How to Create a Lawn Care Business Plan

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📝Key Takeaways:

  • Writing your business plan should be your first move if you’re just starting a lawn care company. During the startup phase, it will assist you in getting the most out of your time and resources.
  • Connecting the dots between your company’s objectives and the costs involved in achieving them is what the financial planning section is for. Plan out your entire incoming and outgoing costs for the upcoming year.
  • You can take it a step further by deciding what that projection should look like in three, five, or even ten years.

Starting a new lawn care company is an excellent way to become a business owner with few hurdles to overcome.

It mostly requires you to get out in society, connect with potential clients, and secure jobs to care for lawns. However, running a successful business entails far more than just day-to-day business operations.

Watch this:

A lawn care business plan is essential for long-term success. It will help you work through your ideas about daily operations and your revenue-generating strategy.

A business plan may seem to some small business owners like a ton of paperwork that needs to be quickly completed. However, a business plan outlines the work you must do to reach your financial goals.

This blog will cover all the sections you need to cover in your lawn care business plan

Let’s get to them one by one!

Steps to Create a Lawn Care Business Plan as a Contractor

1. Decide what kind of lawn care business you want to start

It would be best to determine beforehand whether you want to focus on residential or commercial lawn care. These decisions will influence your business plan in every way. 

Your capability to generate income will depend on the kind of services you’ll offer and how big you presume your own lawn care business can grow.

According to a 2021 survey by Lawn & Landscaping Magazine, 19% of lawn care companies made between $50,000 and $199,999, and 23% made less than $50,000.

Additionally, 28% of landscaping and lawn care companies made $1 million or more. You are unlikely to start your lawn care business with a $1 million budget. However, you are not required to enter at the bottom.

The majority of business plans include a descriptive company summary, executive summary, or mission statement that sheds light on an overview of your lawn maintenance business.

2. Work on your lawn care business overview

A business overview provides a bird’s-eye view of your company. The following are some of the topics covered in this section of your business plan for your lawn care service:

2.1. Business description

In your business summary, describe your company in detail, mentioning what you do, where you do it, how you do it, and who you work with (commercial or residential clients).

2.2. Ownership

Decide whether your lawn care company is a corporation, LLC, partnership, or sole proprietorship. Obtain a written statement of your ownership structure because each type of business entity has unique rules, regulations, and tax obligations.

2.3. Assets

List any tools or equipment you have at your disposal to run your lawn care business. This includes equipment used in the business, such as a trailer, garage, lawnmower, phones, and computers. Any equipment or tools you might need in the future can be listed separately as well.

2.4. Startup costs

Before launching your lawn care business, assess any startup costs you’ll have to pay. This is especially critical if your lawn care company is just getting started.

Start with the aforementioned assets, then add office supplies, promotional items, company uniforms with brand logo, payroll, and lawn care and maintenance software to automate your business processes.

3. Create a budget that takes expenses and financing into account

Putting a lawnmower in the back of your service vehicle and heading to a job site to start mowing and blowing grass is not what your business is all about. 

Even the most basic lawn care businesses now offer pest control services or sprinkler system repair and maintenance. In addition to supplies, and equipment, you will also need permits and licenses, and more to run your business effectively.

It’s critical to create estimates for your expenses and revenue. To create financial projections for your lawn care business and determine your startup costs, the Small Business Administration provides assistance and resources.

Most business plans include financial projections of up to three years. For the number of customers you’ll have and the expected monthly and annual revenues, you can use excel sheets to create worst-case, best-case, and average scenarios.

Your startup budget should also account for the tools and materials you’ll need to get your lawn care business up and to run. Any equipment you purchase qualifies as an essential tax-deductible expense for your lawn care business.

Here is a list of everything you’ll generally need to purchase:

  • Motorized tools such as leaf blowers, trimmers, and lawnmowers.
  • Manual tools and supplies such as rakes, lawn bags, shovels, and protective gear.
  • Licenses, permits, sales tax requirements, and other city regulatory requirements.
  • Lawn care estimate and invoice software, such as InvoiceOwl, for creating and tracking estimates, invoices, and purchase orders.

Important things like business insurance, accounting expenses, tax deposits, and storage should not be overlooked when preparing your lawn care business plan. Determine where you will store your lawnmowers, hedge trimmers, and leaf blowers, as well as whether you plan to rent a storefront or shop.

You must also decide whether you want to operate your lawn care business from your house. Salary and benefit costs must also be included in your budget. When your projections are complete, you can determine your profit margin with reasonable certainty.

4. Create a list of your lawn care services 

Make a list of your lawn services in your business plan, and along with that, mention how frequently you’ll offer each service. The services you provide may be determined by factors such as

  • Your assets and equipment, which you possess or can lease.
  • The services and rates that your competitors offer in the industry.
  • The services your clients require and the prices they are willing to pay.
  • The need for novel or unconventional lawn care services in the market.
  • Opportunities for seasonal employment, such as installing holiday lights or clearing snow.

The following are the list of services your garden services business plan can include:

  • Grading
  • Yard cleanup and leaf removal
  • Aeration
  • Sodding and returfing
  • Trimming and pruning
  • Weed control
  • Lawn mowing
  • Dethatching
  • Edging
  • Mulching

It’s a wise decision to start out with a few basic services for your lawn care business and expand from there if you’re just getting started.

5. Determine the pricing structure for your landscaping services

Now that you have a clear understanding and perspective of your services and target market, it’s time to consider how to price your commercial lawn care services to achieve an appropriate profit margin for lawn care.

