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working with a property management company.

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by born again, Jan 1, 2010.

  1. born again

    born again LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    I have a friend who owns a property management company. He has around 130 properties all over the city and they need maintenance during the spring, summer, fall and some of them during the winter (snow).

    We started talking about business and he might have me taking care of that. I need good advise on pricing, Do's and Dont's. Guidelines for agreement.

    Thank you for your help.
  2. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,283

    Oh this could be the mother load if you and the guy are tight and if you have a business that can service the accounts. The don't is " do not get involved if you aren't absolutely sure you can keep the customers happy". If you mess up in the front end he won't give you any follow on work.
  3. Mow Money Lawn Care

    Mow Money Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 762

    Don't do it! Putting all of your eggs into one basket would be a bad idea. I had a an account with a large investment company back in 2004/2005. They had close to 250 properties. I would cut bi-weekly. Half one week, half the other. It was just me and one other guy. We charged $20 for small city lawns (that we cut with just trimmers) just so they won't get a ticket for tall grass, and we charged accordingly for the condo's, apt. complexes, office parks and large residential properties. I had them for 2 years. At the end, they wrote me three post dated checks that all bounced. I talked to the guy that wrote me the checks (who got me the job in the first place (a residential client I had for a year prior) He said that they just needed to sell one of their houses then I would get paid and I could keep cutting. Well three months later I show up to one of their offices and papers were scattered all over the place. Come to find out, they owed millions to banks and hard money lenders for scams that they had going on and they were indited for federal charges. They went belly up and owe me to this day $21,000. It took me 4 years to recover. I luckily still had about 30 residential customers that I had for 2 years prior to their account. and I am now back on my feet.
    My advice is to not put all of your eggs into one basket, and do not, I repeat do not keep maintaining their lawns if they are 20-30 days late on paying. It will be good money though. Another thing is that the properties will most likely be trash, in bad neighborhoods, and might be hard to route each property. Good luck whatever you do. Sorry for such a long response.
  4. AzLawnMan

    AzLawnMan LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 409

    Listen, this is a once and a life time opportunity. Sit down with your "friend" and hammer out a deal. For example, you want the business and of course the money, so give him a smoking deal on the properties. Find out what he is entitiled to spend. Is it his property management company or is just working there? I currently work for one of the largest P.M in Arizona and I just talked with her today and she has 4 more properties for me. We sat down and I asked her to tell me what there were currently paying, and I cut the prices by 15%. Seems like alot? Well I also will do all tree work, sprinkler repair, landscaping, etc. She looks like a great employee for saving her company a huge sum of money, and I get 4 more money makers. Give and take. And any commercial property will want at least 30 days to pay, its pretty standard where Im from. Do it!! Dont pass it up.
  5. klcjustin

    klcjustin LawnSite Member
    Messages: 9

    I agree with AzLawnMan. Get on it!! Make sure your contract is tight, very detailed and work out your costs and what you should or want to make. Hammer out a deal, keep the properties looking their best. If not give me the info and I will start a crew across the border and do them for you!! haha. Good luck
  6. born again

    born again LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    Thank you Larson. First your time, second, been willinh to share your expirience. Very helpfull. You are absolutely right. I've had lot of people telling me the same thing.

    Thank you again.... Born again.
  7. Mow Money Lawn Care

    Mow Money Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 762

    No problem! Hope everything works out for you... whatever you do.
  8. SilverTouch

    SilverTouch LawnSite Member
    Messages: 32

    Good luck! Could be a good deal since you are friends with him. I am not a big fan of management companies though. Most that i have dealt with are all about the bottom line. Some i don't even talk to, just fill in the blanks on their spreadsheet.

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