I'm green as and probably know the least of everyone on this forum. Im not sure if this forum is the place to ask the following but thought I'd ask anyway.
I've just moved out of the city for a better lifestyle for my family. I've been looking for work too. By chance I'm certain I've practically inherited a lawn care + maintenance work for 3 local pre-school centres (fortnightly). At least until May, that's looking good for renewal.
The truth is the bloke with the actual contract is an out of towner (4 hrs away). The big man has been subcontracting this local work to my semi-retired neighbour (where I fit in) to manage the this account and relationship. The word is they love the outgoing guy (my neighbour).
So I'm not directly invoicing the centres or have ownership over these accounts. But I do believe my neighbours recommendation for me has gone a long way and the big man is coming down tomorrow to finalise our working position as my neighbour wants to step back and free up time asap. Tomorrow is also my first day working in combo with my neighbour as a sort of handover and to meet the big man.
The work is only 3 days (day/centre) per fortnight.
I obviously need to be looking for more work and makes sense I do so with property mgmt industry.
The big man on the phone asked if I be interested in more work (assuming he'll try to find some new opportunities while he's down tomorrow). But it's got me thinking maybe I should focus my a portion of my efforts doing the same, under my own name.
These 3 jobs gives me full access to a trailer including some tools (owned by the big man).
As a requirement Im needing to put a towbar on my second car as a requirement of the job. Ive also had to dish out a hundred dollars in tickets.
I need to figure out if I use my own gear or take on the big mans offer for all equipment supplied. My neighbour before me used his own equipment and charged $40/hr. The talk from the big man will pay me $30/hr if he supplies all gear. Both have their advantages.
I also need to insure myself and invoice for my time so thinking I should explore taking the higher hourly and building and owning my kit.
My equipment is only domestic grade
- Masport 625ex 150cc OHV) and
- Honda GX22 trimmer, which is my brothers on loan.
I'll need to buy myself a cheap petrol blower (looking at ebay - Max Pro or MTM).
Looking at making myself a basic uniform (professional) and try to win some new relationships for so I can build a business while its still summer (Jan). Should I try to build myself a small contracting business, build a small team, associated equipment etc or...?
I have no idea what I should be charging going out on my own... any suggestions how I quote?
As a backup I was planning to ring around for any work including from other lawn care professionals. What is the going acceptable rate to ask for? - is using my own gear an advantage?
Any advice from Seasoned Lawn-Entrepreneurs or those out there open to share how they would do it differently if you were in my position.
Appreciate any feedback.