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Starting My Business At 18

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Mirffy
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Starting My Business At 18
#1

Hi guys i have recently finished school and i am looking to start my own lawn care business and i have a few questions:

 

How should i advertise? Whats the best method you use to get business? 

 

i was planning of printing of flyers to post to peoples houses and create a facebook page as a start using this as the place where people can contact me. After i have mowed there lawn i can ask them to write a review on my facebook page.

 

What equipment is a must? What are some good extra items i should purchase?

 

My equipment:

-Lawn Mower

-Edger (whipper snipper)

 

How should i structure my client data base? What do you guys use?

 

I was thinking of using an excel sheet and having a big book as a back up. What details should i make sure i get and write down such as there phone number etc. 

 

How much should i charge? 

As i am new i am not sure how much i should charge for my service i have been looking around and researching and i think $30 sounds fair? should i charge per hr or on the size of the property?

 

Any extra tips or things you wish you knew when you started?

 

 

Thanks, 


Posted 08 March 2018 - 04:46 PM

Smokey
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Starting My Business At 18
#2

Good to see another young bloke giving this game a crack.

Have a look through the forum heaps of info on here to answer your questions if not feel free to jump in and ask away.

Gumtree and any sites that give you an online presence is a good start.

Flyers and business cards work well but nothing beats word of mouth.

Get all your legal stuff in order insurances and so on.

Dont get caught out buying cheap gear spend the coin now and buy top notch stuff.

Not sure were you are based but our minimum charge is $50 and goes up from there for resi lawn mowing.

Dont sell your self short mate there are alot of expenses and overheads to cover in this game but its all trial and error with quoting. It will come with time and experiance.

I still under quote every now and then its not easy lol.

Cheers,
Smokey
Posted 08 March 2018 - 05:02 PM

plucka
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Starting My Business At 18
#3

Hi Mirffy, Lots of your questions will be answered by reading this forum but 2 quick things I'd mention:

 

1. Flyers are good but don't print them yourself, get them done with professionally with someone like Vistaprint.  Will look far more professional and actually cheaper as well.

 

2. Don't be charging $30 unless it's a 15min job,  $1-$1.50 a minute you should be aiming for.


Posted 08 March 2018 - 06:12 PM

CGAHS
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Starting My Business At 18
#4

go and do a Small Business Management course first


Posted 08 March 2018 - 07:20 PM

AndoTheMando
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Starting My Business At 18
#5

from a newbies point of view.,..Ive only been doing this a month or so...Quoting is the hardest part of the job...!!    but , that only comes with experience ..

 

as for Advertising .... word of mouth is keeping me afloat ....always do a great job...even if you spend longer there ;)

 

i'll pump some flyers during winter


Posted 08 March 2018 - 07:51 PM

Mirffy
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Starting My Business At 18
#6

 

I live in Adelaide.

 

I agree investing money into equipment will benefit me in the long term.

 

Learning to quote will take time and experience.

 

Gumtree is a great idea and other free sites where i can list my service.  

 

Thanks for your advice much appreciated. 


Posted 08 March 2018 - 10:52 PM

Mirffy
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Starting My Business At 18
#7

 

Yeah i have been looking into other business in my local area and i will be meeting with them soon to talk more about the position. Also i am meeting with them to listen and learn from them about there business.

 

Thanks for your advice :)  


Posted 08 March 2018 - 10:56 PM

Mirffy
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Starting My Business At 18
#8

I think my dad has a big blower at his business i could use. Yes i agree leaving the area presentable is important. I will make sure to add that equipment to my list.

 

Thanks for the advice  :)    


Posted 08 March 2018 - 10:58 PM

Mirffy
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Starting My Business At 18
#9

 

I have started making my own home made flyers and cards but i think your right i should go to vista print and create professional flyers and cards. First impressions are important.

 

When i hear people talking about $50 as a starting rate that sounds a bit steep to me. I guess if you take into consideration all the costs and time to drive there. Then i should be asking for that price.

 

Thanks for your advice  :)


Posted 08 March 2018 - 11:02 PM

Mirffy
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Starting My Business At 18
#10

 

When you quote a job do you physically go to there house and quote on the spot? When you quote someone do you have a template like small backyard, medium etc or do you quote /hr rate? Or does it just vary from property to property? 

 

Thanks for the advice appreciate it :D


Posted 08 March 2018 - 11:04 PM

Mirffy
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Starting My Business At 18
#11

Get all your legal stuff in order insurances and so on.

For someone who has no idea what this means? Could you explain a bit more if you have the time thanks  :)


Posted 08 March 2018 - 11:07 PM

Mirffy
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Starting My Business At 18
#12

dad did not say that 

I follow all posts on this site

I am the one that deletes dads drunk posts

RL

wait what i am confused? 


