level of concern over gas prices

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by PJ Wright, Aug 10, 2005.

  1. PJ Wright

    PJ Wright LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    Hi guys,I'm new to this forum but have already learned alot, Thanks! My situation is this: I've been considering going into the lawn care business for a while now, doing research, saving money, etc.. however, the skyrocketing cost of gas has me concerned. Paying more is one thing, but what if it starts to become hard to get? Do you think I should procede with my plans or maybe wait and see for a year or so? I remember the long lines for gas during the 70s, and I just wonder if now is the time to be starting a fuel-intensive business. Thanks in advance for your input and advice.
  2. Jay Ray

    Jay Ray LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,510

    Fuel is a big concern. Still, many customers have only used a small hp 21 and a 1 gal. can that lasted them 4 weeks, so they think fuel cost is still just a drop in the bucket. They go by their experience and don't realize we can't use a 21 all week and live to tell about it. Truck? They think it don't use much either.

    I've been pulling a 5 x 10, but am considering getting a 40" x 48" trailer and doing some clusters of lawns with just a 7hp 21, trimmer, edger, and blower. Maybe half a day on the 21 at the most.

    $2.47 is hard to take.
  3. clncut

    clncut LawnSite Member
    Messages: 94

    2.47 sheesh. Just looked today and the price was 2.75 a gallon. Time to start shopping for goats!
  4. shortgut

    shortgut LawnSite Member
    Messages: 185

    it has go to $2.559 here for 87 octane and for diesel fuel to high for sure
  5. out4now

    out4now LawnSite Bronze Member
    from AZ
    Messages: 1,796

    Today I saw a sign for 2.30 then half a block away 2.55 then about a mile up the road from that 2.599 :help: No shortage of SUV's at the pumps though. When gas goes up like this people act stupid. People are filling up their boats, RV's, ATV's etc. Same thing happened when the Kinder Morgan pipe line broke here recently.
  6. kleankutslawn

    kleankutslawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,185

    now maybe as good as any.prices may be at 3.50a gallon next year.by you just starting out,charge a few dollars more do to gas prices
  7. Thirdpete

    Thirdpete LawnSite Member
    from Chicago
    Messages: 236

    over three a gallon here, regular.
  8. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    don't know what to tell you but if a gas shortage hits then it affects EVERYBODY and it doesn't matter where you work, if we have no fuel then we have no fuel.

    Best advice I can give is read on this forum in different sections there are threads and threads on what MOST of us have done and are doing to conserve fuel not so much so that we don't run out but to LOWER COST! The biggest problem I see is people WILL say bye-bye to the lawnboy as an unnecessary expense when they need extra money to pay for their own fuel budget, we're done long before cable tv even.

    As an example, my outfit consumes an average of 1 gallon of fuel per yard serviced today, total (truck + equipment). That means even if gas goes up to $4/gallon, it STILL only costs ME 2-3 dollars more/yard than when I started in 2001 AND my fuel consumption is at least HALF today what it was then.
    To be brutally honest, the fuel budget of 2001 still fits me today, I was spending 60-70/week for 99cent fuel back then and now I'm spending as much during slow times which is STILL as much if not MORE business than then, and during spring when I was grossing 5k/month through apr-jun, I sustained fuel levels with a budget of $80-$100/week and that's ONLY 20-40 dollars more/week than 3 years ago with over TWICE the business.

    Far as charging more? Well that hinges on demand and I was planning on raising my prices but am still running on last year's and may just continue to do so if for no other reason than because I can let the competition sweat.

    I used to spend $20/week for fuel on my car, now $15/week does the trick, so there's another 50% decrease but I can't save the world, everyone else needs to kick in too, thou to be honest the only ones that frustrate me are those with that attitude of 'either you can afford it or you can not' because we ALL need to conserve this precious, limited resource.

    So you are right, an actual fuel shortage worries me, too... I stay home more and have decreased use of electricity as well as a LOT of power-plants are petrol powered. But if we run out it's EVERYBODY's problem, not just the lawnboy's.
  9. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    yeah it is stupid, my fuel levels are about 1/2 because it's a slow time of year and the stuff is budgeted so what gas that money can't buy doesn't go in the tank. Another advantage to a fuel budget is if I run out then it skru's up the entire expense account so it forces me to watch the gauges and not be wasteful.
  10. Jay Ray

    Jay Ray LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,510

    Checked my records. First gas purchase was on 1-06-05 at 1.749 (was still doing leaves here), latest was at 2.539.

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