Here’s the Equipment Needed to Start a Lawn Care Business. Start lawn mowing business
Here’s the Equipment Needed to Start a Lawn Care Business
Every small business owner has tools of the trade. For example, a landscape contractor needs tools such as a measuring tape, hammers and a backhoe. As a new lawn care business owner, you may be wondering about the equipment needed to start a lawn care business, and what’s really involved from a cost perspective. We’ve got your list and some tips for getting started with the right equipment to keep your new business going strong.
Why You Really Can’t Go the Cheap Route
When you’re first starting out, you need to “spend money to make money,” and that includes everything from your uniforms, trucks, and office staff. You lawn service equipment needs to be sturdy, clean and able to work in all kinds of weather conditions.
Plus, you want to have a professional appearance. So, your equipment needs to look professional too.
You don’t want to have mowers that are chugging out thick, black smoke, and you don’t want your spreaders to break down in the middle of a fertilizer treatment.
You also need the right equipment to get the job done. You’ll need heavy-duty tools that can handle a quarter of an acre all the way up to a few acres of lawn grass.
Sometimes, it seems more economical to buy on the cheap or buy smaller equipment.
But before you know it, your business grows with a few large residential properties, and you don’t have the right equipment to get the job done.
Now, what do you do? Think quality from the get-go, and you’ll avoid having to replace worn-out tools that just weren’t made to last, especially for commercial projects.
Types of Equipment Needed to Start a Lawn Care Business
It’s understandable that as a newcomer to lawn care, you likely want to take some shortcuts until you get more customers under your belt. Yet, as you grow, you’re going to need to invest in some heavy-duty equipment to get all of your clients’ lawns cleaned up promptly. According to Lawn and Landscape, a typical landscape company will have 8-14% of sales going towards their equipment costs each year. When starting out, it’s wise to budget between 30-50k for start-up costs.
Here’s the list of those six pieces of equipment you must have when you’re starting your lawn business:
- Heavy-duty trucks: You’re going to need a truck or two that to haul a trailer carrying lawn mowers and lawn service equipment and tools. Estimated cost: 10,000-50,000.
- Trailer: You need a sturdy trailer that’s easy to load with mowers, blowers and spreaders. Estimated cost: 1,500 for a new steel trailer.
- Storage facility: Unless you have a large garage or another out-building on your property, you’ll need to lease space at a storage facility to keep all of your equipment in between jobs. Estimated cost: 50-200/month.
- Uniforms: You don’t need to go crazy, but you should have at least have T-shirts designed with your company’s name, logo, and phone number (for folks to call you for an estimate when they see your crews around town), pants and work boots. Uniforms communicate trust and professionalism. Estimated cost: 12-30 per employee depending on style, fabric, etc.
- Safety equipment: OSHA requires that you and your workers wear eye and ear protection when working out in the field. You and your technicians should also wear pants and sturdy boots to protect your bodies from sharp blades and flying debris. Another safety must is hearing protection. Estimated cost: Earmuff-style hearing protection can cost around 25/pair, safety goggles can be as low as 10/pair.
- The Must-have, no compromising, tools of the trade: Lawn mowers with attachments, such as mulchers and side catchers. Depending on the properties you take care of, you may need a walk-behind mower as well as a riding mower for larger properties. Estimated cost: There is a huge range in the cost of landscaping equipment, depending on brand, size, etc. A push mower can be as low as 100, while a new riding mower can get up into the several thousands. Here’s an excellent breakdown on costs for lawn care tools from HowtoStartanLLC.com:
- Riding Mower: 1,000-5,000
- Push Mower: 200-1,000
- Trimmer: 50-300
- Edger: 80-350
- Leaf Blower: 100-500
- Lawn Bags: 5-20
- Lawn Spreader: 200-500
- Lawn Sprayer: 50-200
- Assorted additional tools (like trimmers, garden hoses, spades, etc.): 10-50 each
Choose Spyker Spreaders For Your Lawn Business
Spreaders help the lawn care professional fertilize as well as add weed and insect controls. Thanks to features like ACCUWAY and the Spyker Dial, a Spyker spreader actually helps you save money by not wasting product. This gives your clients a better ROI on your lawn services because of the even spreading of materials for beautiful lawn.
Plus, if you want to have a snow/ice removal business over the winter, our newest addition, the new Ergo-Pro Ice Melt Spreader, can cut through rock salt and ice melt and stands up to the harshest outdoor conditions.
Most importantly of all– Spyker spreaders are the type of quality that lasts. Unlike other disposable spreaders that barely make it through a season, Spyker uses better materials, construction, and design to ensure durability over time.
If you’re ready to check out a Spyker spreader for your lawn care business, you can find our products at your nearest Spyker dealer.
How To Create On-Demand Lawn Mowing App like Uber and Start A Lawn Mowing Business?
As Harvard Business Review states, about 22.4 million users annually start using on-demand services, and they spend over USD 57.6 billion on these services. It means the on-demand economy grows and prospers. New apps are created, new niches are revealed.
In regions like North America, lawn mowing apps occupy the market, and they become a good startup idea if you want to create something new. We will show you how to start a lawn mowing business and what your app should contain.
In this article, we want to present a concept of a lawn mowing app that can be your potential product. Cadabra Studio’s design team created it, using catchy icons and navigating illustrations to show how your future lawn mowing app may look. Read on to see more examples below.