Posted 08 March 2018 - 11:10 PM

plucka
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Starting My Business At 18
#13

 

When i hear people talking about $50 as a starting rate that sounds a bit steep to me. I guess if you take into consideration all the costs and time to drive there. Then i should be asking for that price.

 

Thanks for your advice  :)

$50 only sounds steep if you are comparing it to an employee salary, this is a mistake.  As a business owner you have many expenses, no leave, no super, no income on rainy days, half income in winter, the list goes on.  Suddenly $50 an hour starts to look more like $25 once you factor in all these.  


Posted 09 March 2018 - 06:28 AM

plucka
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Starting My Business At 18
#14

When you quote a job do you physically go to there house and quote on the spot? When you quote someone do you have a template like small backyard, medium etc or do you quote /hr rate? Or does it just vary from property to property? 

 

Thanks for the advice appreciate it :D

Yes you go to the property, every one is different!   You start with a basic idea how long a certain size yard takes, but then you have to look at all the things that add time- obstacles (trees, kids play equipment etc), amount of edging (paths etc), type of grass (can you mulch or will you have to bag), ease of access (locked gates, narrow paths, stairs), frequency of mow.   These all can add significant time to the job and so should be factored in your price.

 

You will soon learn that a small yard that has lots of paths/edging and covered in obstacles can easily take longer to do than a much larger but clear and simple yard.


Posted 09 March 2018 - 06:36 AM

Macka
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Starting My Business At 18
#15

get a job,

 

The questions you are asking are a red flag, you know nothing.  you should have spent a 100 + hours researching into creating a business and lawn mowing. 

 

You need $30,000 to get equipment and cover your wages for 6 months


Posted 09 March 2018 - 07:27 AM

drewebb
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Starting My Business At 18
#16

$50 only sounds steep if you are comparing it to an employee salary, this is a mistake.  As a business owner you have many expenses, no leave, no super, no income on rainy days, half income in winter, the list goes on.  Suddenly $50 an hour starts to look more like $25 once you factor in all these.  

If you offered to pay your local mechanic $50/hour you might not get much of a job done  :) Mine is $130.00.
You will have more tools than some mechanics if you stick at it.


Posted 09 March 2018 - 07:28 AM

Blair B
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Starting My Business At 18
#17

If I was to offer advice to a young fella I would go with the points Smokey said especially getting good gear and insurance. I'd also go with what Macka said but probably wouldn't tell him he needs $30000 even if it's true.

 

Another good thing is in Perth there is a residential lawn mowing course at Tafe that teaches  you how much it costs to run your business, how much you need to charge, weed identification, fertilising, importance of compact rounds etc. Not sure if there are similar courses over East. Funnily enough when I did the course there were lots of blokes from Jim's that had just started out in the industry. Must be compulsory to do the Tafe course when you start out in Jim's. 

 

I would also tell a young fella to get some work experience with a contractor.


Posted 09 March 2018 - 09:13 AM

Mirffy
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Starting My Business At 18
#18

 

I can buy a franchise in my local area for 15 to 20k in my local area. Yeah i will have a look into some courses.


Posted 09 March 2018 - 11:55 AM

Fred
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Starting My Business At 18
#19

Don't listen to the negative responses, you may or may not succeed, the biggest factor will be your attitude & desire to succeed.

You're on here doing your research, thats a great start`.

You don't need a fortune to start, just the basic but quality tools, then build up as you go along.

I started well over 30yrs ago with this approach but, I did drive cabs at night as I built up the business to the point where I could give the cabs away.

 

A course in small business management would be great, as would a horticultural course, its great to have a real interest in what you're doing, as well as, customers will rate you if they think you know what your on about.

It all takes time but, you've got that in spades.

Keep doing your research (I still do) Rome wasn't built in a day, blah, blah, blah.

If you want it bad enough ...........

 

Don't under value yourself, I nearly gave it away after a few years because of that.

The only benefit you get is what you are paid, there are plenty of expenses but, NO OTHER benefits.

Jims mowing put me straight, even though I never worked for them or bought one of their franchises.

But thats another story !

 

Cheers Fred.


Posted 09 March 2018 - 12:41 PM

Smokey
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Starting My Business At 18
#20

For someone who has no idea what this means? Could you explain a bit more if you have the time thanks :)

If you have a GOOD Accountant talk to them about starting a small business.

Probably best to start as a sole trader and have a business name. I wouldnt bother regestering for gst yet.


get a abn from there you will need public liability insurance as a minimum and it would be best to have your equipment insured as well.

You need to be 100% commited to this venture to make it work.

Building a mowing round is not easy It wont come over night. There will be days you will wish you have a 9 to 5 job but trust me working for yourself is very rewarding and worth all the hard work.

Dont sell your self short mate might as well sit at home and go broke then busting your #### mowing a lawn for peanuts.

Also as fred said get a qualification im a licenced landcaper so i can offer other services in winter and quiet times.

I find it also works as a great selling point when doing quotes
Posted 09 March 2018 - 02:53 PM




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