Should I do it?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by chillman, Nov 27, 2007.

  1. chillman

    chillman LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    It seems like everybody and his brother (myself included) has a trailer, mower and trimmer. Can a solo operation really get into this business and make a comfortable living without working for peanuts. How do you compete with "Bobs lawn care" who is cutting lawns for $25 and has no fees related to a legit business. Lets face it, anyone can cut grass. Do you find customers just looking for the cheapest guy in town? Thanks.
  2. Lohse's Lawn Service

    Lohse's Lawn Service LawnSite Member
    from US
    Messages: 213

    I believe a "comfortable" living is very attainable. In fact, you can have a more than "comfortable" living if you play your cards right. You may start out solo, but having just 1-2 extra DEPENDABLE employees can make all the difference in the world. I've heard pros/cons from both solo/large-scale mowing businesses. Going solo means no sick days, no vacations, etc. Whereas, having a large-scale operation means a lot more headaches. It all depends on what you, as a person, can handle. Being one or the other (solo or large-scale) does not make you any less or any more of a person. You'll come to find which works best for you, and go from there.

    People really care about their lawns and some will pay top-dollar for their's to be cut. Offer excellent customer service and do a great job, and if you are charging $30 for that $25 yard, it will be well worth it to the customer. Hope this helps. Good luck!
  3. OutdoorMiracles

    OutdoorMiracles LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    Im not sure. With everything going up in price I see many customers that have a hard time paying for lawnservice. I have been replaced for cheaper a few times now, they dont like the work the other does but it keeps the HOA away and they dont have to do it themselves. Just my 2ct.
  4. Marcos

    Marcos LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,720

    That's right.
    Anyone can cut grass.

    (That's the hard realization I went through, myself, about 15-18 years ago!)

    So don't just cut grass!

    Take the time you have during the slow periods of the year to go to classes, seminars, etc to learn other stuff like landscaping, fountains, stonework, pavers and patios, landscape lighting, irrigation, tree trimming, lawn fertilization, mole control, dog invisible fences, perimeter pest control, etc. etc.

    Just pick one or two that you think are the most marketable for your area, and that you'll like the most, and learn them.

    Yeah, you'll probably have to mow right along with the one or two other things you pick up, but that's O.K. for awhile...
    You just keep right on plugging away every off season at something new, and gradually you'll have enough of the 'other stuff' on your plate that you'll be able to SELL off the mowing part of your business, if you grow it wisely.

    Eventually, your ultimate goal of your work is doing something you want to do every morning, and referring to friends on the road or (maybe locals on 'lawnsite') some of the stuff you don't.

    And the customers?
    They'll want you to do it ALL once they start to trusting you and seeing the quality.
    One key for you down the road is to begin finding reputable local partners in the industry, who don't directly compete with you, who you can exchange leads with now and then.
    That's not always easy to do!

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