Lawn Care Business Forum Lawn Care Business Book Lawn Care Business Blog Lawn Care Software
Home Forum Contract & Flyer Templates Blog Software Videos Podcast Calculators / Estimators Store Mower Review Design It Yourself Lawn Business School

Go Back   GopherHaul Landscaping & Lawn Care Business Marketing Forum > Just starting your lawn care or landscaping business? > Starting a lawn care business.

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.

Thinking about a career change...


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.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
  #1  
Old 12-22-2010, 08:55 AM
Desperado72 Desperado72 is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 4
Rep Power: 4
Desperado72 is on a distinguished road
Default Thinking about a career change...

First-time poster here. I'm a single, 38-year-old guy from Richmond, VA, currently working in I.T. for a small software company. I've been thinking about switching to a field where I can have a little more job variety, see the sky, and work for myself. I haven't decided on lawn care just yet, but I have read many of the threads here. I do have a few concerns.

The first is, I will come right out and say I'm a convicted felon. I won't go into any details except to say it was a nonviolent offense, it happened about 8 years ago, and I didn't do any jail time. This is my main reason for wanting to switch careers. Job opportunities in the corporate world are extremely limited when you have a record, and expungement is not a realistic option in my state. I am VERY lucky to have my current job (small company, no background check), but we're losing clients and I fear we won't be around for too much longer. My work record is spotless, but I'm terrified at the idea of having to look for another job in this economy given my "other" record. I would much rather find a line of work where I can be my own boss. So my question is, will having a felony conviction be an issue for me in lawn care as far as obtaining licensing, insurance, etc?

My second concern has to do with equipment. I own a townhouse, so I have none - the HOA takes care of landscaping, snow removal, etc. I have no driveway or garage to store anything, although I do have a small fenced back yard. I'm guessing I would either have to buy an enclosed trailer and park it on the street or get an open trailer and rent a storage unit someplace. That's a pretty big expense considering I'm not even sure if I would like the work. Eventually I would probably buy a house with a garage, but that's a little ways off. Anybody else in this situation?

I have a lot of other concerns as well (my lack of knowledge of the business, my physical ability, income potential as a solo operator, etc.)...but for now those are the big two.

On the plus side, I have good credit, no debt besides my mortgage, no family to support, and enough savings to take some classes, buy some equipment, and perhaps get a business started in the next year or two.

So far my plan is to see if I can get a job working for someone else part-time this coming summer, while keeping my full-time job. Basically see if I like it before I make any big investment in equipment or schooling. Does this sound like a decent plan? Any suggestions?
Reply With Quote

Stop guess-timating. Learn how to estimate and make money! $$$
Mow Time Estimator Lawn Care Price Estimator Mulch and Topsoil Calculator Snow Plow Estimate Calculator


  #2  
Old 12-22-2010, 11:28 AM
Growing Green Growing Green is offline
new member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Texas
Posts: 323
Rep Power: 0
Growing Green is on a distinguished road
Default

Lawn care business tipsLawn Care Business Book
Hi Desperado,
Seems like you are going at it the right way. I don't know about the record, but I can encourage you to take this chance. I don't have a trailer myself. I just started 2 weeks ago and I have push mowers, trimmer and blower that I got off of Craigslist all used. I just load them and unload them from my truck. I currently keep them in my garage, but I'm sure you can get a storage area or maybe a friend who may let you store them at their house.

The investment is very minimal, but if you are unsure if you would like this then you might want to work for someone else. Although, part of the joy of helping me do this is the knowledge of knowing that I own my own business.

I'm sure the old-timers here will have much more and better advice for you. Glad you joined the forum.

Matt
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 12-22-2010, 06:00 PM
Desperado72 Desperado72 is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 4
Rep Power: 4
Desperado72 is on a distinguished road
Default

Thanks Matt for the encouragement. Great website BTW.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 12-23-2010, 11:15 AM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is online now
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 36,199
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

Welcome to our forum!

Quote:
So my question is, will having a felony conviction be an issue for me in lawn care as far as obtaining licensing, insurance, etc?
I can't imagine that ever coming up.

Quote:
I'm guessing I would either have to buy an enclosed trailer and park it on the street or get an open trailer and rent a storage unit someplace. That's a pretty big expense considering I'm not even sure if I would like the work. Eventually I would probably buy a house with a garage, but that's a little ways off. Anybody else in this situation?
HOA's are notoriously picky when it comes to anyone doing anything out of the norm. I have a feeling if you park any commercial vehicles on your property or in front of it, someone is bound to complain. So if you go that route, make sure you have a 'plan b' just in case.

You may find it is best to get a storage unit. Or maybe you have a friend in the area that has a house and some property where you can store your equipment?

Something you could consider doing is offer some gardening services to your HOA for free. Maybe at the entrance of the area? Look for ways to get involved and experiment.

Maybe get a push mower and see if you can line up any family or friends as your first customers. As you scale up, see how you feel about being in the lawn care business.