What Is An On-Demand Lawn Mowing App?
We think the purpose of lawn mowing apps is quite clear. Many people have their lawns in front of their dwellings or the backyard. And they need to take care of them, mow in summer, and do snow shoveling in winter. However, it takes a lot of time, owners can be very busy, and the neglected lawns will look poor and make the area look abandoned.
Modern technologies allow managing entire buildings and factories, so the issue of a well-kept lawn shouldn’t be a problem. And anyone thinking about how to start a mowing business can use process automation to improve customer service. The main question is how to combine simple daily activities with the benefits of advanced technology.
What Lawn mower to buy to Start a Lawn Mowing Business in 2023!
That is where on-demand lawn mowing apps come to the rescue. Lawn owners or moving business owners download it, find a lawnmower who can go and tidy up the lawn. No wonder that lawn care apps are also called “Uber for lawn mowing.” Lawn care apps can also provide additional services, but it depends on the app.
This article may be interesting for you: Uber-like App Development (Taxi app)
Why Does It Become Trendy?
As noted above, yard work is not the favorite thing people strive to do after a tiring week. Previously, it was much more challenging to find a lawnmower. Newspapers ads — that is everything lawn owners could rely on. But times are changing, and digital technologies run the show. And on-demand mowing app development was just a matter of time.
Where there’s demand, there’s supply, you know. Today people are ready to pay for making their lawns clean and good-looking. Other people are willing to mow lawns and get money for it. Lawn care apps help connect both parties. So starting a lawn mowing business is far from being a bad idea.
How Does An App For Lawn Care Business Work?
If you plan to create an app for a lawn care business, you need to know the functionality principle and understand how it works. Usually, lawn mowing apps perform three simple steps as follows:
- Post lawn information. Lawn owners need to post the info about their lawn, indicate the address and photo. It will take a few minutes, and then they can proceed to the next step.
- List and find a lawnmower. There is a list of lawnmowers, and users can check their ratings, read reviews about them, and even check their equipment. Also, some apps allow users to compare to find the best quote.
- Schedule and pay. Once you chose a lawnmower, you schedule a mowing time, make a booking, and then pay. Funds will be reserved, and service providers will get them only when the work is completed.
It is also worth paying attention to the target audience’s needs. This directly affects the software logic. Lawn care business apps created specifically for work with large customers (office buildings, sports complexes, etc.) require more advanced and expanded functionality, special industrial scale equipment and multiple-steps control. At the same time, software for household use has somewhat simpler functionality and a less loaded service-payment system.
Benefits Of Lawn Mowing Apps
Although you already know that apps for the lawn care business are beneficial for both parties, we would like to list the primary advantages substantively.
Don’t have time to read the article? Then contact us directly and share the info about your upcoming project.
- Easy scheduling. Users can schedule time for lawn care using their mobile devices. over, the time can be changed or canceled if necessary, with a few clicks.
- Status tracking. Most lawn care apps make it possible to monitor work progress and even track it in real-time mode.
- Convenient communication. Users may chat with service providers via an integrated chat system or use a phone to call them directly.
- Processes automation. Once users fill out the required forms, they can schedule and book lawn care faster with a few clicks. Also, it is possible to create a template and make automated bookings monthly/yearly. No human errors or time slips: everything is simple and fast.
- Lowerbusiness expenses. As you can see, automation of business processes is a must in today’s competitive world. A quality app allows you to significantly reduce costs for personnel, planning, quality control, etc. This software also makes concluding a lawn care “agreement” extremely fast, significantly reducing time spent.
- Contribution to customer satisfaction and fruitful cooperation. Customers can write down all crucial information concerning lawn care and related processes, so service providers can check it and keep up with it. The better the work is done, the more chances the customer will contact the same specialist again.
So, the lawn mowing app is a convenient tool for improving business processes, reducing costs, automating interaction with clients and customer support. In fact, such software allows you to free yourself from running routine tasks and concentrate on more important things.
Top Examples Of On-Demand Lawn Mowing Apps
What is unique about existing lawn care apps? Lawnmower on-demand application development implies that you need to use competitors’ apps and delve deeper into their functionality.
Lawn Buddy app is targeted at lawn care professionals teams where a team manager can communicate with customers and manage their team of lawnmowers and relevant specialists. When the job is completed, the manager sends an invoice to customers. Lawn Buddy has route optimization for getting the fastest way to do the job, crew tracking feature, and even marketing tools to attract more customers.
The app was created in the USA in 2013. It works all over the US and Canada regions, and it allows users to find lawn and landscaping services nearby. The app provides a wide range of services like snow plowing, gardening, lawn mowing, mulch delivery, trimming, fertilization, etc. A rich user interface and thought-out UX made the PlowzWowz app one of the most popular ones.
Another app for US-based citizens. LawnGuru makes it possible for users to enter their addresses and use automated measuring tools to get instant pricing. The same as PlowzWowz, the range of services of LawnGuru is not limited to lawn mowing only. Users can find all services related to yard improvement.
As we can see, all these products are united by a wide but relatively concise functionality aimed at a specific target audience. Also, every successful app for lawn care business is about communicating effectively with customers and responding quickly to their inquiries. All this together provided by a professional interface design that takes into account the tiniest details and possible user wishes.
How Can You Monetize A Lawn Care App Like Uber?
Gaining a profit is the primary goal of any app development. Lawn mowing apps like Uber let you monetize them in two ways, and you can even choose both of them.
