Please help a youngling with his new landscaping business

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Brill LC, Jan 11, 2012.

  1. Brill LC

    Brill LC LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    Hi guys!

    I'm 17 and I've been doing routine landscaping work since I got my drivers license. I have a trailer, blower, trimmer, and a bunch of hand tools.
    So far, I've done leaf removal, gutter cleaning, planting, weeding, and brush removal.

    I'm working in Massachusetts. I've gotten a DBA with my town. Do you know what other licenses and permits I will need and how much that will cost?

    I've been having clients pay with checks to me afterface to face conversation. Could you please suggest a template I could use for invoices?

    Lastly, I'm thinking about hiring friends to work with me as employees on some of the projects. Will I need to get workman's comp for them even if they're only working for me just 8-16 hours every 1-2 months? If so how much will that cost? Since they'll primarily be doing yardwork with me, is it OK to classify them as domestic workers (gardeners) hired by my client if clients are OK with that?

    I appreciate your help. Thank you for your time.
    -Brill
     
  2. Brett's Lawn Care

    Brett's Lawn Care LawnSite Member
    Posts: 48

    In Arkansas, you arent required to have anything. I got a DNA when I started and insurance once I got going, insurance for $1 million in coverage ran me right around $1000. You can find it cheaper and have less coverage but I had a 'friend' who sold insurance and did do my research. As far as licenses, unless you are spraying insecticides or herbicides even roundup. Hiring friends has turned out poorly for me anyway, they don't tend to work very hard at all except 1 of the 13 I went through last year that is. In Arkansas workers comp is not required until you has 3 full time employees or you contract out your work, then you have to have a special kind of workers comp
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  3. ReddensLawnCare

    ReddensLawnCare LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,652

    Get quickbooks, it will really help you out
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  4. Brill LC

    Brill LC LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    Thanks for the replies. Is it OK to classify day labor as domestic workers if I'm only working on households and I have client permission?
     
  5. Brett's Lawn Care

    Brett's Lawn Care LawnSite Member
    Posts: 48

    I dont classify my helpers as anything, they have all been friends up to this point and I write them a check from my business account at the end I the day just because I only use them maybe 2 times per month and with the check, I can deduct it from my taxes at the end of the year. This may. Of he the legal wy to handle this particular situation you are in but it's how I do it and it has worked for me so far, maybe try a search and see about how to classify your laborers or something to that effect.
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  6. Brill LC

    Brill LC LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    In MA we have to have workman's comp for all employees. However, domestic workers working less than 16 hours a week don't need workman's comp. I don't know how we can afford it because I still have school and sports and work on average 8 hours a week. I don't think we have the cashflow for me to directly hire employees since they need insurance and workman's comp.
     
  7. ralph02813

    ralph02813 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from Charlestown, RI
    Posts: 1,041

    You can hire people as private contractors on an hourly rate if you do so on a limited basis.
     
  8. Kelly's Landscaping

    Kelly's Landscaping LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,304

    Doesn't your state have healthcare insurance requirements for all employees and if you opt not too there's some sort of fines/tax on you and your employees. You really need a Mass landscaper to weigh in on this and walk you through those rules your the only state that has them.
     
  9. ralph02813

    ralph02813 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from Charlestown, RI
    Posts: 1,041

    That's why I brought up the independent contractor idea, but there is a burden of proof there is asked.
     
  10. Brill LC

    Brill LC LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    Only employers with more than 10 full-time employees need to get health insurance. All my workers are local high schoolers and college students so they're covered by their parents.

    Is it OK to classify helpers as domestic workers?
     

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