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What can a landscaper do without a business license

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by theone54, Mar 5, 2011.

  1. theone54

    theone54 Banned
    Messages: 12

    Hello everyone this is my first post here. I plan on starting my own landscaping business or lawncare business soon. I have enough money to buy the equipment i need. My budget is around 500 dollars which will include the push mower, weed eaters, blower, and tools (rakes, shovel, and etc).

    Now my question is what can you do legally without a license. I know you can mow lawns, use a weedeater, and rake leaves. What other services can be done without license. The only thing i know is you need a license to plant trees i believe. I am not too sure if you need a license to trim trees. Any advice would be helpful.
  2. jhouchins

    jhouchins LawnSite Member
    from East TN
    Messages: 182

    Insurance would be more important than a license. I know in Tn they reqiure you to register as a licensed landscaper to plant anything. Basically they just want $200 per year. No test or anything just fill this form out and give us our money. LOL.

    A lot of wholesale nursuries reqiure a business license to buy from them. Its only like $20, so do it.
  3. Cape Atlantic Landscaping

    Cape Atlantic Landscaping LawnSite Member
    Messages: 37

    In my state you can not do anything like that with out a home improvement contractor's license and general liability Ins. That's your first move before you purchase any equipment. In my state you need a contract for anything over $250.00
    This will protect you and your clients because they don't legally need to pay you without this info
  4. Cape Atlantic Landscaping

    Cape Atlantic Landscaping LawnSite Member
    Messages: 37

    What happens if you plant a tree and hit electical lines or a gas line. Its just not a simple as planting a tree or mowing the grass
  5. Shawn S

    Shawn S LawnSite Member
    Messages: 87

    Business licenses vary drastically by state/county/city. You need to go down to city hall and ask.
  6. Patriot Services

    Patriot Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,605

    Some states , counties and even cities levy heavy fines and or jail for unlicensed business'. In my county its a tax, so not having one is evasion. For 28 bucks a year I will pay it. You also can't register your DBA in Florida without it.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  7. jsslawncare

    jsslawncare LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,673

    $500.00? Well that's one trimmer. I know you have to start somewhere. I started with $7000.00, worked half the summer and bought out another man. I paid him $10.00 per account. That was the best $200.00 I spent. In Ga it's a $75.00 tax to be able to plant anything. I spead pinestraw, mulch and cut grass only.
  8. gasracer

    gasracer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,049

    Unless you are bargain shopping at Walmart I don't see that $500 going very far. A good Weedeater will be $300, Blower $300, tools $100, Good push mower $400.Trailer $1,000.
    You better not even think about spraying weed killer......
    As far as trimming tress go.
    Let a tree die from your "trimming" or butcher it to where they don't like it and see who pays for it.

    Even $5,000 wouldn't get you a lot of equipment(commercial) unless you found some good used deals.
  9. kilgoja

    kilgoja LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 944

    here you need a license to do anything within city limits..cut grass, rake, or whatever...you can get a mow only license for $60 or you can get a landscaping license for $85 that allows you to trim shrubs, spread mulch, etc. as well as mow...outside the city limits here you don't need a license at all for anything...check with the city hall and they will tell you what you need
  10. cslawnandlandscape

    cslawnandlandscape LawnSite Member
    from CT
    Messages: 53

    In CT you need a license $220 in order to be legal (landscaping), sales tax permit $100, Register your DBA with town clerk (which is cheap) or file as an LLC (not cheap), you also need general liability insurance; costs for that ranges $400-700/yr, my commercial auto is $700, with multiple policy discounts through my personal carrier.

    So right out the gate your ballpark is going to be more than your budget, granted the insurance portions can usually be made as a 25% deposit and then installments for the remainder.

    As far as tools, $500 is still very low even if your buying used (craigslist) or whatever. Start looking there for a figure and you'll quickly see you will need more $$$ unless you know people giving equipment away (family, friends)

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