- In-app advertisement. This is a widespread monetization practice in the majority of apps. That is why you can start integrating ads into your app. Remember that advertising in your app must be unobtrusive since it will make customers abandon your app and find something better.
- Fixed fee. When users pay for hired services, a fixed percentage of the amount will be transferred to you as an app owner. The percentage can be changed if the number of users is growing.
- Hourly-based payments. You can set hourly for the services you offer. This payment method may be more convenient for some customers because they know exactly what they are paying for.
Don’t forget that part of your app’s monetization and bottom line of successful lawn care business profitability is the unique proposition to users. The software should provide an unforgettable user experience combined with essential features.
How To Start Up A Lawn Care Business And Must-Have Features To Include
If you want to build an on-demand mowing app wisely and avoid failures, we recommend following a specific algorithm of actions. We have prepared steps for you to consider and a list of features for your lawn care app.
Research Comes First
The process of starting a lawn mowing business is no different from starting any other product: each option requires a deep and comprehensive research of the environment. Your target market is the battleground for customers and their loyalty.
So, know your competitor. And know your user. It is an established truth to remember. You should analyze competitor’s apps and spell everything out to make your app better than they did. Also, you need to FOCUS on apps that people in your region use. If you enter the market with a new proposition, you must understand the target audience’s demand and the value your app brings.
Diversify Categories Of Lawn Care
If you want to stand out among competitors, your app should provide additional services apart from lawn mowing. At least, gardening and snow shoveling as well. The more services your app offers, the more users and services providers it has. And it directly impacts profit and accessibility.
Besides, add a rewards-based payment system with gamification. That is, users may be rewarded for cashless payments, for example. Or the gamified payment process may be an additional source of bonuses and discounts. Don’t be afraid to experiment with your app.
Hire A Customer Care Team
Do you remember that almost all on-demand apps like Uber have customer support features? In case of disputes or controversies between user and service provider, the team helps resolve all problems encountered. That is what your app should have — a support team.
The number of employees will depend on the app size. But you must keep in mind that users don’t like to wait — they want to get the assistance right away. Thus, ensure instant help to your audience in case it needs one.
Let Users Navigate Through Your App Easily
Design is what all users will pay attention to first. High usability of user interface and simple navigation — users want your app to be accessible and transparent. On-demand lawn mowing services are predominantly created using green and white colors (associated with grass), you can do the same. However, designers can add unique UI and special features to make your app stand out.
Also, your lawn business app should provide an exceptional, ultimate user experience. It’s about a convenient, joyful and straightforward journey leading clients to the services they need. That is why UI/UX design is so important: it is the main guide for the customer.
As you can see in the picture of our lawn mowing concept, it doesn’t contain redundant elements. Our designers strove to make the onboarding process more intuitive — a large thematic icon, call to action, and button to start. This is what your app must be — encourage customers to start using your app.
Find A Development Team
You need to hire software developers who will build your app. As a rule, development companies provide all-in-one services — UI/UX design, software development, quality assurance. The Cadabra Studio team often creates products from scratch, and we know how this process works.
Another advantage of cooperation with a development company is that designers and developers communicate tightly, so your product is created in a close-knit team where all processes are well-established.
As for the development platform, we recommend starting with a landing page that will contain basic info about your product and a call-to-action button to download the mobile app. For a start, it can be an iOS app only. When the app gains momentum, you can order the development of the Android version additionally.
App Store Optimization (ASO)
When the app is released, it is not the end. You must optimize your app for the app store to provide it with a higher rank. ASO, or App Store Optimization, is the set of activities that lets you promote your app in Google Play and App Store, depending on the software platform.
ASO includes text and graphic optimization. Text optimization means that you will use relevant keywords so that users can find your app. Graphic optimization implies the use of icons, video, screenshots to capture the attention of users. If you do everything right, your app will beat the competition in search results.
However, for efficient ASO, you must not forget that your app should be unique and it isn’t a clone of existing competitors. And if you use templates and app builders for lawn mowing app development, you won’t get custom functionality and a wide range of features. That is why we recommend you cooperating with software developers like Cadabra Studio to create an exceptional and outstanding product from scratch.
How much will it cost to build your lawn mowing app? Get in touch with Cadabra Studio to get a detailed estimate.
Must-Have Features For Your Lawn Care App
Lawn mowing services must be created in two versions — for users and mowers. However, their features won’t be too different. We will list all general basic features for the lawnmower on-demand application development you may be interested in.
- Lawn info. You need to add more information about your lawn — address, amount of acres, photos, etc. You can see the example created by Cadabra Studio in the picture below. Our designers’ intention was to make a UX as simple as possible to optimize the interaction between the user and the app.
- Search. Let users find lawn care service providers nearby. You can also add a mapping feature to locate specialists right on the map in real-time mode. Search is the essential feature any app must include.
- Filter. If your app provides a few services, add a filter that will help users sort them by category, price, location, etc. The filter example is in Cadabra Studio’s concept below. Users can select the type of work they need at the moment. With the help of simple but comprehensible illustrations, this process becomes interactive and convenient.
- Customer support. Interaction with the customer support team is an integral part of your service. Apart from communication with humans, you can also add an AI-based chatbot to answer frequently asked questions. It will be a more expensive option, but it will reduce the number of recurrent questions.
