What did you start with???

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by cuttingmaniac22, Jan 25, 2006.

  1. cuttingmaniac22

    cuttingmaniac22 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 30

    I am sure everyone didn't start out with a ztr so what did you have before that??? And how far have you come since then....just kinda wondering!
     
  2. clallen03

    clallen03 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 511

    Im just starting this year. I have a 1993 F150 XLT, 6x12 trailer w/ racks and cage, used 36" exmark metro, stihl 550 blower, stihl trimmers, stihl edgers, sthihl hedge trimmers.

    I'll let you know during the growing season how things work out.

    Good luck!
     
  3. rfed32

    rfed32 LawnSite Senior Member
    from Hatboro
    Posts: 680

    93 ford explore-1200bucks
    96 frakline 6x10-400bucks
    80 something 48in keys-250bucks
    old blower and trimer nothing
     
  4. AL Inc

    AL Inc LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,218

    Guys here get touchy if we include the years when we were teenagers cutting lawns, so I'll just include the years when I was a legitimate business. I started with an '87 Mazda pickup, a 5'X8' open trailer, and an old 36" Bunton belt drive. I had a Toro line trimmer and a Bunton back pack blower (with the gas tank on top, so you got a nice gas shower on your back while using it). Also had an old syle "neighbor hater" Giant Vac blower. I thought I had hit the big time when I bought a 1986 GMC 1 ton dump truck. Spent a lot of time working on that truck, but managed to get 4 years out of it. Fortunately, I've been able to upgrade over the years...:rolleyes:
     
  5. Wells

    Wells LawnSite Member
    from SLC UT
    Posts: 0

    I started with just 3 clients....My setup consisted of:
    THEN
    1 - 21" Lawnboy Mower
    1 - Trimmer made by "Weed Eater"
    1 - Push Broom

    It's been 8 yrs (6 of them PT and 2 FT) and surprisingly my equipment hasn't changed all that much from when I started:
    NOW
    4 - 21" Lawnboy Mowers
    1 - Gravley 34" ZTR
    2 - Trimmers "Echo"
    1 - Stick Edger "Echo"
    1 - Backpack Blower "Echo"
    1 - Handheld Blower

    As you can see with the equipment I use it's very easy to keep my overhead down. The guys that think they need to have all the fancy equipment when they start out are generally they guys that don't make it past their first year in business.
     
  6. JKOOPERS

    JKOOPERS LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,259

    i started with all 2000 models exmark thp 52" , exmark metro 32" , redmax bc2300 trimmer , stihl br320 backpack blower and 2000 gmc sieraa 1500

    bunch of hand tools and a echo pole pruner and stihl ms 250 chain saw

    this is where i am going on 3 year
     
  7. PMLAWN

    PMLAWN LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,535

    I started with about 50K - I have much less now:p

    Common joke in Nascar- How do you make a million dollars in Nascar--Start with 2 million.


    I had an unused 7x14 w/ barn doors and that was all I really had to start. We pulled it with a Van for the first month. Than bought a pick-up set for just maintenance. First Mower was an Exmark 48 metro (great mower but the last belt we will ever own) Echo hand tools. Trailer was fully stocked for about 7K. We did really have a budget of 50K to start and in the first year spent all+ that.
    Just sent list of assets to county for taxes:cry: and we are just over 260K now (current adjusted value) I should just sell it all and go by a boat:p
     
  8. Branchland

    Branchland LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 354

    A Mazada truck
    8x5 home made trailer
    42" MTD rider
    21" MTD push
    Homelite weedeater
    Homelite blower

    8 customers given to me by somebody getting out of business.
     
  9. Tim Wright

    Tim Wright LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,034

    I started out three years ago with a borrowed push mower, and a trimmer from sears with three small lots.

    The following year I had 10 yards and bought a lawn tractor from Tractor Supply.

    Last year I had 35-40 yards, bought a stihl trimmer, had it stolen, went through two push mowers, and tore up the lawn tractor and bought a Ferris Zero Turn.

    This year I have already added 4 more yards I think and 30-50 houses for final grading and seeding, with a New Holland compact tractor and a harley rake on the way.

    Tim
     
  10. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    First off, I'm starting my 5th year and I don't have a Ztr. To me, Z's are twice the money than a Wb but they don't get twice the work done in the same time, so I find it hard to justify the expense as I outrun Z-boyz with my Wb's all day long in smaller-than-acre lots. The only time Z's really out-perform my Wb's is on flat terrain at least an acre in size or better, the thing is the Z won't get in the corners and now their owner is fooling with a 21" push-mower while I get the whole yard done with the 48" proline Wb... Hence I am not buying a Z until I either got more money than I know what to do with, or I get a slew of large lots or I'm too old to ride the velke.

    My first year I had 20-odd accounts, now I have closer to 50 and I really want 60.

    Now...
    I started in 2001 with 2 used '95 52" prolines, a new weed-eater and a new br-420 backpack blower, a '76 F-250 (over 400k miles on it, it was a beater), a new 6x12 trailer, and a bunch of smaller stuff like shovels, rakes, wheelbarrow, and a tarp (or 3). I would, to this day, strongly advise spending 200-300 dollars on smaller hand-tools like that, the wheelbarrow alone is a great investment for sure, that's some of the best 60 bucks I ever spent (ok they cost 50 + 10 for pre-assembled).

    On a side-note, all my mowers always have been and always will be Toro prolines. I once tried a John Deere Wb and I gave it right back after one yard... Ever since that day I refuse to use anything that doesn't come with a T-bar control.
     

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