Do not spend $20,000 on equipment at startup.. please

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by ROCKKER, Apr 17, 2007.


    ROCKKER LawnSite Member
    Messages: 6

    Unless you are already rich , Do not buy thousands of $ of new equipment at the start of this or any buisness.... People dont give a ratz behind if you cut there grass with a murry or an exmark as long as you do good work and do what you say you will do and do it when you say you will do it at a price they can swallow... You must grow with your income... This way you will never get over your head with overhead and die a humiliating lawncare death... This buisness is not easy by any means... Competetion is tough.... Don't get stuck with a bunch of bills you can't pay......
  2. martinfan06

    martinfan06 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 631

    I would say at least top 3 reason most people fail in this industry, rather 'LOOK" good 1st, rather than be "GOOD" then look good.

    I must have a 40,000$ truck to pull my 12,000$ zero trun mower:hammerhead: :hammerhead: :waving: :waving: in 8 months.
  3. nobagger

    nobagger LawnSite Gold Member
    from Pa
    Messages: 3,065

    Good points but...I belive, you must take this serious and plan ahead. Thats one of the main problems with the lawn care industry, "anyone can pick up a mower and BOOM their a landscaper". I agree with not buying brand new equipment for 20k but you need to buy equipment that is made for your purpose. Its not the fact that a $159.00 21" Murray mower wont cut grass, its how long will it cut grass for? IMO its like a few old sayings, "ya get what ya paid for" and "the right tool for the right job". Yes the customer in most cases could care less what you cut their lawn with but you should!
  4. garrettlawn

    garrettlawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 94

    I already had a 50K dollar truck and a 15K dollar trailer before I started this business.. so is that ok?
  5. WJW Lawn

    WJW Lawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,330

    I think Rockker and nobagger equally make great points!!! As with all black and white issues...there is a gray area...and I think staying in the gray...will help you stay in the RED!!! I see alot of posts with guys paying off 8K zturns, but only have 3 accounts and some wild dream that they'll pick up 50 more like nothing. It doesnt always work that way. At the same time...nobagger has a great point, because you need to invest something into equipment--not for looks, but for productivity. There are guys here that are successful...but say it took them YEARS to add a z-turn, and thats the route Im taking. All my equipment is 100% paid for...even my truck...I came out of pocket on my walkbehind....on my 2 cycle stuff...trailer...and well I already had my truck--it's a 93. Doing it this way allows me to put more away so that one day I can get a z-turn, and a bigger and newer truck and all that. We all know these toys are great!!! And man there are so many cool things you can buy....but I think playing it safe and building up is the way to go!
  6. martinfan06

    martinfan06 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 631

    Thats great your a step ahead of the game,the old saying the have and the have nots.
  7. TNT LawnCare Inc.

    TNT LawnCare Inc. LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,157

    Great Info.,But i dont want to be cutting all day with a 21 pushmower.Unless all your costumers are postage stamp size yards,I would suggest to spend wisely and buy as you need. If your solo 1 good backpack blower or handheld a good quality string trimmer and mower of your choice.
  8. terrapro

    terrapro LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,234

    dont forget used equipment, there are many of deals out there that would save 10's of thousands when you first start out. there is nothing wrong with getting used equipment.
  9. TGM

    TGM LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 931

    used commercial equipment! well, you may be able to get by with push mower and crappy trimmer for a little bit if you're just starting out. at least buy a used commercial walk behind, they're relatively pretty cheap.
  10. Darrin A.

    Darrin A. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 94

    I started out with a used 36" Bobcat $350, a used 5x8 trailer $450 a new Cub Cadet 21" $400 a new Cub Cadet trimmer $150 (about) and a very used Homelite hand held blower, Free. Last year, got a 48" Bobcat $0.00 ($55.33 to make it a good machine). This year I bought a new Red Max trimmer and Back Pack blower, 6.7'x12' trailer, used and lots of maint. stuff for equipment. Currently no debt for equipment. Used is ABSOLUTELY a great option to start out.

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