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starting my own business advise please

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Martee, Oct 1, 2005.

  1. Martee

    Martee LawnSite Member
    Posts: 50

    :waving: I am thinking of starting my own business this next year, have been working for small company for 4 years had a good relationship with owner then went sour so leaving and starting my own. Looking at a Honda HRX217 does anyone know anything about this mower. I am used to using John Deere 21" but do not want to work with local dealer here, they dont treat women with respect, think we know nothing.
  2. hoskm01

    hoskm01 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,690

    Which one are you looking at? 3 speed, Hydro, or electric/hydro? I was on a bit of a budget when I bought mine, got the 3 speed. It runs like a dream, sounds like a car, quiet and smooth. Personally, I will spring for the blade brake clutch next time, just didnt have the $$ this time around. Anyway, awesome machine, the 3 speeds are plenty, slow enough for a tall mess, and fast enough for a quick trim at a brick pace. They look good too.
  3. Martee

    Martee LawnSite Member
    Posts: 50

    Looking at the Hydro, blade brake clutch a must cant stand restarting the mower so many times as we have to bag everthing pretty much as its real wet in most months here. Thats another reason for this mower you can adjust it so you only have to bag part of it.
  4. Az Gardener

    Az Gardener LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,899

    You are having what is known as an entrepreneurial seizure, ;) if your lucky it may go away. If not read the E-Myth by Micheal Gerber before you buy anything. You may think your starting a company but you may just be buying a job. I think the people making the most money are drawing a good salary as a foreman or supervisor and have a small company on the side. Except when you get past the 50,000 per month plateau. When the side work becomes too much then its decision time. As far as the mower goes My first mower was a 99.00 used Murry then a new John Deere then a new Honda then back to John Deere the Honda did'nt cut 400.00 better than the Deere. I will admit that I only use rotary mowers about 30% of the time so I may not be the best source. I use mostly Tru-Cut reel mowers. Seriously consider what I said before. If I had it to do over again I would. I have been working evenings and weekends for almost two years to develop systems and a big picture plan, it is slowly coming together. In hindsight I would have spent 3-6 months on that before I started, it would have eliminated a lot of problems and saved me money. I also recommend getting educated, attend association classes, try and get an arborist certification, CLP certified, ANA certified anything to set yourself apart from the herd. Any rep from a low voltage company or sprinkler house will educate you on their products and how to use them, then you can market full service gardening services. Some one has to change the lights, and plant the flowers. Don't forget Christmas decorations. I just spent a weekend in San Diego at a growers seminar and now I know why I have not been able to keep those Million bells or Nemesia alive and its not because its too hot. I guarantee there were no other maintenance contractors there. The bar has been set pretty low in our industry it dose'nt take a lot to stand out.
  5. PTP

    PTP LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Tulsa
    Posts: 1,383

    Picking mowers is about the easiest thing about running a business. I don't mean to be rude but if you are having trouble with this then things will not be well for you later on. You need to be able to make decisions.

    In regards to a 21" mower, Honda or Toro commercial are the best. If you can't affore the 1K that they cost, then get what you can afford (Honda or Toro homeowners) but don't expect it to last.
  6. Martee

    Martee LawnSite Member
    Posts: 50

    Well since I am looking for a job and not wanting to get rich on this I do understand this. (I love the hard work) I have been running this company for my boss, who when I started was going to file bankruptcy but I offered my full commitment as a employee and do all the books to help get the business back where it should be. And never called in sick in 3years, worked my butt off for someone else to reap the rewards, and to get paid $12.00 and hour and work for free to do all the bookkeeping just to try and help out. I do know all I need to know to have a small one man operation, and get paid at least a decent wage. I have attended classes and have a business plan with customers already in place. Some that I mow for now dont respect my boss and ask when I am going on my own since I run it anyway. As far as the mower goes the JD that is equivilant to the Honda is 400 more than the honda here. I can get the Honda for 699.00. And since I do part time jobs on the side now I have the cash to buy it.
  7. Martee

    Martee LawnSite Member
    Posts: 50

    The only reason I asked about the Honda mower is because I have never used one, I could take the JD apart and put it back together and will buy a used one If I can find one. Because the JD is so much more expensive than the Honda I am looking at I thought maybe someone who has used this mower might tell me if its a good one or not. I can buy the Honda for $699 and the JD is more than $899. so do I justify the price because I know the mower better and have no where to take it for repair as there is only one repair shop in our town to take it for major repairs or ask people for advise without getting crap about making decisions.
  8. Az Gardener

    Az Gardener LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,899

    Sounds like you have it all together! Cograts. Thats more than I can say for most. I would still recommend the E-Myth its short and entertaining as well as educational. Thats odd about the price difference, here the Honda's are right at 1,000 or more, I paid 649.00 or so for the John Deere. I guess I got a deal. I buy from a rental chain here locally. Good Luck!!

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