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How do you Operate Your Lawn Care Business

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  • #46
    oh....and no need to apologize to anyone about not having insurance your first year. It's called being a new guy who just started a business and had the business sense to finish up a year, ask a lot of questions and decided he needed to get insurance after talking with experienced people in this business. Most one of us have been in your shoes and started the same way somewhere along the line. At least you decided you need to get it before something really crappy happened.

    no offense usa lawn care, but this is one of the most ridiculous comments as well as advice i have ever heard.
    insurance is not a option its the law.
    by telling someone it is ok to not have insurance in a public setting such as this sends the wrong message to new guys starting out and more often then not sets them up for disaster.

    liability insurance for a small guy starting out for a year cost less then a commercial grade back pack blower and if you can not afford to do it then maybe you should delay starting a business.
    having insurance is more critical then having all the equipment you need.

    i agree with you that he at least had enough sense to inquire about it and possibly take action but i would classify it more as intuition then good business sense.

    i know things are tough when starting out but it is no excuse to take short cuts and i know this may seem as if i am being a jack a z z but the fact of the matter is i am trying to help and i would hate to see someone get screwed over by themselves for taking such action and like i said if you can't do it right then don't do it at all.

    i know i am new to this forum but i am not new to the industry and the simple sad truth of the matter is if you are not ready to do it right then wait until you can.
    since i been veiwing this forum i see a lot of young kids coming here seeking advice and everyone has a business plan and everyone wants their truck all lettered and have big bad azz T shirts made and business cards and let the whole world know they are open for business with some fancy flyers and they think that is all they need to get going and when they start making the big bucks everything will take care of itself.

    my advice to anyone looking to work without at least general liabillity and commercial auto insurance should hold off on the T shirts and lettering for their trucks and anything else because in this day and age with all the law suit happy people roaming the streets all it takes is a fender bender at a intersection to make someone think they just won the lottery because they just got hit by a truck that belongs to a business.

    i seen so many guys start out that way and at first they worry about it and after a while it gets put on the back burner and then each time they have a equipment failure or a unexpected expense and business is not happening as quickly as they anticipated the insurance keeps getting put on the back burner and eventually the laws of averages start to work against you.

    no one plans on getting into a accident and if they did it would not be called a accident and that is what insurance is for and it is the only thing that is gonna help when the crap hits the fan and even though it cost a good penny that is the one thing you pay for that you never want to use.

    if i was a homeowner and i found out a guy i had hired did not have the proper insurance i would tell him to get off my property asap and i don't know anyone with half a brain that would not do the same.

    if anyone here thinks i am being too harsh or even coming off as a pompus azz, i welcome them to come back and flame away and throw all of the stupidest excuses you can think of at me to prove me wrong which i know in my heart of hearts that i am spot on because i would rather come accross as that and giving sound advice then throw a line of crap like that at someone that it is ok to not protect yourself when you are starting out with the proper insurance.
    it may be harsh but it is the truth and i rather tell it like it is then sugar coat it.

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    • #47
      Absolutely agree. ^^^

      It makes my head spin when I see comments like "wait until you see if you want to keep doing this and THEN get insured". Wait. WHAT?!!!

      Maybe the sheer number of illegal operators somehow validates it in some people's minds, but seriously - three hundred thousand wrongs don't make a right.
      When I first joined this forum, I was stunned by the number of discussions that not only don't condemn, but actually advocate operating illegally. I moderate a forum (not related to lawn care) that has a rule against posting about illegal activity and it's taken quite seriously - publicly admit that you are ignoring the law, or suggest that others do so, and you will be shown the door.
      The difference has taken me some getting used to.

      Perhaps it all stems from the number of "kids" who do this work and the acceptance from the public of lowballers - if they can save a few bucks, they don't care if you're illegal.

      Either way, research what you need to do to operate legally before you start.
      There's more to consider than just insurance.

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      • #48
        let the flogging begin

        My comment was waaaaaay mis interpreted. (which is ok)

        anyways.....my comment was just towards him because he apologized to 'all of us' sort of and there was no need for apology 'to any of us'. My impression was that he jumped in for a year of mowing grass on the side....decided things were going good enough for a real business and was smart enough to know that he needed insurance if he were to continue. I in no way meant 'hey, get it if you want to or don't get it'.

        oh well.

        dpld and hedgemaster.....sorry a mis understood comment caused you so much typing

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        • #49
          usa, i was not flogging you directly or personally i was just commenting on the reply in general, as well as i thought i would go into detail about how i personally feel about the matter and from a giving advice standpoint.

          i have had quite a few younger men work for me over the years that have gone on to have some success of their own that i actually take a lot of pride in.
          i was never the type to get angry and hostile towards former employee's that turned into business owners in fact i would help them and nurture them with my own experiences to better aid them in their own endeavors.

          for me when i started out it was the exact opposite, my former employer treated me like public enemy number one and tried to do everything he could to bad mouth me and steal my customers away.
          i remember to this day what a crappy feeling that was to have someone you would step into the fire for turn on you like a rabid dog.

          i promised myself from day one that i would never do that to anyone and be that type of person.
          i take giving advice very seriously and personally and if i personally gave someone bad advice directly or indirectly that caused hardship to anyone i would definitly take it to heart as well as feel like i failed that individual.

          unlike my former employer i beleive we live in the land of opportunity and who am i to stop a individual from persueing their dream or a better way of life for themselves.
          i also feel that the only eventual course for a motivated individual in this trade is to start their own business after they learned the craft because as a business owner i realize there is a limit to how far you can go just working for someone.
          i can not stop anyone from living out their ambitions nor would i want to and at the end of the day if i can at least help guide them in the right direction to being a knowledgable legitimate business to prevent one less hack on the streets and further the integrity of our trade then it was all a success.

          no need to worry about causing the excessive typing USA, by nature i tend to have long winded replies.

          Comment


          • #50
            sounds like your heart is in the right place......it's a nice quality to have and your employees are very lucky (whether they know it or not).

            My guys many years ago also were treated very well.......bought lunches all the time and they made out like little bandits at our Christmas parties. And all that came from having a couple bosses in my life that treated me the same way and I remembered just how nice it was.

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            • #51

              what was even more bizzar and coincidental was i saw a new stop on his route, a place he never went to before and he was there a while so i was really curious as to what they were doing and i got in the truck and zipped over to where they were and he actually had the balls to unhook my trailer and leave it at one of my customers houses and take the dump truck and go get mulch and do a mulch job.
              So am I the only one that would have found my trailer and taken it. Let them go back and look for the trailer, then hear the lies of what happened to it

              btw your right insurance is great, customers love to hear you have it. I am very small and when selling a job this helps alot and people are willing to pay more knowing i have it

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              • #52
                USA,
                How do you expose yourself to possibility of getting the next door neighbors business using sub contracted workers? Wouldn't they pick up that business for themselves and not tell you. Seems like it would be hard to track.

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