Lawn Care businesses oversaturated?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by johnson grass, Jun 9, 2004.

  1. johnson grass

    johnson grass LawnSite Member
    Posts: 15

    Just wanted to feel some of you out on where the market might be in 5 to ten yrs down the road. Every year I see more and more Lawn Care companies poping up out of the wood work. It seems like if there is a lay off the first thing someone thinks of is starting a lawn care business. These people have just as much right to do so as we did when we started ours, my question is how much impact can a certain area take before we are taken down by the Low Ballers of America? What these individuals must realize is that when you go in and underbid a job (lowball) it hurts the whole pricing structure in your area. Dont think that for one minute that your doing yourself any good picking up a few fast jobs by doing this, especially if you are in it for the long haul. This is a great place to vent sometimes and i would just like to hear some of everyones opinions.
     
  2. dvmcmrhp52

    dvmcmrhp52 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Pa.
    Posts: 4,205

    It will be over run with beer billy's for a time and it will then thin back out. Just a matter of being able to weather it.
    On the other hand the 2 counties around us have had somewhere in the neighborhood of 50,000 new homes built in the last ten years,all potential customers.
    I can't do 50,000 new homes.............................
     
  3. 1MajorTom

    1MajorTom Senior Moderator
    Posts: 6,074

    Yeah more and more "grass cutters" pop up every year. That's a fact. But that's all they are is grass cutters looking to put a couple benjamens in their pockets. And for every new grasscutter that arrives on the scene, another one is getting out of the business because they can't hack it. Don't even worry about these fly by night cutters. Just concentrate on becoming an established professional company in your area, and you'll succeed.
     
  4. johnson grass

    johnson grass LawnSite Member
    Posts: 15

    Great reply thats what i like too hear.
     
  5. Itsgottobegreen

    Itsgottobegreen LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,177

    I seen at least one new company around here every 3 weeks. I hope they go away. Every harry, dick and moe that owns a F-250 or larger truck, seems to buy them self a trailer and a mower. I guess to make the payments on the truck. I run a F-150 and got 8 times the amount of equipment. Its all paid for. None of them seem to cut anything but new houses with no landscaping on a 2 acres lot. Never see any on 1/4 to 1 acres jobs. Mow and blow. (thats if they got a blower) I bet you most of them are scab anyways.

    There are a lot of grass cutters, but less and less guys who do it all (like my self) From mulch, to dethatching (seems like I am the only guy in Mt. Airy with a dethatcher) to brush hogging to tractor and bobcat work to install to snow removal to of course mowing. The only thing I don't do is spraying, but I sub that out to a buddy.
     
  6. LynyrdSkynyrd

    LynyrdSkynyrd LawnSite Member
    Posts: 179

    The bad thing about the Lowballing Beer Bellys. Is once they wreck havack on the pricing. The prices will remain low for sometime after.

    I saw the same thing happen to the CATV industry back in the early to mid 80's. One company would get paid 8 to 10 cents a foot to put up strand. Then that companies workers would see how much money was to be had and created their own companies doing the same work for 6 to 8 cents a foot. Now days subcontractors would be lucky to make 3 cents a foot and have to divide that between a 3 man crew. Cutting in taps that use to pay $15.00 each are now down to about $2 or $3 dollars each. Now all of the fly by night companies that sprang up during that time are gone for they could not make a living and the rest are still suffering the effects.

    That is one reason that I choose to do cutting for Rail Roads, Chemical plants and Coal mines when I started. They have a lot of money to spend on such projects and do not mind paying a contractor good wages to do the work. I worked all over the eastern US for 20 years cutting mostly Rail Road property. And as far as I know they are just one other company in the eastern US doing the work. Rail Roads owns a lot of property between the sea shore and the Mississippi river that has to be kept up to city codes.
     
  7. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    Every intersection with a stoplight that that you stop at around here, you look across, and you'll see another lco. I've been seeing it for 20 years, but not like this.
     
  8. EastProLawn

    EastProLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,110

    Jodi's got this one nailed !
     
  9. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,137

    Every time this kind of thread pops up I say the same thing. Other new LCOs don't bother me, I usually don't pay much attention to them and I've got plenty of work. Worry about yourself and not what everyone else is doing.
     
  10. johnson grass

    johnson grass LawnSite Member
    Posts: 15

    Good replies thanks
     

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