Equipment choices

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by TurfWorks10, Sep 13, 2019.

  1. TurfWorks10

    TurfWorks10 Junior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 3

    Hi all,

    I’ve been operating my part time business as a 1 man band the past 2 years handling snow and ice removal as well as lawn care. My primary account is the company I work full time for. I’ve been able to keep up and punch in at 6, however this year my full time gig expanded and went from 4 medium size lots to 7 medium lots. I’ve also got very strong leads on another 2-3 accounts. All locations are within 1 mile.I need to add equipment this year to make it happen and trying to make the smartest choice between a skid loader or another truck.

    Option #1 adding another truck.
    Pros: Smallest investment, cheaper operating cost, ability to throw salt. Ability to add a 2nd lawn care rig and bid other properties.
    Cons: I’ve already got 1 business truck and 1 personal truck. A 3rd truck would not benefit me personally or make my business any more profitable in the off season unless adding another lawn care set up.

    Option #2 adding a skid loader
    Pros: more productivity working the skid and truck together as a team leading to potential bids of other properties. Equipment could be used during summer months to turn profit. Adding a piece of equipment I do not already own to expand services.
    Cons: most expensive, higher operating cost, and I’m in the middle of skid loader country so finding jobs 1-2 guys could handle in the off season might be difficult due damn near everyone but me owning one.

    Any thoughts or advice on which way to go?
  2. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,530

    What about trying out a sub?
    BUFF and iceyman like this.
  3. iceyman

    iceyman PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,136

    Sub might be a good idea.. personally i would go with a skid as it can have year round use and its a nice piece of equipment to have
  4. OP

    TurfWorks10 Junior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 3

    I am definitely leaning towards the skid, but wanted to check myself for wants vs needs as my business is still small.

    I’ve also thought about a sub, but haven’t done enough reading on it as far as insurance, typical rates, etc but I’d like to know more how you guys operate with a sub.

    From a personal stand point, I think would rather have full control over the reliability and quality of the lots I plow. Being that I’ve got 1 account that’s 80% of my business income, if a sub doesnt show, I wouldnt be able to get the lots cleared and would get an ear full.

    If I owned another piece of equipment, and my operator didn’t show, I would still have the option of calling someone else to get there ASAP and run my machine.
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2019
  5. cjames808

    cjames808 Senior Member
    from SE WI
    Messages: 575

    Decisions. I’d do whatever makes you more reliable, faster, and increases firepower. If it fits the bill.

    Skid loader.
  6. FredG

    FredG PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,046

    Could you add your personal truck and skip a big investment for now? Your still working full time. One man show is not a bad thing. This way you could skip the operator and just find a plow truck man.

    Whatever you do don't go to fast and get into financial troubles. Finding someone dependable, smart that will not hurt your equipment or property may not be a easy task, not impossible.

    Do you have the capitol and shop - yard space to store salt? Keep your trucks nice and clean, maintained you can use your trucks for personal and business, many do.

    By all means, if you got a clear view and need the investment add a truck,skid. Don't jump at anything think through good. A man with a full time job and in snow and does not have a whole lot of time to be sporting around in a fluffed up personal truck..Good Luck
    512high likes this.
  7. OP

    TurfWorks10 Junior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 3

    My current business equipment is paid for. I’ve got a 30x40 shop loaded to the gills with tools and machinery. No solution for bulk at this time.

    Selling off my personal truck makes good sense too. It doesn’t get used much, it’s lifted so unable it’s to accept a plow. And it’s paid for, so id have that $$ to roll into a usable work truck that’s still family friendly.

    If I’d “trade” out trucks, I could probably still swing a skid on current business capital with a little help from bank.

    So both? :usflag:
    512high likes this.