Pricing for your lawn care services should take into account every facet of your business. Determine all of your incoming and outgoing costs before deciding on that pricing:

  • Equipment and overhead expenses
  • Your hourly wage (with and without employee pay)
  • Costs of consumable materials (for instance, fuel and fertilizer)
  • Your profit margin
  • All fees and taxes
  • Any variations for specialized services or materials

6. Conduct a market analysis

Your target market, also known as your ideal client, will be reviewed in this section of your lawn mowing business plan. Note specifics such as

  • If the clients you are aiming for need residential or commercial lawn care.
  • The number of potential customers is there in your area.
  • Ideal customer characteristics ( for instance, age, income, family status, etc.)
  • Customer requirements and preferences that your lawn care business can fulfill.
  • The amount your customers are ready to pay for your lawn care business services.
  • Qualities that customers seek in a lawn mowing business service provider (for instance, speed, quality, price, etc.)
  • Laws or rules that apply to the landscaping industry that you should be aware of.

You can include a summary of any market trends and business opportunities in the market analysis of your lawn care business. Just ensure they’ll assist you in meeting the demands of your ideal client.

7. Analyze your competitors

Knowing your rivals’ identities and the factors that contribute to their success will help you close any service gaps and establish your lawn care business as a serious player in your local market.

Narrow down up to 10 of your top major local competitors. These are landscaping businesses that work with your ideal customers and offer services that are comparable to yours. 

Your competitor analysis in your lawn care business plan should contain the following information:

  • Services provided by your competitors
  • How much they charge for their services
  • How many people are on their team
  • How long have they worked in the landscaping business industry
  • How reliable and well-known their company is for their service business
  • Why prospective clients would prefer them to you (and vice versa)

8. Adopt effective lawn care marketing strategies

You don’t want to start your business and focus on marketing only later. Instead, from the very beginning of your lawn service business plan, marketing strategies should be incorporated.

You can use lawn care marketing strategies like the ones listed below to draw in and retain customers:

  • Lawn care website
  • Lawn care flyers and door hangers
  • Lead generation sites
  • Google and Facebook advertising
  • Temporary lawn signage while you’re working
  • Customer referral program
  • Email marketing
  • Business cards
  • Employee uniforms
  • Vehicle wraps and decals
  • Local business networking

9. Plan for hiring lawn care service employees

Labor costs account for 30-35% of total revenue costs. Because of this, it’s crucial to include an employee budget in your lawn care business plan, even if there is only one employee: you.

Your lawn care business plan should include the following in this segment:

  • Hourly wages or salaries of employees.
  • Local labor costs and living expenses.
  • The number of employees required.
  • Cost, time, and effort to recruit lawn care employees.
  • The average number of lawn care jobs you have per day.
  • The revenue you need to bring in from each job.

If you’re doing the work yourself when you first start out, you don’t need employees right away. But if you do intend to hire, you’ll need to create a job description for a lawn care service provider.

10. Execute your lawn care business plan

The last step is to carry out the procedures you outlined in your business plan.

For instance, if you stated in your lawn care business plan that you hope to have 20 clients by the end of your first month of operation, you will be less likely to achieve this goal than if you hadn’t made any notes at all.

As opposed to a general “as many customers as possible,” specifics help you understand what 20 customers mean for your company.

Similarly, suppose you planned to spend $500 per month on fuel and went over budget this month. If so, you’ll be aware of your cash flow, the number of hours you should put in, and the number of clients you’ll need to turn a profit.

Even though writing a lawn care business plan takes time, the effort will pay off in the long run, ensuring your business’s success.

Stop Wasting Time on Manual Estimates and Invoices Process!

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Frequently Asked Questions
  1. How much does it require to set up a lawn care company?

    Starting a lawn care business can cost as little as $2,000 or as much as $100,000. Your equipment requirements will determine how much you spend.

    Business registration for $150, liability insurance for about $400 per month, and used equipment kept on a service van you already own are all you need to launch a low-budget lawn care operation.

    The cost of operating a lawn maintenance business rises as you add commercial lawn equipment,  staff, trucks, trailers, and an office.

  2. Do you require a license to start a lawn care company?

    Yes, you might need a license to start a lawn care company. Before starting a lawn business, it is best to research your state’s and city’s license requirements, which can be found on your city’s or state’s official website.

Final Words

Running a successful lawn care business necessitates more than just the skill to provide excellent customer service.

When starting a lawn care business, creating a business plan will help you stay on track during the occasionally difficult early stages of operation.

In addition, you’ll need lawn care estimate and invoicing software like InvoiceOwl, to manage the day-to-day operations of your business.

You can automate the process of creating multiple estimates, purchase orders, and invoices completely with the help of InvoiceOwl, thereby avoiding any potential for human error.

It also helps you generate analytical business reports so that you can make better decisions and focus on core business goals.

So, don’t wait up anymore!

Get started with planning your lawn care business plan to drive better results.

Author Bio
Jeel Patel
Jeel Patel

Jeel Patel is the founder of InvoiceOwl, a top-rated estimating and invoicing software that simplifies the invoicing and estimating processes for contractor businesses. Jeel holds a degree in Business Administration and Management from the University of Toronto, which has provided him with a strong foundation in business principles and practices. With understanding of the challenges faced by contractors, he conducted extensive research and developed a tool to streamline the invoicing and estimating processes for contractors. Read More

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