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jklawncare
02-10-2011, 10:43 PM
Hey everyone,

I kinda dissapeared over the winter since i dont do any winter services and im getting ready to start the new season right

My plan is to buy a significant ammount of door hangers and sent them out late march.

Right now im in the process of revising and creating new documentation, receipts, advertisement, and a website.

I thought this would be a good post to create..this isnt a help post..well i suppose it is..but its focused towards everyone

I want you all to post what you will be changing this year
how you will start the new season
what works well for you and what you will continue doing
and what your goals are both short and long during and at the end of the season.

Whats some advice you can give to the newer members and even the older members.

ill be posting some of my documents and advertisement that you can choose to edit or revise and you can give tips and your thoughts on it all..and i hope you all do the same so everyone can learn and criticize.

i attached my new general agreement
tell me what you think

ill let this post get started a little and then ill tell you my plans and goals for the new season.

devuono311
02-11-2011, 01:03 PM
Great job on your agreement, if thats what works for you run with it. However, check over your last paragraph, Not to pick but I did notice you wrote

quote "Though these are goals we aim to goal by the end of the year we are sorry that we cannot yet offer those"

You may want to change that to : "Though these are goals we aim to accomplish by the end of the year, we appologize for any inconvenience"

This is just another way to look more professional.

May I ask why you choose NOT to get insured?
My liability insurance for my first year only ran me roughly $600 total for the year. At average fifty dollars per month at twelve months or $75 per month for the eight months I'm mowing and landscaping, I see it a cheap investment to CYA and as well MORE people will be apt to go with your services. JMO

Good Luck

Steve
02-11-2011, 07:43 PM
Could you re-post it in a doc format? I can't read the docx files.

jymie
02-11-2011, 10:20 PM
Here is a copy of it in doc. I see a lot of spelling errors through out the document. You may want to spell check it before presentation.

SpokaneSRC
02-11-2011, 11:28 PM
Definitely thorough. On the top page you may want to change the wording where you say - by initialing here you "deny" us the right to ... You want to make it positive. Saying something like - by initialing here you "grant" or "give" us permission to email you special offers, etc. That way if they don't want emails from you they leave it blank, instead of having them initial to say they don't want emails.

jklawncare
02-12-2011, 12:08 AM
thanks so much for all the advice
the goals issue..i meant to make it achieve. i honestly didnt do any proofreading..i was doing this when i was completely exhausted and didnt get around to it..although i did plan to go over it 2 times or so before using it

as far as why im not insured..to my knowledge you need to be licensed to be insured..and im not sure if all this work is somethin gi want to get into just yet..i want to have a solid customer base before i go leaping into decisions like that.. i may also want to wait until i turn 18 so i dont have to have my parents co sign it for me and put some responsibility onto them.

what are you guys planning on doing the new season? what are some things youll change? what are some advertisement methods you will use to gain customers and when will you be distributing?

ill revise the document and repost it again some time soon.
once again thanks for the heads up on everything.

psparaco
02-12-2011, 01:52 AM
Hi all.

Well this winter has semi sucked for us. Maryland hasn't received as much snow as we did last year. Actually based on my calculations we only recieved 15 inches as of 01-26-11. Many storms either pasted us or turning into rain or warmed up on us. So January I only made $200.00. My savings is almost depleted.

2011 Season:

I intend to distribute my flyers between 03/21/11-03/31/11. Based on prior years and analysis i have done. Most people will throw away your door hangers, flyers, cards prior to the first day of spring. They aren't thinking "I need someone to cut my lawn" just yet. Last year i passed out several hundres flyers on 03/30, 03/31, 04/03 and 04/04. I received a good amount of calls within 5 days. Overall we were hired for either the whole season or several months by 43 clients. We only distributed 400 flyers. Thats a 10.75% return. considering the market average is 1-2%. I think I did something right.

I started my business in 2009. Peak season we had 25 clients, ended the year with 16 who stayed with us.

2010 season we had 35-40 clients peak season and 19 who stayed with us for this year.

Reason for clients leaving us was due mostly to people moving, losing jobs and can't afford our services, bought a cheap mower, later to realize they still needed to have trimming done which we still charged full price to just come out and do that. Others we dropped for failure to pay us in a timerly manner.

This year so far we have picked up 3 new clients, people i have known my entire life. relatives and neighbors i had growing up. They all were tired of the service they recieved from their lawn guy, fired them and hired us instead since they've known me since i was a child and they know i also do other work besides just cutting lawns.

I believe our intended marketing for this spring is somewhere between 600-900 homes. If we sign the same 10% we lucked out with last year, thats 60-90 homes. One can only hope.

Additions to Company:

2009
1 gas push 22" mower, electric trimmer, electric blower, 200 ft of cord, chevy malibu(didn't have a truck yet) No employees

2010
2 gas push 22" mowers, 1 32" tractor, 1 gas trimmer, 1 handheld blower, 1 backpack blower, 1 6ft X 10ft utility trailer, 1 nissan frontier truck, 1 employee however SHE sees all the profit. My fiance did 90% of the mowing. I did 10% mowing, 100% trimming, edging and 75% cleanup, She did 25% cleanup. This is for the lawn maintenance work. Side jobs we worked together to complete a job.

