TIPS, Do's and Don'ts tips for the new guy

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Eric ELM, Apr 16, 2001.

  1. John Burton

    John Burton LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    For the New Guy- Cutthroat business
    The business is gonna bring out alot of under bidders your way, but for those guys, all they do is pay there bills. If you want to grow and run a good and ethical business, bid the jobs to make money, not just to pay your bills. If you do this you will last a long time unlike the under bidders who fly by night and go bankrupt low balling all the jobs. JB. From Ga.
    Bcoogan23 likes this.
  2. SLS

    SLS LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Mars
    Messages: 1,540

    Good point, JB.

    Starting out we must sometimes take on the less desirable locations to get our reputations built...but we should never underbid to raise prices later is not the easiest thing to do in some cases. All that 'counter-lowballing' does is serve to keep our market prices/income down...for all of us.

    We provide services...but if a potential client is only interested in saving money, they should go to a bank.

    Although we are 'service providers', we are not in the 'money saving' business.
  3. GrassGator

    GrassGator LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    Many times you find people who just want a "cheap" price for a "mow, blow and go" job. When I come across one of these I explain to them that the minimum I do is to mow, edge, weedeater and blow the walks. My reasoning is because when I pull away from their house, what the neighbors see that I did is going to be the impression they all have of the quality of work I do. If the job doesn't give the house curb appeal, then the neighbors and others driving by will not think much of my work. The explanation usually works and I get a higher price for my "basic cut". If they don't embrace the explanation and give me the job, I ask them to find someone else because it is my reputation that is at stake when I pull my trailer away from their house.
  4. roboton

    roboton LawnSite Member
    from Austin
    Messages: 4

    Carry a Swiss Army Knife. You don't even know what pain in the *** it is to try to cut trimmer line with a pair of hedge clippers.....
  5. Scott Wachtel

    Scott Wachtel LawnSite Member
    Messages: 8

    Also, Breakdowns suck!!!!! Make sure to have some kind of spare equipment. You can always be late to the next job but you still have to finish the one your at.It may mean using the 15$ garage sale special to trim the back half but it beats loosing the account.
  6. Hink

    Hink LawnSite Member
    Messages: 6

    I just found this site and am very impressed. I plan on starting a lawnmowing business this spring. My 16 year old son is going to be part of the business. I am looking forward to working with him. Any help and or ideas on how to estimate$$ mowing a lawn would be greatly appreciated.
  7. 70chevelleSS

    70chevelleSS LawnSite Member
    Messages: 9

    double D
    it has all ways been my experiance to do what the manual and Dealer suggest. Warrenty work is the best kind work for you to have done.
    By the way I lived in the Memphis area for 13 years.
  8. aquamtic

    aquamtic LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 303

    IRRIGATION CONTRACOR FORMS- I am trying to put together a pckage of forms that I can use for my irrigation business in the upcoming season. WOuld anyone be interested in sharing forms such as:

    Installation Contract
    Season Service Contract/ Startups,Shutdowns
    Service Call Work Order

    Please email me if you are able to send or fax
  9. TotalCareSolutions

    TotalCareSolutions LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 518

    leatherman tool
  10. 1acreplus

    1acreplus LawnSite Member
    Messages: 32

    New to the lawn biz, but I've been snowplowing and landscaping for 4 years. I've seen a lot of great suggestions for tools and safety gear, but I haven't yet seen something that I do...

    Keep a 3 ring binder in every truck. Put the following info in the binder:

    Have your emergency contact information on the VERY FIRST PAGE. Include numbers for the local poison control hotline, local hospitals, and your insurance agent. Of course, don't forget cell numbers for your foreman/manager/owner, in case the office is deserted.

    Keep a safety checklist/log sheet in the binder. Make these simple daily checks (lights+lenses, horn, brakes, mirrors, etc) and weekly checks (oil, trans fluid, belts, hoses, plug wires, tire pressure, lug nuts) a part of your log. In an accident lawsuit, this log may save your bacon. This log sheet is also a requirement if you have a USDOT registration (we do).

    Have copies of MSDS (Material Safety
    Data Sheets) for every chemical you use, and don't forget gasoline and diesel. This is an OSHA requirement.

    Also in this binder, keep copies of the driver's licenses and medical cards of all authorized drivers for your truck(s), copy of the insurance card, and a copy of the cab card part of the title.

    Keep a list of all the equipment you have in/on the truck and trailer, including SERIAL NUMBERS. When (not if) something gets stolen off your truck, it will make it that much easier to report.

    Last but not least. This is also a good spot to keep a price list or other "ballpark" quote guide for your on-site staff to look at. Every employee that might come in contact with a customer or prospect should have some sales literature at hand, even if it's only a business card.
    wath44 likes this.

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