Leap of Faith

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Acute Cut, Oct 5, 2003.

  1. Acute Cut

    Acute Cut LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 980

    :blob3: Well, I've decided that next year will be the big year.:angel: (My 5 year old is "helping" me add smilies, sorry)
    Ive decided to run more trucks and expand all at once. Next year i will go from a one man operation to a full three crew operation. Ill add on full sprinklers and landscaping. My wife is nervous and so am i but i think we can do it. I guess it is all up to god.:rolleyes:

    I got the sprinkler and lawn care sides no problem. Landscaping is a little different but i am just going to plan on hiring for aptitude and let him run it basically. Any ideas? Anyone got any ideas for immediate tools ill need for the landscaping. I was thinking about a dingo fully stocked or something. I am just trying to figure out what expenses i got coming up. I just worry that I've gotten tunnel vision. Wish us luck. Thanks for all the help ya ll have given me over the years. I do appreciate it. (And i still miss EricELM):angel:
  2. HOMER

    HOMER LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,183

    Wish you the best! Gonna be a challenge.
  3. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,497

    I wish you the best of luck, but PLEASE make sure you have ALL of your expenses covered. By experience, this sounds like too much,-too soon (or maybe fast is a better word). To just "hire" someone, and have them take the reigns in the landscaping dept. of YOUR business is a great risk. Yes, you'll be there monitering it, however, you ALSO have a couple of guys out driving your truck around town, blasting grass. You are monitering THEM, too. And from going from a solo operation, it will take ALOT of work, all of a sudden, to cover this labor, taxes, insurances (including workman's comp and unemployment), and all other expenses related. For 3 crews, you are looking at approx. 6 employees. At $9 an hour (average), you will be looking at $360 per week per employee. Now, add 1/3 of that to cover the necessary taxes, SS, etc.. This brings it to $480 per week, per employee. Times that by 6, and we are at $2880 per week. That is $17,280 per month that you will have to bill out conistently just to cover your labor expenses. This is before ANY of your other expenses, INCLUDING payments and depreciation on all the additional equipment that will be needed so these guys have something to do. THEN, you still have to cover your shop, your home, and all of your expenses, before you can actually pay yourself. Now, it's time to deal with all the employee headaches, deadlines, excuses, issues, etc.. I firmly know why I am the size I am, and plan on staying that way. A good word of advice is, grow slow. Have the work first, until the overtime starts reaching the point that it is more feasible to hire another and it cancels out the time and a half expenses. Then move on from there. Too many people have thought they will just go big without growing into it first, and have suffered. It is a recipe for disaster. Not trying to be negative,.. just being a realist. I DO say once again though,... good luck and I wish you the best.
  4. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Messages: 8,745

    good luck with everything, but a word advice from me is to not jump into it too quickly
  5. Bunton Guy

    Bunton Guy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,909

    I have my tail between my legs after reading what runner has to say lol...actually I have taken that into consideration a long time ago and have gone with the slow growth...I can't see how you can jump from one man operation to a 3 crew operation overnight...sounds like a plan for disaster but if you know what your doing good luck!
  6. Acute Cut

    Acute Cut LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 980

    Well, right now i have myself and one other guy running FULL speed on just lawn care. I have about 110 or so customers and can barely fit any more in with just one crew running it all. So, i figure next year my current employee can run a truck for lawns with just one other guy on it. Then i can run another truck for lawns/sprinkler stuff. If sprinklers pick up then ill get a sprinkler specific truck. As for the landscaping, i figured it could be landscaping/sprinklers as well if need be. I just dont know how busy ill be with either landscaping or sprinklers. I know for sure ill need another lawn truck at least part time. That is where my thoughts are stemming from as of right now anyways.
  7. dvmcmrhp52

    dvmcmrhp52 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Pa.
    Messages: 4,205

    It's been said before but I'll say it again.
    The hardest thing to deal with in business is growth,Too much can kill you as quickly as too little.
    I sincerly wish you all the best , but I must say that it sounds like a certain leap of faith from my experiences.JMO.
    Good luck and best wishes.
  8. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,143

    I have nightmares about hiring a part time person, you've got big ones to jump to 3 crews. Good luck.
  9. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,143


  10. gene gls

    gene gls LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,213

    If you don't know what you need for landscape equipment then your not ready for that phase of business.


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