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? > Introduce Yourself

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!

Hey.......


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!
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
  #1  
Old 10-10-2011, 11:48 AM
rmccutchan rmccutchan is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 32
Rep Power: 4
rmccutchan is on a distinguished road
Default Hey.......

...from Indiana.

I have thought of doing a lawn care business for a LOT of years, and in an effort to put my son through college, we decided to start a basic lawn care business next spring. If all goes well, we can ramp up the services to chemical applications, etc.... , and continue until retirement or ?????

Hopefully I can glean some information from this site, and at the same time, contribute something back. I have a lot of years in maintaining equipment, so I may have a little insight into that aspect.

Right now, all I have is an old White lawn tractor that may, or may not, run (needs carb rebuilt, etc....) and a Yard Machines push mower. Plans are to acquire a used commercial mower over the winter, probably a walk behind.

I always appreciate advice and and happy to give it back.

Bob
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 10-10-2011, 05:18 PM
Ryan's Lawn Care Ryan's Lawn Care is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Maryland
Posts: 39
Rep Power: 4
Ryan's Lawn Care is on a distinguished road
Default

Lawn care business tipsLawn Care Business Book
hunt around on craigslist for equipment and as your things brake try to upgrade to commercial equipment that what i have been doing for a while. Be firm on your prices and don't let people screw with you. I don't feel like you will have this problem though I believe I did mainly because I started my lawn service when i was so young I guess people thought a kid shouldn't have been making as much as I was.


And a walk behind is a great idea i got one about a month ago and have cut my time down so much!!
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 10-10-2011, 07:19 PM
rmccutchan rmccutchan is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 32
Rep Power: 4
rmccutchan is on a distinguished road
Default

Thanks!

Here is my first contribution to the forum:

You are absolutely correct on pricing. I tried to start another kind of business several years ago tried to "give people breaks" on prices to try to get my name out. That is ABSOLUTELY the wrong approach. When I tried to bring prices up, people did a back flip. They heard I was cheap and that is why they called me. So, then I was stuck in a price range and could not gain income

My plan is to set a minimum, something like $xx / 1,000 sq. ft. or per 1/4 acre, or whatever, and add to that price if the property is difficult, ie: lots of trees or hills, etc......, and then stick to the price and walk away if the potential customer wants to pay less. Maybe offer a coupon or 1 free cutting for signing a contract.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 10-11-2011, 06:06 PM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is online now
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 36,850
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

Welcome to our forum!

What kind of business were you previously involved with?

If you could do it over, would you do anything else different with it?
__________________
- 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 10-12-2011, 07:46 AM
rmccutchan rmccutchan is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 32
Rep Power: 4
rmccutchan is on a distinguished road
Default

Hi Steve

I had a photography business, but business principals apply to EVERY business.

What I would do different:

1. Set prices, and STICK TO THEM! I was doing work for small prices to try to get my name out. Big mistake. You can't raise your prices later. Maybe give a small discount after a certain amount of time, but generally keep to your price structure.

2. Don't throw good money after bad. I tried to do ALL of my own printing. I should have let a printing company do the printing while I was out drumming up more business.

3. Manage my time better and don't spend time on needless work. If the camera shutter (or mower blades) are not moving, no money is being made. Maybe let a professional do your books or whatever so you can be out working.

4. Business is: %80 business and %20 product

5. Listen to others who have been there before you!! Don't try to re-invent the wheel. Don't think "I will do it this way and show those people they don't know what they are talking about". It NEVER works that way. People generally love to give advice.......listen to them.

I am no expert, but these are some of the bruises I got my first time around.

Hope it helps!
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 10-12-2011, 05:23 PM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is online now
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 36,850
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

Quote:
4. Business is: %80 business and %20 product
Very interesting. Can you tell me more what you mean by this and how it could apply to lawn care?
__________________
- 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
  #7  
Old 10-13-2011, 02:12 PM
rmccutchan rmccutchan is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 32
Rep Power: 4
rmccutchan is on a distinguished road
Default

Hi Steve

From what I can gather, it is all about management. Management of time, money, and resources.

