What is the best city/state to start a lawn business?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by swbluto, Jun 25, 2011.

  1. I'm in Spokane and, honestly, the local market sucks. The unemployment rate is high so there's a lot of cut-throat competition, the average income is relatively low and the mowing season is only 4-5 months long and the summers are mild (As we're so far north) so 'everyone' seems to love mowing their own lawn when I ask around. As evidenced by our ads' unusually low response rate(The response rate on a flyer that gets 1 call back out of 50 ads in other towns seems to only get 1 out of 200-300 here), it seems to be non-ideal for a lawn care business.

    What places would it be best to grow a lawn-mowing business where the average going price is high, temperatures are hot so nobody loves mowing their own lawn, there's plenty of business and it's pretty much year round or nearly as year-round as possible? Thanks! I'm thinking somewhere in southern california, but it's kind of expensive to live there... I want to maximize my overall net income, which means minimizing my living expenses. However, if I could somehow operate from a trailer in someone's back-yard while also growing a thriving lawn business in a rich area where the going prices are fairly profitable, I'm not against the idea! I wouldn't mind living in a dump if it meant a net income greater than $100,000/year.
  2. tlc1994

    tlc1994 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 290

    I'm a native of So-Cal, and while I can infer that the market is better than Seattle, it is not the BEST that you may be looking for. I'll give you a few facts and maybe that will help you:

    I live just inland of Orange County, the summers are great, just hot enough that people who think they can handle it start to give up right about now. The home prices are very good, not to mention the state senate is about to lower state sales tax if they can't reach a new agreement (which they probably won't :clapping:). The main thing is competition that will be against you; it's Southern California, that's why. But, quality lawn guys are a dime a dozen around here, nothing special whatsoever. Unless you are working on an estate property, you'd be lucky to find lawns larger than 1/3-1/2 an acre. If I could pick anywhere in the country based on your situation, I would recommend Texas, Tenessee, or any similar area where properties are big and people know the value of a nice lawn. Not that California's bad, just might not be exactly what you hope it would be.

    Hope this helps.:usflag:
  3. deereequipment

    deereequipment LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 370

    right now, I'd say the state of insanity. that's probably what it is going to take!
    Definitely have to think "outside of the box". There are so many unemployed folks who have a mower, who think they can cut grass, and are out there making a joke of this industry. It's happening all over.
    Survival of the fittest, so figure out "your" niche, and go get em!
  4. Snapper Jack

    Snapper Jack LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 525

    The economy is suffering all over with throat cutters flooding the market, Florida was especially hit hard in certain areas.Tampa and St.Petersburg seems to have a lot of wealth and with it comes the competition. It's beautiful there but oh man does it get extremely hot and humid :dizzy:
  5. scagman52

    scagman52 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 402

    Down here in FL where I am there seems to be plenty of work but your not going to get rich. Average small lot gets you $20.00 per cut. Maybe $60.00 per month. You might be better off in NC. lol
  6. BrunoT

    BrunoT LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 741

    Corporations pay millions of dollars to consultants for this type of information. There are very rich men out there who made their money doing nothing other than telling companies which side of the road to put a store or a hotel on, what programs to run ads on on tiv, and why some people would make better customers than others. So while doing so on a smaller scale isn't worth as much, that doesn't mean it's worth nothing.

    It takes a special sort of clueless rube to just give that information out for free, especially when he's dolling it out to anyone on the internet who can find this thread, many of whom may well be his direct competitors soon.

    Unless of course one subscribes to the theory that we're all socialists now and they're entitled to our hard-won experience for free. I guess if one grew up in a generation that sees nothign wrong with stealing music and games on the web, this is at least asking first and a step in the right direction.

    Call up Apple and ask them to tell you how to design an Ipad and all the code involved. I'm sure they'll be happy to share that. Because hey, they don't want to be called selfish do they?
  7. Good point. I guess I'll need to figure out a way of discerning which markets would likely be more profitable than others based on demographic information (i.e., I'm guessing income levels, the local unemployment rate, the size of the age 14-30 population, the population density and the price of the competitors for a "standard lawn" would be relevant variables.), and then test each market.
  8. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,699

    Nah, don't send him here. The pay sucks and the competition is fierce.
  9. dishboy

    dishboy LawnSite Fanatic
    from zone 6
    Messages: 6,057

    I think this is universal. You can change climates , but changing market conditions is not going to happen IMO.
  10. Wherever you go, go where people have money. I live in an extremely affluent area of south Florida with a lot of old wealthy money, big estates, etc. We have accounts(residential homes) of 2k+/mo. You can go to other areas of Florida where you will probably struggle being an LCO. Go where the $$ is!
    Posted via Mobile Device

Share This Page