Why do people say it's tough in Florida?

Discussion in 'Florida Lawn Care Forum' started by John From Florida, Jan 28, 2012.

  1. John From Florida

    John From Florida LawnSite Member
    Messages: 23

    Tough as in difficult to make a living doing lawncare?

    Is this accurate in your opinion when compared with northern states? I'm considering doing lawncare part time during college and maybe going full time after graduating. Would I be wasting my time? I doubt this can be entirely true. Some have got to be making it OK. I eventually want to start a family - can I support a small family in this field?
  2. Um with gas at $4 a gallon and people don't even want to pay $20 a cut I'm having trouble justifying it myself. I just purchased used almost new equipment in Indiana and moved back down. I used to mow for $60 a month in 2004 and people don't even want to pay that anymore. But gas is 3x higher than 2004. Plus living cost are much higher probably 25% since 2004. I'm own a home outright that we bought here from selling our home up in Indiana and my wife works locally here now. I'm just doing it to get out of the house and hopefully make $25k a year. But I have my reservation of even being able to clear $25k a year with 60 accounts. I only have 6 accounts at this time. I just moved here 3 months ago. I'm spending $300 a month on paper ads and such. I have a large ad also locally here too. But only 1 call in 3 months. The rest are neighbors. You can even see me all over google. I started 5 websites to get coverage. No calls still.

    Type in "Florida suncoast lawn care" in Google you will see. I'm in adwords on the right also. But still no calls. It's amazing. Glad I bought a 2010 Bad boy zero turn for $2k instead of $6k and such. And my enclosed trailer for $600.
  3. stickleylawncare

    stickleylawncare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 169

    If you are going to FSU, you can hopefully get an easier and better paying job when you graduate than you will do mowing. Unless this is really the business you want to be in and not just a quick cash job with no taxes during college type of thing.
  4. MR-G

    MR-G LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 479

    its tough but not impossible to pull in a decent salary...depends on how far you want to take it...we used to have 5 crews but now are down to only 3...actually making more net this way....you have to be able to stay flexible and able to change with the cost fluctuations that this economy is throwing at all of us...keep your costs low and stay away from debt !!!
  5. gregory

    gregory LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,083

    hang in there.. its still slow this time of year and will continue to be slow for several more months down here. grass just doesnt grow this time of year and wont till the rains come unless they have sprinklers...

  6. Thanks. Oh ya I know it's slow. I just can't seem to find anyone that wants to pay. They want $15 a cut like the prices from 1985. all the pill heads working for beer money have basically torn it way down. There are guys with riding mowers that drive around knocking on doors for $10 a cut. LOL. I had them mow my lawn when I moved down the first day because it was tall plus I had been awake for 2 days straight. LOL. I will eventually be ok. I will pick up some crap one for awhile and then drop them after I get up to about 50 accounts. I know how it works. But man it seems much worse than it used to be. No calls and the prices are unreal.
  7. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,969


    There is real money in the green industry but Grass cutting and Bush trimming is not where the real money is. Grass cutting can be a great lost leader for the more profitable SKILLED SERVICES of the green industry. Some people do make a survival wage cutting grass, but Grass cutting takes the least amount of education and every out of worker carpenter is cutting grass.

    Landscape design and installation can have HUGE markup. Successful installers of course need both Design Education and People talents and are rewarded for it. Irrigation once again is a skilled trade with a higher profit margin as is Pesticide application on lawns. Once again these are skilled areas of the green industry and areas you might want to target instead of Grass cutting.

  8. KrayzKajun

    KrayzKajun LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,737

    Very well said RIC!
    Posted via Mobile Device
  9. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,969


    First I will tell you what I am going to tell you:

    The job world is more about what you know. not what you do. Those who work hardest at meanial jobs make the least. While those who know the most do the least amount of actual work and make the most money.

    Now I will Tell You:

    Those with a skilled trades make more than those with out skills.

    Now I will tell what I told you:

    Life is tough, but it's tougher when you're fat & stupid.
  10. stickleylawncare

    stickleylawncare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 169

    and old. :)

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