When to buy a ZTR

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Big C, Nov 24, 2007.

  1. Big C

    Big C LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,642

    I plan on starting my lawn business this coming spring. My original plan was to buy a new ZTR, and trimmer (all commmercial) using my own cash. Is this a wise choice or do I start with the equipment I currently have (30" Snapper rear engine, toro res. blower and HusQ Res. trimmer and 6 X 12 trailer) I will be starting out part time mainly specailizing on small to medium size lots. What do you guys think would be the smart move here?
  2. Rhett

    Rhett LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,071

    Start with what you have if you are comfortable with it. Get a grasp on what you need and fill the trailer with commercial equipment when you have the business to justify it. Might want to throw in an edger.
  3. swim

    swim LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 357

    Yes I agree. You may find out that the equipment you have bought may not fit your needs.

    When accounts start building up compare them to the equipment available then buy what will do the best job on them as well as be the most productive.
  4. Down2EarthLawns

    Down2EarthLawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 191

    If you have the $ now.....stay with what you have and use some of the part time $ to finance aquiring commercial grade equipment because you will wear that stuff out rather quickly. Follow Rhett's advise...you'll figure out what new equipment may increase your own efficiency through servicing clients.
  5. mowing grass 1111

    mowing grass 1111 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 433

    how reliable is the mower you have now ? will it hold up to a season of mowing numerous lawns? how fast can you get parts/ repair work for it if it breaks? myself i would go ahead and buy the new ztr . and keep the snapper for the smaller lawns. very rarly will i look at a job where i cant use my 60 inch lazerz mowers
  6. 93Chevy

    93Chevy LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 38,403

    Save up your money and work with what you have for now. It might be a good idea, depending on the lawns, to get a top-quality 21" WB. Snapper, as I'm sure you're aware, has very light and dependable 21."

    Just my .02.
  7. DillonsLawnCare

    DillonsLawnCare LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,100

    you have a little while to think about your decision. if i were you, i would definately get the commercial handhelds first thing. i remember when i first started, i had a 42" troybuilt tractor,small residential weed-eater, and a small handheld blower. my first lawn was about an acre and a half. took me six hours to mow blow and weedeat. my trimmer failed on me and got overheated. mower did fine and so did blower. so i had to go back out and get a nice trimmer. since its winter time, there are some great deals on mower/handhelds. in dealers and just some folks lookin to sell. keep your eyes open. i thin your mower will do fine for starting out, but get better handhelds. just my opinion. your business. do what u want.
  8. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    When you have the whole cash amount plus next winter's money saved, in the bank, that is the best time to buy a Z.
    Likely you'll want to start now so in 4-8 years you should have 15-20g in the bank and that ought to be enough to cover your arse.

    Do what you gotta do and start at the bottom, Z's are mostly a status symbol, I didn't get mine until late my 5th year.
    You can try and spend more than you need to but I don't advise it, not until you can well afford it.
    The Wb is as if not more effective than the Z in terms of cost and efficiency.
    The payments will eat you, as will the fuel, so save your money.

    Even my truck suffers, it drains yet another mile off mpg and it is slower driving when I got 4.5 tons riding on 6 tires.
    And 8 tires I am sure isn't but so much better, that would just take it over 5 tons first.

    The easiest way is, unfortunately, still the hard way.
    Do it the hard way and do it right, then you can not go wrong (well, hopefully not, far less chance).
  9. Big C

    Big C LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,642

    I am worried that my Snapper is a littile too slow and thus could reduce my productivity. I am thinking about keeping it as a second mower. I am looking at the Hustler Fast Track, is this a good choice for a beginner doing medium to small lots???
  10. GreenT

    GreenT LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 42,962

    Forget the equipment. You haven't said if you have any customers.

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