Newbie advice..

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by SGTlawnslaughter, Jun 15, 2008.

  1. SGTlawnslaughter

    SGTlawnslaughter LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    I'm looking to go full force next week with just a push mower and a trimmer. I don't have funding as of yet and the seasons already a quarter of the way over. My question is since i have only a Nissan sedan, a push mower and a trimmer, can it be done? Will my vehicle turn off customers? The cars in good shape and i have a great personality. Will that cover my top of the line equipment short-fall? I have 3 lawns next week through word of mouth. I really really really want to do this full time.
    If anyone has started out with the bare essentials like me right now, and has sound advice though experience, PLEASE HELP!!! I appreciate any and all comments and questions.

    STIHL GUY LawnSite Fanatic
    from CT
    Messages: 5,226

    i started small around my house where i could walk to the lawns. i slowly got more accounts and equipment so dont go out and buy a bunch of equipment if you dont need it yet
  3. MileHigh

    MileHigh LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,466

    I wouldn't think about showing up to someone's property to mow there lawn professionally, with my business, without at least a TRUCK.
  4. milkie62

    milkie62 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 834

    Take off the trunk and make a flatbed out of some pallets and paint it the same color as the car.Everyone will think you have an Elcanissan.
  5. lawnprosteveo

    lawnprosteveo LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Tulsa
    Messages: 1,930

    Everyone has to start somewhere. Dont go into debt just so you can look professional. My customers are mostly middle/working class people. They want someone reliable, do a decent job, and charge a fair price. Other than that, they dont care if my truck is old, new, or non-existent.

    As for picking up new accounts, lots of guys have had luck with flyers. I got most of my 1st ones through newspaper ads in the contractor section. Just try all you can to get whatever work you can.

    Make some cash and then start buying all the stuff...but be smart and do it with cash or VERY limited financing. Theres no need to drive a $50,000 1 ton pulling a high-end trailer full of $10,000 mowers....You just got to take it one step at a time.
  6. SGTlawnslaughter

    SGTlawnslaughter LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    Just picked up my first account today!! Commercial across the street by dialing a wrong number!! Im pumped. Thanks for the marketing advice too. Ive heard flyer's are illegal? I would like to think not. Maybe an un-enforced law?
    Any other marketing niches out there on a low-cost avenue?
  7. MowHouston

    MowHouston LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,012

    Theres a guy down here that I see from time to time. Talked to him one day to see how he got started / how his business was doing.

    He started with a 1990 Honda Accord. Mow/trimmer/blower from a pawn shop.

    He's got over 150 accounts now, guys working for him and buncha walk behinds pulled in an landscape trailer and, of course, a truck now.

    Sometimes you gotta start off with what you got.
  8. freshprince94

    freshprince94 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,449

    I started out with Homelite equipment and my stuff in the trunk of a van. I still use that van to pull my trailer, it is a lot better on gas than a truck. But I don't like driving it so I will hopefully get a truck within 2 years. But the van has never affected business.
  9. mowerbrad

    mowerbrad LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,268

    I started off just driving my snapper rider down the streets in my neighborhood and mowed that way untill I could drive. Once I could drive I bought a 3/4 ton truck, got a 14ft trailer and a ZTR. I got plenty of customers just by driving down the street on the lawn tractor so I'm sure that you can get a few more customers out of a sedan. As long as you are reliable then you should have no problem. Of coarse once you get a few more lawns you could then buy a truck and trailer. Best of luck to you.
  10. k911lowe

    k911lowe LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 526

    you have to start with what you have.customers will recognize this and realize you can get them a better price because you are just starting out.when i started i bought 150.00 trucks and painted them with implement paint and used them to death.good luck.just keep the enthusiasm

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