- Push notifications. The app will inform users or service providers about all activities. It prevents both parties from opening the app every minute and checking the feedback/status/update.
- Scheduling. Users can schedule lawn care at the time suitable for them. In turn, service providers may accept or reject the appointment. For lawn care services. the correct scheduling without overlaps is critical because it’s an element of customer satisfaction.
- Payment. Customers should be able to send payments, while specialists can receive payments when the job is done and the customer confirms it. Payments processing must be performed via reliable payment gateways like Braintree, Stripe, PayPal.
- Status update. The update of status notifies users on what stage their order is. A new order, in progress, or completed — it is much more convenient rather than spending time for permanent visual inspection of lawn condition.
- Chat. Text or video chat is required for communication between users and lawn care specialists or customer care employees.
- Ratings/reviews. Once the job is completed, the user can rate a specialist and leave a review. The rating system helps other users find the best professional. Such a feature will help you get closer to the user, understand his needs, preferences and requirements.
- Social login. The app will contain a personal profile for each user and lawn care service provider, so they need to sign up and create their accounts. The authorization process will become faster if social media profiles are used. Let both parties log in using their /Google/ accounts.
- Admin panel. This feature will be helpful for you as an app owner. The admin panel will be available in the web version as a CMS (content management system). Admin functions let you edit the app, change pricing, services, manage all users, etc. Such functionality is indispensable for fast changes management, which is crucial for most lawn care businesses
Note! We have presented our concept design for a few features only, but our goal was to show you the example of your future lawn mowing app. If you need one, we can implement the app according to your needs, and the feature list can be extended.
It’s not enough to own a lawn care business ; you’ll have to manage it successfully, which means adapting your services to your customer’s needs and constantly updating your app.
Ideas For Future Or How To Achieve With Your App
You always need to update your app and provide users with more exciting features. Besides, the app should keep up with modern trends. However, it doesn’t mean that all innovative technologies must be integrated into your app right now. One or two technologies may be enough if they are correctly applied.
- Artificial intelligence. AI remains one of the most popular technologies in recent years. And lawn mowing app can use AI for voice recognition, automated photo classification (for example, the system can identify what type of service your lawn needs). Besides, machine learning algorithms can be applied in chatbots to reduce the customer support team’s workload.
- Augmented reality. Remember Pokemon Go fever? Many people ran around the city to catch a rare pokemon with their smartphone and app. It is not so popular today, but augmented reality technology still remains. With AR tech, your lawn mowing app can show customers how their lawn will be cleaned, what tools can be used, etc. AR is not used for gaming only anymore.
- Scalability. If you ever decide to integrate any tech mentioned above (or any other), your app must be scalable. That is, it must be flexible enough to add new features faster, and developers won’t need to rebuild the whole app.
- Web app. You also need to consider web application development — “lawn mowing services” is a popular request in Google search engine. You can build a progressive web app that doesn’t require installation. So users can order mowing services via the web app. Check more info about the benefits of PWA and how it differs from native apps.
The landscaping business is as competitive as any other. And implementing the right technologies gives you very important trumps that dramatically change the game. The assistance of skilled developers will be mandatory if you don’t want to fail. That is why you should contact Cadabra Studio to make your project right. You also can find out about our experience in app development here.
The Cost Of Starting A Lawn Care Business
Even when you know how to start up a lawn mowing business, you might be interested in the final cost of lawn care service development. Its cost will depend on the number of additional features, the user interface’s complexity like animated design, number of platforms, etc.
If you need a rough estimate, you can look at the info below.
The average hourly rate at Cadabra Studio is 35-50 per hour. UI/UX design creation may take 70 hours minimum and 150 hours maximum. Thus, the design cost will be 2.4-3.5K (minimum) and 5.2-7.5K (maximum).
The development process will include the features we listed above, and the total cost of an essential MVP development of the lawn mowing app (including design cost) may be within the 28-35K range.
However, note again that the estimate is rough, and it is impossible to calculate the cost of your app until you provide us with detailed project requirements.
So we need to calculate the cost of your Uber for lawn care app development when we have all your requirements and expectations. Our business development managers will provide you with all the required information on cost, timelines, tech stack and answer all your questions. Contact us at any time!
How to Start a Lawn Care Business in 10 Steps
You’ve always wanted to be your own boss – and you love working outdoors.
That’s why you’re ready to learn how to start a lawn care business.
Lawn care is a competitive industry, but it’s got some of the most affordable startup costs around. It’s great for people who like to set their own schedules. And if you want to get paid to exercise, starting a lawn care business can do that, too.
If you’re not sure where to begin, no worries. Read on for a step-by-step guide on how to start your own lawn care business. From competitor research to building up your customer base, we’ve got you covered!
Top 10 Tips for Starting a Lawn Care Business
Check out the competition.
Don’t fire up the mower just yet! First, take a look at the demand for lawn care in your area. Are you near a few residential neighborhoods with big yards? Or maybe there’s a call for commercial jobs, maintaining green spaces for local businesses.
Commercial or residential, remember that potential clients may already work with an established lawn care company. That means you should look not just for possible customers, but for ways to differentiate yourself from your competition. What can you offer that they can’t?
To answer that, you’ll need to do some research. The easiest way is to start online. Google “lawn care” and check out the local business listings. Take a look at their websites, especially the services offered and any price lists.
