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Potential newbie from Australia

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by m287j, Mar 21, 2014.

  1. m287j

    m287j LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4

    G'day from down under,

    There is a good possibility I will be moving to the US later this year. I have close to 10 years lawn and garden maintenance experience here in Sydney, Australia with my own business.

    I would be moving to Massachusetts, Rowley in the Essex County and would be looking at setting up my own lawn and garden care business over there. As you can guess I would have many many questions but i'll start with a few.

    1/ Are there any legislative or legal requirements to enter the industry over there ?
    2/ Does one need any certifications, licenses or anything ?
    3/ As a rule of thumb is there a general guide as to hourly rates. Over here I charge $50 to $60 an hour.
    4/ Best way of advertising ? Web based, local papers, etc ?
    5/ What on earth does one do in winter ? From what I see there seems to be plenty of snow about in the Essex County and surrounding areas.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  2. easy-lift guy

    easy-lift guy LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,372

    Greetings and Welcome from the Sunshine State. Every state has various rules and regs when your first starting out in any business. That said you seem pretty set on moving to the NE and I was just wondering if you had considered any other states, like my state?. There are obvious economic and weather advantages over moving and setting up shop in the NE compared to the SE. I hope you will consider other parts of the country for setting up shop and moving forward with your professional life. All the best.
    easy-lift guy
  3. m287j

    m287j LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4

    Thanks easy-lift guy, the reason for my move is woman related shall we say, so location is pretty set.
  4. easy-lift guy

    easy-lift guy LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,372

    More than one fish in the pond. Bottom line you will discover the cost of doing business in the NE will be more expensive and in the winter months you will be limited to plowing, firewood and waiting for Spring.
    Pack up your better half and make your way south. Year round work, no state income tax, no fuel bills in the winter, compared to Mass. It almost never snows, you won't have to keep layering your clothes in the winter as well.
    easy-lift guy
  5. Keene Landscaping

    Keene Landscaping LawnSite Member
    Messages: 51

    Good ol' Oz, miss living there. Used to live in Brizzy for a cple years. Snow can do great things for your business. My former employer said almost all of his lawn care company's income is from snow removal and said he just keeps the mowing account to keep his employees paid year round. I have heard much of the same from other landscapers in the area. Snow is where the money is at, make it work for you.
  6. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,733

    Huh, WHY move to the US? :laugh:

    50-60 will be fine to start out I guess…it's not incredibly far off any of the rates many other guys charge.
    I mean unless you are running a large company with lots of expenses.
    No one reads Papers or Yellow Pages anymore…don't bother.

    In the winter they plow snow.
    However I know a lot of guys who just work like crazy in the green season and take the winter off (it's not a bad idea if you can make it work financially)

    A business license is easy to get.
    check with your local chamber of commerce (you can find them in the phone book) and they will set you up with a list of everything you need to get started.

    you will need to get a license if you intend to spray pesticides as well. But you can always get that later, and just do clean ups and grass cutting.
  7. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,733

    Aren't all those reasons why EVERYONE and their brother eventually moves down there and starts up a lawn business?:laugh:
  8. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,733

    :laugh: you sure it's not the exact opposite??:laugh:

    sure this year there was tons of snow there…but most years it melts before you can plow it, or you sit there watching the sky waiting for flakes… they had a dunkin donuts commercial several years back about plow truck drivers and making fun of them sitting in the truck waiting for one flake to fall from the sky and all rushing at it with their plows.
    was kinda funny:(
  9. easy-lift guy

    easy-lift guy LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,372

    Actually no. Many residents come to visit at first and than decide to retire and live the rest of their lives entertaining family and friends. There are many opportunities available here, as I was explaining the advantages and disadvantages between one part of the country and another. I believe the OP may be set since his better half lives in MA.
    easy-lift guy
  10. Mickhippy

    Mickhippy LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,274

    Wow! Member since 2006 and 3 posts! Thats a pro lurker if ever I saw one! ha
    One thing I found whilst there on holiday is how cheap stuff is! You'll see how the cost of living in Oz is insane these days in comparison. That said, I hear health insurance/medical is more expensive over there. I guess you could always come home if anything major happened.

    Good luck with the move mate!

    Oh, stay away from the hideous boiled shoe, I mean steak!

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