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Hey Guys, maybe some opinions?


Introduce Yourself

Welcome all new forum members. Please introduce yourself and tell us about you. Tell us about your company. How did you get started? How long have you been in business? What do you do for fun? Don't be shy, say hello! It's fun and educational to interact on the forum!
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  #1  
Old 03-01-2010, 08:17 PM
zmsk22
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Default Hey Guys, maybe some opinions?

Hello,

I am 21 and I am graduating in August with a business degree. Work for a bank? I dont think so, I'm looking at starting a lawn business instead with every intent on expanding. Im my area about 95% of business is coming from small lots 70x90 (just a guess). What should I be in the market for, a walk behind? And what size? Considering I will have about $4500 cash to start up, and taking in account the size of lawns, It seems I could start up by buying a used walk behind without going into debt. I have a truck and tools, need trimmer, blower, and trailer.

Also, how do annual contracts work? Are you paid up front or monthly? I think I would like to stick with a per cut basis.

Thanks!
Mike
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  #2  
Old 03-01-2010, 09:31 PM
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Craigslist is really helpful for used equipment. Most of the best deals are around the end of summer, when the guys who wanted to get into landscaping figure out they hate it and sell all their stuff. you can get Isuzu npr's really cheap to now days. They make good lawn trucks.
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Originally Posted by zmsk22 View Post
Hello,

I am 21 and I am graduating in August with a business degree. Work for a bank? I dont think so, I'm looking at starting a lawn business instead with every intent on expanding. Im my area about 95% of business is coming from small lots 70x90 (just a guess). What should I be in the market for, a walk behind? And what size? Considering I will have about $4500 cash to start up, and taking in account the size of lawns, It seems I could start up by buying a used walk behind without going into debt. I have a truck and tools, need trimmer, blower, and trailer.

Also, how do annual contracts work? Are you paid up front or monthly? I think I would like to stick with a per cut basis.

Thanks!
Mike
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  #3  
Old 03-01-2010, 09:42 PM
ritchiem
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Default

First of all, welcome to the forums Mike. I hope they help you on your adventure.

Quote:
Considering I will have about $4500 cash to start up
Not that big of a startup budget but I am sure you can try and make it work. I would assume you'll be going all used. A walk-behind mower is a great money maker. They usually have a low price tag and can put out the same productivity as a rider (depends on user). My only recommendation would be to try and find one with a hydrostatic drive rather then belt driven. They are smoother and more responsive, flip-side, they cost a bit more.
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Old 03-01-2010, 10:41 PM
zmsk22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ritchiem View Post
First of all, welcome to the forums Mike. I hope they help you on your adventure.



Not that big of a startup budget but I am sure you can try and make it work. I would assume you'll be going all used. A walk-behind mower is a great money maker. They usually have a low price tag and can put out the same productivity as a rider (depends on user). My only recommendation would be to try and find one with a hydrostatic drive rather then belt driven. They are smoother and more responsive, flip-side, they cost a bit more.


Thanks for the tip, and yes I realize I would be going a bit over that budget. Being that I am young I really want to stay debt free. I would buy a used walk behind and trailer but I think I would purchase a new trimmer and blower (and hopefully stay under 5k). Once I get some clients and income, I will be willing to spend the money. Haha I guess I am looking at a conservative startup plan. But I am 100% confident I can make it work and grow.
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Old 03-01-2010, 11:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zmsk22 View Post
Also, how do annual contracts work? Are you paid up front or monthly? I think I would like to stick with a per cut basis.
All my contracts(just general contract 15day notice for termination) are invoiced 1 week b4 the first service for the month and due before any work is done. That way only billed once(less hasle) and im not waiting for the money the rest the month. Seems easiest way to me.
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Old 03-02-2010, 11:44 AM
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When you are getting started with anything it is important to keep things simple. In fact it is always better to keep things simple.

Contract when you start, most don't bother. Why because it's tougher to sell them when you are new. Who wants to sign a contract for a year with a start up business that may not be around next week.

As far as payment terms, anytime you can get paid in advance go with that. Chasing people down for payment is a time sucker.

Equipment, start small and start cheap and scale up as you need.

Who knows what you will think of this business until you get into it. So keep it cheap at first as you feel it all out.

Does this help?
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Old 03-02-2010, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve View Post
When you are getting started with anything it is important to keep things simple. In fact it is always better to keep things simple.

Contract when you start, most don't bother. Why because it's tougher to sell them when you are new. Who wants to sign a contract for a year with a start up business that may not be around next week.

As far as payment terms, anytime you can get paid in advance go with that. Chasing people down for payment is a time sucker.

Equipment, start small and start cheap and scale up as you need.

Who knows what you will think of this business until you get into it. So keep it cheap at first as you feel it all out.

Does this help?

Yes it helps. I have seen alot of fair deals on craigslist, and a few real good deals as far as trimmers, edgers, blowers. Im sure once I graduate at end of summer more deals will be popping up, like a previous poster mentioned. My biggest concern is collecting payment etc. but im sure that will be quick to figure out once I get things rolling.
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Old 03-03-2010, 11:53 AM
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Could you set it up where they pay you per cut? Maybe they leave a check for you?
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