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#5935177 - 06/24/17 05:25 PM Anyone run their own lawn care company?
Muddy Boots Offline
trapper

Registered: 02/06/10
Posts: 228
Loc: South East Texas
Just looking to bounce some things off some people, been in it for a little while, got about 30 properties I take care of
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#5935334 - 06/24/17 10:16 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
Ice_Rat Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/05/12
Posts: 1678
Loc: WI
I do, what's Up? You can pm me if you prefer. My crew does about 110 a week, and I have about 400 fertilization/weed control customers. Also have a supply store for retail and wholesale. Installation crews as well.

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#5935566 - 06/25/17 10:36 AM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
Muddy Boots Offline
trapper

Registered: 02/06/10
Posts: 228
Loc: South East Texas
I am pretty much solo, my dad helps me, he semi-retired, I stay pretty busy
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#5935571 - 06/25/17 10:39 AM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
Muddy Boots Offline
trapper

Registered: 02/06/10
Posts: 228
Loc: South East Texas
I have been doing this for about 7 years, just kinda earning a little extra money, the business kinda grew like this on its own, I do a few commercial properties, but mainly residential, I really cutting grass, I learn more and more about the business all the time
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#5935572 - 06/25/17 10:42 AM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
Muddy Boots Offline
trapper

Registered: 02/06/10
Posts: 228
Loc: South East Texas
I guess I started this thread to see who all has a lawn care business and share ideas, and discuss equipment and so on...
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#5935844 - 06/25/17 06:35 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
mixed bag Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/03/07
Posts: 1361
Loc: Pennsylvania
I was thinking of starting one for my son and son in law to run.What's the going rate for residential lawns,1/3-1/2 acre sized

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#5935847 - 06/25/17 06:37 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
mixed bag Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/03/07
Posts: 1361
Loc: Pennsylvania
I have a construction business for past 15 years,but my oldest isn't much in to learning that.

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#5935866 - 06/25/17 07:09 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
Muddy Boots Offline
trapper

Registered: 02/06/10
Posts: 228
Loc: South East Texas
Hard to say, I bid every property different, it's really hard to say
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#5935877 - 06/25/17 07:14 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
Muddy Boots Offline
trapper

Registered: 02/06/10
Posts: 228
Loc: South East Texas
$30 - $50, I know that's a big gap, that could mean $100 - $150 at the end of the day, that's a big difference, I try and get a dollar a minute, then again try to get that, some I don't and some I get more
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#5935896 - 06/25/17 07:42 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
trapperne Offline
trapper

Registered: 05/01/08
Posts: 724
Loc: SE Nebraska
Have about 160 residential customer, cut on average 125 a week. Have one employee. Also fertilize about 80 yards. Plus aerating, spring and fall clean up and gutter cleaning
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Follow me on Facebook @ Lincoln Fur

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#5935916 - 06/25/17 08:03 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
bass10 Offline
trapper

Registered: 03/17/09
Posts: 370
Loc: Akron, Ohio
My son is going into his senior year of college. 3 years ago I talked him into started his own to get him through college. I told him he'd have more tme to fish and play plus make way more $$$ than if he worked for someone thru the summer. He has acquired 2 echo weedeaters, two still backpack blowers, one echo handheld blower, a brand new trailer with racks, a 52" toro with leaf vac zero turn, 48" mtd walk behind, 32" snapper walk behind, 2 echo gas hedge trimmers, 5 wheel barrels, shovels, pitch forks etc. this has all been paid in cash and he clears about 20k a year from April thru October. Stay dependable and do what you say you're gonna do and when you say you're gonna do it. If you plan on doing it long term start leaning more to high end house and commercial properties, it takes longer to do 3 $30 yards than to do one stop $100 yard and easier on your truck and equipment. My 2 cents. By the way I have my own print, graphics company so he did have some top notch marketing ideas and materials and you know paying dad pennies on the dollar helped greatly on start


Edited by bass10 (06/25/17 08:05 PM)

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#5935940 - 06/25/17 08:19 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
Muddy Boots Offline
trapper

Registered: 02/06/10
Posts: 228
Loc: South East Texas
Trapperne that's awesome, what kind of equipment do you run
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#5935945 - 06/25/17 08:21 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
Muddy Boots Offline
trapper

Registered: 02/06/10
Posts: 228
Loc: South East Texas
Bass10, tell him to keep it up, the more experience the better
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#5935952 - 06/25/17 08:25 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
Ice_Rat Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/05/12
Posts: 1678
Loc: WI
Standardize the equipment, much like a trapline. I currently run only Gravely zero turns, stihl trimmers and blowers. It makes it so much easier this way. I absolutely hate it, but Facebook is a ridiculously good advertising tool. The rates are crazy cheap for the exposure you get.

