Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by GravelyWalker, Oct 10, 2012.

  1. CL&T

    CL&T LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 493

    The thing I get out of this is you guys have some kind of ingrained emotional opposition to debt. If you are a smart business person you know that debt, when used properly can be a powerful tool to help you succeed and you wouldn't be "wearing being debt free" on your sleeve. Nothing to brag about nor probably anybodies business except your accountant.
  2. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 19,631

    Which is better??

    Being the owner of your business...or...being in debt to your business...
  3. clydebusa

    clydebusa Inactive
    Messages: 1,660

    I do both, get loans and pay cash on something. To decide if I need a loan I flip a coin, oh wait no coin, need a loan.
  4. GreenI.A.

    GreenI.A. LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,131

    I strongly disagree with you on this. When you are servicing multi-million dollar properties the owners usually prefer to not have tracks that are falling apart sitting in front of their home. For some reason people on here have this thought that having a nice newer cleaner truck gives a message that the company is in debt, doesn't know how to properly manage money, over charges to afford nice things. I will argue that most customers think just the opposite. Having newer cleaner equipment shows that you take pride in you equipment and probably work as well. Does having a 50k truck tell the customer you charge more? Yes it does, but it also gives the idea that their in a reason you can regularly charge more.

    Look as it as the opposite, if a customer sees your 1990 f150 with every body panel a different color, they ate going to think that you charge less. But why do you charge less? Do you have less demand for work?

    This is the exact reason we openly tell potential customers that we are more money than most of our competition. The reason we charge more is because we are in demand, the market is willing to pay us more for the work we do. Word of mouth sells most our jobs. One benefit of being able to charge more is that we can afford newer shinier equipment.
  5. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 19,631

    I have houses with eleavators inside them, I run a 10 year old box truck thats painted all white. My equiptment is clean and most of it is less than 5 years old. So just because Im debt free Im not Sanford and son.

    I see new trucks pulling new Exmarks at the start of every season, Its rear to see the trucks by the end of the season.
  6. cpllawncare

    cpllawncare LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,659

    Maybe not, but I'd agree that in a neighborhood of million dollar homes I don't want to look like sanford and son, my truck isn't new but it is in great shape as is all my equipment, I guess it came from 10 years in the military, where your stuff better at least look brand new at all times or else. It's called "pride" and "discipline" I don't require "new" stuff just new "Looking" stuff.
  7. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 19,631

    I keep my stuff up also, thats a maintance issue not so much a "Loan" issue.

    The point Im trying to make is customers dont care if you have a 50K truck or in my case a 7k truck. I have never ever had a customer ask me what kind of truck I use. Further more a 50k truck used in lawncare is a "Horrible" investment, and a "loan" makes it even woorse. Try telling a customer that you charge more because you have a nice truck, it wont work.
  8. CL&T

    CL&T LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 493

    Say what you want but it's being ignorant if you don't understand how credit and finance can help a business.

    I say BS to that like I do to a lot of other things you have been saying.
  9. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 19,631

    Ive never seen a debt free business go bankrupt. So Ill just be ignorant and debt free.

    Think real hard........doesnt a LAWNMOWER PAYMENT in and of its self just sound stupid!

    Call BS if you wish, it not hard to find slightly used equiptment, the average homewoner didnt buy a 10k Exmark so he could sell it in 6 months. Craigs list is full of slightly used commerical equiptment.
  10. 32vld

    32vld LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,983

    Many cash first people here also said they would take a 0% interest loan and hold onto the cash in the bank and earn interest.

    This way if their business had a down turn there was the money in their savings account to make the payments.

    Now a person that takes a loan to buy equipment and does not have money to cover the loan their business may not be able to survive a down turn do to being in debt.

    People run their business just as if they were an employee. Earning $100 and spending $100 every week. Then when their salary gets cut they can't meet their loans.


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