Help on a alot of questions.

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by michiganmower10, Feb 16, 2014.

  1. michiganmower10

    michiganmower10 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 190

    Okay to start, im tyler. Got a pretty long story but here it goes, so been in landscaping either doing my side stuff or mowing for others for about 7 years(im about 20 but skipped some school and worked-only about the last 4 years full time). I went off and worked for everything from one truck companys to a company that had 100, was cool to see the difference in size and operations. So anyways ive done mowing for a majority of time and only took one year out of that doing patios, irrigation, landscaping design/install for a another company in my area, in the summer/spring of 2013 i ventured on my own bought more equipment, a larger truck etc and kept growing to roughly 65 accounts, before anyone judges that number i had a couple city houses that ive been working with my father with to take over, with me making that transition i picked up more houses early on in the season and expanded what accounts i had been doing part time, so bought a demo lazer off a dealer and a f250, refurbed my trailer, bought some more handhelds and fixed alot of broken ****:hammerhead: this winter i subbed what small snow work i did have to avoid wear on my truck for the first year. this year i need to expand, greatly, i plan on getting a tandem axle trailer before mowing starts, some more blowers, whips, edgers, possibly a second lazer if i can do some landscaping before the grass grows. This is where the story takes a turn, im looking into being a full time firefighter, by that definition working 3 24 hour shifts a week if not more depending on the situation, i was approached by a friend of a friend who had near my experience level about being my partner which in my opinion would work out great with me being gone, snow when im at a month ago he decides he is going to not going to reply/respond to my calls.

    Questions i have:

    Do i abandon a partnership with him and try to find a more of a 'right hand man' to cover **** when im gone or find another partner?

    I need commercials, i know where the money is at, just in my previous experience i was never put in the position of sales. How do i go about bidding for sub divisions, commercials etc?

    Lawn Software, looking for anybodys input on what they use, like i said with me being gone im not sure how i trust the old 'clipboard' way of doing paperwork.

    Insurance, last year i was legit but not insured(all customers new and i took responsibility for anything that should happen-nothing did happen:usflag:)
    What kind should i look into for a company with employees?

    Training, with me being at the helm for the year many guys didnt get use in on the zero turn and one guy never used the wb either, i know the whole throw guys on mower training and hope they figure it out but wondering if anyone on here trains there guys or not, just curious.

    If anyone is still reading thanks and have a good season.:usflag:
  2. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,389

    why buy all this equipment?

    Couldn't you just manage to do lawns when you aren't working at firefighting and refer out all plowing and just not do it?

    So you go a little nuts int he summer but have laid back winters?

    Why not ask around…Im sure another firefighter somewhere in the city also does lawn care… check with him.
  3. michiganmower10

    michiganmower10 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 190

    right now the way the route goes and with either landscape maintenance or a small install the route for the week takes about 5.5 to 6 days, for one i want to grow this company, i dont get other firefighters involved because working together at two jobs to me would be to complicated, but thats in my opinion, i would like to grow this company into a full maintenance and install company, ive seen another family member in the same work situation(fire and grass) and being smaller doesnt work long at least from what ive seen, i already had 2 guys working for me last year working part time while i was doing fire part time.
  4. twomancrew

    twomancrew LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 940

    What is your education level? Highest grade completed? Curiosity is all, you say you skipped some but communicate well for a "dropout". Not trying to stir it up I swear just sayin.
    Other than that I am here to listen, you have a good year too!
  5. michiganmower10

    michiganmower10 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 190

    did not drop out persay, i would say grade 11 was the last year i was there for the majority...but even then i passed with the least possible, my senior year i missed so much i lost credit for most of my senior year classes, the only class i could not technically loose was english....and that teacher thank god let me come in whenever i could to take tests and let me pass with the lowest grade possible believe it or not, missed school in the fall for leaves and then would skip in the spring when grass started, i didnt skip everyday but like i said, a majority, i did fine in school when i tryed but i didnt care at the time so i didnt try:laugh: if i tryed i would of done fine, but i figured experience doing lawns mattered more and turns out with my firefighting gig i wont have to go to college because training is provided, not to write you a novel but at least an explanation will help understand this mess.
    As far as typing and english goes, my grandfather use to make me take a old type writer and type stories from the paper when i got in trouble, as you can see i wasnt an 'angel' lol.
  6. easy-lift guy

    easy-lift guy LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,372

    Your attempting to burn the candle at both ends. If you want to become a Fireman full time some day concentrate on that and leave the landscape maintenance work for professionals in that field that have enough common sense not to burn the candle at both ends. The shear number of members continue to amaze me
    that are in the same predicament that you are trying to have it both ways. Much sooner than later reality kicks in and your wondering what happen?. Concentrate on One career and that way you won't get burnt in the middle, like many others have on this site only to blame everything else except them selfs for poor decision making.
    easy-lift guy
  7. michiganmower10

    michiganmower10 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 190

    i understand where your coming from, its hard to leave it after ive built up good relationships or just to leave it the size that it is, i got alot of worked offered to me and to be honest ive gotten a little be greedy:laugh: ive been doing it for a long time and have seen this predicament as well, its just i didnt think i would get the chance at a full time job so young...but i did and know i got to figure out what to do with the lawn business, im just hoping that the guys who worked for me last year stay with me, will make it easier when im gone.
  8. michiganmower10

    michiganmower10 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 190

    Quick bump for help, lol i dont mind the replies but i know what my limits are and i know im not that 'book smart'. any help appreciated.
  9. michiganmower10

    michiganmower10 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 190

    last shot for anyone who has any input related to the questions i asked, last call.

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