Add a truck and plow or hire someone that has a truck and would have tobuy a plow?

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by oOTurfmanoO, Nov 13, 2011.

  1. oOTurfmanoO

    oOTurfmanoO LawnSite Member
    Messages: 245

    The title says it all.

    Our snow and ice management division has grown to a nice size of signed contracts this year. The unique thing about a few of them is that we also provide the maintenance through the year; now we are responsible for te winter service as well.

    The delimea is this...we have 1 plow truck that is redy to go. My fear is that if something happens during the course of the winter to either the truck or plow, we are in trouble.

    So I thought about adding another plow truck as a back-up. This truck would also be used as a production vehicle moving forward. I'm obviouslly nervous making a move like this so I bounced the situation off a friend of mine. He said he would put a plow on his truck and help me out.

    I think you get the picture....your thoughts?
  2. BPS##

    BPS## LawnSite Senior Member
    from WY
    Messages: 828

    Make it a legit subcontractor agreement with him having insurance and get on with life.

    Don't allow the friendship to get in the way of a business arrangement!
    Or allow the business arrangement to ruin a friendship.
  3. Green Feet Lawn

    Green Feet Lawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 226

    Can that truck be productive (make money) all year? Buy equipment as a necessity not to grow the business into. I would suggest subcontrtacting until you have enough work. You are better off making a few dollars off a subcontractor than to lose money on your own.
    I would not use a friend without the proper insurance and subcontractor agreements.
    Of course this is just my opinion.
  4. nepatsfan

    nepatsfan LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,142

    IF it was me...I would buy another truck. Doesn't have to be new. How do you have a division with only 1 truck?:dizzy:
  5. oOTurfmanoO

    oOTurfmanoO LawnSite Member
    Messages: 245

    The same way an Irrigation division can consist of a dedicated van or trailer I guess.

    This is a tough one for me. I'm not a big fan of taking risks headed into the winter even though the numbers show it is well above doable in terms of adding the truck.

    It will probably come down to using the subcontractor and moving on.
  6. nepatsfan

    nepatsfan LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,142

    Why dont you put a plow on the truck for your landscaping/lawncare division then?
  7. oOTurfmanoO

    oOTurfmanoO LawnSite Member
    Messages: 245

    I'd love to but it's a 2wd Isuzu NPR with a grain body on it.
  8. familylawncare

    familylawncare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 177

    Not to sound too critical, but doesn't sound like you have a clue about doing snow, and are likely to actually lose customers due to your inexperience, coupled with your lack of willingness to take a chance and you do not stand a chance to make money. Just my opinion. Real companies may have divison, but a one man show does not a "division" make.
  9. nepatsfan

    nepatsfan LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,142

    Why dont you sell this truck and buy something that's more versatile. I mean I'm sure this truck serves you well for landscaping but it isn't worth sh$t when it comes to snow. Snow is a huge part of our income for the year. We take it very seriously....I would never buy a truck that wasn't capable of plowing. That's just me, but we never have too many plow trucks. Trucks break, plows break, it's just the way it is. A 4x4 1 ton dump may not be as good for a mowing truck or hauling mulch etc. but it's a boat anchor for 4-5 months out of the year making nothing. You can get 1 tons with the grain bodies. Anyway, good luck!
  10. oOTurfmanoO

    oOTurfmanoO LawnSite Member
    Messages: 245

    Thx for your feedback familyguy, it's appreciated! I'd love to know what part of the thread you were referring to about the one man show. You may have this thread confused with another.

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