We tend to make this idea in our heads that starting a business is this huge deal. Like it is some mammoth effort. Then we go through the handful of steps to become a legitimate business and the next thing that happens is nothing. No phones start to miraculously ring because we opened up shop. That is when the entrepreneur has to take a moment and get to work on the hard part, acquiring customers. Let’s take a look at this topic more in depth from a discussion we had on the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum.
Have you ever been called to submit a lawn care bid on a property where the property owner promised more work later if the initial bid was low? This temptation can be used as an inducement to gain a lower bid. Once that bid is secured, the property owner can then put out for bid other work to get the lowest possible bid on that, using the same technique. As we will see in this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, you have to be careful with the way you estimate your jobs and you need to bid them to be profitable regardless of any future unseen promises.
It’s tough to turn away lawn care work when you are looking to grow your mowing business. Sometimes jobs will come along that are just too big or require larger equipment that you don’t have. In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, we look at what you should do when presented with a job that requires you to mow down real tall grass. How to perform the job and what you should bill for it.
With the different variations of line trimmers available on the market, what type is best for you? Should you go with a cheaper model or a more expensive one? Did you know that the cheaper models tend to be much more difficult to service as they are designed to be used until they break down and then thrown away? In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, we look into the benefits and downsides of using a 2 stroke line trimmer versus a 4 stroke line trimmer and consider which would be best for your needs.
It can be really frustrating taking a broken lawn mower to your local mower repair shop, only to have them not get it fixed for weeks because they are swamped with work. Such situations might actually get you to think about starting your own lawn mower repair shop. But should you do it? In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, we hear from someone who has done it and they give us the pros and cons of going that route.
Should you start a lawn care business before you have studied all there is to know about the business? Or can you get started with no experience and still find success? That is a question which was brought up on the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum. As we will see from this discussion below, sometimes you just don’t have time to learn anywhere else but on the job and that will have to do.
When it comes to the lawn care industry, what makes a low baller? What is so bad about part timers? What about solo operators? Why does there seem to be so much said by the larger mowing companies about the smaller ones? That was the topic, from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, that we focused on in this discussion. Here are some of the opinions expressed on this topic.
To become a successful entrepreneur, there is so much you need to learn about. Financial planning and taxes is an important part of it. Some new business owners tend to feel they need to spend everything they make by then end of the year to build there business while others feel it is important right from the start to save. Here is a great discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum on which method is more important and how your taxes are effected by that decision.
There are what seems to be an infinite amount of lawn mowers available on the market today. If you are looking to upgrade your current mower to a larger model, don’t just feel you need to scale up to the biggest available. The right mower, as we will see in this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, depends a lot on what you are trying to mow. If you get too big of a mower and only have small properties to mow, you will have troubles. The same if you get too small of a mower for a large property. So which is right for you? Let’s look into this further.
You have to fuel up your trucks and equipment multiple times throughout the week. While you are at the gas station, have you ever inquired to find out when they accept bids for caring for their property? It wouldn’t hurt to ask. In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, we hear from one entrepreneur who was asked to bid on a lawn care job at his local gas station and we see how he came up with his pricing.
There are all sorts of methods you can use to figure out how to pay a lawn care employee. You might pay them by the hour, which is probably the most used method. You can pay them a % of what you make on a job. You can pay them per job. In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, we look at that last method in a little more detail. If you decide to pay an employee per job, you may want to consider some of these pros and cons.
Having goals to shoot for in your first year of business can really be helpful. In fact, the more preparation and planning you do, the better your chances are for success. Without goals to strive for, we all have a tendency not to push ourselves to get to where we want to be. Here is a great discussion on start up goals from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum. In it, we hear from a new entrepreneur and what he plans to achieve in his first year and if others think it is practical.
What to do when you are interested in starting your own lawn care business but you are driving around in a car with no money to buy a truck any time in the near future. If you think you have no options though, think again. Here are a couple great ideas, from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, on how you can harness the power of your car to become part of your mowing business.
As your lawn care business grows, you will invariably take on employees. Along with employees comes new challenges that you will need to manage. There are a lot of issues you won’t see coming until they happen, but there are others you can try and nip in the bud to avoid the issue in the first place. Here is one example of that from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum on how you should handle an employee who wants to take on their own clients.
The desire to beat your competitors on price is the greatest when you are just getting started because you really have no other variables to play with. Your skills early on won’t be that good so it is difficult to compete on skill level. It is also difficult to offer a variety of services because more than likely, you don’t know how to perform them. But before you get yourself set on a race to the cheapest price for mowing, consider these lessons from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum.
If you ever get a phone call from a customer asking you to trim some of their landscaping, it is important to do a little research on the type of plant before you just go ahead and break out your hedge trimmers. Sometimes there is a better way to handle things than by simply hacking something back. In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, we get a chance to learn about the best way to deal with overgrown Daylilies.
