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Weekend lawn business - what do I really need?

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  • Weekend lawn business - what do I really need?

    Ok when I started considering this venture, it was to pay off some bills and save some money before thet baby gets here. Then, I would just see how far it went. I currently have a fairly good paying career, with 2 to 3 times what I currently make potential. So I don't want to bail just yet.

    But, it is not mine.

    Now, considering the weekend plan. I know that i will get what i put into it, but How much do I really need to to make a fair go of it? Honestly.

    Once the a huge bill is paid in a few days for medical stuff, I will have the free money to start really moving forward.

    My plan:

    door to door, door cards, maybe friends who are realtors.

    Regular bag push mower, craftsman? Already have
    Gas weed whacker, craftsman. Wll get.
    Blower, prob craftsman. Will get.

    I realize that craftsman is not ideal, but, it's ok and will work for now.

    Mow and go with additional services like Debris removal, will get a simple power washer if I get a contract or two, gutters, maybe some mulching and possibly (after reading about organic spraying on here) some yard treatments.

    I have A DBA, a cheap cell phone on the family plan, and will get a tax I'd number and basic insurance.

    Will get business cards, door hangers, and maybe some door magnets.

    Now, this all seems like a lot of formality for a weekend thing. And after reading all the info here, it seems like almost more than I intended to deal with. I am willing, but still.

    I this just the price of doing business as a responsible adult?

    Am I over thinking it?

    Or, is there anything I am not considering?

    Thanks all for all of your help.
    Last edited by knosaj; 02-08-2012, 07:28 PM.

  • #2
    Business License and Insurance

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    • #3
      Sounds like you know whats going on. to be insured is like $500 a year aka two fall cleanups. DO you have a truck now? You can by a mower used 22" on c-list for like $100. I would get a backpack blower the hand held ones get old very fast. ARE you going to have time with a new baby?

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      • #4
        yea i have a truck now. yea i planned on the back blower, unless i want to have popeye forearms.

        well, im not happy about giving up the family time, but, paying off student loans and approaching med bills, ive gotta do what i gotta do. plus the wifes office has slowly been laying people off. well, she is the last to go, and might be next. so, for now, cash is king. lol.

        business license....this is a DBA correct? or doing business as. yea, i dont know very much when it comes to business.

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        • #5
          business license....this is a DBA correct? or doing business as. yea, i dont know very much when it comes to business.
          I think it verys state to state
          I think your doing good just get a move on flyers and do it many times.
          I would look at echo for the blower and trimmer @ home depot good for the money about the same as sears

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          • #6
            thanks.

            i found a lightly used a "smart" self propeled 6.5 hp 22" recycler toro on craigslist for 175.

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            • #7
              check it out and then see if you can get for like $140
              BTW whats wrong with the one you have?

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              • #8
                welll, not sure. i think it runs...lol

                it was practically brand new and my dumb *** brother in law left it out in the weather for i don tknow how long. a couple of weeks anyway.

                so i started trying to get it running, changed gas, i think the oil too. it was just starting to start and i pulled the cord off. so, this weekend im going to give it a shot at getting it going. if not, ill take it to the repair guy to see what he says. im not real familiar with small engines, but they cant be too complicated.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Read post title: Weekend lawn business

                  Weekend lawn business
                  Weekend lawn
                  Weekend

                  Weekend, the time in which clients are home, and often most annoying towards lawn maintenance professionals.

                  If you can withstand the chit chat, and the feeling of being watched all day... I say go for it!

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                  • #10
                    welll, not sure. i think it runs...lol

                    it was practically brand new and my dumb *** brother in law left it out in the weather for i don tknow how long. a couple of weeks anyway.

                    so i started trying to get it running, changed gas, i think the oil too. it was just starting to start and i pulled the cord off. so, this weekend im going to give it a shot at getting it going. if not, ill take it to the repair guy to see what he says. im not real familiar with small engines, but they cant be too complicated.
                    Sounds like water in carb check youtube on how to fix
                    more or less it's
                    1. drain gas tank
                    2. remove bolt from bottom of carb bowl (I think its a 1/2")
                    3. clean small holes on bolt with small wire (feed wire throw holes)
                    4. clean bowl
                    5. feed wire up into hole where bolt was unscrewed from to clean
                    6. rebuild

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Read post title: Weekend lawn business

                      Weekend lawn business
                      Weekend lawn
                      Weekend

                      Weekend, the time in which clients are home, and often most annoying towards lawn maintenance professionals.

                      If you can withstand the chit chat, and the feeling of being watched all day... I say go for it!
                      Haha! Good point!

                      I was just thinking that I don't see 95% of my clients and a few I've never met beyond an email conversation.





                      Last season was my first full season, so take my input with a grain of salt.

                      As for equipment - I started with a Craftsman, but I quickly replaced it with a Toro Super Recycler. No regrets.

                      I also started with a cheapo Troy Bilt trimmer which I burned up trying to "mow" an overgrown lot. I had planned on saving up for a commercial grade trimmer, but that got fast tracked when my trimmer crapped out on me. I bought a Stihl FS90R and HIGHLY recommend picking up a commercial trimmer, as it's one of the most important pieces of gear you'll use. The difference between commercial grade and a homeowner trimmer is the difference between a butter knife and a steak knife when eating a T-bone.

                      Unless you're doing leaf cleanups, I disagree on the backpack blower. For blowing clippings off a walk, a handheld will do just fine, and takes up less space, while being easier to carry for the 3 minutes you'll need it.


                      All in all, can you make enough money working two days a week to cover your legal obligations?

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                      • #12
                        Never thought of the home owners being around. Oh well, I'll just have to deal with it. No other choice.

                        Legal obligations? If your talking about insurance, I think so. I have a general liability quote that is like 40 a month.

                        I figure,

                        I am hoping for 10 , but If I can get 5 lawns on a weekly basis at 35 a lawn that's, 700 a month. Maybe I am being naive but I feel that's pretty easy. Phone, 10 bucks, then fuel, not sure yet. I live in an area dense with neighborhoods. Thousands of residences in a few square miles.

                        No to bad return. I could knock 5 yards out in one day easy.

                        We have mowing here year round.

                        Am I way off base?

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                        • #13
                          your numbers are not that off but the first year you may spend 50% or more of what you make on tools... growing costs. starting with like 5 to 10 yards is smart learn the ropes & see what happens if it does not work out your not crazy money

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                          • #14
                            How many lawn care customers do you have now and what is your goal as to how many you want with your business?

                            How long do you plan to keep it operating on the weekends only? Will you next expand it to week nights?
                            - Subscribe to my Lawn Care Marketing Blog Feed and get daily tips sent to you. Free!
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                            • #15
                              i hate to admit it, but, i am, at the moment, mmm, all talk and no action. i have zero customers.

                              what i am really waiting on it to pay off this huge med bill in a few days then i can x off the last few things on my list and get started.

                              -insurance is the big one.

                              -cards and door hangers. i have designed these already and are ready for print. again, in a few days ill have them printed. they should be in my hands a couple days after that. i know these arent nesessary, but there is TONS of competition here and i want to look legit. first impression.

                              other than that and shaking off the cold feet, i am set to beat the street.

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