Licenses / Insurance / LLC or INC?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by adidas15g, Oct 9, 2007.

  1. adidas15g

    adidas15g LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    Hello all,

    This is my first time posting on this site, as well as any other lawn care site for that matter. I am very new to the business of landscaping, so I'd like to explain my situation to all of you first.

    My current employer just had his contract renegotiated with the landlord. The new contract states that the property in and around the parking lot of the facility is now the responsability of the business, not the landlord anymore. The owner of the company asked me if I would be interested in maintaining the property, to which I agreed to. There is no grass, just mulch, shrubs and a few plants. Pretty small jobs for that matter, but there is some maintenance involved which I know I would be able to do, and I know based on what they paid the landlord in the past for Common Area Maintenance that there is a decent amount of money to be made. In order for me to get paid legitimately, I need to set up either a corporation or LLC.

    My questions to all of you are as follows. What licenses are required to run a very small operation such as this being that this will probably be my only contract? Will I need insurance for small jobs such as this? Do you recommend a LLC or a Corporation, and lastly, how much will it cost approximately to start up a LLC or INC in New Jersey?

    Thank you all for any insight or information you can provide.
  2. All_Toro_4ME

    All_Toro_4ME LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,578

    Ins is not required, but highly recommended to have. Take the most coverage you can afford. You can work as a sole proprietor. LLC's limit your liability if you were to get sued meaning that the business is exclusive of you, as sole proprietor you and the business are one entity. LLC's and Corps are VERY expensive to set up, you'll need to go through legal counsel, and generally those apply if you have employees. As sole proprietor, you are the sole owner, and its more cost effective to set up when compared to the other two. This is a just a quick overview of the 3 types of business, if you want to read more, do some searches on here, or google them. Welcome to LS.
  3. Clear-Cut

    Clear-Cut LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 481

    in nj, in order to be a licensed landscaping business you have to have a minimum of $250,000 liability insurance, register as a sole prop...if you decide to expand, you can always change over to an LLC

    to be honest...if all you are going to be doing is pulling weeds and pruning some shrubs ever once in a while, i wouldnt even wouldnt be worth it. it costs $55 to register as a sole prop, and i think $70-90 to register as a landscaping business, then you'll have to pay for insurance. if you dont mind me asking, how much will you be getting for this?

    on the otherhand, if you really want to start up a business (have more than one customer) then the best thing you can do it to register. I do 30 lawns a week and im just registered as a sole prop. because it is the easiest and cheapest to work with.

    good luck
  4. adidas15g

    adidas15g LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    Thanks for the info guys.

    I will be getting $4,000 for this job, which includes weeding a few beds, laying down about 10 yards of mulch, and trimming a few shrubs. There really isn't much property to deal with. I know it would be a good deal, and I know there would be more good deals to come.

    I didn't realize though that NJ needs a minimum of 250,000 liability insurance. I read a few of the other posts that people made about insurance, and a lot of them were able to insure their companies for $120-$150 per year. Any idea of any companies who would insure for this price?
  5. NewLeaf

    NewLeaf LawnSite Member
    Posts: 24

    I believe he is saying he has a $250,000 policy. It will usually run about $100 or so per month. It wont cost you $250,000, but you have up-to $250,000 worth of coverage

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