How do you run your business on the side

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by christw, Feb 11, 2013.

  1. caseysmowing

    caseysmowing LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,137

    Yea that stinks. You missed the best shift besides being retired. I would love 4 tens. What I hate about doing this on the side is my routes. I drive by some yards three times a week before I mow them. I could mow all my yards in about 2 1/2 full days solo. Lots of gas and time wasted going out everyday.
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  2. Utah Lawn Care

    Utah Lawn Care LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,560

    You will be busy. That's okay. If you get to the point you don't feel you can keep up with everything you can hire someone to help you which can cut your time nearly in half. If you already have someone else get a third guy. If you're charging 40/man hour you will still be earning plenty since you're only paying your help 10/hour'ish.
  3. MDLawn

    MDLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,284

    I'm part time and have a full time. The friend I worked for years ago is still doing the same thing. When I worked for him it was at first 1 day mowing and maybe a weekend job. The last year I worked for him it was 2 days of mowing and maybe 2-3 weeknight/weekend jobs. It was my only job at the time but he had is full time job also. VERY BUSY. No kids and just a girlfriend at the time for him. Before you knew it he was married and now has two kids. He has people doing the majority of the work for him and he either meets up with them when he gets home and possibly on saturdays. He NEVER worked Sunday no matter what. He has a great gig going that makes him a ton of money. He's learned to be more efficient and let people do the work for him. He NEVER let me do any jobs or even start jobs without him. He was a little bit of a control freak. I'm sure now his matress is actually stuffed with money as he doesn't spend money on small things that are wasteful. He lives on 5 acres and a brand new house. I'm not really sure if he even has payments any more. But he did sacrifice a lot......but it was when he was younger.

    I'm trying to do something similar but am older and have kids who need me. I can't be gone all the time. I will gladly pay people to do the work so I can enjoy more time with my kids even if it means my cut is a little smaller. I can always make more money but I can NEVER get back the time I may miss with my kids.....

    I know this wasn't a "How do I run my busines on the side" but more of insights that I have. As someone else said, it takes A LOT of time.....
  4. AdvLandscapeLLC

    AdvLandscapeLLC LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 568

    I do it but my work schedule is excellent for a part time\full time landscape job. I work full time as a firefighter 24 hours on 72 off. Gives me plenty of time to run my business.
  5. dstifel

    dstifel LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 928

    i work a full-time shift from 2pm to 10pm during the winter and 6 am-2 pm during the summer. It sucks but gotta do what you gotta do. Im about 5 contracts away from going full time and am hitting a advertising campaign hard this year hopefully it pays off. Right now i could mow all my yards in three ten hour days which would leave three for installs or random work and have sundays off that right there would be awesome for me. If i could hit 60 hours a week i would have twice as much free time as i do now.
  6. Steiner

    Steiner LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 409

    I am a fulltime tech ed (shop) teacher in a middle school. I set realistic hours and define when I will and won't work. On my website I list my hours and seasons of work here in Central NY.

    April-June 30th evenings and weekends within reason (spring cleanups)
    July 1-August 30 full time M-F (hardscaping)(large plantings)(equipment work)
    Sept 1-Nov 15 evenings and weekends within reason (fall cleanups)

    I get out of school at 3, drive home (8min), hook on the dump trailer and truck and I head to work around 5pm and work till dark usually 3 hours or so. I don't mow only spring and fall cleanups during school or small plantings. Outdoor construction is when I get off in the summer. Not mowing allows me to schedule jobs and pass larger ones on to a larger company in the area that gives me a kickback. Works great.

    See my thread here:


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