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  • Headstart for frontier lawn

    What would you add to this list of business plan questions?

    Business Description
    - Give a one paragraph description of your business. * We Provide All-in-1 Service for less Searching for sprite Companies
    - Where is your business located? Venice, Fl
    - What services does your business offer?
    * We Currently offer: Lawn Mowing, Shrub & Hedge Trimming, Small Tree Trimming and Removal up to 7', Brush Clearing, Leaf Clean-up, Small Landscaping and Landscape Upgrades. Misc. Yard Clean Up. Fall/Spring Clean Up. Annual color beds, Christmas Decorations
    - What value does it add to the marketplace?
    I believe it adds a lot of value when you can get one company to do all you need to your property


    Management Abilities
    - What are your qualifications? I helped my Mom take care of her 2 acre property in Md since I was 10, then when we moved down here in 1990 her 1 acre home then. Also my great grandfather had a nursery/ landscape design up north and taught my mom all he knew and she taught *me
    - How will your experience contribute to the success of your business?
    It will give me some what a edge over the newbie's but not as much as the seasoned pro's
    Business Strategy
    - What is your business strategy? To Buy used Equipment to start of to keep a low overhead and then buy newer with cash when needed or can
    - What are the strengths of your business strategy? A low overhead = more profit
    - What are the weaknesses of your business strategy? used equipment has a higher chance of going out
    - What are the key strategic opportunities you have identified in your marketplace? I live in the middle of the retires that cant do there lawns any more. so that will lead to a higher chance of getting the job
    - How will your business take advantage of these strategic opportunities more effectively than your competition? We will cater to most of there needs we can fill
    - How do you intend to maintain your competitive edge? Go to 90% of all trade show each year & get all magazines to stay current on new topics
    - Describe the key challenges you face and how will you overcome them? Losing the customer to low bidding newbie's. And we should over come them by 1, they donít provide great service. 2, they go out of bizz from prices to low
    Legal Structure
    - Will your business operate as a sole proprietor, partnership, corporation or an LLC? *sole proprietor
    - How will your legal structure decrease your business's exposure to risk? By being a sole proprietor I donít have to deal with partners wanting there share or there say in the company.

    Financial
    - How much will you personally invest in your business? *$3000
    - How much money are you seeking from banks? None due to credit issues
    - How much money are you seeking from private investors? None
    - How long until you plan to break even? *1 year or less
    - How long until you plan on making a profit? 1 year or less
    - What will your start-up costs be? Be specific, describe each and the cost. Trailer $750, 36" W/b mower $500, Trailer hitch $150, Blower $139, Trimmer/Edger combo $200, Insurance $429, license $75
    - What is your sales forcast for each month of the entire year? List each month's goal.
    - What will be your monthly operating expenses? Be specific, describe each and the cost. Fuel Price Raising and Lowering
    - What will your monthly fixed costs be? Be specific, describe each and the cost. * Promotion's (flyers, signup deals), web hosting fees


    Mission Statement
    - What is your business? Lawn & Landscape Maintenance/ Installs
    - How will your business succeed? Attention to detail
    - What values are important to your business? Quality Work & Reasonable Price's
    - How does your business improve the lives of your customers' and employees'? Donít Know Yet

    Marketing Slogan
    - What is your marketing slogan? At Frontier Lawn, You get Fast Reliable Service, Completive Prices, & Attention to detail. (may need some work still?)

    Market Analysis
    - What are the positive NATIONAL trends that will affect your business? People want to spend more time with family and enjoy there lawn
    - What are the negative NATIONAL trends that will affect your business? donít know
    - How will you take advantage of the positive trends and deal with the negative trends? donít know

    - What are the positive REGIONAL trends that will affect your business? Smaller lawns less time to finish the work and can do more in the day
    - What are the negative REGIONAL trends that will affect your business? Government Stepping in more with rules
    - How will you take advantage of the positive trends and deal with the negative trends? donít know

    - What are the positive LANDSCAPE INDUSTRY trends that will affect your business? Drought tolerant plants
    - What are the negative LANDSCAPE INDUSTRY trends that will affect your business? Hurricanes
    - How will you take advantage of the positive trends and deal with the negative trends? Plant Plants that use less water then the normal plants and try to deal with the weather

    Customer Analysis
    - What is your current customer base? 3
    - Who are your target customers? (age range, education level, occupations, average home value) * (age range) 18-up, (education level) Any, (occupations) All but Lawn Guys, (average home value) $130,000
    - What zip codes do they live in? Only my county
    - What do your customers want? Great Service Completive Prices