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#5935993 - 06/25/17 09:00 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
Jeff Laskowski Offline
trapper

Registered: 06/27/12
Posts: 832
Loc: Ryan, Oklahoma U.S.A.
Better factor in that mowers etc. break down, quite often. I hope you are a good mechanic or the repair costs will kill you. And mower parts are NOT cheap. I have a Kabota zero turn and a rear tire (not including the rim) is $250.00 for one. And they make sure you have to buy it from Kabota as no one else handles it. Just sayin... There are maintenance and repair costs to consider. And once you contract to cut a lawn, they expect it to be done, so you better have back-up equipment. Also, make sure the customer understands that the price you quote them is for a certain height of the grass. Not that they can let it grow 12 inches and expect you to cut it for the same price. And make sure that you include what you are willing to provide, such as string trimming, edging, etc. Don't just assume anything.

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#5936021 - 06/25/17 09:26 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
trapperne Offline
trapper

Registered: 05/01/08
Posts: 724
Loc: SE Nebraska
I have a 48" Great Dane stander, 36" scag liberty z, a 30"exmark walk behind and 2 30" toro personal pace mowers. Red max trimmers, echo back pack blowers, Tanaka hand help blowers. Claussen aerator, not sure what brand my push spreader is, also have access to a overseeder and power take if I need them
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Follow me on Facebook @ Lincoln Fur

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#5936061 - 06/25/17 10:16 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
wvcoonman Offline
trapper

Registered: 11/17/14
Posts: 690
Loc: West Virginia
I've always done quite a few yards for as long as I can remember, but I finally decided to make an attempt at going big this year to help get myself through school. I bought a used 36" scag walk behind, used 60" great dane super surfer stander, stihl km130 trimmer/edger with a brush blade, and a br400 blower. I delivered pizzas all through the winter and handed out flyers to customers for a few months before season started up. I wound up picking up 20 or so clients and had to cap it off at that until I finished up my spring classes. As soon as I got out for summer, I got offered a construction job I couldn't pass up, so I couldn't really expand any further. I've turned down so many yards that I think I could come close to making it a full time job, but between construction and the yards I already had I'm working close to 60 hours a week and really just don't want anymore. I've got a lot of respect for you guys doing this stuff full time because it can make for some hectic weeks. I've also done a good bit of power washing as more of a side job to the side job, and I really think it's something you could capitalize on in my area at least. Most of my power washing customers are more than happy to pay $75-$100 an hour for a good looking job, and it's relatively cheap to buy into. With a good setup, you can get a lot done in an hour.

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#5936099 - 06/25/17 11:58 PM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
Scout1 Offline
trapper

Registered: 07/28/12
Posts: 1158
Loc: Western N. Carolina
Never owned a lawn service, but it was my first real time paying job 30 years ago. They'd pick me up at 8 am and drop me off at 8pm. The worst mowing was old grave yards. Like mentioned before, if you hire an inexperienced teenager have a good maintenance plan. I remember first day on the job blowing the engine on a walk behind. Always check the oil!!!!
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America First!!

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#5936143 - 06/26/17 05:46 AM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: Muddy Boots]
addictedangler Offline
trapper

Registered: 08/09/13
Posts: 2401
Loc: cumberland co, Pa
Jeff L has some very good advice. I have had my own home repair business for 20 years. Many small tools break down. Usually at the worst time and a back up is needed. My main equipment is top notch brand equipment. Some smaller items are off brand do to only using them once a month or so. Part availability can be a breaking point also. Make sure parts are available when needed and also check how long it takes to get them to you. If you are not mechanically inclined make sure you have some one who can take care of that equipment.
If you hire a young person do not assume they know how to do the job. At times I blame myself for a problem because they may not have understood what we were doing and how to do it. However work along side them and make sure your instructions are detailed. I use alot of different tools and sometimes have to supply a new guy with a tool bag. Just pliers,screw driver and so on. Above everything be honest with your customers and employees. Good ones are very hard to find so it is very important to keep them!

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#5936206 - 06/26/17 07:36 AM Re: Anyone run their own lawn care company? [Re: addictedangler]
bass10 Offline
trapper

Registered: 03/17/09
Posts: 370
Loc: Akron, Ohio
Well hopefully after 7 years you're well aware of maintenance and repair costs? Just replaced the two drive belts on walk behind and it was $100. Kinda crazy when the whole mower is probably worth $900 if we were to sell it today. I help my son a ton and am his right hand maintenance wise. I log every piece of equipment and when the oil was changed, belts changed, machine was greased, air filters and so on. After 10-12 hours of mowing its the last thing someone wants to do but is very important to keep the decks clean and blades sharp.

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