If you want to start your own lawn care business, you probably know at least a couple of people who are already working in the industry. See what they think: How hard is it to find customers? Is there a demand for specialized skills, like working with pesticides or fertilizers? You’d be surprised how helpful a simple conversation can be.
Whatever the answers, make sure you have a solid understanding of the market before you begin.
Sharpen your skills.
You’ve got a good idea of the market; now it’s time to take a look at what you do best – and what skills you might want to add.
Lawn care is a physically tough job, no doubt about it. But for many lawn care professionals, being outside on a beautiful day makes the hard work worthwhile. You not only make lawns look their best, you can help clients solve problems. But it takes specialized knowledge.
The more you learn, the more valuable you become to your clients. That shady spot under a tree where grass won’t grow? Recommend a solution, make it happen, and they’ll see you as a trusted expert.
Or maybe a prospective customer asks about applying a pesticide to get rid of persistent weeds. Every state requires certification for commercial pesticide use. The pesticide certification process doesn’t take long and it’s cost-effective, especially if it means you can do jobs that other lawn care businesses can’t.
One more thing: How are your people skills? You’ll be bidding on jobs, talking with customers every day, and making sure their expectations are met. You want to present yourself as a true professional: friendly, responsible, and knowledgeable. If clients like your personality as well as your work, they’ll be excited to recommend you to their friends and neighbors.
Check with your town to see if you need a business license.
Once you have a good feel for what your customer base might look like, it’s time to get official with the town your business is located in.
Each state has different requirements around getting a business license, which, let’s face it. can be pretty annoying to find.
Fortunately, you can check out our Business License by State hub, which lists everything you need to know about getting a business license for your lawn care service in your state.
Simply choose your state and follow the instructions in the resulting blog article.
Get lawn care insurance ASAP.
Business insurance might not seem like something that should be at the top of your to-do list.
But as soon as you walk onto your first customer’s lawn, you’re putting yourself. and your business. at risk. You could end up accidentally causing property damage, or you could have a customer who sues you for something that you didn’t even do (hey, it happens!).
Or you could have some of your lawn care equipment stolen from your truck while you’re working on a job site.
Whatever the scenario, it’s likely that business insurance. especially general liability insurance with tools equipment coverage. can keep you protected.
Here’s how it works: Business insurance can be tailored with specific policies that cover the common risks you’re exposed to on a day-to-day basis. For example, as a lawn care specialist, you’re probably exposed to property damage risks (like accidentally killing a customer’s prized bush or backing into a stone wall, causing some of it to fall over).
Based on what those risks are, you can get policies to offer protection, so you don’t have to pay out claims from your own personal bank account.
Additionally, if you have employees, getting workers compensation isn’t just important for protecting your business. it may also be a legal requirement where you live.
Fortunately, you don’t have to hunt around to find the right insurance coverage. Here at Simply Business, we specialize in helping you find lawn care insurance policy options that fit their needs and their budget.
For example, we can help you find a general liability insurance policy (with tools and equipment coverage) for as low as 22.50 per month.
And with the ability to compare quotes from the nation’s top insurance providers, you can feel confident that you’re getting the right coverage at the right price.
Get Insured in Under 10 Minutes
Get an affordable customized policy in just minutes. So you can get back to what matters: Your business.
Get the right tools and equipment!
We just talked about how important it is to protect your tools and equipment with the right business insurance coverage.
Now let’s chat about what tools and equipment you’ll actually need to start your lawn care business. Keep in mind that this isn’t a definitive list; rather, it’s meant to help give you an idea of what you absolutely need right out the gate as a landscape contractor:
You’ll use your mower every day – so do yourself a favor and start with a self-propelled one instead of a basic push mower. You can get a well-made entry-level model for around 400.
If you want to get a little (okay, a lot) fancier, look into a zero-turn deck mower, starting at around 3,000. That’s a major purchase, so unless you’re doing big lawns right off the bat, you might want to hold off.
And don’t forget an edger to make your lawns look really sharp. Expect to spend around 160 for a high-quality model.
With string trimmers, you tend to get what you pay for. So, while you could spend as little as 40 for a new trimmer, it probably won’t stand up to commercial use – and you’ll just end up buying another one later. Top models cost around 400, but you can get a very good gas trimmer for around 175-200.
As with string trimmers, leaf blowers can be bought very cheaply – but those won’t stand up to commercial use. A gas-powered backpack leaf blower from a reputable company will cost around 190 or so.
Now, how will you get to the job site? Lawn care involves a lot of driving, so you’ll need a dependable truck and a trailer for your equipment. While a brand-new truck can cost 30,000, one that’s only three or four years old should still be in great shape, but more affordable – say, 20,000. Shop thoughtfully, take your time, and your wallet will thank you.
You might be able to find a trailer on Craigslist or Ebay for a reasonable price, too. A new 5-by-8 landscaping trailer will cost around 1,000, but a used version will be quite a bit less.
Safety gear and other equipment
Don’t forget to budget for eye and ear protection, gloves, rain gear, and two gas cans (one for gas, one for gas-oil mix, depending on your equipment). Overall, set aside maybe 200 for these items.
Think of the above equipment as your “starter pack” when learning how to start a lawn care business. Everything else can be picked up along the way, especially once you start raking in money.
Invest in software to track your time.
When talking to lawn care experts, one of the first things they advise new lawn care professionals is to invest in software to track time on the job.
