The Ultimate Guide To Starting Your Landscaping Business

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Starting a landscaping business is an exciting and rewarding experience, but it's also not for the faint of heart.

When you're just getting started, it can feel like there's so much to do that you don't know where to start—and when you do start, it can seem like there's nothing left to do.

Don't worry! I've got your back. In this guide, I'll cover everything from what it takes to get started in landscaping through all the steps of launching your new business and beyond.

From finding clients to choosing plants, I'll walk you through each step with expert advice and tips that will help you thrive as a landscaper!

Start a business plan

Starting a business plan is the first step to starting your landscaping business.

The Ultimate Guide To Starting Your Landscaping Business

The business plan is a document that describes your company, its products and services, the market it will serve, and how you plan to make money

It also includes financial projections for at least one year, including sales revenue and expenses. It's an important tool for securing funding from lenders, investors, or other sources of capital.

There are many things to consider when writing a business plan.

You'll want to think about what type of business entity you'll be using (corporation, LLC, sole proprietorship) and whether or not you need a separate legal structure like an LLC or corporation in order to protect yourself from liability in case something goes wrong.

You'll also need to decide how much money you need to get started—and how much risk you're willing to take on financially before turning a profit.

Once you've decided on these things, it's time to write! 

Start by creating an outline of each section of the document: 

Start with the executive summary

The executive summary is the first part of your business plan. It's where you'll want to explain what your company does, how it makes money and why people should care about it. 

The purpose of an executive summary is to attract investors or lenders and let them know how your company will make money.

Describe your company

The next section of your business plan is where you describe the company itself. This should include:

  • What the company does
  • How it makes money (the business model)
  • Why this idea or product is unique or better than what's available on the market now

Describe your customers

In the next section of your business plan, describe who makes up your target market—that is:

  • Who your target customer is
  • How many people are in that group
  • Why they would buy this product or service from you

Define your competition

Defining your competition is an important part of identifying the correct strategies to follow. This should include: 

  • What competitors do (their products and services)
  • Why they are successful or not successful
  • How this product or service is different from what's already on the market

Develop a marketing plan

In this section of your business plan, you will outline the steps that you intend to take in order to market your product or service.

  • What marketing strategies you will use to promote the product or service (advertising, social media, etc.)
  • How much it will cost to implement this strategy
  • Whether there are any existing resources that can be leveraged

Describe your operation and management plan

The following section of your business plan describes how you will operate and manage your business.

  • The type of equipment or facilities needed to manufacture the product or provide the service
  • How much it will cost to acquire this equipment or rent these facilities
  • You can also discuss whether you have any existing resources that could be leveraged for this purpose

Identify financial needs, capital requirements, and cash flow projections

The last part of your business plan should be devoted to explaining how much money you need, and where that money will go. Your projected expenditures for the next five years are especially important because they entail:

  • How much it will cost to acquire or rent the equipment needed to manufacture your product or provide your service
  • You can also discuss whether you have any existing resources that could be leveraged for this purpose

Register your business

Registering your business can be one of the most important steps to starting your landscaping business. You'll need to register with local, state, and federal agencies to ensure that you're complying with all regulations.

Register your business

The first thing you need to do is register as a business with your state's secretary of state's office. This will allow you to open a bank account in your company name and start receiving checks from customers or clients—which means you can pay taxes!

Next up is registering for a sales tax number (if applicable). Most states require that businesses collect sales tax from customers who purchase their products or services; this is determined by where the customer lives. 

If you don't have a physical location where customers can come in and make purchases from you, then it may not be necessary for you to have this number—but it still couldn't hurt!

Finally, if there are any federal regulations that apply specifically to landscapers (such as laws regarding pesticide use), then you'll need to register with those agencies as well. As you can see the process of registering your landscaping business is very complex. That’s why it’s advisable to work with business formation experts like the two in this SmallBusinessHQ comparison guide.

Get licenses and permits

One of the first steps in starting a landscaping business is to get your licenses and permits. While many states require business licenses, you may also need to obtain a permit from the city or county, depending on where you operate.

A license is basically a permission slip, which lets you know that you are allowed to keep your business open.

Licenses are issued by the state government, but they vary from state to state. In some places, it's possible to apply for multiple types of business licenses at once; in others, you must apply separately for each type of license. 

If you're planning on doing any kind of work outside (such as tree removal), there may be additional requirements to meet before obtaining your license.

Permits are similar to licenses in that they let people know what kind of work they can do legally within their jurisdiction and where they can do it

Most cities have different types of permits based on what kind of work will be done (tree removal vs painting) and how much it costs (permit fees). 

Local governments also charge fees for these permits because they allow them access to infrastructure--such as sidewalks--that help keep us safe from harm while performing our jobs safely!

