How to Start a Yard Cleaning Business

by Jennifer Lynn Tavernier; Updated September 26, 2017

Many homeowners are so busy that they neglect yard work. Yards require mowing, planting and weeding. A yard cleaning and maintenance business can be a lucrative business. It can be a larger business with a crew of five or a small one-man enterprise. Either way It will require some kind of capital. The necessary equipment can be expensive brand new, so search for deals on used items. This article will discuss the basics to start a two-man operation. Once you have established a happy clientele, word of mouth will spread quickly and your business will expand.

Items you will need

  • Business plan
  • Business permit
  • Business Insurance
  • Truck
  • Equipment: lawnmower, weed trimmer shears, hand fork, small hand cultivator, trowel , weeder, gardening gloves, shovel, fertilizer, lawn bags.
  • Work order forms
  • Receipt book
  • Folders
  • Pens
  • Income ledger
  • Listing in Yellow pages
  • Protective work clothes
  • Natural pesticides
  • Advertising

Starting a yard cleaning business

Step 1

Write a business plan to keep you focused on the steps it takes to start a business. This will also be necessary to show to investors when looking for additional capital. It should include what services you offer, prices charged, amount to get your business started, estimate of operation cost and income projection.

Step 2

Apply for a free Tax ID number online. You can get tax breaks on some of the items purchased for use when operating the business.

Step 3

Check with the state for required permits. Make sure to file the necessary paperwork with either the state or county office.

Step 4

Take out a small business insurance policy. It is necessary to cover any damages to anyone working or to a client's property.

Step 5

Gather the equipment for lawn maintenance. Purchase a dependable work truck to transport all the equipment needed. A four-wheel drive vehicle may be required in more rugged terrain. Two-wheel drive is recommended for city driving.

Step 6

Set up an office in the garage or create a home office. Include a filing cabinet and desk. Put a phone and a receipt pad, pens, income ledger and work order sheets in your desk. Start individual folders for each client in filing cabinet. Keep track of every sale and purchase in the income ledger.

Step 7

Place Yellow Book ad for your lawn care service. Place ad in want ads to hire a crew member.

Step 8

Place ads in paper and on radio for more advertising.

Tips

  • Plan a grand opening at a perfectly maintained yard to show off your services. Include food and beverages and lots of balloons. Give away prizes and certificates for signing up for regular maintenance.

Warnings

  • Dogs are very protective of their domain. Always insist that pets be securely put inside while working.

About the Author

Jennifer Tavernier is a Michigan based writer for Demand Studios, Hub Pages and Triond. Tavernier is majoring in art and design at Northern Michigan University.