Here’s why: Lawn care specialists spend a lot of time on the road, driving around to different customer properties. All that time on the road can really add up. and unless you’re tracking the time it takes to get to and from your customers’ homes, you could end up losing out on money.
Time-tracking software can help you accurately scope out your projects for the day, so you can plan the most optimal route to each job site.
Additionally, time-tracking software can come in handy if you have any employees who might be at other properties.
Finally, time-tracking software can help you accurately invoice your customers for time spent on their properties, especially if you charge an hourly rate.
How to Start a Lawn Care Business in Florida
Those hot Florida summers can take their toll on residential and commercial green spaces. Grass, shrubs, gardens, and trees struggle in the heat and require the proper maintenance and care.
Starting a lawn care company in the Sunshine State can be a promising and lucrative business venture. From the low start-up costs to the opportunity to operate year-round, the lawn care industry is a great option for anyone with an entrepreneurial spirit who has always dreamt of owning their own business.
This article will tell you everything you need to know about starting a lawn care company in Florida, including what sort of licensing and insurance you need, key considerations, and step-by-step instructions to get your business off the ground.
How hard is it to start a lawn care business?
Starting any business takes work, but luckily, the lawn care business has fewer barriers than other businesses. The start-up costs in particular are relatively low, so getting the businesses up and running is very doable.
At a minimum, you’ll need the right landscaping tools and equipment required to do the job (these can be owned or rented), a company vehicle to transport the tools, equipment, workers, and the proper licensing and certifications.
Is a lawn care business profitable?
Lawn care businesses can be profitable due to their low start-up and maintenance costs. Lawn care and landscaping business owners can earn between 5,000 to 50,000 in their first year and as much as 160,000 to 250,000 after a few years once they are established.
Pros and cons of starting a lawn business
Like any business, there are pros and cons to starting a lawn care business. The pros outweigh the cons but it’s important to be aware of each before getting started.
- Consistent work: Grass, shrubs, bushes, and trees never stop growing, so there’s always a need for someone to be tending to them. Most homes and businesses come with a green space or outdoor area that requires maintenance, so lawn care businesses will always be in demand.
- Minimal seasonality: The best part about starting a lawn care business in Florida is that there’s no barrier to work due to seasonality, so you can run a successful and lucrative business all year round. Between June and October (the wet season) there could be a slight dip in demand and revenue but overall, Florida is a great place for a lawn care company to succeed.
- Opportunity to expand services: In addition to lawn care services, lawn care companies can expand their offerings to sell related products such as fertilizer, soil, plants, and more.
- Work can be learned on the job: No formal training is required for yourself as the business owner or your team. Usually, minimal instruction is needed to onboard someone new and the learning curve isn’t very steep, making it easy to bring on new employees when you need the extra help.
- Scalable: With a lawn care business, you’re able to expand and build out other service offers such as landscaping services, sod installation, gardening, tree trimming, weeding, and more.
- Competitive market: Depending on your location, the lawn care industry may already be saturated with other lawn care companies, making it difficult to break into and gain traction.
- Location-specific work: Lawn care work requires you to be in those areas that need the work. This means you and your team might be doing a lot of traveling or driving to get to certain job sites.
- High turnover and hard to find “good help”: Since the job requires no formal training, this can lead to a high turnover rate. Finding good help that will show up on time, consistently, and have a good work ethic can also be challenging.
- Weather-dependent: Since lawn care is outdoor work, it can only be done safely and efficiently when the weather cooperates. Things like rain or heavy winds can put a strain on your scheduled jobs. You’ll also want to wait until the lawns are dry before tending to them as wet grass can clog your equipment.
- Economically dependent: Lawn care is a luxury and is one of the first services to go during a recession or economic downturn.
Do you need any previous experience to start a lawn care business?
You don’t need any experience or education to start a lawn care business. Education like a degree, diploma, or certificate in business or business management would be helpful, but isn’t required.
How much does it cost to start a landscaping business in Florida?
It costs between 25,000 to 40,000 to start a landscaping business in Florida. Here is where your money will go during the startup period:
- Equipment such as mowers, trimmers, edgers, leaf blowers, etc.
- Smaller handheld tools such as shovels, rakes, pruners, lawn sprayers, buckets, bags,
- Personal protective equipment (PEE) like work gloves, earplugs, and eye protection.
- Company vehicles such as trucks or vans to transport the crew, equipment, and tools from job site to job site.
- Equipment trailer to haul larger equipment that won’t fit in the vehicles.
- Cost of a business license, business insurance, auto insurance, vehicle tracking and driver management software, etc.
Costs will vary depending on the size of the company you’re starting with, how many jobs you have lined up, the size of your crew, and some internal policies such as providing your team with uniforms or not.
Since start-up costs are quite minimal for a landscaping business in Florida, it doesn’t take a lot of capital to get started. With such low entrance fees, starting a landscaping business in Florida is a lucrative and viable option for someone with an entrepreneurial mindset.
Common mistakes when starting a lawn care business
If you’re thinking about starting a lawn care business or you’re in the process of doing so, be sure to avoid these common mistakes that can cause your small business to struggle or fail.
- Borrowing too much money to start
- Setting unrealistic expectations
- Using cheap or second-hand equipment
- Over promising
- Not prioritizing administrative work
- Mismanaging finances
- Scaling too soon
- Poor communication
- Lacking motivation
- Lacking experience
Pro tip: Find yourself a business mentor who has entrepreneurial experience for you to ask questions and learn from to help you avoid some of these pitfalls.
