What do you think?

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by LTDLawnCare, Nov 7, 2007.

  1. LTDLawnCare

    LTDLawnCare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 77

    I have been looking around at a few different paver educational courses. i currently do not do any hardscaping, however I would like to see what is involved with it and see if it is something that I would be interested in offering. I have found two one day courses at cooke college in partnership with Rutgers University that seem like they would give me the general idea of if this is a direction I would like to take my company. The courses are labeled " concrete pavers" and "designing and installing concrete block". Keep in mind I am a 19 year old with a small maintenance company looking to expand services or even considering leaving maintenance if this seems like a prosperous path to follow.Any feedback about these courses from anyone who has taken them or heard things about them or if you recommend any other courses within a 5 hour radius of MA.Sorry for the long post and thank you in advance for any responses.

  2. PatriotLandscape

    PatriotLandscape LawnSite Bronze Member
    from MA
    Messages: 1,209

    Call Ideal concrete block www.idealconcreteblock.com they have great seminars and you will learn the BASICS of installation. They have one day winter courses and are free with lunch. You will also meet other contractors with and without expirience to swap stories with. Keep in mind that no course will teach you what you really need to know only expirience.
  3. cgland

    cgland LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,929

    Before thinking about adding hardscaping to your services, you have to ask your self a few questions. A) Do I have construction knowledge and the ability to operate many different types of machinery? ie. skid loaders, backhoes, compactors, saws, lasers, etc.? B) How are my math skills? Hopefully they are top notch. C) Do I have the knowledge needed to accurately price jobs out so that I don't lose my azz? D) Do I have a comprehensive insurance policy in place that covers me when I damage someones home? If you answered NO to one or more of those questions, then I would seriously consider your decision. This is not meant to discourage you, I only want you to realize what actually goes into running a hardscaping biz. Good Luck.

  4. PlatinumLandCon

    PlatinumLandCon LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,315

    cg has got it. You should have a good bit saved to get you through the first 2-3 months if something happens on the first job.

    Start by asking current grass customers if they were considering any hardscapes or if they have friends that do (give them cards to give out). Like most businesses, start with small 1-2 day jobs that require minimal machinery. Then move up to larger and larger jobs until you get to a comfortable level (might take 2-3, maybe 5 years).

    Good luck, let us know what you do!
  5. LTDLawnCare

    LTDLawnCare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 77

    CG- Thank you for your reply, I do know how to operate some small machinery eg. skid steers, mini excavators, plate compactors, cutoff saws , ect. I have a decent sized insurance policy, i beleive it is 2 million. I have good math skills and once I was aware of what went into these jobs I feel like I could have a general idea of how to price. i also plan to start like MCB stated, small and work up. With the smaller jobs I feellike i could gain experience and eventually learn what takes more time than thought and other things that can only come with experience. Thank you for your replies.

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