    Competition Analysis
    - Who are your competitors? Lost Count
    - How many employees do they have? Don't Know
    - What is their estimated sales volume? Don't Know
    - What services do they offer? Lawns/ Landscaping
    - What is the quality of their product? Don't Know
    - What is the price range of their product? Don't Know
    - Who are there customers? Don't Know
    - What are their strengths? Don't Know
    - What are their weaknesses? Me
    - Are they a direct or indirect competitor? Both

    Labor
    - How many employees will you start with? Full or p/t? None
    - What will the hourly labor wage paid to employees be? None
    - What will your total annual labor hours be, see below?
    * Jan total billable hours = 224
    * Feb = 224
    * Mar = 224
    * Apr = 224
    * May = 224
    * Jun = 224
    * Jul = 224
    * Aug = 224
    * Sept = 224
    * Oct =112
    * Nov = 224
    * Dec = 224

    * Yearly total billable hours = 2576

    Equipment
    - What equipment will be needed? 36" W/b, 21" Trimmer/Edger, Blower Misc Tools
    - How much will it cost to obtain this equipment?
    - Where will you store the equipment? Trailer in my yard
    - How much will it cost to store the equipment? None

    Advertising / Promotion
    - How will you advertise or promote your business? *Flyers & Word of mouth
    - How much will you spend doing each per year? * * 500 min.

    Types of expenses.

    Different expenses you will want to include in your business plan. I want to include insurance, Gas, Equipment Maintenance, Advertising, Cell Phone, Web Hosting, & Office Supplies. *

    Rent/Mortgage, Utilities, Insurance, Gas, Equipment Payments, Equipment Maintenance, Advertising, Truck Payments, Phone/Cell/Internet, Office Supplies. Or others.



    www.frontierlawn.biz

  • #2
    Hi Frontier-Lawn,

    That is a great start. Let's see if we can add some more details to help you plan more.

    1. What zip codes will you be servicing? This will allow us to create some customer charts for you to find which areas you may want to focus on.

    2. Can you break down the monthly fee for the following expenses :
    Quote[/b] ]I want to include insurance, Gas, Equipment Maintenance, Advertising, Cell Phone, Web Hosting, & Office Supplies.

    Rent/Mortgage, Utilities, Insurance, Gas, Equipment Payments, Equipment Maintenance, Advertising, Truck Payments, Phone/Cell/Internet, Office Supplies. Or others.
    3. What are your new customers goals for this year? Give us 3 #'s. A total number of new customers you feel you can easily attract this season. A total number of new customers you feel will be moderately difficult to attract this season. A total number of new customers you feel will be extremely tough to attract this season. What date do you want these total customers by?
    - Subscribe to my Lawn Care Marketing Blog Feed and get daily tips sent to you. Free!
    Download your Free trial of Gopher Lawn Care Software.

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi Frontier-Lawn,

      My name is Joel LaRusic and the Gopher Team asked me to see if I could provide any words of wisdom to help you get your business plan completed.

      What you have so far is great. It is good that you are taking the time to think things through as you start your business... it is a key to your success to always plan ahead.

      I had a couple of points about your plan. First regarding your financials and second about your competition and marketing efforts.

      First with your financial section. I know, this is not the fun part of the business plan but it is an important one. You have to understand the numbers behind your business to succeed so you might as well start from the beginning by doing proper analysis.

      You wrote:

      Quote[/b] ]Financial
      - How much will you personally invest in your business? *$3000
      - How much money are you seeking from banks? None due to credit issues
      - How much money are you seeking from private investors? None
      - How long until you plan to break even? *1 year or less
      - How long until you plan on making a profit? 1 year or less
      - What will your start-up costs be? Be specific, describe each and the cost. Trailer $750, 36" W/b mower $500, Trailer hitch $150, Blower $139, Trimmer/Edger combo $200, Insurance $429, license $75
      - What is your sales forcast for each month of the entire year? List each month's goal.
      - What will be your monthly operating expenses? Be specific, describe each and the cost. Fuel Price Raising and Lowering
      - What will your monthly fixed costs be? Be specific, describe each and the cost. * Promotion's (flyers, signup deals), web hosting fees
      I'd like to see a little more detail in your forecasting sections. Try to look ahead at least one year in advance. As Gopher suggested make a list of all your expenses and how much you expect to spend each month on them. (hint: use a spreadsheet program like Excel).

      Also estimate how much revenue to expect to make each month. Use the numbers that the Gopher Team asked you to come up with (new customer goals) and try to put a dollar amount to each customer. The net result for your plan is a list of each month of the year and the expected revenue for that month.

      The other thing in your plan that I think needs a little more research is your competition. True, there are probably too many competitors to list them all or even most. Are there one or two companies that stick out in your area that do well? Are there companies that are strong in the neighborhoods that you want to work in? You may need to spy on them and watch them do a job or two. What are they doing well? What are they not so strong in. Be candid and take notes. Try to select one or two and look at the questions again.

