$1500.00+ = Real Mower
$300.00 = Homeowner Mower
$550.00+ = Real Trimmer
$150.00 = Homeowner Trimmer
$250.00+ = Real Blower
$0.00 = Straw
I recommend you work for a company & come up with some funds. You can start from scratch, but your looking at a disaster if you start from a tear.
And not to mention being a partner is going to limit how much you'll be making at first. If you manage to get 5 customers before the seasons up (give or take on the weather you have) you'll be splitting all the hard earned money.
You both need to set goals, personal & teamed. You both need to put money into equipment & need extra for repairs, fuel, etc.
If you start by renting equipment, there goes your 5 first lawns, no one will be getting paid. Unless of course you rent from a friend?
Advertising is key. What about business cards? Maybe you can advertise lawn maintenance & weeding, maybe even gutter cleaning?
I'd also recommend having a Q&A sheet for when customers call, make sure you can answer all their questions. When does your service begin & end? What does your service offer? Is it just mowing? Or do you edge & use the blower to cleanup the mess you might make after cutting?
Several things to think about, & you've found the gold mine!
Don't mind me, I stayed up all night & read your post with squinted eyes!
You've been working for 3 months already? That's pretty sweet!
Just remember, always charge the customer more then the renting fee of any equipment. Don't forget that you need to be paid, as well as your partner!
If your doing a job, most of us like to at least make $40.00/hr, but that's totally up to you. In my opinion, a profit is a profit, my sweat & effort never seemed to catch up to me- YET.
Don't tell the customer you are working by the hour, it'll irritate them. Instead think of how long the job might take you, & multiply it by $40.00, then tell them the estimate.
If a customer interrupts you while your working on the project, & asks if you can soon do another one. Say, "I'm pretty booked, but I will let you know if I have time when I'm finished this one"
Once you are finished the first job, reflect & see if your profit was decent. If it wasn't, your customer is probably going to take advantage of you. This can happen!
After the first job, you may actually have time to think about taking on another job. Maybe you gave his yard a cleanup, now he wants you to paint a fence?
Step on the breaks & think before you say yes, you don't want to let him down, & you really don't want to say yes to something you can't do!
Customers like this can be a good thing, though you don't want to lose him/her from a simple mistake.
That's all the info I can offer now, I feel trashed! Time for a nap, doing hedges in a few hours! LOL