price for good help?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by dogger, Mar 3, 2002.

  1. dogger

    dogger LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    I am intrested in hiring a few more guys this summer. They also both have a couple of years of experience cutting. They will drive to my shop, pick up the equipment and go to that days assigned work. They will be part time (half days) as they both have a steady job. What would you pay them? By the hour or a salary? Also, because they have a full time job i am considering paying in cash and 1099ing them after the season. Does anyone else take this approach?
  2. Can't do it.

    Must use W4 or they don't officialy work for you, and they use "your" equipment, you can't 1099 them.

    Yes there are loop holes, but you will end up in jail using them.
  3. Guardian

    Guardian LawnSite Senior Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 269

    You could open yourself up to alot liability. Also, once you go over 3 employees. you have to have workmans comp.

    You can only 1099 somebody who uses their own equip, like LGF said. I sub work to another LCO and 1099 them.

    I have to pay $7/hr and give an incentive after 30 days in order to keep decent people. I have a fulltime opening for a foreman and it looks like I'm going to have to pay about $400/wk to that guy.
  4. richard coffman

    richard coffman LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 341


    I've been around the block a few time with this. Personally, I'll call there past employers who they cut lawns with, check drivers license for violations, and a back ground check. I'm not the paranoid type, actually pretty easy going, but letting a few guys take your equipment out and work for ya is like metting your little girs date for the high school prom for the very first time. I'f these guys who live in your neiborhood and you know them, then i can see that you would feel more comfortable.

    As far as the 1099 goes, go with what LGF says, sounds like he's knows what he's talking about.

    good luck,

    Richard Coffman/owner
    Special Needs Lawn Services
  5. scott's turf

    scott's turf LawnSite Senior Member
    from NH
    Messages: 949

    Gaurdian, up here in NH we have to have workman's comp for just 1 employee. There is a big fine too if we get caught without it. I am looking for a guy to to mow this summer as well. He will be by himself all day and report to me in the evenings. I will be paying $14-$16/hr to find dependable, quality help that will hopefully reduce my headaches. I had a guy for a long time that was great but he went to med school. Last year was a nightmare. I had to let the guy go and had to squeeze in the work when I could with some part time help. Maybe with the economy weaker it will be easier to find good help.
  6. dldonnelly

    dldonnelly LawnSite Member
    from ga
    Messages: 3

    I'd say by salary , especially if your not going to be with them.
    My accountants are scattered all over town and some times it takes as much as twenty minutes to get to the next lawn. So it works better for me to pay a salary.
  7. bruces

    bruces LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 648

    Lawngodfather is right on the money.

    Yes, you can pay them cash & give them a 1099.

    Is it right, no. At the end of the year when you give them a 1099 for 5,000 and they have to pay self employment tax and income tax, are they going to be upset? You bet. If you fire them and they go to the unemployment office, guess what, the state will think they are an emloyee. You furnish the equipment, tell them where to go, when, what to do, there is no way they are not an employee.

    In the long run you will probably have problems by not doing it right, either from the IRS or state or the employees, or both.
  8. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,497

    Here in Michigan, we have to have worman's comp on each and every employee as well. Starting with the first. (Of course, we can't carry workman's comp on ourselves unless we're inc.'d. As far as the salary deal, especially for part time,- BAD idea. This is where accidents happen, and people get hurt - from racing from one jobsite to another to save their "own" time. There is also a quality control issue there for when they ARE on the job. If you want to know a fair price, for experience, reliability, and maturity, 9'ish is good. Good luck with it!
  9. PAPS

    PAPS LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 404

    In order to 1099 them, they will have to be recognized has each having a business.I.e, they are you "sub contractors". NOOOO they do not have to have there own equip. 1099 means that like the guys have said up top, they will have to have some money saved up to pay back in tax's at the end of the year..... Why not pay them on the books period??? Guys who work for me are all on the books NO questions asked. Also, as for work comp, YOU WILL NOT NEED IT. Being that they are 1099 it is THEIR responsibility to have THEIR own business insurance. What would I pay... being they are part time, probably like 10-12/hr. being full time maybe like 12-15 or so.
  10. Guardian

    Guardian LawnSite Senior Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 269

    Dwayne & Scott:

    What kind of accounts are you sending a guy to solo? What kind of equip. set-up do they use?

    I am trying to decide what is appropriate to assign to one guy. We have always used 2 man crews on every job, so they are used to sharing the load.

    Is this the first time you're trying this or have you been doing it?

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