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? > Show Off - Picture Post - Photo Gallery

Show Off - Picture Post - Photo Gallery Post your lawn care and landscaping pictures. Also show off your stuff: Lawn care trucks, trailers, equipment, mowers, signs, marketing material, shops, lawns, toys, projects etc....

What recession?


Show Off - Picture Post - Photo Gallery

Post your lawn care and landscaping pictures. Also show off your stuff: Lawn care trucks, trailers, equipment, mowers, signs, marketing material, shops, lawns, toys, projects etc....
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
  #11  
Old 07-15-2008, 07:42 AM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 37,807
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

WOW That is a great story!

Do you think that you are better prepared mentally to deal with running your own business than you would have been when you were younger. Has life experience made it any easier to run 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

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


  #12  
Old 07-15-2008, 06:51 PM
VPS Lawn Care
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default Ya,i Beleave so

Lawn care business tipsLawn Care Business Book
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve View Post
WOW That is a great story!

Do you think that you are better prepared mentally to deal with running your own business than you would have been when you were younger. Has life experience made it any easier to run it?
Yea, i am more able to run it now, i have more years under my belt. A prime example is in 1984 i started a LCO, as a side gig, as it went in the first month i had14 accts, all commercial, it seemed so much easier then to get the accts. I was 19 and making 2800 a month on these accts.(i also pressure washed the side walks once a month for the resturants) But thought i had to keep with the BIG CO. and use all that learning paid so much for. I had some good accts. The UAW hall, Perkins resturants (5) Pondarosa's (4) and a couple hotels in liss. by Disney, and at that age , when i felt i was stretched to thin, i just stopped doing them, did not go back , call or anything. That i would , could never do now, then young and dumb even with all that college.
Just wish it was as easy to get the accts. now as it was for me then. It has changed alot since the mid 80's

Last edited by VPS Lawn Care; 07-15-2008 at 06:54 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 07-16-2008, 08:13 AM
musician/lawnman musician/lawnman is offline
Chuck
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South West Florida
Posts: 919
Rep Power: 0
musician/lawnman is on a distinguished road
Default

Stick to it Sherman, You'll be fine dude.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 11-16-2008, 08:57 AM
musician/lawnman musician/lawnman is offline
Chuck
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South West Florida
Posts: 919
Rep Power: 0
musician/lawnman is on a distinguished road
Default

Just an update on this post...

So I ran all summer with a 3 man crew(2 employees + myself), at 1st it was a situation where 2 guys could no longer keep up, but 3 guys on the team basically ment we could get more done in the day but only little more than enough to cover the 3rd guys labor. As we worked I kept working on different stratagies & found a system that helped make us more efficient once at a clients home. Then I revamped my route again. Then we kept gaining new clients & each new customer within our service area ment the stops were now closer together. Drive time is the biggest killer of productivity & there more guys on the crew, the more it hurts. Cause 3 men can't get there any faster than 2. 10 min of driving with 2 guys is 20 labor, & 30 minutes with 3 in the truck.

As this season progressed we got to the point we were doing 28-30 properties a day. So towards the end of the summer we had gotten back to being a more profitable business machine. If your route is tight, a 3 man system works. If you're all over town, your better served alone until business gets better.

Going into next season I plan to set up a 2nd truck, I'll probably run 2 employees on 1 truck & go solo on the other, at least for a while, Then I'll add a helper on my crew as things progress. Ultimately the most profitable system seems to be 1 guy per truck, but unless you've got the capital to buy 2-3 full riggs as you expand it's not a practical business model.
Say for instance (to explain): one man can probable average around $40-45 average gross per hour. 2 guys can hit $70-75, while 3 were usually say $90- $100. So $100/hr is nice but it's with 3 guys? 2 trucks with 1 man each could collectively hit $80-90 per hour and save an entire guys labor. So either you invest in the equipment, or you invest in unessesary labor.... So I guess that's why most factories are so automated now.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 11-17-2008, 07:20 AM
Team Gopher's Avatar
Team Gopher Team Gopher is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 38
Rep Power: 10
Team Gopher has disabled reputation
Default

Chuck,

That is really very insightful.

