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My Plans... What do you think?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by cvicnotcivic, Oct 16, 2007.

  1. cvicnotcivic

    cvicnotcivic LawnSite Member
    from US
    Posts: 4

    Hi everyone,
    I have plans to buy my cousin’s business next spring to get into lawn care. His biz has 26 ¼ acre residential customers and grosses about $2200/month. He is selling me the customers, 32” Toro walkbehind, 21” Toro push, Stihl trimmer and blower, and a 5x10 trailer for $6000. All the equipment was bought in 2004.

    I go to hi school and I’m in 11th grade and drive a 2003 Crown Vic X-Cop car. It has a tow capacity of 2000lbs so I’m not worried about towing. My cousin weighed the fully loaded trailer and it was 1180lbs with empty gas cans.

    I plan on only working about 12-15 hours a week (57 mile route, round-trip) so I don’t want to get a truck just yet. If business goes well next year I’ll buy a truck (F150 or Ram 1500) in spring of 2009 when I graduate.

    I want to be a legit business and want to grow so when I’m in college I can have a business on the side to help pay for tuition.

    What do you think of the plans? I can’t wait to get started!!
  2. verant

    verant LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 484

    i started when i was 16. i bought a ztr, 6X12 trailer, and trimmer, bp blower. i got a truck when i was 18, im 19 now and in college. i had a jeep before and it was okay for awhile, but it got old pulling with it. Its so nice to have a full size truck, it makes life easier, the extra gas isn't a big deal b/c its worth it. How many customers is that? if you plan to be somewhat busy you'll want a bigger mower and if you do leaves you'll need a bagger. If you have any questions let me know cause i know where your coming from
  3. PlatinumLandCon

    PlatinumLandCon LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,315

    A trailer with that equipment will be OK to tow behind that car. I've heard of people start out using their mom's old minivan. Don't plan on using the crown vic for too long because you'll grow out of it realllllyyyy fast.
  4. 93Chevy

    93Chevy LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 37,805

    Sounds like a good deal. I'm looking to start cutting on the side next year, and I'm looking for a used trailer and maybe a used ZTR or new hydro WB. Problems I could see with a car is transporting grass clippings if the customer wants their grass or leaves bagged. But that all depends on your customers.
  5. tbettis

    tbettis LawnSite Member
    Posts: 221

    have a spare transmission on standby
  6. PlatinumLandCon

    PlatinumLandCon LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,315

    I don't get it.... If the tow capacity is 2000 and he says he'll only tow 1180 then i don't see the issue.
  7. coif_kid

    coif_kid LawnSite Member
    from Ontario
    Posts: 93

    The problem is the transmission on cars aren't built like they are on trucks. They aren't designed to continually tow a large weigth behind. Yes, they can tow the weight, but not for continual extended use. A home owner 21" mower will do the same as a commercial 21". The difference is durability.
  8. SwihartServices

    SwihartServices LawnSite Member
    Posts: 154

    I think your getting screwed.

    Used trailer ..$500.. Used walk behind ...$500... 21" mower ...$300... Stilh weed eater and blower ..$400.. = total equipment $1700-$2000.

    You'll have $4000-$4300 for advertising, insurance, and business setup. You could end up with $3,000 for advertising.

    If you pass out $1000 worth of flyers next spring you'll probably get more customers than what your cousin has.

    Then you could take the other $2000 and buy a truck or some hand tools so you can do mulching and spring cleanups as well. Or get a yellow pages add or something.
  9. daveintoledo

    daveintoledo LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,587

    too much, you need a truck, and you need to work more then 15 hours a week, it wont work
  10. cvicnotcivic

    cvicnotcivic LawnSite Member
    from US
    Posts: 4

    correction... the walkbehind mower is a 36".

    musclecarboy, you're right that I'm a lot under the weight limit. I'll also only be using it for business like 30% of the time.

    coif_kid, my dad was telling me about this. but if i'm only towing 30% of the time, will it make a difference? its also the "Police Interceptor" version so everything is heavier-duty.

    SwihartServices, i haven't looked up prices of equipment yet because I'm new. I will look everything up to verify.

    verant, I will get a truck after next year because I'll need the space and the bed.

    dave, why will I need to work more than 15 hours?

    Thanks for the help guys!

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