So, a person can do an excellent job at yard care, or anything for that matter:

Marketing/Sales: So........how do you get the phone to ring? Each year, a plan needs to be made on how to get the word out to potential customers, etc. Then, how are you going to pay for the advertising and marketing? A plan needs to be made on how much to spend on marketing. Meanwhile, some research needs to be done to find out what the market is like in your area and what are customers looking for. Some companies hire people to do nothing but sell their products or services.

Time management: The phone is starting to ring and you are signing contracts. Now, you need to figure out how to manage time in such a way that you can efficiently do the work without backtracking and wasting time driving to jobs. Maybe you have a few employees. You need to manage their time, hire and fire as necessary.

Also, someone needs to field the phone calls when they come in. This can be a full time job for if you are busy.

A lot of small business owners tell me that they spend a LOT of time trying to get money from customers. I just spoke to someone who had to travel 4 hours to pick up a big check from a university ($38,000) ..........and it was 3 months over due!! In 3 months, he probably spent 50-75 hours trying to get his money. That's 50-75 hours he could have spent drumming up new business.


Record Keeping: So you have the work and you are getting busy. Are you keeping records daily? Do you know what things you are doing that are costing too much money, and what things are making you money? Are you keeping mileage logs and logging your expenses for tax time? By the way......did you spend much time researching you contract to make sure it is solid? Do you have employees? You need to make sure all their taxes and insurance stuff is taken care of.


Money management This one could go on for a while. Once the money starts coming in, what do you do with it? How much do you save, how much do you re-invest in the business, how much do you pay yourself, etc.... It has to be budgeted so that you have money for repairs and new equipment when the need arises. Do you do your own repairs or hire a shop to do them for you? (this falls under time management also) Do you sharpen your own blades, or do you have Herb's Sharpening Shop (a real business where I live) do the work for you. Do you invest in the new mower or keep fixing the one you have. (a budget study needs to be done on that one)

Do you put down chemicals? There are a lot of regulations and paperwork for that type of work.

Notice I haven't said ANYTHING yet about cutting grass or removing snow.

The point is, this stuff all takes a lot of time and effort and a sharp pencil. If you go out and mow grass for a day, how much time and effort does it take to manage that day? Is the day over when you park the truck in the barn at night?

These are just a few of the high points that I did not listen to when I started my first business. The list could go on for a while.

Thanks for listening.

Bob
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 10-14-2011, 06:33 PM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is online now
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 36,850
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

Quote:
A lot of small business owners tell me that they spend a LOT of time trying to get money from customers. I just spoke to someone who had to travel 4 hours to pick up a big check from a university ($38,000) ..........and it was 3 months over due!! In 3 months, he probably spent 50-75 hours trying to get his money. That's 50-75 hours he could have spent drumming up new business.
This is an issue that seems to effect a lot of small business owners. Do you feel there is anything that can be done to improve upon this? Or is it always going to be a crap shoot to find whether or not the customer is going to pay on time, after the fact?
__________________
- 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
  #9  
Old 10-15-2011, 03:59 PM
rmccutchan rmccutchan is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 32
Rep Power: 4
rmccutchan is on a distinguished road
Default

Well, it seems to be a crap shoot. Crap is the appropriate term I hope somebody has some insight to this one because I hate chasing money.

When I photographed weddings, the bill had to be paid before the wedding, which is pretty standard for that business. Not all businesses can operate that way, though.

In construction, often times companies required 10% down, and so much as the job progressed. I suppose one could require payment or at least a partial payment, before the work started. Then, you just don't show up until some type of payment is made first. I don't know how this industry works yet, but that could be an option.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 10-15-2011, 07:38 PM
Charles P Charles P is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 9
Rep Power: 4
Charles P is on a distinguished road
Default New lawn business

The best way is to buy used equipment to start, this lowers your over head. Post your business on bulletin boards in locations such as the post office, hardware stores, senior services etc. If you need graphic services for your bulletin board AD I will help you at no charge. When I was in the landscaping business, I would fertilize the lawns at no charge. The reason I did this was it insured a healthy lawn and also helped it grow. Your customers will want you to take charge of their lawn care, they will want your advice on how often it needs cut, how often to water etc. So study your customers lawns, know their needs and they will never leave you.
My email is: www.charlesp@therazorblade.com
Charles P.