Quote:
Say for instance (to explain): one man can probable average around $40-45 average gross per hour. 2 guys can hit $70-75, while 3 were usually say $90- $100. So $100/hr is nice but it's with 3 guys? 2 trucks with 1 man each could collectively hit $80-90 per hour and save an entire guys labor.
Do you have any estimates on the profit level for each of these categories? I bet a lot of readers are looking at this and thinking WOW with 3 guys I can hit $100 an hour, but that is not the real full story one should focus on. It's the profitability of it. What's your view?
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 11-17-2008, 07:14 PM
musician/lawnman musician/lawnman is offline
Chuck
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South West Florida
Posts: 919
Rep Power: 0
musician/lawnman is on a distinguished road
Default

Steve,

For one, yes 3 guys can run that much pe hour but I'll tell ya, seems to me it's gotta be the right 3 guys & on a relatively tight route. If you had a gated community, 2 guys (hussling) could do it too. But I've had a few employees come & go, & if you lolly gag... your probably not getting there.

I don't have any hard numbers on the profitability for you as my line up changed too much. What I mean is for most of the summer I ran 3 days with 3 guys & 2 days with 2 guys. 2 of my routes were a little lighter & more spaced out, so I decided I couldn't really justify the extra labor those 2 days.

The problem lies in that I lacked the business this year to buy another full truck & rig just yet, but a 2 man team couldn't keep up. I think the most profitable system is 1 guy per truck & here's why:
If you have say 2 guys on a truck & run 20 stops that day, for ease of math we'll say each stop takes 20 minutes start to finish, then 5 minutes travel bettween each stop. So during that day you have 6.6 hours per man = 13.2 hrs actually on the jobs making money & 1.6 hours per man = 3.2 hours wasted driving. A total of 16.4 hours labor to complete 20 stops.

2nd Scenario: 2 guys each with their own truck (trailer, mowers, etc.) running solo. Each guy does 10 lawns, only now it takes each one 40 minutes to complete alone, the travel time remains the same.
Each guy ends up at 6.6 hours of productivity = 13.2 hours total, and now each man spends .83 hours behind the wheeel of the truck for a combined total of 1.6 hours travel. A total of 14.8 hours to complete 20 stops.

You save 1.6 hours labor per day in this comparison. Then the question is, how many days doee it take for that to offset the costs of new equipment?

& other variables play in too, like running solo last summer I peaked out one day at 16 stops alone, the best I've done with 3 guys is 35 stops. Today I completed 25 stops with just 2 of us, and at that, I had a ded battery on 1 mower this morning (25 minutes lost per guy) & we did some trimming & pruning at one clients home. IF it had been light out longer we'd have finished my 31 stop cut list for mondays on schedule despite not having my 3rd man on the truck!

You gotta weigh out everything in this business, it's a business of minutes & seconds. You have to do a quality job, but 5 wasted mintes per stop can keep you from finishing a handfull of additional lawns per day. That hurts the pocket at the end of a week, month, year.

How's that for long-winded!?
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 11-19-2008, 10:39 AM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 37,807
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

When you add a second crew, will you need to duplicate the same equipment of can you have one crew for larger properties and one for smaller? Or what would be ideal? Also what is your plan for truck or trailer needs for the second crew?

Should all of this be interchangeable so each set of truck and equipment is the same?
__________________
- 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
  #18  
Old 11-19-2008, 05:34 PM
musician/lawnman musician/lawnman is offline
Chuck
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South West Florida
Posts: 919
Rep Power: 0
musician/lawnman is on a distinguished road
Default

As of right now my intention is to buy an older regular cab "work" truck to tow my current trailer & the main crew (all employees) will run that set up with my current mowers & gear. They will Ideally handle the lions share of the mowing, trimming & pruning.

