Sub Contracting

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by heygrassman, Apr 8, 2002.

  1. Tyner Lawn Service

    Tyner Lawn Service LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 328

    I have thought about subbing out for years. I as of a couple of years ago started to deal in this. Yes a sub and a employee both can be in the same category but if handled proper I think in time it will work. I'm 47 now and if I were to sub all types of lawn care I could be semi retired one of these days and do this forever as long as my health hangs in there. I have a amount I need to get to for this to work out at 20% per job. It will take 300 lawns to make it work for me.
  2. ChicagoLawn

    ChicagoLawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 126

    Right on Sprinklerguy!!!

  3. John from OH

    John from OH LawnSite Member
    Messages: 144


    You aren't old enough to remember what the building industry was like 25-30 years ago. When a general contractor built a house, he subbed the excavation, electrical, and plumbing. His own crews did everything else. My brother worked for a remodeling contractor. They opened up a new home division about 10 years ago. They built 20 houses, netting $20,000+ on each the first year. They had 2 employees, a salesman, and my brother who was the superintendent. He took the plans from the salesman, subbed everything out, and monitored the progress. Over the past 10 years they have brought on their own crews. Now they are phasing out their crews and subbing again. They have trouble making a predicatable return on their investment with their own crews. A subs price is the final price on any phase of a job, excluding change orders. Bidding is much simpler.

    The point I am making, the market changes, the labor market changes and customer perceptions change. Our industry is ripe for subbing as we are in the same place the building industry was 30 years ago. Everything phase can be a specialty. Mowing, applications, mulching (think bark blowers), design, hardscapes, irrigation, lawn installs, lighting, water features, and so on. We are starting to sub more work, and our goal is to be subbing out about 80% of our work within 5 years. Good subs are worth their weight in gold. You do have to make subs responsible for the quality and timeliness of their work. When a sub makes a mistake, your cost doesn't change, its out of their pocket. Paying them fairly and promptly will keep them happy.

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