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Family Members as Partners


LawnSite Fanatic
Do any of you have family members or relatives that are partners with you in the business? What are the pro and cons about it?


LawnSite Bronze Member
my father and my mother both work for me. they are retired. i don't think i could be where i am today without there help the past few years. its great working with them, SOMETIMES. other times its very tough i couldn't imagine being partners with them though.. i know there are some exceptions but at least family won't stab you in the back like most people you get to work with you off the street...


LawnSite Bronze Member
Hawkeye country
Had my brother help me out on one job. IMO as partners it wouldn't work out, heck even working for me was not the best of all worlds, just didn't work out.
This is just my experience, others may have success stories.


LawnSite Member
Ashland, MA
My wife and I are essentially partners within the business. It is very difficult at times. We don't always have the same opinion on certain things. Therefore, it is very important to clearly define each other's role within the business. Although I love her to death and she is a HUGE asset to our business, some days are tougher than others. We've had some pretty heated discussions (Ok, arguments) about certain topics. But we are getting there.


LawnSite Senior Member
Attleboro MA
My best friend wanted to become partners with me. I told him no thanks I wanted to be by myself. I ocassionally have my farther inlaw work for me. He knows that I'm the boss and my wife thinks it's kind of funny. He says to me "your the boss what due you want me to do". Funny thing is I'm 26 and he is 50.


LawnSite Bronze Member
meathead1134 said:
I ocassionally have my farther inlaw work for me. He knows that I'm the boss and my wife thinks it's kind of funny. He says to me "your the boss what due you want me to do". Funny thing is I'm 26 and he is 50.
He is trying to make you feel comfortable with the situation since you are the son-in-law. Your lucky he doesn't come off as knowing more than you.

You might return the favor by asking him what would he do in this situation (i.e. dealing with specific customer situations, his advice if you should by a specific piece of equipment vs. another item,etc. ). Son-in-law and father-in-law bonding goes a long ways especially when you are in a bind and you need his help.


LawnSite Senior Member
Rbriggs, my situation is exactly like yours. But me and my wife have had extreme job problems in the past year and half since the day we got back from our honeymoon in fact. Mowing has been the only thing that has helped us pay the mortage. I helped her father when he bought the business and was mowing 7 yards a week and working a factory job. When we lost our jobs he simply handed us the biz. As of this week we are now over 15 yards. If it wasn't for my wife there would be no lawn mowing business cause I could not work full time and keep up. When she is not available my brother has helped out and I have not had much money to pay him.

Next year we are doubling in size, only because I have the family a good job to do it. I scored a full time 4 day a week comission VerizonWireless job.

When your wife helps, money all goes to the same place. When 17 yr old bro helps, as long as you pay him more than making shakes at steaknshake he's happy too.


LawnSite Silver Member
Me and my Grand father work together, he helped me get where I am today. I run the business from sales, marketing, labor, and office work, he just does all of the major repairs, welding.

Randy J

LawnSite Bronze Member
Richmond, KY
Most business people will recommend against family/friend partnerships - and they do so for a reason. While some do work out, the odds are that it won't. And if it doesn't, you not only loose a business partner, you lose a friend/family member. I couldn't say don't do it, but I would really think hard about it.


LawnSite Member
My Dad and I are partners, I started the biz 4 yrs. ago and could not be where I am now w/out his help. He and I have a good relationship and we see eye to eye on most issues. I run the biz from day to day, he handles the invoices, money tracking, and tax side of the biz. He has a ful time gov't job and is retiring at the end of '06, once this happens he will help more with the day to day stuff.