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Walk Behind or Riding Mower?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by CFI, Oct 23, 2007.

  1. CFI

    CFI LawnSite Member
    Messages: 2

    Hi Everyone,

    I am interested in starting a weekend lawncare business next spring, and have some questions concerning the best (most efficient for the job) equipment to purchase. My fulltime employer has two commercial lots with warehouses totaling 6 acres in a 4/2 split. The retired gentlemen who has been mowing in the past has told him that this is the last season he wants to mow. I have spoken to my boss, and he will give me these lots to mow if I can get a mower that can handle the job (don't want to push mow it). I thought this would be a great way to get started, as this can help get things rolling while I find new accounts. The terrain is mostly flat with some slight hills and small stones. The terrain is fairly natural also, more like field grass, not a manicured lawn.

    Would I be better off with a some sort of riding mower or a Commercial walk behind? I think price will put me out of a zero turn rider for now. I'm hoping to purchase a mower for around $1000. Would these even be feasible with a 36" walk behind with sulky or do I need a larger deck?

    Thanks again for your help
  2. jbone

    jbone LawnSite Member
    Messages: 125

    I would prefer to have a ztr if I was going to be doing 6 acres, however your budget wont allow it. I would get a walk behind with at least a 48" deck AND a sulky. Just my 2cents though.
  3. jbannick18

    jbannick18 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 490

    As stated about you will want a ztr for that much property. I mean, spend the money now and you won't be dissapointed. I'd honestly buy new but thats just me. I know a new toro 52 inch ztr starts around 7600 though :D
  4. Raven386

    Raven386 LawnSite Silver Member
    from CT
    Messages: 2,169

    a 48" hydro w/ sulky would probably be best, you will never find one at that price. check in the F/S section on here, ive seen a few mowers for sale not to long ago...
  5. CFI

    CFI LawnSite Member
    Messages: 2

    Thanks for you advice everyone. I've got a few months time to save my pennies, so I'll try to expand my mower budget for a rider or hydro walk behind. The current gentleman who mows has an old tractor that he uses and it still takes him a couple of hours to get the 4 acre lot finished. To clarify, the 2 acre tract is about 5 miles down the road.
  6. Lawnut101

    Lawnut101 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,260

    You can find a nice 48 in hydro walk behind for right around $1000. I got one last year for $1100, and I put around $200 into it for repairs, and then another $200, for a sulky. So, I spent about $1500 on it, but I've made about 2.5 times that with it. And mine is only a Snapper! lol. But anyway, there are all kinds of Exmark Turf Tracer's on Ebay and stuff for 1-2k. Some of them even come with sulkies. However, for 6.5 acres, your probably gonna want a 60" walk behind, or a ztr. Good luck to you.
  7. jbannick18

    jbannick18 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 490

    I steer away from used lowers because the fact of no warranty. If a hydro blows ur looking at 800 just to repair it. Just another thing to consider
  8. Clear-Cut

    Clear-Cut LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 481

  9. 93Chevy

    93Chevy LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 40,292

    You'll definitely want a rider for all that land. It'll pay for itself, eventually.
  10. stuffdeer

    stuffdeer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,617


    A "Riding Mower" will fall apart.

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