I think I may go back to being solo.

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by exmarkking, Jun 30, 2013.

  1. coolluv

    coolluv LawnSite Gold Member
    from Atlanta
    Posts: 3,766

    From your mouth to Gods ears! Thanks.

    OOOPs....are we still allowed to mention God?

  2. gulfjoe

    gulfjoe LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,626

    This has been fantastic reading for a new guy in the biz.Right now I am a small solo guy with 8 accounts and a full time job as a jet engine mechanic that may ask 60hours from me at any point. My goal was to get big and let someone run the biz while I worked my main job building engines and let me handle the paperwork and the purchases, but not after reading this thread. I will have an employee maybe 2 for efficiency depending on sales. Right now as solo guy I am trying to learn and build clients. I also want to make all my mistakes so i may be able to fix them in the future.
  3. vegandude

    vegandude LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 450

    Make no further mistakes? Some days getting out of bed is a mistake:laugh::laugh::laugh::hammerhead:
  4. gulfjoe

    gulfjoe LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,626

    I'm talking about the real dumb ones like I did Friday. Didn't know the ground was SOFT and rode the 450lb WB through it trenching a 40 ft spot in the yard.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  5. vegandude

    vegandude LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 450

    Been doing the swales at the same business for ten years and this spring I buried my 26" in six inches of water that I swear wasn't there when I started
  6. Kelly's Landscaping

    Kelly's Landscaping LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,353

    I am slowly being beaten into submission on the employee issue. My knees bother me but I am considering options when I finish paying off me 2 newest trucks. It may be worth dropping the employees and just doing this with my partner not sure if id like to have us both solo or team up but I am sick of the bs we get from employees. Now the nice thing about downsizing if that was my decision is we have a killer lawn list now some 200 accounts so you can imagine knocking out 25-30 accounts a day with only 4-6 stops. That is possible if i wanted to cherry pick.
  7. colawnbarber

    colawnbarber LawnSite Member
    Posts: 14

    you guys that are running solo...god forbid but what happens if you ever get hurt or something like that? And if your running solo you don't own a business you own a job, with out you the biz makes no money
  8. vegandude

    vegandude LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 450

    Run carefully, carry a big bottle of aspirin and learn to work through everything. Liquor helps :laugh: seriously though-it's a mindset and I wouldn't have it any other way. I am too old and set in my ways to put up with stupidity and inefficiency and 100 other reasons. I like knowing that when I set foot on a property, good or bad it's all on my shoulders and I won't be responsible for someone else's mistake. :weightlifter::drinkup: I have never thought of this as a job, it's an adventure:laugh::laugh::laugh:
  9. RSK Property Maintenance

    RSK Property Maintenance LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,486

    solo is nice, but i think 2 people total would be able to potentially gross and net a lot more money with just one employee. for example, I gross 4000 a month mowing + sales tax it costs me 480 a month in gas and diesel to do my accounts. which can be done in 2 12 hour days if I am feeling really ambitious and its dry out, other wise i'm looking at 3 days of mowing, leaving me with at least 2 days open for "other work" if not even a 3rd and sometimes 4th day in the spring or fall. so solo i can and have net over 8000 pretty easily per month a few times. finding an extra 500 between 4 possible days really isn't that hard to do at all. for me it consists of asking my 23 customers if they are interested in having me do a number of things that need to be done, such as shrub pruning, mulching, weeding, brush clearing and removal. its really not hard. If I based my prices off trying to make 500 in an 8hr day I would get 95% of the jobs i ever went to do an estimate for. If I had one employee we could knock out 80 residential lawns in 4 days making me triple the money i was before and costing me next to nothing and add in a few mulch jobs for the week or shrub pruning and now because of this extra set of hands i'm able to make 15-16,000 a month instead of 8-10,000. I know it could work that way, because my buddy used to do it that way, and make that kind of money and I'm solo following in his foot steps. Its all about pricing, the economy and finding the right employee. I have the equipment, I have the market to support what I want, and I am the employee. I personally don't need help yet, but I'm not far away. I think 50 lawns a week for a 25 year old is pretty healthy, netting 8000 a month or more is very possible. my new goal for next year is to net 10,000 a month solo.
  10. wildstarblazer

    wildstarblazer LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 984

    It does seem like we could make a lot of money in this business but for some reason I rarely see a solo guy who cuts lawns for a living having all the nice things that are customers have. Nice house, cars, extra money to do whatever you want, fancy vacations. etc..

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