      Quote[/b] ]Competition Analysis
      - Who are your competitors? Lost Count
      - How many employees do they have? Don't Know
      - What is their estimated sales volume? Don't Know
      - What services do they offer? Lawns/ Landscaping
      - What is the quality of their product? Don't Know
      - What is the price range of their product? Don't Know
      - Who are there customers? Don't Know
      - What are their strengths? Don't Know
      - What are their weaknesses? Me
      - Are they a direct or indirect competitor? Both
      See if you can complete these tasks and post your results. We'll go from there.

      Good luck!
      Joel LaRusic
      Consultant/Author, Start & Run a Landscape Business
      www.mowboy.com

      Comment


      • #4
        Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ April 04 2005,11:32)]Hi Frontier-Lawn,

        That is a great start. Let's see if we can add some more details to help you plan more.

        1. What zip codes will you be servicing? This will allow us to create some customer charts for you to find which areas you may want to focus on.

        2. Can you break down the monthly fee for the following expenses :
        Quote[/b] ]I want to include insurance, Gas, Equipment Maintenance, Advertising, Cell Phone, Web Hosting, & Office Supplies. *

        Rent/Mortgage, Utilities, Insurance, Gas, Equipment Payments, Equipment Maintenance, Advertising, Truck Payments, Phone/Cell/Internet, Office Supplies. Or others.
        3. What are your new customers goals for this year? Give us 3 #'s. A total number of new customers you feel you can easily attract this season. A total number of new customers you feel will be moderately difficult to attract this season. A total number of new customers you feel will be extremely tough to attract this season. What date do you want these total customers by?
        1. What zip codes will you be servicing? This will allow us to create some customer charts for you to find which areas you may want to focus on. ****- 34234, 34228, 34236, 34235, 34232, 34239, 34233, 34231, 34238, 34242, 34229, 34272, 34275, 34285, 34293, 34292, 34287, 34286

        2.. Can you break down the monthly fee for the following expenses :
        insurance $50, Gas $100, Equipment Maintenance $25, Advertising $50, Cell Phone $90, Web Hosting $5, & Office Supplies $15.

        3. What are your new customers goals for this year? Give us 3 #'s. A total number of new customers you feel you can easily attract this season.{15} A total number of new customers you feel will be moderately difficult to attract this season.{25} A total number of new customers you feel will be extremely tough to attract this season.{40} What date do you want these total customers by? End of July/August
        www.frontierlawn.biz

        Comment


        • #5
          Joel,
          there is one guy on my street that does lawns and his truck/equip looks like scrub stuff Have not seen his work but his property is not in the best of shape. and then there is another scrub that does 2 lawns on my street. he does not do a great job. the 2 bigest and best companys that are in my area are hazeltine landscape and The one next to my moms house T.L.C. they both do a good job and are always bussy
          www.frontierlawn.biz

          Comment


          • #6
            Hi Frontier-Lawn,

            Customer analysis based on zip codes provided by Frontier-Lawn of service areas and data provided by ESRI Business Solutions.

            Census data provided by census.gov

            We charted three of the zip code areas you posted. You can see there is a wide difference between them. I would suggest doing this for all the zip codes you want to service to see which would be the best to market to.
            - Subscribe to my Lawn Care Marketing Blog Feed and get daily tips sent to you. Free!
            Download your Free trial of Gopher Lawn Care Software.

            Comment


            • #7
              the four closest zips to me are 334293, 34292, 34275, and 34285
              www.frontierlawn.biz

              Comment


              • #8
                Hey Frontier-Lawn,

                Regarding your expenses... have you considered if you will be spending money on any of the following:

                Fertilizers & Other Lawn Treatments
                Waste Disposal
                Bank Interest & Charges
                Truck - Repair & Maintenance

                Also:

                Is the $100 fuel for your truck, your equipment or both?

                What is the $50 insurance for? Truck insurance? Business liability insurance? Workers' Compo or disability insurance? Have you considered the cost of all of these?

                Internet Access/Hosting - You put $5 for hosting. What do you pay for internet access (you can write this off too).

                Provide these numbers and we'll put together a monthly expense graph so you know what you need to break-even.

                Thanks
                Joel LaRusic
                Consultant/Author, Start & Run a Landscape Business
                www.mowboy.com

                Comment


                • #9
                  Quote[/b] (mowboy @ April 07 2005,11:55)]Hey Frontier-Lawn,

                  Regarding your expenses... have you considered if you will be spending money on any of the following:

                  Fertilizers & Other Lawn Treatments
                  Waste Disposal
                  Bank Interest & Charges
                  Truck - Repair & Maintenance

                  Also:

                  Is the $100 fuel for your truck, your equipment or both?

                  What is the $50 insurance for? Truck insurance? Business liability insurance? Workers' Compo or disability insurance? Have you considered the cost of all of these?

