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starting business

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by rbruchwalski, Feb 17, 2003.

  1. rbruchwalski

    rbruchwalski LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    :dizzy: My wife and I are just starting in the business and had several questions running through our heads. We have a logo already and am ready to advertise, but do we need a tax id number first, company bank account, etc., or can we do all of that after we see what kind of response we get back from our advertising? Any help would be of great appreciation... Thanks Everyone
  2. Hamons

    Hamons LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    I'll respond first, because I know everybody will be thinking the same thing when they read your post. Give more details! You need to search round the site until you have enough information to ask specific questions.

    I know that is the hardest part -- there is so much you seem to know all at once -- but you can do it. Here are the best tips i can give you.

    • Tax Id -- If you are setting yourself up as a sole-proprietor with no employees you don't need one. Just your SSN#
    • Bank Account. -- Go to your local bank and tell them you want to open a business checking account. In my state we don't have and DBA requirements so you just tell them the name of your company and give the your SSN
    • Go to www.SCORE.org -- they re a great free resource for small businesses.
    • Get a good book on accounting at the library and read up on it. I have found Keeping the Books by Linda Pinson to be incredibly helpful!

    I would do all of this before advertising -- you have to approach this business with the mindset that you are going to make it work - no matter what.

    Also, Don't forget about Licenses and Insurances. Check with your states regulations for that!!!!

    I hope this helps. Feel free to contact me if you have any other questions.

    Jeff Hamons
    Hamons Custom Landscaping
    Overland Park, KS
  3. rbruchwalski

    rbruchwalski LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    :) thanks for the info......I'll keep searching on here for more info....
  4. Randy Scott

    Randy Scott LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,915

    I'm not sure I understand. What difference does it make in the response you get from advertising? You are either starting in the business or you aren't. A sole proprietor will need a sellers permit # from the state to receive materials tax free. A bank account is nice as to keep the business seperate from the personal. Just more professional in my opinion. I would just get the ball rolling on all this stuff while it's the winter season. It's going to take time to get everything in line. Get to your states government website for any questions, some states vary in laws. I think some don't have a sellers permit. You really need to search their site and call them with any questions. Our state is very helpful with this type of stuff and hopefully your's will be also. Good luck.
  5. rbruchwalski

    rbruchwalski LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    :) Maybe I should rephrase the question. We are still going to start the business, but I guess my question is do we need to have a business bank account, tax id number, etc before we start advertising or do we need to wait until we have everything together before we send out fliers....Thanks again for any info:D
  6. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,028

    You don't need to have anything together before you start advertising except your flyer. All the business stuff technically does not have to be done at all. There is nothing that says you aren't doing this for a hobby.
    I know you eventually want to take advantage of all the tax breaks and run a legit business so you will have to move towards setting up your business plan.
    You don't have to do anything but print the flyers and advertise but take my advice and do all the paperwork before you start working on the lawns. The days seem to get shorter in the spring.
    Good Luck.
  7. rbruchwalski

    rbruchwalski LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    Thanks alot. Thats what I was looking for...:D
  8. Doburf@cs.com

    Doburf@cs.com LawnSite Member
    from WV
    Messages: 6

    Do your business plan first!!!You will be building your business around your plan!!!When you are putting together your plan you will (should) cover all the areas your asking about. You can't just advertise either. You will need to know who you're target group is, what your target group reads (as far as printed ads). I could go on and on about advertising.....but to get the best value out of your advertising dollar, find out who your target group is (ie seniors, execs, business, etc.) and find out what they use to contact lawn services. Email me if you need help with your business plan.:)
  9. ronslawncare

    ronslawncare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 540

    mow ed said it perfectly
  10. Lawn DOG

    Lawn DOG LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 276

    Go to your courthouse and get a business license. File for fictitious name at the clerks office. You can use your SS# for tax id for now. Don't forget liability insurance. Don't want to lose everything you own. Then you open a commercial checking account. These are the basics. Any other advice would be telling you to be a "scrub" or nicer put "hobbyist".
    You did say you wanted to start a business not a hobby.
    Good luck!
    Trust me....Do it right or don't do it at all.......
    There is already enough scrubs out there.

    Of course this applies to VA. PA is probably similar.

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