I plan to remove the tailgate from my current truck, install a trailer style drop gate in it's place. I'll install trimmer racks to the wood sides to hold the trimmers, blowers etc. I will run this rigg with not trailer handling new estimates, landscape measurements, proposals, 1st time cuts, & pick up any slack from the main crew, all the while being free to roam & check up on them at any time. You can bet that if I'm not on the jobs personally there will be a high standard for quality control, & I'll visit properties shortly after my crews have been there & I'll follow the routes to find them & make sure they are where they're supposed to be.

I'll run solo again at 1st other than that any new employees will have to train with me for a few weeks before being put onthe other crew. Once things get too busy for the other crew & me alon to handle I'l hire on a helper for my truck.

I know the dangers of growing too fast & while I think I'm growing this a bit faster than the average company grows... I'm being careful & thinking each move through. Each time you grow as a company (new employees, equipment etc.) your profitability drops a bit at 1st. It's a natural occurance. Growing pains!
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 11-20-2008, 09:35 AM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 37,807
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

Quote:
I know the dangers of growing too fast & while I think I'm growing this a bit faster than the average company grows.
Chuck, you bring up a great point here too.

How does a lawn care business owner know when they are growing too fast? What are the warning signs they should look out for and what is the upside or downside to growing too fast?
__________________
- 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
  #20  
Old 11-20-2008, 10:46 AM
musician/lawnman musician/lawnman is offline
Chuck
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South West Florida
Posts: 919
Rep Power: 0
musician/lawnman is on a distinguished road
Default

Well in a podcast about a year ago while discussin this topic another forum member suggested 20% growth per year or less was relatively safe & beyond that he found it risky. Once a business is established this seems like a good guidline. All I can say is watch your numbers! As I said above your profitability drops a bit each time for a while. If you are dumping all your profits into new growth, equipment, man power etc. you can push yourself into the red pretty quickly. You've got to invest some $ back in the business then let the profit level gow to your new increased business capacity. Then repeat.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Tags
2 man crew, 3 man crew, employees, hiring

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
Are you concerned about a recession? Steve General Business Discussions 8 11-13-2007 09:07 AM

