Owning and operating a landscaping business means purchasing, renting or leasing the necessary landscaping tools to keep customers’ lawns looking immaculate.
Landscape equipment and professional landscaping tools are absolute musts for your business, so it’s important to research specific items you’ll need to effectively provide your company’s landscaping services and grow a successful landscaping business.
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Expenses add up quickly, so make smart choices before deciding on your landscaping tools and equipment list. Use these basic steps from Next Insurance to guide your choices as you build a strong foundation:
Make a list. Getting organized helps prevent unnecessary purchases.
Weigh your options. Know exactly what your needs are.
Get the most bang for your buck. Do your research.
Put safety first. Recognize that accidents do happen.
Get to work. Be safe and smart, and don’t slack on upkeep.
What kind of tools do landscapers use? Part of the answer is found by examining your company’s short- or long-term goals. Should you look for commercial landscaping equipment for sale, or buy used landscaping tools for sale as a good way to save money? Are you utilizing helpful landscaping apps to save some sweat equity for your team?
In this landscaping tools guide for 2020, learn which landscape tools you need to perform quality work more efficiently.
Must-Have Landscaping Tools
In compiling the best landscaping tools list, a landscaper must invest in certain pieces of reliable equipment to work most efficiently, whether they are for completely redesigning a customer’s landscape or sprucing up a neglected lawn.
According to Guidant Financial, the top eight necessary expenditures in landscaping tools and equipment for a small landscaping business include:
$27,000 to $36,000 for a reliable vehicle to get from job site to job site.
$800 to $5,000 for a utility trailer to haul heavy equipment.
$50 to $200 per month to rent storage space for vehicles and tools.
$1,000 to $2,600 for a commercial lawn mower (from ride-ons to walk-behinds, or a combination).
$200 to $500 each for landscaping edging tools, trimmers, and push mowers.
$35 to $70 apiece for spreaders and sprayers.
$5,000 to $6,000 for cutting, digging, raking, grading and measuring tools.
Varying costs for safety equipment (including personal protective equipment).
If your landscape company focuses solely on providing lawn care services, also consider buying a lawn leveling tool to smooth out bumps and ridges in yards before mowing. If your company offers lawn care and landscape maintenance services—such as planting flower beds, weeding, fertilizing, and pest control applications—invest in various hand tools, such as shovels, picks, rakes, hoes, spreaders and shears.
Ready to get your hands dirty? Landscapers definitely do that, and they require a multitude of landscaping hand tools to make the job a little easier.
Here are some basic hand tools to add to your landscaping equipment list:
Pointed- and square-edged shovels
Mattocks (root chopping and cutting)
Heavy-duty steel garden rakes
Lawn leveling tool
Landscapers’ tools for measuring:
Marking paint applicator
Chalk measuring wheel
Extra landscaping tools:
Square and/or plumb bob
Again, figure on spending $5,000 to $6,000 for professional landscaping hand tools, or search online for good deals on less-expensive, used landscaping equipment. Just be sure to thoroughly inspect the equipment to make sure it’s in good working condition.
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Landscaping Power Tools
Ask a fellow landscaper, “What equipment do you need for a landscaping business?” They’ll more than likely recommend making an investment in landscaping power tools.
But should you invest in tools powered by electricity or gas?
“There’s really no contest on noise between gas and cordless electric-powered equipment,” according to the Old Farmers Almanac. “Gas-powered tools use combustion engines, which make noise when producing power.”
Also, while gas-powered equipment costs less, electric-powered tools require little maintenance outside of general clean-up.
But as Consumer Reports test engineer Frank Spinelli points out: “Gas mowers are more versatile in terms of how large a yard can be cut. And they maintain better cutting performance in tougher, longer, and thicker grass.”
It’s really a matter of preference.
As to which power landscaping tools you need to acquire to complete your landscaping equipment package, consider these items:
Riding lawn mower
Leaf blowers and leaf vacuums
Power edging tools for landscaping
Wood chipper/garden shredder
There’s no need to shutter your landscaping business during the winter months. Commercial landscaping equipment—with a few adaptations—can be used for other purposes to support perennial growth for your company.
Colder weather means additional job leads, such as removing snow and ice from neighborhood streets, parking lots, and sidewalks.
Go from mowing lawns to snow removal by attaching a large, scooping shovel to the front, or even back, of your truck.
Add a gas- or electric-powered snow blower to your equipment arsenal to make sidewalk snow-clearing easy.
Use a power spreader to distribute ice melt solutions.
Another off-season idea: Hang Christmas lights for customers.
Equip your landscaping business for the colder months, perhaps even providing heavy winter clothing for your employees with your company’s name emblazoned on the apparel. Don’t winterize down; accessorize up instead.
Preventive maintenance and timely replacement of landscaping tools and equipment, along with the vehicles you use to haul them, is vital to maintaining your landscaping profits.
