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starting mowing

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by tractrpowr45, Feb 3, 2007.

  1. tractrpowr45

    tractrpowr45 LawnSite Member
    from NY
    Messages: 32

    Hi, I am fairly new to the lawn/landscaping business, last year was my first year doing landscaping. This year I would like to get into mowing in order to pick up more landscaping customers. My first question is, should I buy a commercial mower first, then look for customers,or should I start advertising and get a dozen or so customers, then buy the mower. I live in Western New York, when should I start advertising/passing out flyers? Also, should I start out with a walkbehind or a ZT mower. I am currently looking at Ferris and Exmark ZT's and walkbehinds. The Exmark walkbehinds are almost as expensive as the ZT's; I'd rather sit down mowing than walk. Plus I've read that Exmark has some issues with their decks; how is the Ferris cut?
    Thanks for any info
  2. lawnpro724

    lawnpro724 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,201

    If you have the money and your sure this is the field you want to work in then buy a ztr, trimmers, blowers and so on. If you don't have the money to lay down for a new ztr or walkbehind then wait til you have some customers. I would start advertising for new mowing customers March 1st with an ad in paper then flyers around areas where you want to work. If you direct mail then you need to start doing that now.
  3. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    I ran my first 5 years with nothing but 48" Wb's, in lots generally ranging from 1/4 acre to a full acre in size.

    Only last October did I buy the luxurious, big Z.
    And if I had to do it over again, I wouldn't buy the Z at all.
    Because in lots under an acre, the Wb cooks a mean lawn in as short or shorter time at far less cost.

    You really need lots an acre or larger in size before the Z pays for itself.
    I only have 5-6 of those, could've saved myself the 8.5k.

    otoh, it is nice, but you need it about as bad as air conditioning and a limo, far as luxuries go, it's just overkill for the usual lots.
    Now that's just my experience.
  4. echeandia

    echeandia LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,131

    Air conditioning a luxury? Not here in Virginia.
  5. GreenN'Clean

    GreenN'Clean LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,512

    If your just starting out I would go with the Walk Behind there cheaper and you can still do quality work with them. I used WB for a few years and only got ZTR's to do bigger jobs of an acre or more. I know a few guys who have been in the Business for many years and only use WB's. Start off small and build your business as you grow and gain more customers don't try in jump in full steam and try to get yourself into debt before you even have any customers. Good Luck this season....
  6. clallen03

    clallen03 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 514

    sorry wrong post

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