Can it be done??

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by grassnazi1, Sep 20, 2007.

  1. grassnazi1

    grassnazi1 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 73

    Here's a thought.... I have a very good friend of mine who lives in a different part of the state who has seen my small lawncare business take off and do well. He was recently downsized from work, is 32 with a house, wife, 2 kids, and doesn't have a huge nest egg in the bank. He called me last night and asked me what I thought about this scenario for himself....

    He only has a 21" mower, weedeater trimmer, and a 4 door family car. BUT he does have a nice Echo PB 620 magnum blower, rake and tarps/cans.

    Here is his thoughts.... He wants to start a lawncare buisness for this fall doing leaf removal and fall clean ups, he called asking me if I thought this was a good idea, he thinks he could posibly do 2-3 clean ups per day and make somewheres around 200-300 per day 5-6 days a week for about 6 weeks and have enough cash to carry him through the winter and then use his tax return money in feb to buy used equipment and what not for lawn season.... but as of right now he has done no advertising and has no customers.

    I didnt know exactly what to tell him to expect since this will be my first fall season myself, but what does everyone else think? Think this could be done with the correct advertising and being the fall season? I told him I think it would be possible, but wanted others opinions as well. Thanks guys.

    By the way, we are located in Upstate NY area, so leaf season is like less then 2 weeks away!
  2. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    I'd say his expectations are eh teensie bit lofty.

    Try one cleanup a day, 60-70 dollars maybe 100, if you've never experienced fall get ready.
    Not trying to scare you but it's rough, I may be an incurable wise azz but one thing I don't do is feed bull.
  3. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,497

    I fully agree. No, while there are going to be a half a dozen guys jumping on here saying. "Oh, it's possible....I make so and so amount with my pushmower and just a home depot blower." But it is highly unlikely. Let alone landing all these jobs out of the blue. Help your friend, and tell him to stay close to the not only realistic, but to the likely boundaries.
  4. grassnazi1

    grassnazi1 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 73

    thanks for the input guys, Like i have said.... First year for fall clean ups myself and I wasn't sure what direction to point him too. I agree, I think 2 or 3 clean ups a day by himself is incredibly high for someone just getting into the business, even with a commercial blower.... I just don't see him landing that many accounts and wanted other peoples opinions on it. I only had my first cutting season to quote him and it was a crazy summer for me, went weeks hitting one or two new clients and then went other weeks hitting 5+ more customers. So i wasn't sure what to tell him. I personally have had 3/4 of my customers "tell me" they will use my services when the leafs fall, but its still like 2 weeks out. Think i am going to copy this link and email it to him so he can check it out and have others tell him the news. Thanks for the input so far!
  5. All_Toro_4ME

    All_Toro_4ME LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,578

    Well his expectations are out there a bit. You mentioned he would take the winter off and live off of his "earned" income til tax return time. There's little to no market for it here, but since you are in New York, have you thought about suggesting to him to offer snow removal services. I know you all get a lot of snow and have seen on how profitable it can be, probably much more then fall cleanups. I just dont know what he would use for heavy snow removal, unless he got a small trailer of some sort and a medium sized snow removal walk behind machine, used of course. As far as the fall cleanups, theres a shot, but slim. Its very difficult to build a business from scratch in less then one season, if not next to impossible. Takes years.
  6. JeffW0011

    JeffW0011 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 182

    My thought and advice to your friend is this: First off, this is my first fall (well since I was a teenager anyway) so I'm no expert... however...I do know the following:

    Dude ain't gonna be able to do that many jobs with the equipment he has (or doesn't have) even if he could miracoulasly (spelling) find them. I do think though he could make more than $100 or $150 per job on average for the ones he does find. I have about 10 lined up right now and mine average about $250.00.

    I know from doing my own yard the last 10 years that it took me hours working with similar equip if not slightly more than what your buddy has currently. I also got to mess with them gradually as they fell, where as your friend is going to have to do them all at once. I would advise your friend to find a job ASAP to keep his bills paid and if he wants to do this full-time he can start knocking on doors this fall on the weekends and try to find 1 or 2 jobs per weekend and use all that money to seed an operation this spring.
  7. capetan

    capetan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 226

    poor guy....... maybe he should post an ad on craigslist (thats always my last resort)... he could make flyers, knock on doors, but with just basic equipment and little experience hes looking at 10 to 15 bucks an hour.....god bless him

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