When trying to learn how to properly estimate hedge trimming jobs, it is quite useful to review what others have done. How they bid on different hedge trimming jobs. What they charged and how much time the job took. In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum we hear some great insight on lessons learned after working on a large overgrown hedge trimming job. These lessons should help you improve your estimating in the future.
When you are used to bidding lawn mowing jobs, you can find yourself caught off guard when a customer asks you for a bid to perform another service. In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, we hear from one contractor who way underbid his mulch bed weeding job and ultimately spend double the time he initially thought it would take him. After reading through this, you will see the importance of realistically bidding such jobs so you don’t find yourself in a bad spot.
Many of the first lawn care customers you get may be in lower to middle class neighborhoods and after dealing with a few of them, you will figure out what kind of price range they are willing to pay for lawn care. But what should you do when you start to make inroads into wealthier areas? Should you charge wealthier clients more and cheaper clients less? That is the question which came up on the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum.
Once in a while, you may get a phone call from a national property preservation company that is working for a bank and has a local property in your area they need mowed. Should you work with them? Is it worthwhile taking on the extra tasks they demand, like submitting multiple photos as proof of service? Depending on your situation, such jobs may help you fill out your mowing route as we will see from this discussion on the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum.
It can be tough enough trying to estimate what to charge to mow an average sized yard, but what should you do when you are called in to estimate a 15 acre camp ground? That is what this one business owner was called to do and he asked for help on the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum. As you will see from the discussion below, quite a few elements are involved in creating a price you can make a profit on and the customer will accept.
Here are a few tips from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum on how to improve your mowing operation by streamlining the time spent at each customer’s property. As a business owner, you need to be as productive as possible and knowing which services yield the biggest bang for the buck and which don’t can help you on your pathway towards maximizing your profits.
There is a constant desire and drive by new entrepreneurs to go out and explore. The boundary of how far they are willing to explore seems to forever be pushed further forwards. If you find yourself doing this with your own lawn care business, here is a cautionary tale from someone who has been there about the downside to exploring the unknown, on a customer’s dime. In this story, from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, we hear how one project mess up had cost a landscaper $10,000.
Here is a landscape job request you won’t get everyday. It’s from a customer who posted the job on the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum. She needs a hole filled in that was dug under a trampoline so that the trampoline was level with the ground. The catch on this job is that it is difficult to get around to the backyard so large equipment won’t be able to be used. A couple of interesting points came up about this job that can really effect the job price. As you are reading the job description, think about how you would handle this request and come up with your own price before you see how these other landscapers would bid this dirt fill job.
Estimating hedge trimming jobs can be tough for those who are unfamiliar with the process. The amount of time it will take to perform the job, from the moment you arrive until the moment you leave, is almost always under-estimated. The biggest element missed in most bids is the amount of time your clean up will take you. It only takes a few hedge trimming jobs under your belt to learn that under-estimating your cleanup will dramatically eat into any profit you think you will make. So before you bid on any future hedge trimming jobs, consider the lessons learned from this discussion on the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum and learn how to improve your estimates which reflect a realistic amount of time needed to be spent on each job.
Starting a new business can involve a lot of frustration. When you come up with a business idea and a plan, it is up to you to breathe life into your creation. No one else is going to do it for you. If you are not accustomed to being a self starter, you are going to be in for a difficult experience. In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, we hear from one new entrepreneur who just can’t seem to get his footing and he wonders what should he be doing to improve his current situation.
There is nothing more frustrating than spending a lot of time designing, printing, and distributing your lawn care marketing material only to find later that no one returns your calls from them. When this happens, it makes you question everything. Are you doing the right marketing? Are you in the right business? Should you just throw your hands up in the air and surrender? Before you get too crazy over this, take a moment and see what other entrepreneurs have gone through and shared with us on the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum. I am sure some of these insights will get you headed in a better direction.
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you bid a lawn for mowing at one price, only to find out after you mow it that it took a lot longer than you expected and you underbid the job? What should you do if this happens and you bid the job for an entire year? Should you suck it up and just deal with it or should you immediately contact the customer to reprice the job? That is what one entrepreneur wondered when he shared his story with us on the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum.
Most every lawn care business owner is always looking for more ways to attract customers. Sure you can hand out flyers or door hangers, they will take some time out of your schedule. But have considered using lawn signs on the yards you are actively mowing? That is what this entrepreneur did and he shared his story with us on the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum. It seems the idea worked quite well and helped him get more customers that fit into his mowing route.
Two students looking to start a summer mowing company are curious to find out more what steps to take to begin. It is amazing how much regulation is involved to simply try and get a small business going for a few months. In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, one veteran shares his thoughts on how a newbie should go about doing this and if it is financially worthwhile to attempt.