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jford1995
08-18-2011, 09:00 PM
Hey Guys my name is Jeremy Ford im 16 years old but ive been mowing grass for 6 years. So far this year has actually been my best year!! Ive been looking around this site for years its a great site i love it and im finally turning to all you other guys in the profession for help! Here latly ive been thinking of services to offer in the off season to help me get through the off season. One that ive come up with is the month of January hauling off live christmas trees. There are places around here that sell live christmas trees that im gunna try to advertise at and i was thinking 15 dollars to just pick it up off the street or 25 to have to get the tree out of the house and clean up the needles. please tell me what yall think and some other services i could offer in the off season. Thanks Jeremy Ford

SouthallMowing
08-18-2011, 11:44 PM
Welcome man! I'm just a year old than you, so we're in the same boat business-wise. I'd like that idea with the Christmas trees, but going into their house, it's too easy to break something, and since you probably don't have insurance, that wouldn't be too good. However, picking it up from the curb, that's a better idea, cause if you break the curb, I wanna shake your hand.

Liberty Landscaping LLC
08-19-2011, 02:10 AM
The township picks up our live christmas tree for free here that doesn't happen by you?

Steve
08-19-2011, 12:54 PM
Hi Jeremy,

How does your township handle christmas trees? Do people put them to the curb when they are done with them? Or what normally happens?

SouthallMowing
08-19-2011, 08:58 PM
I know here in Waverly, Ohio. The Street Department takes any yard waste. Grass clippings, tree limbs, etc. However, if you have tree branches, the must be bundled together, and the bundle can't be over 4 feet long. (for the weight of the bundle) They normally come on Friday mornings, so you see people out doing stuff thursday. You can also take stuff to their dumb area free of charge.

jford1995
08-20-2011, 10:56 AM
Here in the city they do collect yard waste but i dont believe they come around for christmas trees and i know out in the county they dont collect at all. I had planned on taking them to the city brush center and they would be turned into mulch which you can get for free thru the year!

Steve
08-20-2011, 12:31 PM
I think there is a flyer template for this service in the free lawn care flyer templates (http://www.gopherforum.com/forumdisplay.php?f=34) section.

Maybe in the fall or possibly even december you could promote this with some flyers, or are you thinking of another way to market it?

jford1995
08-20-2011, 04:53 PM
There are probably better flyers for it and feel like mine have to many words but yes i have made some flyers for it

CHEESE2009
08-20-2011, 07:47 PM
Shovel your neighbors walkways

or

Work for someone so that you have a steady income which will enable you to purchase more equipment for the summer season.


It's not easy doing summer and winter work, to me they are like separate businesses that require two very different strategies. Focus on summer for now, as doing something on your own this winter might hold you back financially.

I say this because you are 16 years old, so I assume that you are probably in school and don't have a vehicle of your own. Running an operation well enough to produce a profit requires commitment which might not be your best asset right now.

If you are going to school, get a slack job working for someone else on the weekends. The last thing you want are customers calling you and for you not to be able to provide for them, especially if you are just starting out.




It doesn't costs a lot to start in our line of work, but it does cost a lot to make it work properly!

Let's say you want a zero turn mower for spring. Working at McDonalds all winter will give you that and more! Working for yourself and starting something new right now will just slow you down.

If you want to charge $15 to haul around trees, that's going to kill you. It costs me $15 in gas to get out of my driveway. You might (luckily) make a generous 10 customers, that's $150.

Take your income and subtract the gas, it will give you a minimal income that will not be worth your time.





If you are like me, you wont listen to my advice. You can only figure out the right price to charge, after first doing the job once.

Find out what the minimum wage is, multiply it by the time you spend on the job. Now you also must add how much money in fuel you are using. Now figure out what your competition is charging, and see how much profit you can obtain, and how good of a deal you can give your clients compared to your competition.

SouthallMowing
08-20-2011, 09:26 PM
Shovel your neighbors walkways

or

Work for someone so that you have a steady income which will enable you to purchase more equipment for the summer season.


It's not easy doing summer and winter work, to me they are like separate businesses that require two very different strategies. Focus on summer for now, as doing something on your own this winter might hold you back financially.

I say this because you are 16 years old, so I assume that you are probably in school and don't have a vehicle of your own. Running an operation well enough to produce a profit requires commitment which might not be your best asset right now.

If you are going to school, get a slack job working for someone else on the weekends. The last thing you want are customers calling you and for you not to be able to provide for them, especially if you are just starting out.




It doesn't costs a lot to start in our line of work, but it does cost a lot to make it work properly!

Let's say you want a zero turn mower for spring. Working at McDonalds all winter will give you that and more! Working for yourself and starting something new right now will just slow you down.

If you want to charge $15 to haul around trees, that's going to kill you. It costs me $15 in gas to get out of my driveway. You might (luckily) make a generous 10 customers, that's $150.

Take your income and subtract the gas, it will give you a minimal income that will not be worth your time.





If you are like me, you wont listen to my advice. You can only figure out the right price to charge, after first doing the job once.

Find out what the minimum wage is, multiply it by the time you spend on the job. Now you also must add how much money in fuel you are using. Now figure out what your competition is charging, and see how much profit you can obtain, and how good of a deal you can give your clients compared to your competition.


Listen to him man, he's right. Mowing, if you do good work, will get you some great cash. Trust me. Winter however, if it snows too deep even if you have a car, you can't get out. Which is my problem cause my dad takes the truck in the snow to get to work. So I have to walk. IF you decide to shovel snow and stuff. Do it close. I'm going to be a senior this year, my plan for winter is if there is a snow storm supposed to come, I call everyone that I normally do and tell them that if it's a 2 hour delay, or a closing, I will be there. If not, I will call you and you can get someone to come. That worked last year great. You cant start a huge business from the start. I started out with a push mower and a trimmer 5 years ago. Now i'm up to: a truck, trailer, zero turn, and the whole nine yards. Just take it nice and slow. let it come to you. don't try to make it bigger than what it is, it'll kill you financially.

Steve
08-22-2011, 11:54 AM
If you are like me, you wont listen to my advice. You can only figure out the right price to charge, after first doing the job once.


How did performing your first job effect the way you bid in the future?

CHEESE2009
08-25-2011, 01:05 PM
How did performing your first job effect the way you bid in the future?


You'll know exactly what kind of crap you'll be getting yourself into, and eager to charge enough to cover your previous suffering. Or you may charge the same, but tweak your job enough to make it work for you.

You always need to test your service, to see where you can go wrong. Watch youtube videos of others doing it, before you do. Create a checklist of what needs to be done, and you are set.