» Recent Threads
  RatingTitle, Username, & Date Last Post Replies Views
back surgery
Bradcook21
01-28-2016 08:51 PM
Yesterday 08:04 PM
by Chilehead
12 270
hello all
romanlandscape
01-29-2016 03:46 PM
Yesterday 10:20 AM
by Bradcook21
6 171
Finding open bids?!?
C&DPropertyManagement
Yesterday 01:48 AM
Yesterday 01:48 AM
by C&DPropertyManagement
0 42
Lawn Care Book Ranked #1
Steve
02-06-2016 12:36 AM
02-06-2016 12:36 AM
by Steve
0 61
Hi
Sellers Lawn Care
02-02-2016 01:48 PM
02-05-2016 08:03 AM
by Sellers Lawn Care
4 134
Collecting payments from...
Niagara Mowing
02-03-2016 05:21 PM
02-05-2016 08:00 AM
by Niagara Mowing
7 182
SMS assist? The good,...
jcurr33
01-27-2016 10:24 PM
02-04-2016 11:53 PM
by Steve
5 208
I need some help...
Anise
02-04-2016 01:39 PM
02-04-2016 11:51 PM
by Steve
3 101
Customers dodging the...
Rocky
11-06-2015 06:22 AM
02-04-2016 03:41 AM
by C&DPropertyManagement
7 1,462
Offering a "Trial"...
wybut076
02-01-2016 06:27 PM
02-03-2016 08:26 PM
by Just for Cuts
7 217
Iowa Caucus Predictions?
Steve
02-01-2016 06:31 PM
02-03-2016 12:40 AM
by Steve
1 86
Laying White River Rock
DiamondLawnCare
02-01-2016 08:27 PM
02-03-2016 12:17 AM
by Steve
1 102
Networking for a...
jcurr33
01-30-2016 09:26 PM
02-01-2016 06:27 PM
by Steve
4 171
Customer giving a 1099?
apmAkron
01-27-2016 07:22 PM
01-31-2016 08:55 PM
by Chilehead
6 231
happy to be here
redrobin
01-29-2016 10:45 AM
01-31-2016 08:44 PM
by Steve
1 124
Thought's on an "E-Z...
jcurr33
01-27-2016 10:48 PM
01-31-2016 08:38 PM
by Steve
4 199
Changes
Knaubone
01-30-2016 10:56 PM
01-31-2016 08:31 PM
by Steve
1 106
Thoughts on this Exmark...
googus
01-28-2016 04:24 PM
01-28-2016 08:09 PM
by Chilehead
1 131
1st year in
jcurr33
10-18-2015 05:07 PM
01-28-2016 07:49 PM
by Chilehead
6 4,121
Need opinion on zero...
Mr. Mow
01-24-2016 05:42 PM
01-28-2016 07:41 PM
by Chilehead
10 339
Opinion on liquid vs...
Bradcook21
01-25-2016 02:03 PM
01-28-2016 07:38 PM
by Chilehead
9 284
Finding property size
Gageslawncare
01-25-2016 11:08 AM
01-28-2016 12:05 PM
by Gageslawncare
10 289
Tiger TG 2661 Commercial...
lawnman1959
01-25-2016 08:12 PM
01-27-2016 07:57 PM
by Just for Cuts
5 224
Spouse as a dependent?
Steve
01-26-2016 01:51 AM
01-27-2016 10:44 AM
by Chilehead
3 185
Hello All
C&DPropertyManagement
01-23-2016 12:21 PM
01-26-2016 01:24 AM
by Steve
1 168
Credit Cards - What's in...
Shark1611
06-16-2015 04:04 PM
01-23-2016 03:43 PM
by C&DPropertyManagement
17 7,650
Start My Own Business?
mowandblow1980
01-12-2016 08:43 PM
01-19-2016 07:00 PM
by Steve
12 604
State of the nation 2016.
Steve
01-12-2016 12:05 AM
01-19-2016 06:57 PM
by Steve
6 361
little help? first big...
Brian3137
12-31-2015 12:39 PM
01-19-2016 06:54 PM
by Steve
23 1,044
Hi everybody...
Greg_TopYardServices
01-14-2016 08:10 AM
01-19-2016 02:47 PM
by SC93
12 432
What's your next...
Steve
05-15-2015 12:54 PM
01-17-2016 08:48 PM
by Homeland unlimited
25 7,894
Plow controller problems
scaypa
01-12-2016 05:49 PM
01-16-2016 10:46 AM
by scaypa
4 276
Say Hello !!!
Steve
03-19-2007 12:18 PM
01-15-2016 07:23 PM
by tannerduncan
1,244 427,967
Pricing issue
Mr. Mow
07-07-2015 07:15 AM
01-15-2016 11:20 AM
by djlandscaping06
23 5,384
New College Course
Dr. D
01-14-2016 01:45 PM
01-14-2016 05:35 PM
by Steve
1 202
Yelp
Shark1611
01-13-2016 10:00 AM
01-14-2016 05:32 PM
by Steve
4 257
New to the forum from...
Doug Green
01-12-2016 12:23 PM
01-14-2016 08:34 AM
by Doug Green
2 233
Facebook advertising
Just for Cuts
12-13-2015 08:49 AM
01-13-2016 10:20 PM
by Just for Cuts
12 902
Choosing local business
Doug Green
01-12-2016 12:29 PM
01-13-2016 06:12 PM
by Steve
2 394
4 Seasons Landscaping LLC
Doug Green
01-12-2016 12:56 PM
01-12-2016 12:59 PM
by Doug Green
1 252
2016 business goals
OxfordOS
01-09-2016 04:19 PM
01-12-2016 08:36 AM
by mowandblow1980
15 546
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.1.0

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:10 AM.


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

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:10 AM.

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