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Need some expert advice

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by spat, Mar 5, 2003.

  1. Shuter

    Shuter LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,171


    I am from the Northeast so I can not comment of FL. But I have the same idea as you, only on a smaller scale. I gained 5 accounts in one neighborhood of about 40 higher end homes ($500,000 - 800,000). These lots are not real big and only take about 20 minutes to mow. I could have set up a lower rate schedule but I stayed with what the landscaper had that I took the customers from - $25.00 per mow. As I started working, more neighbors stared asking me to their lawns. I then had 15 after 2 years and I have a deal with the developer to be the recommended landscaper for the 20 new homes that are going to be built. Right now as the snow is on the ground, I have picked up 6 more accounts for the spring - total 21. I have raised my price for all, but the first 5. I am not taking advantage of the wealth these people have, but I am offering a good service that keeps them happy with the results and they are willing to pay for it. On the landscaping side once I re-did one yard (plantings and beds) it started all the other people thinking about their yards, so I now have a list of things to plant or take care of all the time for just these 21 accounts.

    You should check (like networking) with other landscapers in your area about pricing. In my area many landscapers get together to share ideas and talk about business. There is more than enough work out there that you should not be worried about talking to your competition. It is a good business idea that all companies stay in the same area in pricing.

    You mentioned that the area is going to have 6000 homes. Do you honestly think that you will get all 6000 lots for service and that you and your partner could handle 6000 homes. You also mentioned to throw out all the things like Workman's comp...., do not have insurance and if not you may not pay taxes and do the things that a good businessman should do. For a good company to grow and do well for the long run you need to be relatively legitimate.
  2. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Posts: 3,256

    Let me see if I have this straight. You did TWO years of research, but you didn't know how long it was going to take you to complete a lawn?
    And yet you somehow plan to grow to 6,000 lawns!!!???

    Now that's just silly.
  3. 65hoss

    65hoss LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,360

    That just about sums it up.:dizzy:
  4. gogetter, if I didn't know better, I'd think you're accusing that boy of lying! LOL
  5. cuttinfirefighter

    cuttinfirefighter LawnSite Member
    Posts: 12

    :dizzy: you did bid way too low...... i make it a point that its not worth me droppin the gate on my trailer unless i am getting $25...... but like one of the guys said chalk it up as a learning experience...... and sell the accounts to someone who is just getting started (after you get some other accounts that you bid correctly on) .......... as for the stander.... i used to like wright standers... until i tried a GREAT DANE its a better made machine especially when it comes to the deck..... you might pay just a few dollars more....just a few but it is worth it............:D :D :D
  6. brucec32

    brucec32 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,403

    All these high dollar grosses flying around...seems to me like there are more lucrative ways to make money with a "big" company. I just do it cuz I like working outdoors and not having to deal with the typical BS of corporate jobs.
  7. NYRookie

    NYRookie LawnSite Member
    Posts: 240

    I would say that you should look into a Toro 32" w/b. They are not too much more than a 33" Troy-Bilt, which I personally own and hate. I have not used it since the first year I bought it. Go with the t-bar, alot easier on the hands than the Troy-Bilt.
  8. TaussigLawnCare

    TaussigLawnCare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 206

    I think if you are going to put the money in 32 in is to small but thats just me
  9. Paradise Landscapes

    Paradise Landscapes LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 960

    Everyone learns a mistake. I have to say I have done so once or twice.
    But a third time? I don't think so.

    All I can say is listen to all the wise ones if Lawnsite. If it wasn't for them, I would definately be lost in this business.
    These members been there. They and we know what we speak about.

    (Anyone a star wars fan? I think of these wise ones as JEDI KNIGHTS of the Landscape and Lawn Care industry. May the force be with you!) :D :D

    Thanks for all the help fellow pros.
  10. Coral Isle Gardens

    Coral Isle Gardens LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11


    I was just curious what machine you found to solve your quandry

    ... and ...

    how many of the hundred(+) homes you were targeting you landed contracts with?

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