How to start a lawn care business in Florida
Here are the steps to starting a lawn care business and things to implement for success.
Create a business plan
Creating a business plan is the best practice when it comes to starting any new business. This is a place to create a detailed document of all things related to your business and help you stay organized—especially when you’re getting started.
Your business plan should include the following:
- The business name.
- Whether the business will be caring for residential or commercial lawns (or both).
- Whether you plan to be a sole proprietorship or manage a team.
- A detailed breakdown of your start-up and ongoing costs.
- Your offer strategy (including a detailed list of what services you’ll provide and how many lawns you can care for per week).
- Your pricing structure and strategy (including services pricing, profit margins, employee payments, etc.) – don’t forget to consider lawn size, shape, and slope when determining price.
- The business’ marketing strategy and how you plan to generate customers and leads.
When starting a lawn care business there are several start-up costs to consider and account for when putting together your business plan.
- Equipment and tools (rent vs. buy)
- Company vehicle or vehicles
- Licensing and certifications
- Web development SEO
- Marketing advertising
Most lawn care companies offer services like:
- Leaf Blowing
Get the required licensing and certifications
To run any business you need the proper licensing and certifications. To operate a lawn care business in Florida, you’ll need to get a business license from the Florida Department of State Division of Corporations. If you plan to hire staff, you will need to have an Employer Identification Number (EIN).
If you plan to offer any fertilizer services, you’ll want to look into getting your Fertilizer Application Certification. It should be noted that there are special certifications for herbicide applications as well.
To be absolutely certain of what licensing and certifications you need, we recommend contacting the government offices for the Florida city or county where you live.
Additional certifications that are relevant to a lawn care business include:
- Exterior Technician
- Horticulture Technician
- Lawn Care Technician
- Lawn Care Manager
- Business Manager
- Certified Irrigation Technician
- Certified Landscape Irrigation Auditor
- Certified Golf Irrigation Auditor
- Certified Irrigation Contractor
- Certified Irrigation Designer
- Certified Landscape Water Manager
The certifications above are offered by the National Association for Landscape Professionals (NALP) and the Irrigation Association.
Purchase the necessary equipment
To run a successful lawn care company, you’re going to need the right equipment. Don’t cheap out on this part of your start-up process. Your equipment is a large part of what makes your business possible and profitable.
Some of the equipment you’ll need for your business may include:
- Riding mower
- Push lawn mower
- Leaf blower
- Lawn bags
- Lawn spreader
- Lawn sprayer
- Assorted additional tools (like garden hoses, spades, etc.)
You’ll also need to purchase things like personal protective equipment (PPE) and uniforms (simple t-shirts with your company logo will work to start) for yourself and your employees and also find a place to store all of your equipment—whether that be a garage, shop, or storage unit.
Secure a work vehicle
You’ll need to secure a work vehicle or several work vehicles that are large enough to transport the lawn care equipment and technicians. Depending on the vehicles, you may also need to use a trailer to haul equipment. Whichever wheel combination you go with, these vehicles should be safe, reliable, tracked, and ideally labeled with your company logo and contact information.
Get the required insurance
As a business owner, you’ll need to take out a few insurance policies to protect yourself and your company from financial loss. At a minimum, you should take out general liability insurance, equipment insurance, workers’ compensation, and auto insurance.
Build a website
To run a business these days, you need to have a website. For a lawn care business, the website doesn’t have to be anything too extravagant. We recommend working with a web developer to create a site that’s easy to navigate, lists your lawn care services, includes multiple ways for customers to contact you and request a free estimate, and some images of the lawn work you’ve done. Your site should also link to any social media platforms you might be on.
Market your services
Starting a business is one thing, but telling people about it is a whole other ballgame. If no one knows your business exists, how will you start getting customers? As a lawn care business owner, you can market your services through paid online advertisements on Google and social media platforms. You can also market your business by sponsoring a local community event, advertising in the local papers, on message boards, incentivizing referrals and so on. Once you’ve done a few jobs, you can ask recent customers if you can put a small branded sign on their lawn to show that you were responsible for the well-tended-to yard.
Set up vehicle tracking
If you have a team, no matter how small, it’s Smart to install GPS tracking for your company vehicles. This allows you to see where your fleet vehicles are in real-time while collecting valuable data on driver behavior and vehicle health. Understanding how your company vehicles are being used can help you better manage your drivers and save money on fuel costs and maintenance. GPS vehicle tracking can also help small business owners save money on their auto insurance.
Learn more about the advantages of vehicle tracking for small businesses or request a demo with Force by Mojio GPS Fleet Tracking to see first-hand how beneficial and easy fleet management can be.
Lawn care can be a lucrative business…if set up correctly
If you’ve been contemplating starting a lawn care business in Florida, this is a great time to start. Follow the steps above to keep your lawns and your business thriving.
How to Start a Lawn Mowing Business: A Clear Path to Success
Lawn mowing businesses are growing in popularity, so now is a great time to learn how to start a lawn mowing business.
While you probably don’t need much convincing if you’re reading this post, but a great reason for starting a business can be that there are plenty of grass lawns attached to residential homes and commercial properties that require regular maintenance.
This guide will cover everything you need to know in regard to how to start a lawn mowing business from scratch. Read along for some helpful tips!
What is a Lawn Mowing Business?
A lawn mowing business helps clients ensure that their lawns are in the best condition possible by cutting the grass.
