The pitfalls and dirty tricks of buying lawn care accounts.

When times are tough, we all tend to get a little desperate and look for a short cut or a quick way to make things better. There are also those who prey upon others looking to make a quick buck so we need to constantly be on the watch. A prime example of where a lot of underhanded business dealings can go on is when you look to grow your lawn care business fast and want to buy a bunch of lawn care accounts from a seller.

A member of the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum wrote and asked us what we thought about his current situation. “Someone has offered to sell me 18 of their lawn maintenance accounts for $3,000.00. He claims he makes $3,000.00 from them. He just does the maintenance, no chemical applications. None of the accounts have contracts. That kind of worries me! What do you guys think about this?”

One business owner shared “I’d be hesitant of them not having contracts…maybe have the deal worked out so that each account has a price assigned to it, and then if the person leaves, you don’t pay for that account? If he would go for that.”

Another said “$3000 / 18 customers = $166/customer.

Instead of taking the easy way out by buying a customer list, why not spend a couple thousand dollars on marketing in order to build your own customer list.

I guarantee that “paid-for” customers are far less loyal than customers you cultivate through advertising.”

A third shared a warning about this “I’d never pay more than 1 months gross & with no contracts I might make it 2 weeks gross. Though I’ve never bought an account & probably never will.

You’d like to think nobody would rip you off buy consider this….
Times are tough & people (some lawn care business owners included) are hurting.

Consider this scenario. Some lawn care business owner & his business are going down the tubes. He’s broke & jaded that his business isn’t making him rich. He decides to close down & then it occurs to him he can probably sell the few accounts he has! He wondering how much he can get for em!? Could it get him out of debt? No he doesn’t have enough accounts to sell. So he has an idea, he goes to 10-15 friends & says hey man, I’ll pay you / get your lawn cut for free a couple times if you go with me on this.¬† Your my customer & have been on my list for a while ok?
He gives his friend say $60 to pay the new guy a time or 2 then drop em.
You come along & pay him $166 per account. He just made $106 per account (over $1900) & you bought a failing business.

I’m not saying that is the case in this situation but I’ve heard of it happening. SO BE CAREFUL.”

Those are all very good points and important issues to think about before you sign the check and buy those lawn care accounts.

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