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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Guys,

Looking for some opinions seeing as my business is fairly new. Currently, I'm using a walk behind aerator but rented a Stinger stand on for my larger yards. When/if does it make sense to buy instead of renting?

Thanks in advance!
 

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When you can make more money than purchasing the equipment cost within a reasonable amount of time. Also, if you have the means to store and maintain it (which are part of the cost).

Equipment needed daily or weekly, probably worth owning. Monthly or sporadically through the year? Maybe not. What’s nice about renting is the companies are obligated to maintain the equipment, and are usually able to drop off and pick it up saving you time. If there are issues they can usually swap it out or send a repairman. These should be factored into your price, not eating into your profit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
When you can make more money than purchasing the equipment cost within a reasonable amount of time. Also, if you have the means to store and maintain it (which are part of the cost).

Equipment needed daily or weekly, probably worth owning. Monthly or sporadically through the year? Maybe not. What’s nice about renting is the companies are obligated to maintain the equipment, and are usually able to drop off and pick it up saving you time. If there are issues they can usually swap it out or send a repairman. These should be factored into your price, not eating into your profit.
All good points, thanks for the input!
 

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I picked up what retails for $4500 a walk behind beast of an aerator from Home Depot rental department that was selling a few things. Had 25 or so hours on it. I’ve put at least 150 hours on it myself. It’s paid for itself 40x over and still running strong maybe I got lucky. Now because it’s built to be a rental it’s heavy as heck but that’s a good thing too it can take a beating. I’ve had it around 10 years now.

sorry I forgot I paid $900 for it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I picked up what retails for $4500 a walk behind beast of an aerator from Home Depot rental department that was selling a few things. Had 25 or so hours on it. I’ve put at least 150 hours on it myself. It’s paid for itself 40x over and still running strong maybe I got lucky. Now because it’s built to be a rental it’s heavy as heck but that’s a good thing too it can take a beating. I’ve had it around 10 years now.
Nice, what model aerator did you get?
 

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Classen 30 I believe, I am not at my place to take a look that just rings a bell. 30” maybe 32” but it may have some different model number. Has a Honda engine. I think I got a steal, it’ll still start after sitting all winter on first or second pull. We don’t do a heck of a lot of aeration because it’s tough to do with a manual like this. But to step up to a ride on you are going to drop at a minimum $10k so got to think about how much can you make from it.
 

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HD was asking $1000 I said I’d give them $900 they had to call a manager and they did and after telling me they couldn’t go down from there and then I said ok I’m not buying he told me ok but that $100 has to be spent in this store right now so LOL I did but for my concern it was $900.
 

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But I agree with a caveat if you need to rent to “get started” the do it. Years ago I rented a back end tiller until I realized that I really was wasting money and needed to buy one.
 

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This is really a loaded question as there are lots of things to answer. First, don’t let anyone say that you’re not a professional if your renting equipment. For some reason us landscapers like to buy all our equipment. Yet large construction companies rent or lease nearly everything for every project. Everything from road signs to loaders is rented or leased.

For me, I would ask yourself questions. These are simple questions, with simple answers and based on how you answer, that would immediately tell me if I should continue to consider other factors to buying or if I should stop in my tracks and rent with no further thought.

1. what is the ROI. How fast do I get my money back ?

2. Assuming you’re not sitting on piles of cash, rather than buying your core aerator, is there other business needs that the money could go towards ? This could be equipment related or general business related like marketing.

3. do those items which you also need to buy, have a higher/ faster ROI then the core aerator that you intent to buy. -

If the ROI for your situation is crappy, you should not buy it.

if you have other needs that would get used more often, you should not buy the aerator

if the other items have a higher or faster ROI, you should buy those instead as you get your money back faster for reinvesting down the road.

By the way, this method of decision making is also how larger CEO types determine what projects to complete and what areas they they should personally focus on.
 

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All good points. I hate renting but still do for some things. Have to figure at least 2 hours picking up and returning.

I own way more than what I should. And I don't like to buy junk, so I tend to overspend on the smaller stuff. But listen to the others.
 

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If you or anyone else has low sq footage yards like I do, I would definitely buy a used walk behind aerator now. I've seen many for sale under $2000.00 for hydro units. We get about $150 for a 3,000 sq ft yard. And don't mind doing it whenever the customer asks. Before I would turn down Spring aeration, because renting for 1 or 2 jobs was not worth it. But not now.
 
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