Getting Started: The Pre-Planning Steps
Doing your research early on will ensure that everything is in order, when you launch your business. When starting a lawn mowing you are going to need equipment and tools, so understanding what you will need and how much it will cost is a good place to start. You should also do your research to find the best deals to optimise the profitability of your business.
It is important to choose an appropriate location where you can operate your business. You will need a location where you are close to all you clients, so that you can provide an efficient service.
The next step involves thinking about how you will deliver your service logistically. A lawn mowing business involves expensive equipment such as a lawn mower, an edger, a weed trimmer and a leaf blower. Such heavy equipment also needs to be transported since the business needs to be fully mobile. In this case, a truck might be the transportation of choice.
The purchase of all this is well outside the financial capacity of many new business owners. Instead, a hire purchase agreement would allow owners to hire the equipment for a set period of time through installment payments. The agreement gives you the option to buy equipment at its cessation. It’s definitely worth looking into hire purchase agreements to ensure you are legally protected.
Develop a Lawn Mowing Business Plan
Excellent planning will often lead to success. Using your research, you should develop a formal business plan to guide your business. This might include your:
You can always seek assistance from a professional accountant or business lawyer to assist you with this, if you aren’t confident in developing a business plan yourself. It’s important to revisit and review your business plan regularly.
Determine your Business Name
Now you need to decide on a business name. Once you decide on your name, you can check the availability of the business name you have chosen.
If the name is available, you can then register your business as a trademark to ensure that you have the exclusive rights to your business name throughout Australia.
Determining your Business Structure
You will need to decide on a business structure to establish your business plan. Consider whether you will operate as one of the following.
- A sole trader is someone who owns and operates a business under their personal name.
- A partnership is when two or more people come together to form a business.
- A company is when you register your business as a separate entity from your personal affairs.
You should contemplate which structure will work best for your business goals. It is important to know what the legal ramifications are of each structure and how they can affect how you operate.
Get a free legal document when you sign up to Lawpath
Sign up for one of our legal plans or get started for free today.
Registering your Business
You need to register for a few things in order to make your business official. For instance:
- A business name
- An Australian Business Number (ABN) to help the Australian Tax Office (ATO) and customers identify your business.
- It would be good practice to also register your business as a company (ACN) so you can benefit from limited liability.
- Register your Tax requirements.
- Ensure that all relevant licences or permits are valid.
Insurance is the most important step when setting up your business. It is imperative that you protect yourself and your business from any legal action. Firstly, you will need a type of public liability insurance, this will be beneficial for you and your business when customers or staff experience injuries on site or otherwise.
Start Your Business With What You Have
Public liability insurance from insurance companies such as BizCover can help you protect your property and your employees from damage or injury.
Additionally, you will want to ensure you have worker’s compensation set up for these instances. Finally, you will need a form of coverage for all your equipment to protect against loss, damage or theft.
You will want to consider hiring additional staff to help ensure that your business runs smoothly, especially as it expands. You will need to decide how many employees you are looking to hire and what type of employment they will receive. Will they be full time, part time or casual workers?
You will then need the appropriate employment agreements drawn up and signed. There are different types of employees that you can hire, learn more about how they may affect your business in the Webinar below.
Marketing Your Lawn Mowing Business
Now all you need to have a successful business is working on appropriate jobs. When considering how to advertise your lawn mowing business to help you attract individuals or companies in need of lawn mowing work you may want to implement a strategic marketing plan to cover all your bases. This will allow you to gain insight into your target market.
It will also be beneficial in helping you understand what is the most effective marketing method to reach your target market. Some marketing methods you may choose to use include starting a social media page or putting an advertisement in your local newspaper. Another simple and effective approach of reaching new customers is through word of mouth.
Having an online presence is important even for construction companies. Using websites like Shopify or GoDaddy can help you create a well-established business so that your customers can easily find you. Additionally, you should set up and maintain a website which means you need to consider any website terms and conditions to ensure that your customers are safe.
Considering the Law
While there are no formal licensing requirements to start a lawn mowing business, it’s important to consider what you will need to safeguard all your hard work.
Starting a business from scratch can be a lengthy process. You may choose to buy a franchise of an existing lawn mowing business.
This will save time on establishing your business image and reputation. However this means that you will be required to report on performance, potentially be required to meet performance targets and have additional duties owed to your franchisor. Read more on what obligations franchisees are subject to in our franchisee guide.
Alternatively, if your business is successful, you can potentially leverage that success to grow into a franchise.
Legal Documents you will need
To get up and running, you should consider these legal documents so that you can protect your business. Some documents you should consider include:
- A Services Agreement can outline the service you provide so that your customer can know what to expect.
- A Employment Agreement can outline your employee’s responsibilities and their obligations to your business.
- A Sub-Contractor Agreement can be useful if you need to employ another business or sole-trader when operating your business.
- A Franchise Agreement can help you set out what is expected of the franchisee and franchisor.
- A Refund Policy allows for you to inform your customers of your refund policy.
- A Tax Invoice allows you to create a formal request for payment and ensure your records are up to date.
- A Hire Purchase Agreement sets out the obligations, terms and conditions regarding the rental of equipment.
How Lawpath Can Help
At Lawpath, we can help guide you through starting your own lawn-mowing business. One of our Experienced Lawyers can provide you with all the legal information and requirements necessary for your business to succeed.