Niche offerings- any neat services you see out there?

Discussion in 'Lawn Care Business Management' started by Rick Engasser, Oct 21, 2017.

  1. Rick Engasser

    Rick Engasser LawnSite Member
    Messages: 53

    image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg One of the posters wisely noted that "niches equal riches". I thought about that when I helped my brother for a day with a niche he has for his paving business. It is a small business mostly driveways and small parking lots. He did some work at a golf course and they wanted him to quote redoing the cart paths, which apparently most paving companies don't care to do. He came up with the idea of hauling in the blacktop with compact tractors and dump trailers which turns out to be a less intrusive method than backing in dump trucks or having them turn around on the turf. Or bucketing in blacktop with skid steers. Pretty cool little job, requiring lots of coordination with 20 pieces of equipment, but it did not require closing that part of the course or cause any damage to the turf. By the way the budget for the project is $50k per year for 5 years. While it is not lawn renovation related, it is a good example of a niche that exists. What started the dump trailer program is we do volunteer work on snowmobile trails and built a couple of them from salvaged dump boxes over the years to haul in gravel on problem areas of the trail.

    Another little niche I found was removing the berms in a horse arena, the horses kick the dressage to the perimeter walls of the arena. A customer who has me till her garden and mow the paddocks asked if there would be a way to remove the berms and level it out. I had built a hydraulically controlled depth control roller for my box blade some time ago image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg which worked pretty well, so a couple of hours with some recycled cutting edge, plasma cutter and welder and came up with an wing that bolts under the side of the box blade with a depth control wheel from my sod cutter. The idea was to pull the berm away from the wall so there is room enough to box blade it away and meter it out. First time out and it actually worked pretty well. She was happy and her husband was thrilled as he had been digging it out by hand and trying to drag it around with the arena leveler. I have a video but I cannot load them onto this post.

    Hoping there are some other niches this group is willing to share, being niches there is a limited market for them but your operation may already have some less mainstream equipment that may be adapted for them.
  2. RDALawns

    RDALawns LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from Texas
    Messages: 1,640

    I purchased a truck for the engine. Ended up fixing the pump on the dump bed . Thought hey it may be useful once in awhile. Lol the truck gets used almost daily . It's a ugly old truck but it's boosted our revenue greatly. So you know it's ugly I'll add a picture.


    JLSLLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,358

    I love it.
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  4. chrissyboy

    chrissyboy LawnSite Member
    Male, from southern il
    Messages: 20

    I love it as well. Seems like a money maker to me!
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  5. oqueoque

    oqueoque LawnSite Platinum Member
    Male, from Jersey
    Messages: 4,390

    I have a Chevy 3500 that the original factory bed lifts and dumps using a Pierce Arrow kit. Mine is not a dually. It looks like you might have a trailer behind yours. I can't figure out how to tie into the frame for a hitch, because on mine the tilted bed & bumper would hit the hitch when upright like yours is now.

    I can tow off the bumper, but haven't. I use it now for some mulch and brush, when the stake body has something different on it. And I might get a small trailer 5x8 to tow a Ground Logic spreader or aerator or anything light just using the bumper.

    If you tow, how is yours setup. Thanks.
  6. BigJlittleC

    BigJlittleC LawnSite Gold Member
    from Chicago
    Messages: 3,621

    I always tell my wife ugly trucks are cheap trucks. Making them pretty is just time and a few bucks!

    I found here in the city no one wants to do snow removal on rear steps. Local code says you need two exits clean and clear on multiple family dwellings. I don't advertise for it but get lots of referrals for it. Really not hard to do either with the right shovel!
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  7. RDALawns

    RDALawns LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from Texas
    Messages: 1,640

    I do tow trailers with the truck.The bed has a goose neck ball under a trap door. I also pull my utility trailers with it. The truck doesn't have a rear bumper but dose have a 10k valley hitch receiver . It's welded to the frame.
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  8. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 15,087

    Mole trapping. And mole poison baits.
    You may need an animal control license--probably not in most states.

    Salting sidewalks and steps in front of buildings. Or liquid de-icer applications. Plus snow plow work, of course.
    Got a hill? Can you rent a hill? Build a ski hill. Don't bother with a chair-lift or rope tow--drive skiers up to the top of the hill. Four wheel drive--mini-bus--old school bus-- whatever suits your situation.
    True, you might have to take the seats out.
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  9. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 15,087

    Outdoor lighting. Especially security lighting. Motion detecting that get super-bright--triple lumens if somebody sneaks into the yard.

    And maybe a bigger push at overseeding with better quality grass seed.

    Install irrigation.

    And--referring to the indoor horse arenas--sometimes they need calcium chloride spread on them. Because--they get very dusty. The calcium chloride attracts moisture and serves as a dust control application. Perhaps the same for dirt driveways. Just need a spreader or a liquid application system.

    Got leaf blowers? They are nice for clean-ups of football stadiums. Paper cups, hot dog wrappers, peanuts. Why not for outdoor concerts, too?

    Also evetroughs and gutter cleaning. Dangerous--unless you can use leaf blowers and long curved tubes to blow them out.
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2017
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  10. Rick Engasser

    Rick Engasser LawnSite Member
    Messages: 53

    image.jpg Something else as part of winter prep could be shrub protection services. Check out it is a small company that makes standard and custom covers for shrubs, either with frames or ground stakes.

    Riggle great ideas! We may try the Sno-Cat skiing/sledding idea for our snowmobile club. 2 of our Sno-cats have 5 man cabs so we could have an sledding hill day as an appreciation event. If we do we will post some pictures.
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