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   Table of Contents

1. I'm new to the business, I want to know how did you get started?
2. I don't know how to price jobs, how much do I charge customers?
3. Where can I get the best price on equipment?
4. How much is business license, spraying license, workers comp and liability?
5. Where can I find parts for a 25 year old yard mule?
6. Build me a free web page & get me some work, I live in so and so U.S.A.
7. What can I do to make more money, all I do is mow, hedge, edge, trim & blowing?


1. I'm new to the business, I want to know how did you get started?

I got started by advertising in the local newspaper. I found out the hard way to make it short & sweet. All letters bold faced the 3 lines only 1st line Lawnservice, 2nd My company name, 3rd Phone#. I found out Sunday was the best and when I needed more I would do it on Wednesday. 

When I made a few dollars, I got some magnetic signs on my truck. Then later I hired employees & purchased shirts for them with my company name & logo on them. I never had much luck with fliers but I had them mainly to put at houses next or near the jobs I was doing. I would rather have 3 jobs close together than 5 a little ways apart. Starting & stopping can take a lot of time.

When I first started & didn't have much work to do I would offer to do more work for less money if it was a good location because of the exposure of my signs on my truck got (I would look for things to do clean roofs & etc.). I've worked for a whole day for very little money maybe break even sometimes.

If you have signs on your truck, have a good answering machine & check it often during the day, lot of them have a feature to call from another phone to retrieve messages it will pay for it self & if you have someone with good phone sense they can help you to.
Most of the time the people want the work done yesterday. Go after the work & later it will come after you.

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2. I don't know how to price jobs, how much do I charge customers?

This is tough because what works for some doesn't work for others. Also it varies what part of the country your cutting grass, people in Atlanta Georgia don't get paid near as much as people in Cape Cod.

I will tell what I have learned the hard way. If you are cheap on your work it will lose you money & will come home with you at night (saying to your self I should have priced this job a little more). This is bad on the business, you can't stay in the business if you are not making money.

If you are high bid on a job people will talk about you & make others want to hire you if you are not way over priced. You get that high bid you've done good, after doing the job do you still think you were to high, think about it. If to cheap well you know what happens there.

Look like a Pro, work like a Pro, act like a Pro and you will get paid like a Pro. I only came down on price very few times & I think every time I regretted every minute of it. Tell the customer that this price you are giving them is the best price you can give & if you could do it for less you would but you know the quality of work they want & expect performed & with your experience this is what you have to get to make a profit.

I always figured my jobs on how long it would take me by myself to get the job done then I had a figure that I would use for my hourly rate (back when I did it I charged $15-$20 an hour depending if it was manual labor or I was using Power Equipment this was also in the 80's you get a little more now). When I figured how many hours it would take me to do the job then the number of hours times my hourly rate.

If I figured 8 hours on a clean up job by my self & my crew was 4 men we better have the work done in 2 hours or I figured wrong. If you are working more than 2 people you need to devote your time to working them & making their job as easy as possible. Keep a close eye on the crew, if they are working good are they thinking like you would, no I don't think so if they were you would be working for them.

Example: You are running back & forth getting tools and helping the men trim bushes look at who's slowing down, your over half finished get that person to start cleaning up. Employees work better separated. Go help the person that was slowing down.

Some people figure grass cutting by the square foot, edging, trimming grass by the liner foot, and bushes by the size & how much to trim off. I tried it & I didn't like it, might work for you not me. I always figure it by how long it would take me. I then multiplied the number of hours times my hour rate to figure what I needed to make a profit.

I used this on all my jobs residential & commercial. You in most cases wont make but a few mistakes. I sometimes would tell the customer that we would work for so much per man per hour. If I had 4 or more men I normally wouldn't charge for my time unless I was doing work over half the time. This in most cases was agreed upon in advance.

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3. Where can I get the best price on equipment?

That's a good question. Lets say you live in Bangor Maine & I know where you can get a good 21"commercial walk behind for $150 below the best price you found in your town all you have to do is go to Ty Ty Georgia. In this case it doesn't work for you, but lets say you did get it & it had a manufactures defect, the engine had a loose rod because it wasn't properly torqued at the factory. Well you haven't got the time & the $250 dollars in gas money to take it back.

Then you take it to the Mr. Over priced outdoor power equipment dealership in your home town & he tells you that he only does warranty work on what he sells. The next closest deal of a life time dealer is 200 miles away & your thinking will he say the same thing. Your thinking to your self, I now wish I had paid that extra $50 bucks now. Two days later you have lost 2 accounts that you make $285 a month on because you already put them off 4 days before your deal of a lifetime walk  mower broke down because you were going all over the country trying to save $250 on that $6000 rider. How much money did you save? Not much did you.

I have seen it time & time again where people spend a easy 15 to 20 hours or more to save $20 to $50 on a walk behind & some times drive 100 or more miles to find that deal of a lifetime. Remember if you were out working with this equipment instead of trying to save a few bucks the mower would be at least 1/2 paid for. Maybe you have but I have never seen a dealer sell a $800 walk for $950 or have I seen them sell it for $650. These dealers only have %15-%20 markup maybe a little more but not often. 

There are people out there that pay $25,000 & more for a piece of equipment then charge $50 & more a hour labor. I think anybody now is averaging $25 or more a hour labor when running a commercial 21" walk. Your making plenty of money with the equipment don't make it a lifetime career to save a few bucks. Do make it a lifetime career to find a dealer that will help you when you need it most. To a certain point a dealer can make you or break you. Find a dealer & build a good working relationship, you will save thousands of dollars. This will be the dealer that will loan you a mower or will repair your mower on the spot ahead of 150 other repairs already there waiting to be fixed. This is savings. 

Hey how do you like it when your potential customers want you to give them a %10 to %20 discount on your services before they even see your work, what goes around comes around. I never asked for a discount & I always got one and or the best service you could ask for too. It takes other people, well I mean it takes more than one person to make 1 person successful they can't do it by themselves. Get the picture!!!!!!

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4. How much is business license, spraying license, workers comp and liability?

I don't know, I do not live where you do. It varies where you live. Sorry that's the best I can do. Try calling the license dept. at your local court house, call your county extension services agent and your insurance agent.

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5. Where can I find parts for a 25 year old yard mule?

I don't know, what is it. I don't have this kind of information, I wish I did. At this time I do not have info on where to obtain obsolete parts or parts of any kind. Try finding the manufacture & contact them. Take a look at this page & see if you can find the link to the manufacture that made your equipment. Links to Outdoor Power Equipment Manufactures.

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6. Build me a free web page & get me some work, I live in so and so U.S.A.

I wish I could build you a free web page & get you some work in your home town. If you want a web page I will be glad to build you one for a small fee. Go to Contact us.

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7. What can I do to make more money, all I do is mow, hedge, edge, trim & blowing?

Think of services that you can provide besides cutting, mowing, hedging, trimming & blowing off surfaces. Did you know that cutting grass with a mower is the most costly & least profitable work performed in the lawn service business. Yes it's very true!

80% of your work comes from 20% of your customers, you don't believe it. Well all I can say is give it a try. When billing your customers put briefly on your bill, all the services that you can provide. Tell your customers that you need more good customers like themselves & ask them to tell others. If you are working for these people & they like your work, believe me they will tell others!

There is more info on all of the subjects below at, 
Click here: No lawn service work, I'm still waiting!

Here is a list of more services that you can provide your customers.
At little, to no extra cost to you that fits right in with your line of work!

Plenty more services you can offer: Just think about it & be creative!

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