Keep us posted on how it all goes.
__________________
- 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.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 12-23-2010, 02:26 PM
Desperado72 Desperado72 is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 4
Rep Power: 4
Desperado72 is on a distinguished road
Default

Thanks Steve. I guess I should find out who handles licensing etc. for the state or talk to an attorney and see what they say about my having a record. As for the HOA, the street I have in mind is outside their jurisdiction. Good idea about offering to help in my neighborhood though.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 12-23-2010, 04:15 PM
picframer's Avatar
picframer picframer is offline
Andy
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Halifax, Nova Scotia
Posts: 2,885
Rep Power: 9
picframer will become famous soon enough
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve View Post
Welcome to our forum!



I can't imagine that ever coming up.


Depending on his insurance company it will and at least here it will on Commercial work, if I do work for the city or any government agency, I have to maintain background checks on everyone.
__________________
Andy
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 12-23-2010, 06:51 PM
Desperado72 Desperado72 is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 4
Rep Power: 4
Desperado72 is on a distinguished road
Default

Thanks for the input guys. Who is the best person to ask about qualifying for insurance, licensing, etc. given my situation? An attorney? Someone with the state? I don't want to get involved in this if I'm just going to hit a brick wall down the road due to my background.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 12-24-2010, 01:21 PM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is online now
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 36,199
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

Each state handles this differently. So does each community.

Your area may or may not require you to be licensed to simply mow lawns. I would do a search on your state's web site for professional licenses and see what is listed. Do this at your township's website too.

As far as insurance goes, can you call around and get a few quotes for liability insurance and ask them if the criminal background issue will effect things?

Keep us posted on this too because I am sure there are many readers who are in the same situation but haven't brought this up.
__________________
- 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.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
another career shift... engleman Introduce Yourself 8 04-06-2010 09:45 AM
What Was I Thinking? swampfox Introduce Yourself 3 08-22-2009 09:46 AM
thinking of a new rig.. wdcutter General Talk 8 07-30-2009 10:51 PM
Is 'Kramer's acting career over? Steve General Talk 0 11-28-2006 01:46 AM