Your company invests a lot of money in tools for landscaping, so protect that investment by making cleaning, repair and maintenance part of your day-to-day operations, long-range planning, and year-round budgeting.
After you acquire the essential landscaping tools and equipment, train everyone on their proper use, upkeep, cleaning, maintenance, and storage. Your tools will last longer and your team will know they can rely on them.
Tools are a long-term investment. Maintain them with these tips:
Service and repair regularly
Store in a cool, dry place
Keep blades sharpened
Safety and Personal Protective Equipment
To reduce occupational injuries, landscaping companies need to provide safety and personal protective equipment to their workers.
Outfit your landscaping employees with the proper safety gear and equipment, such as:
Ear protection (ear plugs and ear muffs)
Eye protection (safety goggles and glasses)
Face protection (safety shields and masks)
Hand and arm protection (gloves)
Head protection (hard hats and helmets)
Breathing protection (respirators and masks)
On ear protection, for instance, lawn equipment noise reaches up to 95 decibels, according to OSHA. Hearing damage can occur at sound levels in the 85- to 90-decibel range.
Maximize Efficiency with Landscaping Business Software
Weed out your operational inefficiencies by utilizing landscaping business software to provide quintessential customer service.
ServiceTitan’s solution for coordinating daily landscaping tasks helps your company increase average tickets and grow revenues.
Communicate clearly with customers using automated scheduling, GPS-based dispatching and tracking, and online booking. Use customized data reporting to monitor and boost your technicians’ productivity, so you can watch your buds bloom into more sales.
Provide your customers with good-better-best landscaping options while streamlining your job cycle and boosting team efficiency for dispatching, scheduling, financing, marketing, business reporting, integrating QuickBooks Online, and better customer engagement.
Business Valuation Calculator
Want to know the value of your landscaping business or irrigation service company? The free ServiceTitan Business Valuation Calculator can help you weed out key metrics for tracking growth and profitability, or show how much your local landscaping and irrigation businesses may be worth if you decide to sell it.
Flow Rate Calculator
Quickly calculate or convert units of measurement for volumetric flow rate using ServiceTitan’s Flow Rate Calculator. This free tool helps landscaping irrigation specialists determine the speed of water flowing through a pipe and how much space it occupies inside that pipe based on diameter and velocity—without complicated equations and manually converting metrics.
Pipe Volume Calculator
Figure out how much water a piping section can handle and tally how much the water in those pipes weighs with the free ServiceTitan Pipe Volume Calculator. Irrigation specialists and landscapers can easily convert pipe volume and mass using six different measurement units to save time, reduce waste, improve accuracy, and confirm appropriate pipe size for any irrigation system installation or repair job.
Give your landscaping or irrigation techs working in the field the ability to create and send customized invoices from a mobile device with ServiceTitan’s free Invoice Generator Tool. Eliminate paperwork, streamline invoicing, and give customers a convenient digital invoice by email or text they can pay on the spot or online later.
Labor Rate Calculator
See how much each worker truly costs your landscaping and irrigation company to determine how much you should charge customers using the free interactive ServiceTitan Labor Rate Calculator. Plug in key metrics, such as overhead costs and ideal net profit, to tabulate the billable hourly labor rate required to cover your cost of doing business and maximize overall profitability.
Ensure your landscaping or irrigation business can capitalize on all of the features ServiceTitan’s field management platform offers and yield a positive return on investment with our complimentary ServiceTitan ROI Calculator. Discover your service company’s profit potential with higher average tickets and an increase in daily calls, booked appointments, estimates, and jobs sold.
Service Business Grader
Gauge the performance of your landscaping and irrigation service company with ServiceTitan’s Service Business Grader Tool. In less than a minute, discover how your team stacks up by evaluating average ticket sales, daily calls, booked jobs, and other key metrics.
Mobile App & Tablet
Make it easy for customers to order, buy, and pay for your company’s landscaping or irrigation services with a simple tap-click-or-swipe on a mobile tablet. Using ServiceTitan’s Mobile App, techs build tiered estimates out in the field with vibrant photos, manufacturer videos, and detailed product information, so customers can browse and buy at their own pace—just like shopping online.
Give your electrical customers the mobile-driven service they prefer by adding ServiceTitan’s Mobile App to your techs’ arsenal of tools. Other key features include:
Data Access: Give techs access to all information collected by CSRs, such as customer names, addresses, contact information, outstanding estimates, job histories, property details, prior invoices, call recordings, notes, and more, with a few taps on their mobile tablet.
Customization: Upload your own forms and pricebooks, and manage pricing and product updates easily across the entire ServiceTitan cloud-based system.
Job Automation: Automatically trigger certain forms to appear as the job progresses, so techs know which steps to take at every stage—from diagnosis and repair to invoicing and asking for a review.
Mobile Payments: Get paid faster by capturing checks and credit cards via the mobile tablet camera, or add a credit-card swiper. If customers prefer to pay with cash, techs can accept that, too, and automatically document payment in the field.
ServiceTitan Landscape Software