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 > Business > General Business Discussions

General Business Discussions A place to talk about general business discussions.

What were the biggest...


General Business Discussions

A place to talk about general business discussions.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
  #1  
Old 01-20-2009, 09:52 PM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is online now
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 36,386
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default What were the biggest...

What were the biggest mistakes you made starting out and what do you wish you could have done differently?
__________________
- 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


  #2  
Old 01-20-2009, 10:00 PM
justin_time justin_time is offline
Justin
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: French River, ON, Canada
Age: 28
Posts: 1,801
Rep Power: 0
justin_time is on a distinguished road
Default

Lawn care business tipsLawn Care Business Book
  • Buying a crappy trailer
  • Not getting a zero turn mower

It may not sound like much but my tractor would probably in better shape now if i would of had a better trailer (had to get a new cab since it bounced off and fell on the road)..

Also the fact that I use a tractor at the moment, maybe if I would of borrowed the money for a zero turn, maybe i would be probably debt free now and probably making money
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-21-2009, 11:28 AM
mruiz
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

The one I can come up with is the purchase of a Ram 1500 6 ft bed. For a lawn biz it was doing fine until my customers started asking for other services. Landscaping, Hardscape and etc...

Next purchase will be a small dump truck.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-22-2009, 01:06 AM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is online now
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 36,386
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

Quote:
Also the fact that I use a tractor at the moment, maybe if I would of borrowed the money for a zero turn, maybe i would be probably debt free now and probably making money
This is a very interesting point. So actually starting with slow or non commercial equipment can actually hold you back from making a profit faster? Then maybe if you make a profit faster you can scale up your business faster?
__________________
- 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 With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-22-2009, 06:12 PM
musician/lawnman's Avatar
musician/lawnman musician/lawnman is offline
Chuck
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South West Florida
Posts: 919
Rep Power: 7
musician/lawnman is on a distinguished road
Default

Common Steve ya had to know the answer to that question when you asked...

A commercial ZT easily doubles (if not more) the productivity of a residential grade tractor mower. It does a better job, faster with a lot less driver fatigue. I've found with every upgrade that made me faster, I ended up with blank space in my schedule at 1st. You have time on your hands so you get creative on the advertising & marketing instead of just working. Every time, I've found ways to fill the schedule in again. More work = more money. Then I upgrade again, more equipment, more employees etc. This spring should be more everything. Time for a 2nd crew! I could just a easilly still be a one man operation today running the residential tractor I had for my lawn prior to opening up the business. I'd be workin my butt off on like 20 accounts for a little money. Instead I went big & grew big (Still growing at around 120 accounts currently. The adage "takes money to make money" does to some extent apply here in this industry too.
Like for instance: you might be able to build & sell a nice wooden lawn chairs one at a time with some nails, a jigg saw, & some sand paper. But if you invest in some better tools (skill saw, table saw, nail gun, power sander etc.) you can make them nicer, faster, & more of them. Productivity up & you'd then find ways to sell the additional chairs rather than just word of mouth. You'd advertise, maybe get local shops to carry & sell them! As they got more popular.... demand for your wooden chairs might be more than you can handle, so you hire a helper & buy a whole other set of tools for him to use! Now your both going full ime making 10 chairs each everyday with a back order list weeks long.... But if you had never bought the right tools to make the product better & faster you'd never even know what you were missing out on. You'd be proud of your 1 or 2 chairs a week....

Sorry to go off on a tangent but I think it accuratly explains the consequenses of working with inferior gear.
__________________
AAA QUALITY CLEAN CUT, LLC.
LAWN CARE & LANDSCAPING
Visit us here:

  #6  
Old 01-22-2009, 08:30 PM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is online now
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 36,386
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

Quote:
Sorry to go off on a tangent but I think it accuratly explains the consequenses of working with inferior gear.
I very much appreciate your insight!

The thing I wonder is when you are starting, say if you had the equipment you had now, would the average lawn care business owner have the ability to make the equipment payments?

Also, should they invest in the better equipment when they don't have the infrastructure down to maximize it's potential. By that I mean, the advertising, the word of mouth, the customer base etc.
__________________
- 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 01-22-2009, 09:30 PM
justin_time justin_time is offline
Justin
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: French River, ON, Canada
Age: 28
Posts: 1,801
Rep Power: 0
justin_time is on a distinguished road
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by musician/lawnman View Post
Common Steve ya had to know the answer to that question when you asked...

