Gardening services may seem like a lot of manual labor without proportional pay. However, the National Association of Landscape Professions 2019 report shows that the landscape industry makes about $99 billion each year while employing more than 1 million people.
An LA Times report confirmed that gardeners make about $35-55 per hour. It is a lucrative business, but it can cost upwards of $15,000 to start. If this is out of your budget, you should consider applying for small business loans. This article itemizes all you need to create a successful gardening services business.
Why Start a Gardening Services Business
If you enjoy working with plants and flowers, spreading mulch on a garden, the smell of freshly cut grass, or doing yard work, then gardening could be your calling.
Recently, people have been looking for ways to revamp their residences naturally, resorting to earthy colors and putting an extra shift on the garden. The pandemic-fueled industry saw as much as a 270% rise in sales during its busiest months.
The excellent news is papers like the Guardian seem to think the boom is here to stay since demand has not fallen off, so the industry offers plenty of promise. As gardening requires frequent maintenance, there is an assurance of recurring tasks from clients.
Selecting the Gardening Services Types You Will Offer
The business covers both commercial and residential clients. Here are some of the gardening services you could offer:
1. Outdoor Lighting
One type of business that will add a touch of warmth and excellence to people’s homes is outdoor lighting services. Your job is to set artificial lighting that illuminates a garden and highlights its best angles. Strategically placed lighting will not only improve a garden’s looks but also enhance security.
2. Lawn Maintenance
A well-kempt lawn is an essential feature in a home’s development as it adds monetary value to the property by improving its aesthetics. Your gardening business could offer lawn maintenance services such as:
- Scraping and raking
3. Control and Removal of Pests and Weed
Pests and weeds are a menace to plants, destroying and ruining your garden’s beauty. Your job would be to eliminate pests and weeds before and after you plant.
For best effect, use a combination of chemical and non-chemical methods that suit the soil type, irrigation system, and the type of pest or weed.
4. Snow and Ice Management
Although it’s only seasonal, these services can be lucrative during colder seasons. The job involves cleaning storm debris, removing snow, and preventing and getting rid of melting and ice build-up.
Install, repair, and maintain irrigation systems in both residential and commercial settings. Assess your client’s needs and recommend the best irrigation options, including remote-controlled irrigation systems from a smartphone.
Probably the most common type of gardening service, landscape design entails planting in the right places to make a garden visually pleasing. Landscaping will help maintain its functionality and simultaneously improve the home’s value.
What You Need to Have to Start Your Gardening Business
1. License and insurance
Gardening license laws and insurance requirements differ from state to state. Since all you need are your skills, moving along state lines will not be an issue, but a license will. Acquire a permit wherever you work, which varies depending on the scope of your work.
Although it’s not a requirement, it portrays you as a trained and qualified gardener. A certificate documents your skills, enhancing your job prospects. The Professional Landcare Network and the Tree Care Industry Association provide credible certification.
3. Basic equipment
When starting, you typically do not have enough space and funding. Focus on purchasing only essential pieces of equipment, which you can upgrade as the business begins raking in some cash. Some of the crucial equipment you need include:
- Garden fork
- A hose with an adjustable nozzle
Since professional-grade tools are costly, consider taking small business loans since this is a viable venture.
4. A marketing strategy
Your small gardening business requires aggressive marketing to be competitive. The goal is to win potential clients and retain them as loyal customers. A marketing strategy should assist in:
i. Creating awareness of your business
ii. Launch you ahead of the competition
iii. Establish and target ideal clients
iv. Enhance revenue
If you cannot bootstrap the marketing drive, small business loans come in handy.
Financing your Small Gardening Business
Before looking for financing, ensure a clean credit history, excellent references, impeccable bookkeeping, a solid business plan, and financial reserves. Use the following financing options to get your gardening business off the ground:
SBA loans: Ideal for small businesses as they have long repayment periods and low-interest rates. To enjoy these loans, you must run a for-profit organization, be a small business, and have exhausted other financing options, including personal finance. Once eligible, you may borrow as much as $5 million.
Bootstrapping: In this case, finance the business using your savings. You’ll exercise greater control over the company by self-financing since you won’t give up ownership, have limited debt, and have no restrictive loan terms.
Friends and family: You can ask wealthy family and friends to chip in if you can’t secure other forms of financing. It’s a great option as the terms are likely to be flexible, with little or no interest and no punitive action if you default.
ITIN loans: You can finance the gardening business through ITIN small business loans. It is an excellent option if you are an immigrant who has yet to get a social security number but has a unique tax identification number. Moreover, you need not worry about excellent credit history.
Banks loans: Can provide large sums of financing, but you must have an impeccable personal credit score to obtain approval. In addition, they consider your current debt and cash flow.
Starting a small gardening business is not easy, but the returns can be huge. Whether you decide to offer irrigation, lawn maintenance, or snow and ice management services, a business license, essential gardening tools, and a business plan should help you succeed.
Follow the link in the introduction section for more tips on securing small business loans to start a gardening services business.