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: 5
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: 5
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 offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 37,569
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: 5
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: 10
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: 5
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 offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 37,569
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
SCAG Tiger Cat DECK...
rower30
08-24-2013 10:07 AM
Yesterday 02:51 PM
by Sunpointair
12 4,900
John Deere 667a
acrajchel
08-30-2015 10:00 AM
Yesterday 11:06 AM
by Steve
4 99
Your 2015 summer review.
Steve
Yesterday 11:01 AM
Yesterday 11:01 AM
by Steve
0 28
Dane Scag
Steve
08-28-2015 12:29 PM
08-28-2015 12:29 PM
by Steve
0 82
24 and 50 acre cemetery...
grassmasterswilson
08-18-2015 10:09 AM
08-26-2015 02:42 PM
by Steve
13 559
Rookie business question...
WarriorLandscapingCAN
08-05-2015 05:20 PM
08-26-2015 02:33 PM
by Steve
3 412
How to clean an old...
rmccutchan
08-16-2015 05:23 PM
08-26-2015 02:31 PM
by Steve
9 431
how to make customers...
Bradcook21
05-27-2015 05:04 PM
08-26-2015 12:25 PM
by kslawn
19 3,770
Needing a website built
burtle
06-17-2015 09:02 AM
08-25-2015 11:31 AM
by acrajchel
9 2,486
Big mowing job
Bradcook21
07-30-2015 03:57 PM
08-25-2015 11:23 AM
by acrajchel
17 1,004
ZTR Review
Shark1611
05-31-2012 10:42 PM
08-25-2015 11:16 AM
by acrajchel
8 3,776
Hi Everyone
mmays29
08-25-2015 08:16 AM
08-25-2015 11:15 AM
by Steve
3 130
Should I buy this Exmark...
googus
07-03-2015 09:22 AM
08-25-2015 11:08 AM
by acrajchel
11 1,206
Old Business New Owner
Toyman
06-17-2014 08:57 PM
08-25-2015 11:00 AM
by acrajchel
17 1,597
Hi everyone! We're new...
alltrades
08-22-2015 12:46 PM
08-24-2015 10:41 AM
by Steve
2 177
CAn I get some help with...
rootytalbot
08-11-2015 06:14 PM
08-24-2015 10:36 AM
by Steve
12 525
Hi
Wemowjunction
08-16-2015 08:45 PM
08-20-2015 01:46 PM
by Steve
11 423
Drive cable bad?
SGL1
08-10-2015 11:16 PM
08-20-2015 01:41 PM
by Steve
5 381
Hey there everyone
Cole8999
08-16-2015 04:42 PM
08-18-2015 04:35 PM
by Steve
3 263
Help with a truck
bdodson89
04-27-2015 08:15 PM
08-18-2015 11:47 AM
by rmccutchan
7 980
I need some aeration...
rootytalbot
08-14-2015 12:32 PM
08-18-2015 07:59 AM
by rootytalbot
7 404
Say Hello !!!
Steve
03-19-2007 11:18 AM
08-17-2015 04:34 PM
by Steve
1,229 406,187
Whats wrong with this...
GreenWorx
07-28-2015 07:56 PM
08-16-2015 11:42 PM
by rmccutchan
3 605
What's your next...
Steve
05-15-2015 11:54 AM
08-16-2015 11:09 PM
by SC93
16 1,259
These are the days on...
ExtremeLawncareServices
01-11-2015 10:41 AM
08-14-2015 11:08 PM
by scaypa
95 11,497
New Biz
kufnerins
08-14-2015 05:52 PM
08-14-2015 08:56 PM
by Steve
1 220
Chemical and Fertilizer...
rmccutchan
08-09-2015 10:36 PM
08-13-2015 11:11 PM
by rmccutchan
6 418
String trim BEFORE mow...
Mr. Mow
04-12-2015 08:13 AM
08-13-2015 02:10 PM
by rootytalbot
12 2,092
Hello all thinking about...
bernie
08-11-2015 04:28 PM
08-13-2015 10:33 AM
by Steve
8 380
Logo Help Font Color
LZLC
08-08-2015 09:26 PM
08-12-2015 03:50 PM
by Steve
4 358
Pricing issue
Mr. Mow
07-07-2015 06:15 AM
08-12-2015 12:30 AM
by Jeff1
20 1,829
My new mower
Chilehead
08-08-2015 09:09 PM
08-11-2015 08:36 PM
by Chilehead
9 532
Thought this was a good...
Just for Cuts
08-06-2015 03:38 PM
08-11-2015 10:54 AM
by Steve
8 526
Plowing pricing
jcurr33
08-08-2015 04:58 PM
08-11-2015 10:51 AM
by Steve
6 483
Should I upgrade my back...
googus
08-07-2015 10:50 AM
08-11-2015 10:44 AM
by googus
7 450
Keeping it clean....
Wolf4dk
08-09-2015 11:31 PM
08-11-2015 06:34 AM
by Chilehead
7 375
I have been rude and...
biglee
06-15-2015 10:11 PM
08-10-2015 09:41 PM
by stallman419
12 2,764
Newbie Saying Hi.
LZLC
08-08-2015 09:22 PM
08-10-2015 11:20 AM
by Steve
1 266
How much do I charge to...
Chris Herrera
08-06-2015 09:30 PM
08-09-2015 11:31 AM
by biglee
2 410
scag SWZT review!
mattthelawnguy
07-23-2015 02:28 PM
08-07-2015 03:26 PM
by Steve
17 1,153
Best commercial contract...
sanlanct
08-04-2015 12:18 PM
08-06-2015 06:20 AM
by sanlanct
2 404
I came across this on a...
rootytalbot
08-02-2015 11:04 AM
08-05-2015 08:17 PM
by SC93
9 639
Help bidding a hedge...
hopolb33
08-02-2015 06:09 PM
08-05-2015 02:07 PM
by Steve
3 442
recycler toro 22"
rvezakis
08-03-2015 12:10 PM
08-04-2015 11:47 AM
by Steve
1 323
» Popular Tags
ad landscaping advertising aerocore applying bark billy goat brushcutter blowout bob villa bush collections contract help curb appeal services deliquentaccounts demonstration design door hangers edging employee problems equipment dealer equipment rental facebook flyers free advertising free lawn care google growing a lawn care business hiring how to hydro increase customers jobs landscape landscaping landscaping training lawn aeration lawn mowing marketing marketing secrets more customers business mr dave mulch new business ordinance past due per hour charge per hour service plowing pricing profit on employee roundup scag secrets to landscaping sell the vision seo shell shreaded solo solo backpack sprayer sq ft square foot swzt tree tree pics up sell employee walk behind web design website website design winterization www.greenturion.co.za
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.1.0

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:47 AM.


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

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:47 AM.

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