Fortunately, complying with your state’s licensing and permitting requirements doesn’t have to be complicated. You can work with business compliance experts like the ones reviewed by GovDocFiling to manage these needs.

Fund your business

One of the first steps to starting your landscaping business is to fund it. You need capital to buy tools, materials, vehicles, and other equipment that will help you get started and grow your business

Fund your business

You also need money in order to pay yourself a salary while you're launching your company--you can't pay yourself out of profits until you have any!

There are a number of ways to fund a startup landscaping business. One of the most popular methods is through a crowdfunded campaign on platforms like Indiegogo or Kickstarter

These platforms allow people from all over the world to donate money towards your project in exchange for rewards based on their contribution level.

If you're thinking about doing this, we recommend asking friends and family members for donations first--they'll be glad to support you in this way!

Get business insurance

Getting business insurance for your landscaping business is the next step to starting your venture.

The first thing you need to do is get a general liability policy, which covers you if someone gets hurt on your property or if you damage someone else's property. This will help protect you from lawsuits if anyone gets hurt while they're on your property.

Next, get workers' compensation insurance. This will cover medical expenses for workers who get injured on the job, as well as lost wages for those who can't work because of an injury sustained at work.

Also consider getting business interruption insurance, which protects you if something happens that stops you from being able to operate your business as usual—like fire or flood damage—and it lasts longer than expected.

Define your brand

Defining your brand is the next step to starting your landscaping business.

If you're ready to start a landscaping business, you'll want to make sure that both you and the people you work with have the same understanding of what "brand" means for your company. 

Defining your brand isn't just about making sure that everyone knows what color of shirts they should wear when they show up for their shifts.

It's about creating a cohesive vision for the future of your business that will guide every decision you make from now until forever.

Your brand is not just about how customers perceive it, either. It's also about how employees feel about themselves when they're working on behalf of the company, and how they feel about their work when they're off duty. 

A strong brand helps set clear expectations so everyone in the organization understands what kind of work they need to be doing and why it matters.

Defining your brand doesn't have to be hard or stressful—it can actually be fun! 

Think back on all the things that make up who you are as an individual (your hobbies, beliefs, favorite foods), and then think about how those things connect with other people in ways that make them feel like they're part of something bigger than themselves.

Market your landscaping services

Market your landscaping services as the next step to starting your landscaping business.

Market your landscaping services

You've decided to start a landscaping business. You've picked out the perfect name, you've got a logo designed and ready, and you've even found some great clients who need you to come do work for them! Now what?

It's time to start marketing yourself so that people know that you exist and can hire you for their landscaping needs. This is where social media comes in—it's an easy way to get your name out there and connect with potential customers. 

Make sure you have a presence on all of the major platforms: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest… whatever makes sense for your business model

You don't need to spend hours every day posting content; just make sure that when people search for what you offer (say "landscaping" or "hardscaping"), they'll see that you're there.

But don't stop there! You should also consider hosting open houses at homes in your area where potential clients can come meet you and learn more about what you do before hiring you for their project. 

And if possible, host an event at a local community center or business so that people who aren't even thinking about hiring someone right now can learn more about you and the services you offer. 

You can also consider starting a blog, which allows you to share valuable ideas and tips that are relevant to your industry so that people who come across it will see how knowledgeable you are about landscaping.

Invest in the right tools

Starting a landscaping business can be a lot of work. When you're just getting started, you'll want to make sure that you invest in the right tools to make your job easier and more efficient.

One smart tool to invest in is Jobber, the app that streamlines the management of large projects

With Jobber, you can easily organize your clients, schedule appointments, and invoice clients for services rendered. You can even take pictures for each client with their invoice or project details to help keep track of all details.

Jobber also offers a free invoice template so that no matter what kind of business you're running, you'll have everything you need to get started!

Get your landscaping business off the ground today!

Starting your own landscaping business is a great way to follow your passion and make money doing it. You can earn more than you would at a regular job, and you get the satisfaction of knowing you made something beautiful.

To get started, make sure to get all the necessary permits and licenses, and then build up your client base by asking family and friends for referrals. 

It's also important to have an eye for what clients will want—if they're looking for something specific like drought-tolerant plants or native plants, make sure you know how they work so you can advise them on their choices.

Finally, be sure not to overlook the importance of marketing yourself: post flyers in local stores, post ads online, and tell people what you do!

About the author 

Peter Keszegh

Most people write this part in the third person but I won't. You're at the right place if you want to start or grow your online business. When I'm not busy scaling up my own or other people' businesses, you'll find me trying out new things and discovering new places. Connect with me on Facebook, just let me know how I can help.

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