One man show?

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by steveair, Oct 15, 2000.

  1. steveair

    steveair LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,073


    As this year is beginning to come to an end, I now am in the process of beginning to think where my company is going to be next year.

    One question I have is what kind of expectations can I have for running a 1 man opearation, performing mainly landscape construction, with the occasional mulch/pruning/etc jobs, but no mowing, trimmming, etc.

    When looking at what I did this year as a part time business, I'm starting to think that a gross in the range of 250-300k would be a realistic goal (with no plowing), and that a 400k gross for a year seems like it would be possible if I really set my mind on it, of course my life would consist of 7 day work weeks for 44 weeks.

    Any input appreciated, or anyone out there who is solo can surely be of some help too.

    by the way, I'm single, so that means a lot in what kind of dedidication I have to reach my wife to nag me about not seeing me for 2 weeks because I leave at 5 AM and get home at 9 PM
  2. paul

    paul Lawnsite Addict
    Messages: 1,625

    Are you planning on having a socal life?
  3. rats5656

    rats5656 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 150

    making 250 k how is that possible as a one man shoe hoe ?
  4. rats5656

    rats5656 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 150

    making 250 k how is that possible as a one man show how ?
  5. steveair

    steveair LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,073

    too maybe clarify a few things:

    I plan I could Gross 250k-300k, and then maybe profit 30-40% of that for my self. So far this year, I am on track to hit the 70k gross mark, with a average profit of 30-50% on every job. Of course, there's taxes involved here too, so that 'in my pocket' money is far less.

    I have been working my business around my full time job. I work 5 days/40 hrs a week, 6-2 m-f, and had took one of my vacation weeks to do a job. This is what I am basing my prediction on. I figure if I were full time, I could get jobs done A LOT faster than i have been. When you start a job a 3 pm, and work till dark, you can get a lot done, but things like all the supply yards closing at 5 and what not really have slowed me down.

    As for a a social life........none now. I figured the 5 years I spend guzzling beer with all my buddies in college had to catch up with me sometime, and the time is now. Now I got to face the music and get things going before I'm fifty years old and still doing the same thing/making the same money as I do now.

    Besides, what more of a social life outside of lawnsite does one need......................LOL


    [Edited by steveair on 10-16-2000 at 01:09 AM]
  6. Ocutter

    Ocutter LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 314

    I too want to go as far as I can go with a single man operation. I cant imagine doing what you do. God bless you. Just stay healthy and dont burn yourself out.
  7. Lanelle

    Lanelle LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,361

    Remember that is takes time to grow a business. Do you have lots of pent-up demand that will allow that much expansion in a short period of time? If not, you'll need more marketing, advertising stratigies. Also, managing growth is a little harder than it looks, sometimes.
  8. PRapoza451

    PRapoza451 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 58

    I would look at this another way. Most people shoot for higher gross sales #'s. This doesn't necessarily mean anything. I like to look at things in the opposite direction, I’ve found this works better for me and lets me focus on what’s more important which is my compensation. If you start out with the dollar figure you want to make (has to be reasonable) you can set your rates, markup, hourly rate, etc., around that #. For instance if I wanted to make $70K and I sold primarily hours and I could work 2080hrs. (40hrs/week x 52weeks/yr.) That would tell me I need to charge $33.65/hr. and I need to sell 2080hrs@$33.65/hr. in a year. However if I only wanted to work 1600hrs/yr. then I need to charge $43.75/hr. This is a very simple example and other things need to be factored in (overhead, taxes, insurance, etc.) You get the idea. You can do this factoring in everything else too, material markups etc... Good luck!

    [Edited by PRapoza451 on 10-16-2000 at 11:55 AM]
  9. Toddppm

    Toddppm LawnSite Senior Member
    from VA
    Messages: 268

    Well if ambition has any part in it , you got that licked.
  10. jaclawn

    jaclawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 490

    I am in the same boat, so to speak. I thought of being a one man show doing landscape work. There is money in it, more so than mowing. The main reason that I didn't decide to do landscape work alone, is the fact that it is often heavy and hard work. Those timbers get awefully heavy to move alone. That wheelbarrow gets heaiver as the day goes on. Oops, that hole for the tree is not deep enough, and the tree has to come back out of the hole... You get the idea. On many projects, it is nice to have another set of muscles around.

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