starting out in a saturated area

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by lawnchopper, Jun 29, 2004.

  1. lawnchopper

    lawnchopper LawnSite Member
    Posts: 211

    Ive been working for a LC for awhile and im sick of the low pay. Ive been ecouraged by friends ect to go on my own especially since ive been doing Lawn care for about 10ys however theres just one problem....i think It APPEARS there is alot of competion in this area it seems like i see more and more scrubs with a Sears Craftsmen mower trying to make it buck plus there seems to be a few people out there with Lazers and Danes doing it on the side aswell.
    I wonder how i could still get my share, should i target different accounts like maybe lake homes???? or more rual areas?? maybe specialize in residential??? I plan on just being solo I dont want to get big. any thoughts anyone??
  2. Albemarle Lawn

    Albemarle Lawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,544

    Keep in mind the combined total of all the craftsman scrubs is probably not putting out that much work. I have determined that our 5 man operation with a tight route and top notch equipment is easily putting out more work than 20 scrub operations. Most of the scrub operations are part-time anyway, work part of the time until there is enough beer money, then maybe work the next day, maybe not, depending on hangover intensity.

    A good way to find out would be to ask your boss and other real LCO's if they are turning away work, or looking for more.

    If the professionals are turning away work it may not be a saturated market even though you see 5 new beer-billys every week.

    If professionals are not at least at 75% capacity, then chances are you actually are in saturation.

  3. txlawnking

    txlawnking LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,905

    Agreed, talk to your boss and other LCO's in your area to get a feel for your market. If you are as unfortunate as I, and your area is bog full of LCO's get ready for a long uphill battle. It is a LOT different on the other side of the paycheck... Trust me, Do your home work. At least in your area the folks you refer to have junk equip., Here they all have walkbehinds or ZTR's!!! LOL
  4. RedWingsDet

    RedWingsDet LawnSite Gold Member
    from Detroit
    Posts: 3,556

    its saturated here too. but im getting alot of work from customers who didnt like the scrubs before, or the bigger companys and more professional companys were so overwhelmed they were not on time every week, they'd miss a day or two. i dont think a day or two is bad, but i guess to some homeowners it is, and i guess it is when their paying for it. but i always cut same day and time each week as long as it doesnt rain :) but just do good work and you will be fine no matter how many scrubs are around. IMO more scrubs = more for you, the homeowners will realise that the scrubs actually do a scrub job, and a professional can do a professional job for only a few bucks more each month, so they will hire you!!!
  5. soonernation

    soonernation LawnSite Member
    from Okc OK
    Posts: 63

    I am in a very saturated area. It seems every road I go down there is another truck pulling a trailor filled with mowers. We have a few companys in the OKC area that have a huge share of the market, yet I am having to turn business down almost every day from referals. If you do a proffesional job and treat your customers like they are special, they will tell a friend. If the scrubs are doing a crappy job, they will tell a friend. Be personable, return their phone calls, and do your best and you will eventually get what you ask for. I have tripled the amount of yards I started with this year and they are 100% referals. Don't be scared of the scrubs. The bottom line is, if your yard looks better than the one across the street for too long, they'll be giving you a call.
  6. Evergreenpros

    Evergreenpros LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,155

    If you see a lot of scrubs working, then there's a lot of work to be had. I'd be worried if I didn't see hardly anyone doing lawncare.

    Don't be afraid of competition.
  7. snippy

    snippy LawnSite Member
    Posts: 130

    I had doubts when I looked into the amount of LCO's there was around my area, there's a hell of a lot of lawncutters but there's a hell of a lot of lawns too.
    Everyday hundreds of people move into and out of the homes in my area, I guess the trick is to nab them before anyone else does.
    As far as the so called "scrubs" are concerned, as someone already mentioned they're really not that serious about the job, normally being part timers.

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