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yet another start up thread, with a twist.

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by me1223, Aug 9, 2007.

  1. me1223

    me1223 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 35

    I tried posting this in the ponds only forum, but it's gone a few days without a single reply, so in hopes of having more traffic, I'm posting it here.

    I've been toying with the idea of starting a company which will do only pond and waterfall installs. I've done some work with ponds before so I'm good with most of it, there are a few things which I haven't done before so I hope that people can share their advice on a few topics:

    1) skimmers, I've never installed a skimmer. How hard are they to install, if you use a skimmer do you need to also have filtration at the waterfall (trickle tower, biofalls, etc.)? Is there any cirulation within the deeper water of the pond (1'-2' deep) if you use a skimmer?

    2)Size of ponds, how big do most people want their ponds to be?

    3)Excavator or not, at what point (how many yards of dirt to be removed) do you need to bring in equipment to do the excavation?

    4)Size of Truck, is it necessary/desirable to have a 3/4ton or 1 ton truck or is a half ton good for the job?

    5)Liner wholesales, when I've done ponds before I always went with the 45mil liner from home depot, can you order directly from firestone if you buy it by the roll? Has anyone ordered a whole roll from firestone before, or is there some sort of middleman inbetween that you can deal with and get a better rate? (keep in mind I'm a canuck and can't order from pondliners.com)

    6)Size of crew, how many people do you usually take to build a pond(or general landscaping project), do you work solo, have one or two other people with you.

    7)Insurance/liability, are we liable if we build the pond for someone who might drown in it later on? How much insurance should you carry for your worksite (not on the vehicles)?

    8)How do you price your work, so much per hour of labour and then add the cost of materials, do you take your costs and double them, or some other pricing method? If you charge something like (hourly rate + materials) what is your hourly rate(I'm considering somewhere between 40 and 60/hr)?

    Any feed back would be great.:canadaflag:
  2. westwind

    westwind LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 444

    You are asking basicallly every question in the book to start a business. My best advice is to hook up with a local installer and buy him/her dinner. The advice you will get here, on this subject, will be varied. A lot of these factors will be determined by location and customer base. Good luck!

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