I'm not hip on that.
  7. tonygreek

    tonygreek LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,440

    MTD, Storage Inns of America, which I believe is the largest storage co in the US, has a company-wide policy preventing fuel, fertilizer, etc. We have several locations in my area and 2 went so far as to say it is "corporate policy to not rent to landscapers". I didn't pose the question to their corporate office as I didn't really care because they don't have the door height that I need.

    You may look at checking with any contacts you've networked and see if anyone has space available or would like to share. My window company warehouse actually houses 3 companies. It's 6k sq ft and comprises a forms co, a design co, and my exterior remodeling co. Outside of a couple of minor squabbles related to one of the guys space usage, it's been great. This is the second building we've done this in and we've saved a ton with the shared utilities, alarm and rent. When we just moved into our new place, we all took the chunk of space we needed and has gone well. I like it from a security standpoint that someone is almost always in the building and they like it because I'm like having a pilot for a roommate. I'm never there.
  8. cantoo

    cantoo LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,910

    mtd, you're going to likely have to go a little south of you to find cheaper buildings to work out of. Try farm country maybe you can rent a shed there's lots of empty buildings there.
  9. stslawncare

    stslawncare LawnSite Bronze Member
    from DE
    Posts: 1,484

    probably not what your going to want to hear but the policy on fluids and tires is not by the storage company but most likely from the local fire marshal. when i first read your message i was thinking it was the companies policy but then saw about the tires and that leads me to think that its the fire marshal, that rule is being made all over the place now.
  10. pfifla1

    pfifla1 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 45

    We currently own a 8,000 sq ft building, most is dock high but a 2,000 sq ft section isnt which i use primiarly as a workshop, i'll tell you what i'd sell my house before i get rid of this, i love going over there and putting the mowers up on the forklifts, and i also can store my jetskis and fourwheelers in there, there is no substitute for space... it is very wise to buy, not rent, this place has almost doubled since purchase in 2001

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