» Recent Threads
  RatingTitle, Username, & Date Last Post Replies Views
Building credit
Matther777
Yesterday 05:20 PM
Today 02:46 PM
by Steve
2 60
Spreading Weeds?
WesleySnips
Yesterday 09:46 PM
Today 02:09 PM
by Steve
2 50
Have you ever had to...
SouthernRootsLawnCare
07-26-2014 02:41 PM
Today 01:36 PM
by Steve
2 87
From Concord NC
SouthernRootsLawnCare
07-26-2014 02:34 PM
Today 01:30 PM
by Steve
1 42
New from Texas
Livingston Lawn Care
07-25-2014 11:17 AM
Today 01:29 PM
by Steve
3 114
Echo Edger 'Neutral'
WesleySnips
07-25-2014 05:28 PM
Today 01:22 PM
by Steve
2 95
Single tree, mow customer
WesleySnips
06-27-2014 10:12 AM
Today 01:21 PM
by Steve
14 613
Left handed edging with...
SGL1
07-23-2014 08:59 PM
Today 07:39 AM
by SGL1
15 309
Echo PE 266 edger
stevef1201
07-01-2014 01:28 PM
Yesterday 10:14 PM
by WesleySnips
5 335
These are the days on...
ExtremeLawncareServices
03-22-2014 09:12 AM
Yesterday 01:21 PM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
80 4,622
Texas lawn care company...
Livingston Lawn Care
07-25-2014 11:29 AM
Yesterday 08:16 AM
by Just for Cuts
7 182
need some help geting...
dalvan0
07-13-2014 09:28 PM
07-26-2014 04:39 PM
by BLC7
7 321
new trailer help
mattthelawnguy
07-11-2014 08:21 PM
07-25-2014 06:31 PM
by mattthelawnguy
13 487
You know it;s gonna be a...
stevef1201
07-25-2014 08:50 AM
07-25-2014 01:34 PM
by Steve
1 95
Customer letters
kslawn
07-23-2014 06:17 AM
07-25-2014 01:20 PM
by Steve
5 206
Got my first lawn job...
SGL1
06-11-2014 09:19 PM
07-24-2014 07:09 PM
by SGL1
29 1,258
Need help determining...
Jbss861
07-20-2014 02:33 PM
07-24-2014 01:11 PM
by Steve
13 382
Should I ?
googus
07-22-2014 04:06 PM
07-24-2014 12:10 PM
by Steve
4 217
My First Apartment...
SSLCtn
05-26-2014 10:17 PM
07-24-2014 06:46 AM
by kslawn
15 914
Crop Rotation Techniques...
eastsidelandcare
07-17-2014 03:47 PM
07-24-2014 06:38 AM
by kslawn
3 220
Selling lawns like...
eastsidelandcare
07-17-2014 03:51 PM
07-24-2014 06:28 AM
by kslawn
3 275
Scag new "Eliminator"......
ExtremeLawncareServices
07-20-2014 10:45 AM
07-23-2014 05:37 PM
by Just for Cuts
9 308
need professional advice...
Fiddlers_green
07-20-2014 07:21 PM
07-23-2014 12:42 PM
by Steve
3 212
new to me box truck
jrayb39667
03-06-2014 10:20 PM
07-23-2014 12:40 PM
by Steve
15 1,408
Lawn Service back in...
LawnCareMan280
07-18-2014 09:00 PM
07-23-2014 11:48 AM
by Steve
4 248
Overspray?
stevef1201
07-21-2014 04:20 PM
07-23-2014 11:39 AM
by Steve
3 156
Hello Everyone! Newbie...
SLKlawn
07-17-2014 06:22 PM
07-22-2014 01:53 PM
by Steve
6 294
Proper height for lawn
rob lederhilger
05-26-2014 08:01 AM
07-21-2014 02:53 PM
by LawnDoctor
9 673
Blade sharpener
Just for Cuts
07-04-2014 12:31 PM
07-21-2014 01:48 PM
by Steve
9 516
What's my business worth?
Chaz
07-16-2014 01:35 PM
07-21-2014 01:45 PM
by Steve
4 299
1.5 Acre Jungle
WesleySnips
07-15-2014 05:57 PM
07-20-2014 11:31 AM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
21 613
Gopher schedule software
Ray
07-18-2014 04:13 PM
07-18-2014 04:13 PM
by Ray
0 196
2006 Chevy fuel pump...
KevinsLawns
07-17-2014 08:39 PM
07-18-2014 11:51 AM
by Steve
1 190
Halfway point of year!
Steve
07-01-2014 12:08 PM
07-18-2014 11:38 AM
by Steve
14 748
I got told to leave and...
gwilson98
06-16-2014 02:07 PM
07-17-2014 11:43 AM
by Steve
16 1,067
Hey guys this is the...
prmenter@gmail.com
07-07-2014 08:23 PM
07-16-2014 08:10 PM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
28 791
Mowing the hills
prmenter@gmail.com
07-08-2014 12:22 PM
07-16-2014 05:00 PM
by Just for Cuts
18 719
Say Hello !!!
Steve
03-19-2007 11:18 AM
07-15-2014 05:38 PM
by icon2000
1,184 320,647
Classified Ad Template...
bcfb
06-05-2013 02:40 AM
07-15-2014 11:16 AM
by Steve
15 3,739
Husqvarna pz 60
CDLAWNCARE
07-06-2014 06:50 PM
07-15-2014 08:53 AM
by kslawn
10 466
Lowballers
Chaz
07-11-2014 03:55 PM
07-14-2014 12:27 PM
by Steve
5 381
My new side job
Sprinkler Buddy
05-10-2014 05:23 AM
07-14-2014 12:15 PM
by Steve
10 838
Illegal spraying
GoGreenerKS
07-04-2014 09:11 AM
07-13-2014 10:36 PM
by GoGreenerKS
10 577
New Mower and Trailer
Chaz
06-25-2014 12:04 PM
07-13-2014 06:25 PM
by SGL1
7 590
What Fertilizer to Use?
acrajchel
04-07-2014 01:56 PM
07-12-2014 07:36 PM
by SGL1
21 1,909
Fuel and fuel additives
SGL1
07-06-2014 10:23 AM
07-11-2014 07:53 PM
by SGL1
15 574
Questions for a patchy...
jumcgee
07-09-2014 08:42 AM
07-11-2014 12:34 PM
by Steve
1 235
toro proline blades wont...
boog
06-25-2014 06:26 PM
07-11-2014 05:28 AM
by kslawn
18 679
Contents of Marketing to...
prmenter@gmail.com
07-09-2014 05:25 PM
07-10-2014 03:23 PM
by Steve
3 328
Shindaiwa
CLB454
05-13-2014 09:04 PM
07-10-2014 03:04 PM
by Steve
14 813
» Popular Tags
2wd 4x4 ads birdscaping care charge collections subcontractor commercial craigslist customers ecosymbiosis employee problems exmark fall ferris four wheel drive franchise gopherhaul grass gravely holiday honda how much to charge how to bid hydraulic installation invoice kawasaki labor cost late lawn lawn care business seo lawn care business show lawn care business website lawn care business website seo lawn care website lawn service leaf cleanup lesco marketing mowing mulch estimate native plants new buisness office management online classifieds podcast promotion rotating scag scag v-ride season seo sprayer starting a business steep lawns stihl sulky theft of services tips toro tractor auger trailer mate pro truck new used landscape upsell walk behind walker winter money making ideas won't return wright stander rh
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.1.0

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:26 PM.


(C) 2011 Riggs Publications - Terms of use & Privacy Policy

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:26 PM.

(C) 2011 Riggs Publications - Terms of use & Privacy Policy