A commercial ZT easily doubles (if not more) the productivity of a residential grade tractor mower. It does a better job, faster with a lot less driver fatigue. I've found with every upgrade that made me faster, I ended up with blank space in my schedule at 1st. You have time on your hands so you get creative on the advertising & marketing instead of just working. Every time, I've found ways to fill the schedule in again. More work = more money. Then I upgrade again, more equipment, more employees etc. This spring should be more everything. Time for a 2nd crew! I could just a easilly still be a one man operation today running the residential tractor I had for my lawn prior to opening up the business. I'd be workin my butt off on like 20 accounts for a little money. Instead I went big & grew big (Still growing at around 120 accounts currently. The adage "takes money to make money" does to some extent apply here in this industry too.
Like for instance: you might be able to build & sell a nice wooden lawn chairs one at a time with some nails, a jigg saw, & some sand paper. But if you invest in some better tools (skill saw, table saw, nail gun, power sander etc.) you can make them nicer, faster, & more of them. Productivity up & you'd then find ways to sell the additional chairs rather than just word of mouth. You'd advertise, maybe get local shops to carry & sell them! As they got more popular.... demand for your wooden chairs might be more than you can handle, so you hire a helper & buy a whole other set of tools for him to use! Now your both going full ime making 10 chairs each everyday with a back order list weeks long.... But if you had never bought the right tools to make the product better & faster you'd never even know what you were missing out on. You'd be proud of your 1 or 2 chairs a week....

Sorry to go off on a tangent but I think it accuratly explains the consequenses of working with inferior gear.
This is why I am looking to get a ZTR as fast as I can, but before that, I need to afford a truck that can pull my trailer so I can pull that ZTR.. Like Chuck said, it takes money to spend money but my equipment is gonna have to be upgraded sometime in the near future
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01-22-2009, 10:11 PM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is online now
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 36,386
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

Quote:
This is why I am looking to get a ZTR as fast as I can, but before that, I need to afford a truck that can pull my trailer so I can pull that ZTR..
This is very interesting because here we are talking about infrastructure. A lot of things need to be put into place before we can scale up in any direction. In this case, you need a bigger truck to pull a bigger mower. Very fascinating!
__________________
- 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 01-22-2009, 10:20 PM
justin_time justin_time is offline
Justin
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: French River, ON, Canada
Age: 28
Posts: 1,801
Rep Power: 0
justin_time is on a distinguished road
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve View Post
This is very interesting because here we are talking about infrastructure. A lot of things need to be put into place before we can scale up in any direction. In this case, you need a bigger truck to pull a bigger mower. Very fascinating!
Well since I bought a bigger trailer, it means more weight compared to my other one, more weight as in carrying stuff, pulling equipment, carrying tools, weight all adds up.

Here's a picture of the truck I currently have, it is not 4x4, so I cannot put a plow on it and it ain't big enough.

Reply With Quote
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 01-23-2009, 10:24 AM
musician/lawnman's Avatar
musician/lawnman musician/lawnman is offline
Chuck
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South West Florida
Posts: 919
Rep Power: 7
musician/lawnman is on a distinguished road
Default

Yes I understand the delema, Some may not have the financial means to do so right away & hey everyones gotta start somewhere right? But to build your business quickly it takes a little financial risk & investment. Ya know if I have to bet my hard earned money on something, betting on myself & my performance is a good bet for me anyday! So yeah I extended some money on the bet I could make the business fly, if it failed it would have been my fault & my fault alone so it was a safe bet for me. My familys welfare was on the line, I don't fail under pressure. I
In fact I've found in my carreer history I've alway enjoyed a new job, even more if it's in a new field I knew nothng about. I enjoy the challenge & take pride in climbing to the top of that field. Once I get there, & I was the best whatever, It takes me about 6 months to get bored & want to quit he job. This started as a kid working fast food... I got raises & whatnot & they wanted to make me a manager but Iwasn't even 18 so I couldn't... I got bored. I worked at Stanley Steemer, once I got crew cheif, the next step up was branch manager (wasn't happening at 19 yrs old) I got bored. I've sold vehicles, I been a service writer, ran independent auto shops, Managed & sold construction projects, & sold insurance..... This is different. I can just keep raising the bar!

