we are gonna grow big this year.

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by allaroundguys, Jan 5, 2014.

  1. allaroundguys

    allaroundguys LawnSite Member
    from kcmo
    Posts: 56

    Hello I'm Kevin with the all around guys. we are going on year 2. We had a good solid year one and will grow tremendously this year. was hoping to get some advice / criticism on our business.
    hopefully maybe help others learn from me.
    our gear we ran all last season with a honda 36" wb ztr. has a 20hp brigs & strat. well we definitely learned a lot about mower repair. first off i learned never buy a mower that is no longer made. All parts are nla. However local oreillys kept us going with figuring out what car parts would work for us. lmao yeah i know. we are going to be buying another 36" to be our reg and use the honda for backup / tuff jobs. the honda is a tank and will do anything it's asked to and more.
    trimmers - we used cheap homelites. first 2 where junk 3rd lasted all season. we will be going to stihl/redmax/anything commercial grade.
    chainsaws we have 1 18" poulan 1 14" redmax. got the poulan first it's ok for what we do but left us wanting more. The redmax is a beast. much prefer it over stihl but as a disclaimers we don't climb trees . I've got a guy for that.
    blower- started with a cheap pawn shop one. ended with a stihl handheld and love it.
    truck is a 92 f150 6cyl. simple for me its a ford does everything I've could hope for. Without turning this into a truck convo id say this if i can't buy a ford ill look at a chevy. if can't find either ill wait tell i can buy a ford. period.

    now to the $$. Our customers.
    We had a solid first year. great customers only fired 2.
    We need to work on customer retention. we lost some to the neighbors doing it for free. lost 1 because we don't bag. (No big deal i don't want the hassle of dumping grass)
    We landed a few landscaping jobs nothing crazy but good solid numbers. by middle of June that well seemed to dry up but put out bids for this season
    lot clearing we love to do this. such a difference when your done. we are in a city so we don't get a crazy amount. average 1 per month during season.
    leaves= pia probably won't offer at all next year . nobody wants to pay $250 for leaves disapper and I'm not making the money we should be.
    with all that our customers love us. we always try to go above and beyond. we like our referrals.

    advertising. mostly just flyers passed out 1500 last season will be doing at least 25k this year. we didn't start until may BTW.

    Our goals this season are 250 mowing customers. we are no where close yet but we will definitely get there.
    we don't set goals for our other services but have an idea where we would like to be.
    also we want by may to have a dedicated lawn mowing crew and a dedicated everything else crew. i have a partner and he will lead the mowing crew. he is better at bidding those. I'm good at bidding everything else.
    our new equipment for this year will include a truck with a dumping bed mower handhelds and hopefully a very used skidsteer. all of which could already be making us money.
    also a note everything is paid for we have 0 debt. we will definitely stay that way for this season. all new equipment will be purchased by june 7th rest of season goes into pocket.

    sorry for the long post, any misspelled words (wife does all the that and answers phones) your input is appreciated.
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  2. DEPENDABLE LANDSCAPING

    DEPENDABLE LANDSCAPING LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,343

    Where are you at now and where do you want to be this upcoming season?
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  3. tyler_mott85

    tyler_mott85 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 582

    You plan on servicing 250 mowing clients every week with one crew? Good luck!
     
  4. jsslawncare

    jsslawncare LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,674

    Good-luck with your plan. Here's what I'm thinking. The mowing side (which is what your partner does because he's better at it then you) that's going to take off wide open. He's going to hang you out to dry because you're not pulling your weight. (because you're good at everything else) And set a goal that's doable. 250 accounts is a lot for a 2 3 men crew.
     
  5. allaroundguys

    allaroundguys LawnSite Member
    from kcmo
    Posts: 56

    This last year we only mowed Thursday and Friday's and had projects for the other 5 using sat as a flex day in case of rain. we where under 50 that are reg carry over to this year.

    i should of clarified. most of our accounts are bi weekly with 11 weekly customers. i was a logistics specialist in the army. I'm fantastic at route planning. most of accounts are 1/4 acre or less. we have all of 3 that are 1/2 acre or above. the half acre accounts we still are there and done within 25 mins top. j also make sure i have other customers within non driving range. so if I'm on street a. i make sure i have at least 2 customers. i understand when i grow it might get harder to do. But ill always make sure it's a priority.
    If we do get overwelmed i have a high school friend that only mows and can toss him some. he is above the 350 mark and growing.
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  6. allaroundguys

    allaroundguys LawnSite Member
    from kcmo
    Posts: 56

    Well i have no worry about him. he's like a brother. also i own a larger percent and our other projects usually end in more money then mowing. hence more day's last season dedicated.
    we will be around 150-175 per week. small yards are our target as well. If we can't keep up we will sub out or dump the ones with lower profit.
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  7. jrs.landscaping

    jrs.landscaping LawnSite Silver Member
    from Maine
    Posts: 2,716

    So you're looking to be over 300k gross in your second year?
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  8. gulfjoe

    gulfjoe LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,626

    [​IMG]
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  9. allaroundguys

    allaroundguys LawnSite Member
    from kcmo
    Posts: 56

    Would be nice. if learned in life if you want it go get it. We will only fail if we don't try. if we do half that it still wouldn't be a bad season.
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  10. law-n-forcement

    law-n-forcement LawnSite Member
    Posts: 9

    Maybe I am missing something. You're planning on jumping from 50 to 250 lawn customers from your 1st year to your 2nd? I don't mean to be negative, but you should set some more realistic goals. Never mind the fact that that kind of growth is nearly impossible (unless you buy 175-200 accounts off of an existing lco) but you are operating with only 2-36" walk behinds (1 of which you seem to have had a lot of problems with this year), and hand help blowers (invest in a Stihl or Redmax backpack blower and you will cut the cleanup time in half). Even if ALL 250 accounts were bi-weekly (125 per week), that's still a lot for 1 mowing crew with 2 36" wb's. I have a 3 man crew that cuts from sun up until sun down 4 days a week and only does between 100 and 110 accounts per week (with 2-52'' Scag zero turns and 1-36" Scag V-ride).

    If you somehow picked up 50 accounts from nothing in your first year, good for you. That is pretty impressive. I just wouldn't bank on growing at the pace every year. Come spring time even though you think you will retain all of them, you will most likely lose a couple of them. People move, pass away, lose their jobs and can't afford anymore, children are now old enough to do it for them, etc.
     

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