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Would you do this?!?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by JT1304, Jul 26, 2006.

  1. JT1304

    JT1304 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 97

    I have the oppurtunity to trade my "talents" as landscape/lawn guy for a website. This guy offered to build me 4-6 page website, host it, pay for it for a year and do my maintenance to the site. In return, all I to do is build him a small retaining wall. The wall will be @ 30' long, but only about 2' at its tallest point. By the way i have all the material to do this, with the exception of mortar and concrete. I have the cinder blocks and the cultured stone. The block and cultured stone were free, given to me by a builder just for hauling them away.
    My wife says I will just be giving my work away. I seem to like the idea though.
  2. prostriper

    prostriper LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 336

    What he's offering yu is a fair deal. Many web design companies charge $60 plus an hour for design and maintenance. and another 30 a month for hosting. Shop around and see what he's offering you would cost and compare to what the retaining wall would cost. Do a search for web design companies and you will get well over 10,000 companies.
  3. JT1304

    JT1304 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 97

    The good thing about cost is the fact the have nearly all the materials. Just need a little mortar and some concrete. I can know out a wal thissize in no time. He will build the site first so I can see it before I do anything to his yard, if this helps.
  4. JJLandscapes

    JJLandscapes LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 682

    ifyou need a website then yea its probably worth it.
  5. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    I don't think it's a big deal to him, so ask if he would order / register a domain name for you as well (yourLconame.com). Thou cheap, it can be a royal headache to deal with this apparently so innocent part. Obviously after that year is up, the domain name is yours to keep along with the site, you're just responsible for its costs after that (around 75-100 / year for bare basics, advertising not included)... uhmmm yeah, the site with its pages would be yours to keep as well, right? Sure...

    I'd say you're looking at trading around 300- 500 dollars worth of stuff here, I don't know how much the ret.wall costs but other than that, you BET!! He might argue it's closer to 600, that's not out of the ballpark just yet, either.
  6. JT1304

    JT1304 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 97

  7. GardnerLandscaping

    GardnerLandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 310

    I have over 10 years experience building a broad range of Web sites for personal use, corporations, businesses, politicians, government, and military. Most of those years were doing Web-based applications. My first commercial Web site was working with a graphic artist to build the first Orkin Pest Control Web site.

    Here is a recent example Web site that I've built which fits into the category of a landscaping Web site:


    Design and Build: 32 hours @ $25/hr = $800
    Maintenance for 1 Year: 10 hours @ $25/hr = $250
    Hosting for 1 Year: $35.40

    Total Cost: $1085.40

    I got lucky on the project and I acheived my desired design fairly quickly. All the content and structure was already provided to me in the form of a sloppy template-designed Web site.

    I would say the average time to design, build, and maintain would take twice as long with it possibly taking as much as 4 times longer: $2K average, $4K maximum for $25/hr rate.

    The hourly rate ranges from $25/hr to $50/hr for this type of project. So you can double that again for the range of costs.

    The quality and time required varies greatly from person to person and business to business. Web design and software development is a lot like landscaping, only 100 times worse. Ask for examples to know what level of quality you're hiring. Ask for a time estimate and apply these bill rates to know the value of what you're getting.

    I hope this helps.
  8. GardnerLandscaping

    GardnerLandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 310

    Normally, this is done as a work-for-hire, which applies to such things as art and sometimes but normally to software.

    There was a famous Playboy photograph case that defined the law in regards to intellectual property rights of a work-for-hire.

    Once the work is delivered, a check is written, and a check is cashed, the signature on the check and the cashing of the check signifies that intellectual property rights of the work-for-hire was transferred, especially if the check includes a description on the check of the work-for-hire.

    In the case of a barter, you probably want to do a work-fore-hire agreement which you will want to obtain intellectual property rights of the Web site, including all source code, images, and other media.

    I would ask for the password and login of the hosting provider for the Web site so that you can direct access to the files and inquire about a password for the domain name hosting/registrar account so that you can have the domain name and Web site moved to another location or hire someone else to provide maintenance for you in case the original developer is no longer accessible.

    You can find short and simple work-for-hire agreements on the Internet, sometimes even for free.

    Costs can be as low as 2.95/month for web hosting from popular and reliable Web hosting companies like 1and1.com and bluehost.com. Domain registeration usually varies according to your registrar. Domain registeration is usually free when signing up for a Web hosting account and usually runs about $25/year registeration.

    The worth of what you're getting is closer to $1K, especially if what he says is true that he does good work. You're getting a deal.

    For people like me and sounds like the guy you're trading with, he can do it in his sleep and underwear and certainly easier than building his own retaining wall.

    For you, building a Web site is probably something you have no clue of where to even begin, especially on the design aspect, so it has a lot of value to you as well.

    I do the trade, especially if you're serious about your company. You'll get use out of it if anything the appearance of dedication to have a Web site. I personally would want to use you if I knew I could communicate with you by email if I were hiring you to tear up my yard.
  9. GardnerLandscaping

    GardnerLandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 310

    B2B usually charges around $50-75/hr. Government usually pays contractors around $100/hr. Special purpose can pay as high as $200/hr. These projects are generally larger in scale, more complex, and require additional things like network management, security management, risk management, configuration management, contract management, expectation management, project planning, management, and oversight.....

    Yes, there is a ton of competition in the field. It is why I never bothered to pursue it more and chose to pursue software more. Software is getting as bad though. With landscaping, at least your market is localized and more grandmothers need landscaping than software and Web sites. I got recently into cellphone/handheld device software development. The competition is much less but the number of projects is severely limited.
  10. GardnerLandscaping

    GardnerLandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 310

    Sorry for the multiple postings.

    I wanted to add, you probably don't need to be too concerned with the domain registrar. Anyone can find out the administrative and technical contact of your domain name if for some reason you needed to transfer control to someone else.

    Just be sure you have the work-for-hire to retain intellectual property rights in everything and you want either access to all the files or the files delivered to you a zip file and the ability to have control/rights to the domain name. Doesn't sound like he would screw you over, but always good to have in case something happens.

    The price range is really all over the map depending on the organizations/people involved, their skills, and the project. A lot like landscaping just with lower overhead and less government regulating what you do.

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