Justin,
I was pulling a 6x12 enclosed trailer with a 52 in zt & all the other gear in it, then at times with 500-600 lbs of brush in the back of the truck to boot. I was running a for ranger (edge). You dakota should be able to handle an open trailer with a zt. What engine are you running in the truck? I only had a 3.0L v6.
__________________
AAA QUALITY CLEAN CUT, LLC.
LAWN CARE & LANDSCAPING
Visit us here:

Reply

Bookmarks

Tags
biggest mistakes, lawn care business, phone book ad, start up

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
Biggest business mistake? Steve General Business Discussions 0 10-21-2008 10:03 PM
Biggest douche of a customer ever... UniversityLandscapers General Talk 5 07-04-2008 12:02 AM
Biggest Job Ever miltthemower Online Lawn Care Estimator - Help me bid this job 7 11-21-2007 02:03 PM
Biggest motivator? Steve General Business Discussions 0 12-07-2006 11:40 AM
the biggest landscape company you know? Quick Cutz General Business Discussions 4 06-16-2003 11:37 PM

» Recent Threads
  RatingTitle, Username, & Date Last Post Replies Views
Trying something new,...
ExtremeLawncareServices
Yesterday 09:07 PM
Today 11:46 AM
by Matther777
1 110
30 Inch Push Mowers Pros...
Billy Goat
06-27-2013 08:07 PM
Today 09:04 AM
by CLB454
23 6,337
Kohler command carb...
ExtremeLawncareServices
Yesterday 03:09 PM
Today 04:15 AM
by stevef1201
3 151
Not sure, but anyone do...
SnowRemoval2k14
Today 12:10 AM
Today 12:10 AM
by SnowRemoval2k14
0 92
2014 Gie-expo
ExtremeLawncareServices
08-19-2014 11:22 PM
Yesterday 09:23 PM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
3 915
Tribulations of working...
stevef1201
09-13-2014 08:37 AM
Yesterday 10:10 AM
by stevef1201
8 582
Mulching beds
Bradcook21
Yesterday 07:43 AM
Yesterday 10:03 AM
by stevef1201
2 178
This sucks...
Matther777
09-18-2014 04:56 PM
09-20-2014 07:19 PM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
9 489
These are the days on...
ExtremeLawncareServices
03-22-2014 09:12 AM
09-20-2014 05:39 PM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
120 8,433
Replacing a Shindi T-27
Dan Tanner
09-13-2014 12:59 PM
09-20-2014 03:16 PM
by kslawn
2 588
Scag turf tiger hydrolic...
ExtremeLawncareServices
09-04-2014 10:55 PM
09-19-2014 05:59 PM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
11 943
Mowing 7 acres
avetslawncare
08-31-2014 04:24 PM
09-19-2014 03:29 PM
by acrajchel
6 1,119
snowplowing
jshak40
09-01-2014 07:20 AM
09-19-2014 11:49 AM
by Steve
23 1,513
Looking for feed back on...
ExtremeLawncareServices
09-17-2014 08:38 AM
09-19-2014 08:17 AM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
9 529
Lowballers scrubs &...
Darksteel
01-13-2014 07:35 AM
09-18-2014 06:32 PM
by Northwoods Outdoors
58 6,920
Hello from upstate NY!
A&MLawn&Snow
09-18-2014 11:19 AM
09-18-2014 04:10 PM
by Sprinkler Buddy
2 377
Price to apply fertilizer
SS.Lawncare
09-15-2014 11:10 AM
09-18-2014 01:16 PM
by Steve
9 636
Trailer tires
J.A.S.LawnService
09-01-2014 10:17 AM
09-17-2014 09:57 PM
by curts lawn care
4 1,032
new to the forum
SGlawncare
09-16-2014 11:20 PM
09-17-2014 08:29 PM
by curts lawn care
3 453
Help With Snow Blowing...
Robertf31
09-13-2014 10:55 PM
09-17-2014 12:34 PM
by Steve
11 801
Non-Stop Summer?
SouthallMowing
09-14-2014 10:51 PM
09-17-2014 10:48 AM
by stevef1201
6 585
Poll - net income
Dan5082
11-15-2010 08:08 PM
09-16-2014 04:44 PM
by jrs.landscaping
12 3,319
Getting lowballed!
PineHillLawn
06-27-2012 07:23 AM
09-16-2014 01:25 PM
by jrs.landscaping
24 5,025
Compare this summer to...
