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Thoughs who have a full time job + lawns

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by stevenf, Aug 17, 2008.

  1. stevenf

    stevenf LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,612

    I decided early on that I wasnt cut out for college. Im just not one of your book smart people. Since my 11th grade year, I have done lawns as a summer job. Last summer I had 11 accounts and this summer I have 17. At first glance, I was interested in doing this for a living. I was soon hit with needs for medical insurance, retirement, and the need for year round money. After I came to this conclusion, I decided to finish a year of college and find a job with benefits. I would love to find a part time job with benefits but its not looking very likely. I have come across a 40 hour a week job working 6:00am-2:00pm. I also want to get a little more serious into the lawn business also.
    Questions: For thoughs of you that work an 8 hour day, how many lawns can you handle after that? Are you completely miserable trying to juggle both? Do any of you own a lawn business but pay someone to handle the labor while you work a full time job? How well does this work for you?
    Questions for the LCO: For thoughs of you that work seasonal and make a good living, how do you handle the medical insurance, especially if your wife decides to stay home with the kids rather then make the benefits? How do you handle retirement?
     
  2. rsmith1002

    rsmith1002 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 5

    thanks for your reply to my earlier post. As i stated in my post I am just starting the biz. Will have to work a regular (w-2 status) job starting tomorrow which sucks. I am currently looking for another 1099 (independent contractor) sales position like I had last year to work along with my lawn care biz. You might want to look into something like that. It would offer tremendous flexibility to do your own thing but may not have benefits. Some 1099's do though. Only downside is it may or may not provide stable income like a regular j-o-b depending on the opportunity. Have you looked into getting health insurance on your own? There are alot of better plans out than there used to be. I'm on one now via Blue Cross but it was when they had an open enrollment period. I would look at a company like IPA (insurance producers of america). They have some of the best and most affordable plans out right now but you do have to be healthy, no pre-existing conditions like heart disease, diabetic etc. Just food for thought.
     
  3. stevenf

    stevenf LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,612

    Thanks for the response. I have looked into health insurance and it was affordable. However, the green industry in my area is very competitive and hardly ANYONE wants winter work done muchless a binding contract to guarantee work.
    I love what I do but im sick of sitting at home trying to progress faster then my area will allow. Im already 20 years old and really would like to settle down and put my foot in the door with a good company. If the lawn fails, I will stick with it part time, if a few years from now I have so much clientele I cant handle it myself, I will pursure it.
    Just wondering what type of hours you work, how many you can handle without beating yourself to death.
     
  4. lawnkingforever

    lawnkingforever LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,280

    I work fulltime and I cut about 20 yards a week. I cut Tues., Wed. and Thurs. I am solo with no help and can do these 20 yards easily unless I get a rain out. There are times though I will work some OT at my regular job and it can be tough going home after a long day and have to load up a trailer and go cut. Do not take on more than you can handle. I have turned down alot of business this year, because I donot want to over extend myself.
     
  5. stevenf

    stevenf LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,612

    I want to try and pull in an extra $500-$600.00 a week. Thinks its doable without being misserable?
     
  6. dago52

    dago52 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 249

    Where in Louisiana are you located? I live in Louisiana and just started myself. I also have a full-time job in sales and do my work on the weekends or evenings. I am also a full-time college student and just had my third child. It can be challenging, but I have a passion for cutting grass. I currently have about 10 lawns and I keep getting referrals from my current customers. Sure you can do 500 to 600 a week, but depending on your market will determine how many lawns you will need to accomplish your goal. My goal for now is a 1,000 dollars a month which I am real close to hitting my goal.
     
  7. white1

    white1 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 108

    Im outside Baton Rouge. I started part time, got laid off, then went full time. Im starting back full time work tomorrow night (7 12's) So Ill be getting off at 7am, and Mon-Wed be cutting 1-5 yards. I started too late this year, but am hoping to do this full time next year, so dont want to chance loosing any long term customers. I work in P'Ville, Denham, Walker, and Baton Rouge. I have a few that are a 30 minute ride, but those are actually worth the $$$$. If youre close and want to pick a few up for a month or so PM me
     
  8. railman

    railman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 94

    I too have a fulltime job and manage 37 account. most are weekly and some bi-weekly. I don't have a set schedule at woek because im on call 24-7 so I usually cut grass before or after work. I pretty much cut grass everyday and when I get backed up I have a 15 year old son that helps me catch up. IMO it is doable. I have a co-worker that have 60 or more accounts but he said that he usually hires a couple people to help him because he only cuts yard on wed,thurs, and fri.
     
  9. grassworksbr

    grassworksbr LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    New to the forum and not sure how to PM you. I might be interested in the yards you have in the Baton Rouge area. Any input on how to send you a PM would be helpful too. What a great resource this is! Message intended to go to White.
     
  10. stevenf

    stevenf LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,612

    Im hoping to find a Job that I can get off around 2:00-3:00. I have one lined up, I just need to turn in a resamay. I may just start to target nothing but small lawns such as garden homes. Ive picked up three on one street that take less then an hour to finish and pull in $90.00 a cut for all three. I figured since I am going to get a Quick 36", I can finish even faster(wont need 21" on back gates) and really make a profit. Do you guys just do small lawns or do you also take on the big ones?
     

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