2011
As of now about the same as last year. Not all things listed for 2010 were purchased at the same time. We may have 4 mowers, 2 push, 2 self propelled. If we have 50-100 clients, I would like to hire someone part time to do the mowing. That idea is still up in the air. Cause 50-100 lawns with 2 people is just plain nuts. 3 man crew is do able.


Marketing:

Our flyer hasnt changed much. We are using last years copy for now. Since i have about 200 left over flyers. Why re-invent the wheel? I am attaching the flyer we use.

General Service Agreement:

I am attaching it for you to review and use if you like.



Short term 2011 goals:

Purchase a commerical grade walk behind mower, preferrably 32" or 36" to fit through gates.

Long term goals:

Sign contracts with 39 more clients to bring our total clientele to 60. Will accept up to 80 more clients which will bring our total to 100.



In closing all above listed dates for this year may change sooner than later depending on the weather. They are calling for highs to be in the 50's-70's by end of next week. If this warmer weather stays in place, the grass will start to grow sooner and our season will start about mid march instead.

devuono311
02-12-2011, 04:17 PM
JK,

I understand whole heartedly now to why you are operating without insurance. I hope you didnt take it as a negative put down I was just curious as to your reasoning and you have very good reason to operate in the manner you do. Also, I want to point out, GOOD HEAD ON YOUR SHOULDERS, starting out at a young age. You have a head start advantage many of us weren't smart enough to start out so young. By starting out prior to being eighteen, not only are you building a strong work ethic for yourself, but you are learning young, and therefore better odds of achieving younger than a lot of us also. Hang in there, I'm sure you will find this to be a great business to get into as long as you keep the work ethic. I must admit, prior to being 18 I was more focusing on parties and chasing trim. Again GOOD LUCK!!

-Tyler

Steve
02-12-2011, 05:31 PM
In closing all above listed dates for this year may change sooner than later depending on the weather. They are calling for highs to be in the 50's-70's by end of next week. If this warmer weather stays in place, the grass will start to grow sooner and our season will start about mid march instead.

When you look back over the last couple of years, is there anything you wish you did more of or anything you wish you did less of?

jklawncare
02-12-2011, 07:56 PM
JK,

I understand whole heartedly now to why you are operating without insurance. I hope you didnt take it as a negative put down I was just curious as to your reasoning and you have very good reason to operate in the manner you do. Also, I want to point out, GOOD HEAD ON YOUR SHOULDERS, starting out at a young age. You have a head start advantage many of us weren't smart enough to start out so young. By starting out prior to being eighteen, not only are you building a strong work ethic for yourself, but you are learning young, and therefore better odds of achieving younger than a lot of us also. Hang in there, I'm sure you will find this to be a great business to get into as long as you keep the work ethic. I must admit, prior to being 18 I was more focusing on parties and chasing trim. Again GOOD LUCK!!

-Tyler

I didnt take it negetively at all. Whenever i mention it in a forum or to someone they ask the same thing and i just give the description i gave you..
ive never been good in school..im only good when it comes to cars, computers,and lawns..

so if i cant get into a good college for auto or computer stuff lawn care will allways be a fall back

actually

auto and computer will be a fall back
i love doing this
i wish i didnt have school so i could work longer, plow, etc. but no way will i drop out and risk everything.

Its kind of funny
i hand out the flyers and awnser the phone and my voice is very deep
so when i show up at a customers house they are often suprised with my age

i once had a guy who thought i was just an employee
he later found out i was the owner and was blown away on my organization and my work haha.. so i look at it as a positive aspect even though there are some draw backs



This year i plan on getting a new truck
right now my blazer is crap to be honest
there is rust under the wheel wells and i dont want my new company name to be associated with it

im starting the season with 2 employees
risky thing to do i know
but
they are both friends and understand taht if they need to be let go they will be.

one has a nice truck that he agreed to use..
my main thought behind hiring 2 people was to get more work done faster
so i can take on more houses
and once summer hits
we can expand

i can even send those 2 out or keep 1 with me and have a second crew going out.

i was iffy on it but if i get the return rate im hoping (and i underestimated my goals) and i make the right ammount of money..everyone is making more than what they originally wanted..so i think it will all work for the best.


Ill be getting 2500 door hangers and passing them out mid march as well
i feel thats a good time to do it
spring is coming up
and its a bit earlier than competitors
ill also be passing out a second wave some time in april
and then most likely doing the clover method or whatever you call it

then some time mid summer i will send out a few more "tired of working?" ads if needed

my addition goals are to have a 32" walk behind
2 22" push mowers
2 weed wackers preferrably kombi's
and 2 backpacks
plus a new truck and trailer

Steve
02-14-2011, 10:16 AM
It sounds like this is going to be a big year for you! Great planning!