Steve
09-03-2014 12:52 PM
09-16-2014 11:20 AM
by Hanks Lawn Care Services
15 1,234
thinking about throwing...
veteranslawncaresystems
09-09-2014 10:31 PM
09-15-2014 03:41 PM
by Steve
12 912
Hello
Robertf31
09-12-2014 10:34 PM
09-15-2014 03:17 PM
by Steve
2 497
Newbie......Again
Jibber
09-13-2014 12:17 PM
09-15-2014 02:54 PM
by Sprinkler Buddy
2 598
need help with starter...
GoGreenerKS
09-12-2014 04:23 PM
09-15-2014 02:25 PM
by Steve
3 518
Brake job!
kslawn
08-30-2014 07:49 AM
09-15-2014 02:16 PM
by Steve
12 1,230
Hello
jawnebgoode
08-28-2014 08:37 PM
09-15-2014 02:15 PM
by Steve
3 1,001
Employee uniforms
Gerardo_Landscape
01-21-2014 11:11 PM
09-15-2014 02:12 PM
by Steve
5 1,121
Greetings from the north
Northwoods Outdoors
09-13-2014 08:55 AM
09-15-2014 02:07 PM
by Steve
1 484
darleneh
darleneh
09-15-2014 12:33 PM
09-15-2014 02:07 PM
by Sprinkler Buddy
1 495
My 1st bid
WesleySnips
06-11-2014 03:13 PM
09-15-2014 02:05 PM
by Steve
29 1,908
New Aerator
Chaz
09-09-2014 11:43 PM
09-15-2014 01:50 PM
by Steve
9 742
Yearly contract Pricing
jrob0691
08-21-2014 08:57 AM
09-15-2014 01:23 PM
by stevef1201
8 1,399
getting ready to start
calebmoss
05-23-2011 09:35 PM
09-11-2014 12:21 PM
by Steve
34 11,392
Stihl pull cord replace
SGL1
09-03-2014 09:22 PM
09-10-2014 12:25 PM
by Steve
9 915
Softball field
kslawn
08-15-2014 09:28 AM
09-10-2014 12:16 PM
by Steve
18 1,672
Lawn Route Templates
Landscaper1165
08-30-2014 01:52 PM
09-09-2014 08:05 PM
by Landscaper1165
4 1,159
New truck and trailer...
Johnny Rocket
05-14-2012 03:41 PM
09-09-2014 07:23 PM
by Matther777
18 6,731
What gets you bad press?
Steve
09-09-2014 11:48 AM
09-09-2014 07:21 PM
by Matther777
2 612
Signs on your snow plow?
Steve
01-15-2007 01:07 AM
09-09-2014 11:42 AM
by Steve
19 6,361
Exmark Lazer Z S-Series...
BLC7
08-22-2014 10:18 AM
09-08-2014 08:08 PM
by avetslawncare
12 1,439
New to the business
flamingyouth87
09-05-2014 11:52 AM
09-08-2014 11:55 AM
by Steve
3 830
Hello from Ohio
kurtwin
08-28-2014 05:06 PM
09-08-2014 11:51 AM
by Steve
7 1,124
Facebook
element009
03-23-2011 08:36 AM
09-07-2014 07:35 AM
by avetslawncare
24 7,898
Help pricing cut down 7...
Bradcook21
08-26-2014 11:17 PM
09-06-2014 02:09 PM
by Bradcook21
8 1,213
billing matters
sbuchanan8154
09-05-2014 09:56 AM
09-05-2014 03:00 PM
by Steve
3 805
Thoughts
googus
09-05-2014 07:28 AM
09-05-2014 02:23 PM
by Steve
2 743
» Popular Tags
2wd 4x4 article marketing bid birdscaping care charge collections subcontractor commercial credit card decorating ditches ecosymbiosis employee problems exmark ferris financing four wheel drive gopherhaul grass gravely hardscapes health honda how much to charge hydraulic installation landscape services lawn lawn care lawn care busines plan lawn care business seo lawn care business show lawn care business website lawn care business website seo lawn care website leaf lighting brass outdoor lights marketing mechanic monthly mow mulch mulch price native plants new buisness outdoor environments past due patio install podcast promotion running a business scag scag v-ride schedule seo snow starting a business steep lawns stihl sulky theft of services toro tractor auger trailer mate pro truck new used landscape walk behind walker won't return wright stander rh
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.1.0

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


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

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

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