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Young owners of LCO's ?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Soupy, Apr 18, 2002.

  1. Soupy

    Soupy LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,125

    I notice that there are alot of young guys, 14 and 15 years old running LCO's. I commend their efforts, but am wondering how this is done? Isn't it illegal? Is Their (your) parents the actual owners. I can remember back when I was 15 and went to work for an ice company here in town. I couldn't work around any mashinery. all I could do is keep the place clean. I think the guy just liked me and wanted to give me a chance. as soon as I got my license, he made me a driver and worked there untill I was 21. then I started my own business (10 years ago).

    Anyway, I was just curious as to how all these yound guys are doing it. I'm wondering how they get their mowers around. Sure when I was young I cut a few grasses in the neighborhood. But I would hardly call it a business. And back then there was only a couple of LCO's in my area. Now there are 100's.

  2. scagman

    scagman LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 270

    Yes, there are literatlly 100's. I see them everywhere. nobody looks as good as me though.J/K
  3. AK Lawn

    AK Lawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 186

    You want to know how we did it, well what i did was start off very small and work from there, when i was ten i mowed two lawns and business had doubled almost every year since, currently have 100 weekly clients, before i was 16 my father drove me around after work to the properties that were far away and had a trialer on my bike for the close ones, only had 20 or so clients till i was 16 then went to 40. since then i have tripled and and currently were i am today, as far as before 18 yes father owned everything, he gave me loans that i had to pay back and waslicensed under him, a year ago everything was switched no longer bank of daddy and have loans with Wells fargo, all euquipment is paid for by me including my new truck, i have had insurance since i was sixteen under my father, with out him i couldn't have what i have today, and i thank him everyday, he still looks over the bus. as a silent partner, like he always has, but will step in to co-sign if needed , he sees my vison and supports me fully, have to say this year i have invested into property of my own and am almost fully selfsufficent, if you have any other questions on my success or even if you doubt me feel free to email me and will be glad to discuss this futher, i have to say i am not planning on doing this my whole life, currently i am in school and have had job offers from various investment firms and fell that this is the direction i will take my life later, but for no nothing else couild pay the bills better or have as much fun doing, have just taken om a partner that want to phase me out over the next five years to just a small silent partner (like my father) to always be there to help out
    AK Lawn
  4. Soupy

    Soupy LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,125

    AK Lawn, I commend you on your acheivments. I kinda thought that is how you guys did it. I wasn't knocking you guys at all. I was just curious as how it was being done. the main reason I asked this question was because My nephew keeps bugging me to hire him, But I tell him he's not old enough. I'm sure he could do the job. But I don't think it's legal. I need to check into it more locally. I was always under the impression you had to be 18 to operate mashinery.

  5. Brickman

    Brickman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,249

    Soupy you are right about the 18 deal. But if you "own" your own business or work for your parents, that is dropped to at least 16.

    I have one commercial prop. that will not allow me to have any one working on their prop. under 18. (insurance)
    Since I have mowed them for like 5 years, and don't want to git rid of them I will listen.

    It is a high visiblity shopping mall, where a lot of people see me out there, and comment on the looks of the place. So I try hard to keep them.
  6. Soupy

    Soupy LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,125

    That's what I thought, I worked one winter at a resturaunt (bartender) and the busboys that were under 18 were not allowed to run the dish washer.

  7. Clint

    Clint LawnSite Member
    from Texas
    Posts: 97

    I mowed my families yards ( 4 ) for years, bought my commercial husky bp blower, and husky string trimmer, and then decided to take it to the next level, while mowing their yards, saved my money, sold my dirtbike ( Yes, I saved for that too ), and bought my new metro 36" 15hp and a 12x5 trailer, I'm 15 and my mother does not work, thankfully my dad can support us w/out mom having to work, she brought me to the account, sat in the car, and read her gardening magazines, Thank you mom! I'm 16 May 10, and it will be a load off her shoulders, either way, thats how I do it. Really, to tell you the truth I dont know how I got so much money to buy that motorcycle. But glad I did, cause now I've got my mower!


    P.S. Dad did buy me my 98 RAM.
  8. dlandscaping

    dlandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    from mass
    Posts: 835

    Started out with a neighbor that grew to about 12 on my street. I walk my midsize walkbehinds to the properties mow walk back get the trimmers walk back get the backpacks. Had to buy a trailer at 14 so my dad could pull all our stuff and had to buy the trailer hitch. Sometimes he will help out but usually just sits in his ram. He has an enclosed ram2500 so i needed a pickup so at 15 i bought a 95 f250 extended (need seats for my bros) and have him or my mom drive it to a job. If its local they go back home if not sit in the car. Im going to get insurance this year under a parents name. Just got my permit the other day so now i can drive the truck and trailer but still need a parent. It was much more expensive having to rely on my parents since i can only take on so much work and have so much stuff had to buy 2sheds for equipment. I cant wait for fall when ill have my liscence and then plowing in the winter. I dont know of that machinary 18 thing since every company here employees from 14 on and some younger people. I have been running walkbehinds since 13 when i bought a brand new one and was never told of such a thing.
  9. Scag48

    Scag48 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,067

    There is no age to run your own equipment. If you have an employee that is under 16, maybe even 18, OSHA or L & I might get mad. You could be 10 years old and mow lawns. You can operate any equipment you want as long as you don't have an employee that is under 18 or something. I know golf courses don't hire people to mow up there untill they're 18.
  10. GLS

    GLS LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,174

    I am 16 years old, and my brother is 17, but we don't really consider ourselves to be an lco. We have been mowing lawns since we were about 10 (parents lawn with a little 21"er). A few years later we were asked to mow a friend of my grandmas. One of my parents would drive us over there. We actually started out using her 21" and an ELECTRIC weedeater. About a year later, we got tired of the electric trimmer, and brought our gasser. Couple years later my brother could drive, and we took on a few more jobs (by word of mouth). We bought some better equipment: deere jx-75, 48" tractor, stihl fs 85 trimmer, and other attatchments/hand tools...We now mow around 7-10 lawns per year and do a lot of cleanups and landscaping projects. We also build decks, install trim, etc. Saving for a new truck (currently use our dad's chevy).
    A lot of people probably think that at this age, we are too young. But, some people are more mature than others. We do quality work, and buy the best equipment we can afford. We're not going to steal anyones business, it's just to put a few dollars in our pockets and it's something we enjoy doing. I can make over twice as much doing lawncare than I can working part time at some fast food resaurant. Just last weekend we made over $400, try doing that at mcdonalds!
    Here are some pics of our equipment:

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