Trying to Break into the game

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by devilphrog, Oct 2, 2006.

  1. devilphrog

    devilphrog LawnSite Member
    Posts: 9

    Hello All, My name is Nick and I am currently trying to get into the game, even though it is late in the year. I'm currently a full time college student with classes 2 days a week. My goal is to get approximately 20-25 lawns and make some supplemental income. I am also in the Marine Corps Reserve now, just got back from an iraq tour a few months back. I do not have a commercial mower yet, looking at an exmark metro 36 though. I already have a Stihl BR-600 blower, bought it knowing it is leaf time. Sorry this is so long but if any of you have any helpful advice feel free to drop me a line.
     
  2. Bel Air Bob

    Bel Air Bob LawnSite Member
    Posts: 84

    I tried sending u a private message but after all that typing it wouldnt go through. I think you'd learn a lot by going to the EXPO in Kentucky this weekend. See my post under 'network with people from your area' my numbers there if you wanta give me a call about Expo or just to talk about the business. I have too many things to tell you than I feel like typing. Rob
     
  3. redtreeinc

    redtreeinc LawnSite Member
    Posts: 4

    one piece of advice: stay out of the business. all we need is one more inexperienced, undercutting, part-timing poser dilluting an already fragile and stimatized business. unless you have legitimate field training AND CONSIDERABLE BUSINESS SKILLS, you have no right "practicing" on honest, paying customers.

    finish school and get a real job.
     
  4. Bel Air Bob

    Bel Air Bob LawnSite Member
    Posts: 84

    Don't be discouraged by REDTREE. I think as long as you're honest with people, and don't try to undercut everyone, of course you have the right. Customers have the right not to hire, or to get rid of you if not satisfied. That's the way our free market works, right? Now I would agree you don't have the right to compete unfairly by not paying taxes, or buying insurance. If you're gonna get into this, do it right. You have to get insurance first of all. It's not fair to the customer, or worth the risk to you if you don't! Too many guys out there now with no insurance, and that makes it harder for full time guys trying to make a living to compete.
    You may think, 'why do I need insurance just to cut grass?'. I took out a $200 window last month with a weed-eater. Yep, a weed-eater. It kicked up a tiny pebble which shattered the entire window, that's how safety glass breaks. That's just one example, I was happy to pay out of pocket on that one, cost of doing business I figure. I am just happy customer still wants me. But what about if you get on a slope and miscalculate just a little then your big ZTR slides into a building? 10, $20K real easy when a thousand pounds of equipment bangs into something it aint supposed to. My father-in-law playing around on my mower slid into our swimming pool and took it out, so believe me, this stuff can and does happen. Worst case scenario, that little pebble doesn't hit a window, but hits a kid in the eye. Now you don't have insurance, you could be talking about losing everything. Kiss your business goodbye, you got a house, they'll take that too. See what I mean. Invest the money and don't underprice yourself. Get in touch with your local small business office, community colleges often have business resource centers available free. Don't jump in this thing just yet, talk to some people first. If you wanta talk w me, P.M. me. Good luck for now, I gotta go cut some grass.
     
  5. Sandgropher

    Sandgropher LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 909

    i think you can not use PMs until you are here at least a month, not sure, as for Redtree not the best kind of advice i have heard for a returned soldier.:usflag:
     
  6. Randy J

    Randy J LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,124

    Winner for most idiotic post of the month award!

    First off, thanks for serving - I know it was tough, but it is not unappreciated.

    Second, decide how you want to compete - based on price or on quality. If price, buy cheap equipment, low-ball your estimates, get in and get out, get paid. However, there will always be someone else willing to undercut you. If you compete on quality (best bet), then buy a good used mower - never used an Exmark, but they seem to get real high reviews, take your time and do the best job you possibly can. Give the customers value for their money. Most people are willing to pay a little more - as long as they're getting a better value for their money. And always, always do what you promise. If you promise to get there by a certain time - get there. If you promise to call, then call.
    Good luck to you.
     
  7. dcgreenspro

    dcgreenspro LawnSite Senior Member
    from PA
    Posts: 688

    First, disregard what the idiot redtree said. plenty of customers and plenty of money. I keep hearing people recommending different type mowers and thats all good but how about some info to make you smarter in the field? Turf Management by Turgeon. Read it and understand it, if you are going to make a dent in this business it will be with your brain and not your brawn.Jmo
    Thank you for serving
     
  8. devilphrog

    devilphrog LawnSite Member
    Posts: 9

    Thanks for all of the advice. I am looking into doing this all legitimately with licenses and insurance, and taxes. I haven't done any marketing yet as I want to get this all done first. I went and looked at some mowers yesterday, and liked Exmark alot. Just a message saying thanks for all of the advice, and I am motivated at my plan to get started in the spring!:drinkup:
     
  9. Bel Air Bob

    Bel Air Bob LawnSite Member
    Posts: 84

    Are you logged on right now?
     
  10. Bel Air Bob

    Bel Air Bob LawnSite Member
    Posts: 84

    Are you logged on right now? Wednesday 16:45 hrs
     

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