How to keep equipment busy making money.

A good way to improve your chances of success in business early on is to explore different avenues and see which one is the most profitable. In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, we hear from one entrepreneur who is trying to find out ways to utilize the equipment he has, to make a profit, even when he is not out mowing lawns.

One lawn care business owner wrote “I have a diesel pick-up and a 7×12 dump trailer. I do a little lawn mowing but I mainly focus on hauling of materials for delivery such as mulch, topsoil, stone, firewood, etc. With spring sales/deliveries slower going because I’m not very established, as this is only my 2nd year, I am looking for ways to make money and keep my equipment working when calls for deliveries are not rolling in. Any ideas of alternate materials to haul, things to do with the equipment to make money would be greatly appreciated!

Last year I worked with a local landscaper delivering mulch. This year however I have not seen him flying around town anywhere near as how much as he has in past years, I see a lot of people with all the driving I do. I think the reason for this is because a farmer down the road from me bought a rotochopper mulch/chip processor and is selling for $25 a yard wholesale black brown or red so any landscaper with a trailer can get it themselves.

My motto has always been ‘turn and burn.’ I feel I do better on deliveries so I always opted to just do another delivery for the day instead of install landscape products myself. With the start of this season being a little slower though I believe I would be pretty open minded to new ideas. Maybe I should start installing product if I have a slow schedule that day. It’s not as good as flipping another delivery but it’s still work!”

A second lawn care business owner said “you could talk to that farmer and become his delivery go to person. If he doesn’t offer delivery, he is missing out on more money.

If you are currently only advertising yourself to small landscapers you are missing a much larger market. Why not look for roofers, concrete removal companies, etc. When we did tear outs of driveways and such it was always a huge pain to have to bring our dump truck and have someone take it to a pit to get rid of it. I’d rather you just pull up in your trailer and we load it with our skid steer and say goodbye and I get back to work. One down side I see is your trailer is too small but if you could leave it on a roofing job for a day, they could use it on roofing jobs that they can’t get a dumpster on or don’t want to ruin the grass with a dumpster.

What we would pay would totally depend on many factors. Really it’s uncharted waters that could be a niche all in itself. Something you would have to figure out, the logistics of where you could dump and what they would charge you. We would take ours to a rock quarry. Some concrete suppliers will take tear out and they crush it and sell it as base fill. You may want to feel out the smaller companies in your area. Most have a skid steer to tear out but no dump truck. Feel them out and see what you can do! I think its a great idea for someone with a dump trailer.

Another idea is how about putting a leaf box and leaf loader on your trailer. Do curb side pickup?”

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