buying a lawn business

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by marke, Aug 13, 2004.

  1. Tider6972

    Tider6972 LawnSite Senior Member
    from Alabama
    Messages: 649

    Mower63, I have no qualms with your approach; you are willing to pay a premium (goodwill) for what you determine is a well managed, well organized, well established business.

    I take a different approach, guess you can call me a meat and potatos kind of guy. I am simply not willing to pay for an intangible notion upon which I cannot capitalize: you as a new owner MUST create your own goodwill, I don't believe it transfers!

    I find that many if not most entreprenuers have what I call a 10 year cycle. At about 10 years, they become bored and are ready for a new challenge. That's where I come in!

    I like to buy businesses which have been neglected and poorly managed, turn them around, get them running well and profitably, and sell . I also have a small clientel for whom I provide corporate tax and management services, and a tax service patterned after H&R Block.

    Currently, I am involved in my first start-up, a landscape design and install business. I had no intention of doing lawn maintenance, but found a demand for it which I didn't anticipate, and decided to fill that need! I've got one guy doing all the lawn maintenance, only about 12 accounts, but will have a 2 man crew to begin next season, for I have about 15 clients waiting on me to take them on, and I have good reason to believe that I will have no problem growing to over 40 early in the spring.

    I am always looking to aquire small companies from owners who are ready to make a move.
  2. Mower63

    Mower63 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 65


    Sounds like an interesting approach....I don't have enough experience to feel like risking my $$ in a turn around situation but definitly Kudos to you for taking the challenge. Maybe in a couple of years...right now I've got a 4 year old I need to make sure can get a good education.

    Any way I usually burn out after about 5 years and get bored. Then I'll be looking to sell but should be in the 500K - 1MM gross sales....not exactly a failing biz (of course that depends where you are looking at it from).

  3. tonygreek

    tonygreek LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,915

    Mower63, I find it rather interesting that you come from a consulting background. You're not alone.

    3 years ago, I was a Sr. Mgr with Andersen Consulting/Accenture and decided to make a drastic change to avoid the 100% travel I was doing. I went from overseeing DaimlerChrysler's Dodge and Mercedes web development and eComm strategy to opening up a replacement windows/siding company and now am doing my due diligence on opening a landscape design and maintenance division.

    Entrepreneurship.... catch it!

    Dayton, Ohio
  4. Mower63

    Mower63 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 65


    Interestingly enough, I just stepped off a project in your neck of the woods. I spent the last 9 months flying into Dayton and driving down to Cincinnati for a construction project...400K sqft building. As for entrepenurial...I'm all for it. I figure if I can manage a 30MM design/build project (and everything in between), I can manage a property management / grounds maintenance company.

    How 'bout you...any advice on what you would have done different when you made the transition? Nice to know I'm not the only ex-consultant on the board....yeah....I'm going through airport withdrawal currently....must find Starbucks....arggggghhh....


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