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Starting a lawn care business. How to start a lawn mowing business, lawn care business, or landscaping business. If you are starting a lawn care business, ask your questions here.

young people problems


Starting a lawn care business.

How to start a lawn mowing business, lawn care business, or landscaping business. If you are starting a lawn care business, ask your questions here.
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  #11  
Old 02-26-2013, 08:31 AM
LawnBoy0311 LawnBoy0311 is offline
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Originally Posted by Steve View Post
What are you wearing when you show up for bids or service properties?

Are you wearing something that makes you look younger or are you wearing a uniform?

You can do a lot to change the maturity level you project by what you wear.



That young boy needs to stop wearing those tight @$$ pants! Whats wrong with kids these days?!
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  #12  
Old 02-26-2013, 07:01 PM
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I started cutting grass when I was about 10 for family and neighbors, fast forward a few years and at about 16 I started really getting into my own business. Not gonna bore you with all the background but basically I am very used to the looks and customer questions/comments. And many people will try to take advantage or think that you are just a "fly by nighter" like as if you don't have experience.

For me what worked the best was to tell customers that I wasn't the owner (kinda sucks and is a little depressing) but I had to in order to get out of the residential sector and into the more lucrative commercial sector. I would have to meet with Property Managers and they are sizing you up from the first phone call, so get a uniform, give yourself a title ( I have used "Senior Project Manager" in the past and works well) and play it off like you work for a family business. Basically that you have been doing this since birth like you were born into landscaping and your father/uncle/grandfather...whoever is the boss that they run the show and you basically oversee the day to day, do the scheduling and customer service.

Its worth a shot, for the few people that will be amazed that you are young and have your head on straight there will be far more that will doubt your every move and try to take advantage. And a plus side is that you can also play "good cop-bad cop" which may be helpfull in the areas of someone trying to haggle a lower price. You can always say "I would love to do it for cheaper but the boss wouldn't allow it" works great and if it dosen't work it will buy you time like as if you had to go back and check in with a boss, you can take a few minutes to think about it then get back to the customer later that day. Good luck
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  #13  
Old 02-26-2013, 08:08 PM
smallstripeslawncare smallstripeslawncare is offline
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I'm young at 22 years old and if I keep clean shaved and all people tell me I look younger than I am as well.

I normally don't have an issue with loosing clients because of it but generally when I first meet them I always get the "wow you look like your 16!" and I explain no I'm actually 22 years old married with almost three year old twins and that usually ends that conversation.
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  #14  
Old 02-27-2013, 11:19 AM
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Quote:
For me what worked the best was to tell customers that I wasn't the owner (kinda sucks and is a little depressing)......

And a plus side is that you can also play "good cop-bad cop" which may be helpfull in the areas of someone trying to haggle a lower price.
This is very interesting. It reminds me of some discussions we had in the past on here with Scott (Breeze) and how he was facing similar problems and he dealt with this similarly.

How did you come up with this idea to handle it this way? How did enacting this idea change your business?
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Old 02-27-2013, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by smallstripeslawncare View Post
I'm young at 22 years old and if I keep clean shaved and all people tell me I look younger than I am as well.

I normally don't have an issue with loosing clients because of it but generally when I first meet them I always get the "wow you look like your 16!" and I explain no I'm actually 22 years old married with almost three year old twins and that usually ends that conversation.
when I opened up my shop I grew a beard to make myself look older and looked into adding a little gray to my hair but never did. It really helped business though to grow the beard. The wife hates it though.
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Old 02-27-2013, 10:11 PM
racerdude711 racerdude711 is offline
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I know what you mean. I'm 19, have been doing this since I was 13. I also don't look a day over 16. What works best for me is to be as professional as possible. When you talk with me on the phone, you don't get the typical "teen" language. I sound professional. On the job, always where a company shirt. My truck, decked out with logo's, phone numbers, ect. My trailer, big sign on the back gate. When I roll up to a property, I give off an extremely professional vibe. When they realize how young you are, they won't question your professionalism or quality of work. I've already proven that. Honestly, we have the upper hand over everyone else that is older. People are more willing to help out someone younger in business. At least that is how it has worked out for me. Good luck!
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  #17  
Old 02-28-2013, 06:38 AM
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TIPS:

You should comb your chest hair so it pops out more, have it protrude from the collar of your shirt....

Wash your clothes in booze, you'll smell like everyone's grandfather.

Shave your head down the center.

Tell them you drank a youth potion before showing up, and if they hire you, you'll think about sharing some with them. - works every time!
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Old 03-01-2013, 06:39 PM
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Steve:
I started this practice when I realized I needed to get commercial accounts in order to stay in business. I know a lot of people do very well with residential but it just wasn't working for me. So I knew there was going to be hurdles getting into commercial work especially since the big guys (who were surprisingly the biggest low ballers, you think the "old man with a pick up and a craftsman tractor" is putting you out of business...you should see what a national company whose name I won't mention but it starts with "B" and ends with "Ickman" was charging to do a development around here)

Anyway, I had enough looks and comments from residents so I figured that if I didn't come up with something that I would never be able to step foot into the commercial bids. And it worked great, knock wood I have never had anyone call me out on this and it got me into the more lucrative market. It might not be the answer for everyone but it worked for me.
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Old 03-04-2013, 01:39 PM
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was charging to do a development around here
Did you find they would low ball a price initially to gain a foot hold and then raise prices later or do they just really bid low?
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  #20  
Old 03-04-2013, 10:02 PM
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Make a website and show before and after pictures of your work. This way age doesn't matter, as long as they get those quality results that are displayed in the photography.
They should be amazed on how young you are, and happy that you are doing something smart. There should be know doubt about your work based on your age.
Being young, it's always best to have some kind of proof too show what you are capable of when it comes to cleaning a persons yard.
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