Starting new biz... How important is a Skid Steer?

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by westernmdlawn, Nov 25, 2003.

  1. westernmdlawn

    westernmdlawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 98

    Hi all... I'm expanding my lawn business to incorporate and focus more on Landscaping work. I want to be able to do lawn installations, hardscape installations, and general landscape installations. I know I have much to learn about EVERYTHING. Anyway, have been doing alot of reading on this awesome site and have gathered that it is quite possible to run a profitable operation that does the above listed work by myself, or with 2 or 3 guys at most in most situations. It has been mentioned here that purchasing equipment helps to minimize labor. Labor that can be lazy and unreliable, requires overtime pay, and all the negative stuff associated. Equipment affords the benefit of avoiding such pains in the rear. Well, of course equipment requires maintenance and fuel and so on... but still it is better, right? Anyway - would it be best to have a skid steer or a tractor with 4 wheel drive, a bucket, and a PTO. I was thinking a tractor would be more useful since it has a PTO and most SKID STEERS dont (or am I wrong there?). What do you guys think?
  2. MacLawnCo

    MacLawnCo LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,847

    Rent until you need one. At this point, you do not even know if this aspect of your bus will take off, correct?

    It would make sense to continually rent up until you just about pay annually in rent what it would cost to own one (dont forget maintenance costs too).
  3. yacht

    yacht LawnSite Member
    Messages: 104

    I think the answer will depend largely on the type of work you get or pursue. Currently I am doing a large job on a site that has nice established grass and I don't have to worry about the tires on my tractor tearing up the grass when I turn. Ofcourse skid steers are probably faster than a tractor. :)
  4. hoyboy

    hoyboy LawnSite Senior Member
    from Chicago
    Messages: 346

    Unless your a farmer, skip the pto stuff. Buy a skidsteer. If your jobs are really small, consider a dingo with various attachments. May make sense for your size operation.
  5. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Messages: 4,899

    Ditto Yacht!!!
    But i'll take my trac over a skidder any day when it comes to big open areas they are faster, small residentials probably the skid steer becoase of of its manuvability.
  6. Shuter

    Shuter LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,171

    Pretty important if the you choose to do skid steer work. If not rent it as needed and add the cost into the job quote.

    DUSTYCEDAR LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Messages: 5,132

    i run a tractor loader back-hoe and powerake i can go from slow to 20 mph to move around the sites a skid steer has 1 speed slow
    the tractor has more ground clearance and is easier on the lawn
    a skid steer is good for some things but not 4 my uses
  8. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Messages: 4,899

  9. zedosix

    zedosix LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,665

    How important is a skidsteer?

    How important is your back?

    DUSTYCEDAR LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Messages: 5,132

    skid steer - trailer is abought $30k u can rent a lot to see if it is worth it plus ins and a place to store it

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