                  Internet Access/Hosting - You put $5 for hosting. What do you pay for internet access (you can write this off too).

                  Provide these numbers and we'll put together a monthly expense graph so you know what you need to break-even.

                  Thanks
                  spending money on any of the following:

                  Fertilizers & Other Lawn Treatments- I don't Do. to much bs to go throu to get a licence for it
                  Waste Disposal- $25 Customer pays it
                  Bank Interest & Charges- Free Checking fron 5th 3rd bank
                  Truck - Repair & Maintenance- oil changes every 3 months $25

                  Is the $100 fuel for your truck, your equipment or both? Both so far. all i have is a 21'' push, trimmer and edger, blower

                  What is the $50 insurance for? Truck insurance- truck is on personal insurance Business liability insurance- yes Workers' Compo or disability insurance- no Have you considered the cost of all of these? not yet

                  Internet Access/Hosting - You put $5 for hosting. What do you pay for internet access (you can write this off too).
                  Comcast online- $42.95 month
                  msn for email- $10 month

                  Provide these numbers and we'll put together a monthly expense graph so you know what you need to break-even.

                  Thanks
                  www.frontierlawn.biz

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Hi Frontier-Lawn,

                    Here is our customer goal chart for this year ending in August to help motivate you. Now that we have these goals, we will be able to chart your progress throughout the season.

                    Each month you should report back here and let us know your latest customer count to see where you are at in your goal. You might want to print out this chart and put it somewhere where you will see it each day to inspire you.


                    This is from our Business Consultant Joel. I don't think this part was answered yet.

                    Quote[/b] ]Also estimate how much revenue to expect to make each month. Use the numbers that the Gopher Team asked you to come up with (new customer goals) and try to put a dollar amount to each customer. The net result for your plan is a list of each month of the year and the expected revenue for that month.
                    - Subscribe to my Lawn Care Marketing Blog Feed and get daily tips sent to you. Free!
                    Download your Free trial of Gopher Lawn Care Software.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      This is from our Business Consultant Joel. I don't think this part was answered yet.

                      Quote
                      Also estimate how much revenue to expect to make each month. Use the numbers that the Gopher Team asked you to come up with (new customer goals) and try to put a dollar amount to each customer. The net result for your plan is a list of each month of the year and the expected revenue for that month.


                      with the cheapest mow @ $145month

                      customers monthly income
                      15 $2175
                      25 $3625
                      40 $5800
                      www.frontierlawn.biz

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Hi Frontier Lawn,

                        OK, thanks for clarifying those numbers. Here is a quick snapshot of your income statement based on your estimates:

                        * I have used your lowest revenue numbers. Of course, if you succeed in getting more customers then this number will go up.

                        Also I have assumed that your $145 lawn cut charge includes waste removal (which you said is currently $25 based on 3 customers) so I adjusted the waste disposal charge to account for more customers.

                        Revenue 2175

                        Expenses
                        Advertising 50
                        Equipment Fuel 25
                        Equipment Repair/Maint 25
                        Insurance 50
                        Truck - Gas & Oil 75
                        Truck - R & M 10
                        Internet Access/Hosting 5
                        Office Supplies 15
                        Telephone and Fax 90
                        Waste Disposal 125

                        Total Expenses 470

                        Net Income 1705

                        As well, attached is a pie chart of your monthly expenses.

                        My book provides more details on how to put together a more thorough business plan including how to complete all the reports and charts you need ...and I would recommend you do this (The book will be available at www.mowboy.com in about 2 weeks). However, this will suffice to get you off and running right now. *

                        Do you have any specific questions about the business that I can help you with?
                        Joel LaRusic
                        Consultant/Author, Start & Run a Landscape Business
                        www.mowboy.com

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          latter on whats good to expand in to on other green industry products
                          www.frontierlawn.biz

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Quote[/b] (Frontier-Lawn @ April 09 2005,1:31)]latter on whats good to expand in to on other green industry products
                            If I understand your question, you are asking what areas can you expand into. I would suggest providing your existing customers with more services. You mentioned about fertilizing being a bunch of red tape but this can be a high profit service that is probably worth the hassle in the long run. Try to offer your customers full service or you may find them switch to a company that does.

                            So other than cutting you can offer beds maintenance, trimming and pruning, planting, fertilizing, lawn weed control, lawn specialties such as aeration, lawn renovations/rejuvinations and top dressing.

                            Keep learning more about horticulture and try to help (and profit) from anything your customer needs for her lawn and garden.
                            Joel LaRusic
                            Consultant/Author, Start & Run a Landscape Business
                            www.mowboy.com

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              also would ether for you know how hard it is to get a SBA Loan for $10,000 for some new Equipment?
                              www.frontierlawn.biz

                              Comment

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