Quote:
Originally Posted by rmccutchan View Post
...from Indiana.

I have thought of doing a lawn care business for a LOT of years, and in an effort to put my son through college, we decided to start a basic lawn care business next spring. If all goes well, we can ramp up the services to chemical applications, etc.... , and continue until retirement or ?????

Hopefully I can glean some information from this site, and at the same time, contribute something back. I have a lot of years in maintaining equipment, so I may have a little insight into that aspect.

Right now, all I have is an old White lawn tractor that may, or may not, run (needs carb rebuilt, etc....) and a Yard Machines push mower. Plans are to acquire a used commercial mower over the winter, probably a walk behind.

I always appreciate advice and and happy to give it back.

Bob
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

» Recent Threads
  RatingTitle, Username, & Date Last Post Replies Views
FREE Custom Website...
breadcrumb
Yesterday 10:58 PM
Yesterday 10:58 PM
by breadcrumb
0 12
FREE Custom Website...
breadcrumb
Yesterday 10:55 PM
Yesterday 10:55 PM
by breadcrumb
0 7
Greetings from above! (...
Hard-Body lawn & garden
Yesterday 05:29 PM
Yesterday 05:29 PM
by Hard-Body lawn & garden
0 30
Fencing help
Knaubone
Yesterday 02:36 PM
Yesterday 02:36 PM
by Knaubone
0 30
Just Quit?
ringahding1
01-30-2015 06:23 AM
Yesterday 08:50 AM
by rmccutchan
9 211
Landscapers from hell!!
Chilehead
01-29-2015 03:55 PM
Yesterday 08:17 AM
by jrs.landscaping
4 155
French gardener owner's...
didgreen
01-30-2015 09:10 AM
Yesterday 02:25 AM
by didgreen
3 109
Thanks for all the posts
WheatGrass
01-30-2015 06:38 AM
Yesterday 01:29 AM
by WheatGrass
2 101
hows it going.
uppercut
01-30-2015 05:01 AM
01-30-2015 11:16 PM
by uppercut
3 109
viking cyclon.
uppercut
01-29-2015 09:12 PM
01-30-2015 11:11 PM
by uppercut
2 92
These are the days on...
ExtremeLawncareServices
01-11-2015 11:41 AM
01-30-2015 10:26 PM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
15 892
adding something new...
veteranslawncaresystems
01-28-2015 12:13 AM
01-30-2015 09:15 PM
by veteranslawncaresystems
6 216
Crunch time 2015!
Chilehead
01-29-2015 08:57 PM
01-30-2015 07:51 PM
by Chilehead
2 113
Government contracts
avetslawncare
11-15-2014 08:50 AM
01-30-2015 07:46 PM
by Chilehead
11 922
Lost my @#$ blower
stevef1201
01-11-2015 08:31 AM
01-30-2015 04:47 PM
by Just for Cuts
3 488
whats this briggs?
uppercut
01-30-2015 12:40 AM
01-30-2015 02:49 PM
by Steve
1 74
Say Hello !!!
Steve
03-19-2007 12:18 PM
01-30-2015 02:36 PM
by Hard-Body lawn & garden
1,202 364,034
Lawn Mowing -...
ringahding1
01-30-2015 07:05 AM
01-30-2015 07:05 AM
by ringahding1
0 50
TaskEasy & Plowz & Mowz...
jrwalker333
01-25-2015 01:02 PM
01-29-2015 08:14 PM
by lxarth
8 300
Contact last years...
googus
01-28-2015 09:13 AM
01-29-2015 02:29 PM
by Steve
6 269
Looking for advice on...
berryjam
01-21-2015 07:37 PM
01-29-2015 02:21 PM
by Steve
15 521
New to the forum
LCRobert
01-26-2015 10:21 PM
01-29-2015 09:11 AM
by ringahding1
7 247
What happened to Better...
Steve
01-27-2014 04:07 PM
01-28-2015 12:26 PM
by Steve
21 3,244
Lawn care truck
Steve
10-10-2009 03:40 AM
01-28-2015 12:23 PM
by Steve
44 16,139
Bidding to get other work
Rodriguez11
07-21-2011 11:52 PM
01-28-2015 12:08 PM
by Steve
29 9,510
How many contracts...
5StarLawnscaping
01-12-2015 03:51 PM
