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Businesss Purchase?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Billee, Jul 9, 2005.

  1. Billee

    Billee LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    I am currently looking into purchasing an exisiting business the equipment includes 48" Gravely, 46" Hustler with bagger, 14' trailer, blower, trimmer and hedge trimmer. It is currently run as part time with 14 verbal commit customers. I would like to hear comments and what a good price would be.
  2. Lawn Sharks

    Lawn Sharks LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 394

    Gonna need more than that.

    Hours on mowers?

    Hours and models of blower, trimmers etc.?

    Will the current owner take you and introduce you to the current clients?

    What does he get paid for each client?

    How often does he mow each client?

    Why is he getting out of the biz?

    Do you have experience or are just starting?
  3. Billee

    Billee LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    Not sure on the hours or models on the trimmers etc. I am meeting with him on Monday. He will take me to all the customers and he has told all of them of his intentions. He is selling do to being military and being transfered. He claims to take home around $1500 monthly. I will discuss all of this more indepth. I wanted to get ideas on what all to look for from people here. I have experience, 5 years prior to military and started back this season.
  4. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,501

    They gotta be pretty small lawns according to my calculation...like 25 - 30 bucks each per week.
  5. charlies

    charlies LawnSite Senior Member
    from earth
    Messages: 587

    very rough estimate, i would agree to about 14,5oo$, if the equipment was nearly new. (less than a year old). that include 500$ each for 7 customers, because you will probably lose half. there is no freaking way i would ever pay more than that for customers, because i have calculated that, for us, we pay about 200$ in advertising and labor for each new customer that we put on our schedule.
  6. newbomb

    newbomb LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 391

    If his equipment is in real good shape and you like the models etc. and if the equipment is sold and serviced by a dealer near you THEN I would make him an offer on the equipment only!!! $1400 a month is nothing. You could find that much work yourself once you get out there. If he wants to give you the accounts take them but dont pay him for them. If he had 100 accounts that might be different.

    I honestly think you could buy a 36" walkbehind, a push mower and trimmers etc. for $4000, put them in a pickup and generate your own business for a lot less money than he will want. And your equipment would be new.

    It sounds like he has a lot of equipment for 14 or so lawns. I would ask him where the rest of his work went. ( maybe you shouldn't say that but be wary) The customers he has now owe you nothing and probably won't stay
  7. Lawn Sharks

    Lawn Sharks LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 394

    I was thinking the same thing. 14 accounts is really nothing and he has two good sized mowers for it. A solo op can't run those two machines at once. Since I am not familiar with those brands I am guessing one is a ZTR at least. If it is only two walkbehinds I wouldn't even consider 14.5k as I could get a single top quality rider like a Walker, Wright Stander, Exmark etc. and a trailer, trimmer and blower for that brand new. Should be easy to use the "Completed Sales" feature of Ebay to find out what the equipment is worth in the retail market and make him an offer for the package that discounts that by a certain percentage for the ease of selling it all at once.

    I should add that if you get a real warm feeling from his current customers when you visit them then perhaps a premium for the accounts is merited.
  8. Billee

    Billee LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    Both are ZTRs and he kind of hinted he would sell for 10,000 or less. I appreciate the words on the customers, I was wondering about them staying on or not.
  9. Lawn Sharks

    Lawn Sharks LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 394

    You seem quite sharp so I don't know how much we can help you. You may want to give some thought to the need for two ZTRs as a solo op. It is always nice to have a backup sitting in the garage but you will have to balance that out with the debt incurred versus the revenue gained from whatever clients you get. I wish you the best of luck in your decision.
  10. newbomb

    newbomb LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 391

    Do you have other accounts? Are you trying to break into the business? What is your current lawn mowing status?

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