just starting out, any tips?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by fdidonato3251, Nov 24, 2009.

  1. fdidonato3251

    fdidonato3251 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    I just started my own property maintenance business, ive already started posting flyers around town and in the local paper. I've recieved a few calls for this year but i am mainly looking to get going after the winter / in the spring of 2010. I'm very interested in hearing what anyone has to say and offer from they're experiance. thanks, Frankie.
  2. lawnkingforever

    lawnkingforever LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,280

    Some will disagree, but you should start out with just enough equipment to get by. Then as you build your business and bankroll, you can start buying better equipment and using your current equipment as backups. Financing can be a useful tool for some, but paying cash for equipment is usually for the best. Keep low overhead, tight routes, and charge enough per yard to be profitable. At the start you may have to bid a little low on a few accounts just to fill up your route, you can always adjust it as you get better paying accounts. Do a good job everytime because word of mouth is your best tool to getting quality /good paying jobs.
  3. fdidonato3251

    fdidonato3251 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    right now ive got a push mower, rider, truck, wacker, blower, rakes shovels etc.. all im looking for now is a trailer for it all and ill be ready. but thanks for the advise.
  4. SW Services

    SW Services LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    as everyone else said start small and work your way up. If you buy larger scale equipment and go under, your stuck with finance charges up the ying yang with no income to make payments. See how you do, and then buy accordingly. As for trailers, check craigslist. Now is the time to do so as people sell trailers affordably on there in the winter months.
  5. bobcat48

    bobcat48 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,176

  6. jeffslawnservice

    jeffslawnservice LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 830

    I am just finishing my first season and I too was faced with the dilema about equipment. First off my accounts are relatively small nothing crazy largest are 1.5 acres but most are 1/4 acre to 1/2 acre. I started the year out with a 21'' lawnboy (used bought it for $200,) a used echo SRM-210 weedwacker, a new crafsman backpack blower (bad choice on my part.) I was also using a minivan to move everything. I waited to see how many accounts i would get and what other work I would get besides grass cutting to go out and buy any other equipment. Two months in i started to upgrade to commercial hedge trimmers, redmax backpack, a truck and other small tools that make the jobs go buy so much easier.
  7. Big C

    Big C LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,642

    Be patient...and pay cash!
  8. kemco

    kemco LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,147

    I completely agree with the starting out small and work your way up... but at the same time, if you are serious about this, buy the best mower you can comfortably afford without breaking your bank. And by "best" I mean one that will allow you to cut the most yards, in the quickest amount of time, with the least effort.

    If all you can afford is a new commercial 21" mower, get it. You can cut twice as fast, twice as clean, with half the effort... allowing you more time to make more money. If you can afford a little more like a commercial 36" walk behind, get it. If you can afford a little more like a 36" ztr, get it. If you cant afford to go commercial, use the same mentality for a residential product to get you through some or all of your first season. Your "residential" equipment will probably be shot by the end of the season anyway or maybe even half way through if you pick up a decent number of accoutns. Just be sure to put a little money back to save up in order to get you some better equipment for next year.
  9. SangerLawn

    SangerLawn LawnSite Senior Member
    from indiana
    Messages: 736

    I agree with what everyone else says about only getting what you need except as far as a trailer. Don’t waste your money on a small trailer. Everything else you buy you will be able to use even once your company is grown except a trailer. If you have a small trailer it will be worthless later on and very hard to sell…by a 16 foot tandem trailer and be done with it.

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