01-28-2015 11:04 AM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
10 647
"Part Timers", "Low...
doug1980
06-10-2009 12:55 PM
01-27-2015 09:01 PM
by jrs.landscaping
43 10,419
Is anyone doing mosquito...
BWild
01-27-2015 12:30 PM
01-27-2015 07:24 PM
by avetslawncare
4 179
New to group
ron@alpine
01-27-2015 08:45 AM
01-27-2015 01:29 PM
by Steve
1 148
please Help with none...
Lawnboyman1170
01-09-2015 09:46 AM
01-27-2015 01:27 PM
by Steve
13 837
does this sound good or...
Bradcook21
01-22-2015 09:24 AM
01-27-2015 07:42 AM
by ringahding1
9 379
second year advise
cmdlawncare
01-23-2015 06:22 PM
01-27-2015 07:31 AM
by ringahding1
6 319
need advise
rawssrob
02-23-2010 02:45 PM
01-23-2015 06:40 PM
by cmdlawncare
7 2,661
New to forum
ROB N
01-23-2015 08:35 AM
01-23-2015 01:53 PM
by Steve
1 206
Extending the life of...
rmccutchan
01-17-2015 12:37 AM
01-23-2015 01:43 PM
by Steve
8 450
osceola lawn service
jasa@wildblue.net
01-22-2015 03:23 PM
01-23-2015 01:38 PM
by Steve
1 216
Tax Question
Wolf4dk
01-20-2015 01:11 AM
01-22-2015 02:28 PM
by Steve
4 361
Billy Goat Vac
Mr. Mow
01-19-2015 07:42 AM
01-22-2015 02:18 PM
by Steve
6 347
Property Pricing
GVL
01-19-2015 02:46 PM
01-21-2015 02:18 PM
by Steve
5 403
Landscapers Source For...
breadcrumb
01-16-2015 02:44 PM
01-21-2015 05:55 AM
by breadcrumb
14 576
Hoa advice
Bradcook21
01-16-2015 09:36 PM
01-20-2015 04:30 PM
by Steve
4 391
My Invention
biglee
01-11-2015 07:51 PM
01-20-2015 10:16 AM
by biglee
16 723
How to beat the pre pay...
stansg1fresh
01-13-2015 04:33 PM
01-19-2015 03:38 PM
by ringahding1
3 462
Hello from Md
homey
12-17-2014 06:55 PM
01-19-2015 01:37 PM
by Steve
12 1,279
Hi from Illinois
burtle
01-02-2015 09:46 PM
01-19-2015 01:22 PM
by Steve
3 626
Hello from SW FL!!
5StarLawnscaping
12-05-2014 02:35 PM
01-19-2015 01:20 PM
by Steve
14 1,577
Another Illinoisan.....
barhopper
01-11-2015 05:38 PM
01-16-2015 04:29 PM
by Steve
10 544
marketing with pizza...
apmAkron
01-15-2015 09:57 AM
01-15-2015 06:29 PM
by Steve
4 356
CRM and Quickbooks?
5StarLawnscaping
01-15-2015 08:06 AM
01-15-2015 08:06 AM
by 5StarLawnscaping
0 285
New Member, Indiana Iraq...
Timbo
07-14-2011 09:44 AM
01-14-2015 06:14 PM
by Steve
10 3,874
» Popular Tags
4wd 4x4 aerocore apartment bid apartment lawn care estimate applying auger billy goat brushcutter blades bush deliquentaccounts design ditches employee problems equipment rental estimate ferris flyers foreman four wheel drive google gopherhaul growing a lawn care business hiring husqvarna introduction jobs john deere quik trac landscape services lawn lawn care lawn care business lawn care business seo lawn care business show lawn care business website lawn care business website seo lawn care seo lawn care website lawn care website seo lawn mowing managing a lawn care business marketing mr dave mulch per hour service podcast pricing pto push versus ride reo running a business seo shell small engine repair snow plowing square foot starting a lawn care business steep lawns steve sulky theft toro toro grand stand trailer tree trimmer rack up sell employee walk behind web design website design
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.1.0

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:45 AM.


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

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:45 AM.

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