How to Start a Landscaping Business

Written by Dave Lavinsky

How to Start a Landscaping Business


How to Start a Landscaping Business

If you’re looking to start a Landscaping Business, you’ve come to the right place since we’re going to show you exactly how to do it.

We’ll start with key landscaping industry fundamentals like how big the market is, what the key segments are, and how revenues and profits are generated.

Then we’ll discuss keys to not only starting a Landscaping Business, but succeeding in it!

Before we continue, here’s where you can access your landscaping business plan template since having a plan will be key to your success.

How Big is the Landscaping Industry?

There are 474,237 landscaping businesses in the U.S. that generated $76.6 billion in revenue last year. This represents an annual growth rate of 3.5% from over the last 5 years.

What are the Key Segments of the Landscaping Industry?

Landscaping industry is segmented by its investment strategies. The two main segments of the industry are commercial and residential.

What External Factors affect the Landscaping Industry?

A number of factors affect the performance of the landscaping industry. These drivers include:

  • Value of private nonresidential construction: This year, the value of nonresidential construction will rise. An increase in this factor provides high opportunities for the landscape industry.
  • Value of residential construction: The value of residential construction affects the landscaping industry the same way as the value of private nonresidential construction. The more residential structures built, the higher the demand for landscaping services.
  • Households earning more than $100,000: Households earning more than $100,000 tend to spend more on recreating their residential landscapes. However, this number is forecasted to slowly increase which will not provide much opportunity to the industry.
  • Per capita disposable income: The per capita disposable income of households this year is expected to increase providing an opportunity for households to spend more on additional expenditures like landscaping.
  • Government consumption and investment: The growth of government consumption and investment increases the demand for landscaping services. It is expected to grow this year.

What are the Key Customer Segments in the Landscaping Industry?

The largest customer segment in the landscaping industry are Single-family residents, followed by commercial properties.

What are the Key Costs in the Landscaping Industry?

Wages – A majority of the industry revenue is allocated to wages since the landscaping business is operated mostly with workers.

Purchases – This makes up the second largest industry expense.

Marketing – Only 0.9% of the industry revenue is allocated to marketing.

Depreciation – 3.0% of the revenue this year is allocated to depreciation.

Other costs – This accounts for only 3% of the revenue which consists of rent, utilities, and administrative expenses.

Finish Your Business Plan Today!

If you’d like to quickly and easily complete your business plan, download Growthink’s Ultimate Landscaping Business Plan Template and complete your plan and financial model in hours.

What are the Keys to Launching a New Landscaping Business?

1. Have a business plan
Plan the specific details of your landscaping business. Create a business description, know your target market, key competitors, and list of the equipment you need, and calculate the possible cost. Make sure to write a business plan that is appealing to investors.

2. Identify your target market
Choose the type of lawns you will be specializing in as this will determine the kind of equipment and amount of supplies you will need, as well as your business model and pricing. You can then expand your supplies selection and upgrade your equipment as your landscaping business grows.

3. Earn certifications
Be sure to take the proper landscaping courses and training, especially if you do not have any background in landscaping. It is best to run a business that you know you are good at rather than entrusting most of it to other people. This also increases your clients’ confidence that you are a true professional with the proper schooling and certifications.

4. Buy your landscaping equipment
Purchase tools and equipment based on your initial business needs. Make sure to invest in equipment that will last, but do not spend too much on those you probably cannot use while you are just beginning your business. Focus on the things that you need most before considering an upgrade.

5. Invest in a vehicle
If you do not own a large vehicle, make sure to invest in one. You will need a lot of different tools, equipment and supplies and it would be inefficient and impossible to travel to jobsites without a large vehicle to transport all of your stuff.

6. Comply with government requirements
Secure your business permits, licenses, tax registration, certifications, and other requirements that the government needs before you can legally start your business. Be sure to also find out what you need to comply with your state since there are requirements that only certain states need.

7. Find good subcontractors
Connect with subcontractors that specialize in areas that are out of your field of expertise. They will be helpful when a client needs something complex beyond your capability. In turn, they can also call you if they need your services on some of their projects.

What are the Typical Startup Costs for a new Landscaping Business?

The cost of starting up a landscaping business vary widely, but can be as little as $2,000.

If you’d like to quickly and easily complete your business plan, download Growthink’s Ultimate Landscaping Business Plan Template and complete your business plan and financial model in hours.

How much do Landscaping business Operators Make?

The average salary of a landscaping business owner ranges from $50,000 to $250,000 depending on how long it has been in the business.

Additional resources in the Landscaping Industry

For additional information on the landscaping market, consider these industry resources:


How to Finish Your Landscaping Business Plan in 1 Day!

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With Growthink’s Ultimate Landscaping Business Plan Template you can finish your plan in just 8 hours or less!

Click here to finish your landscaping business plan today.


OR, Let Us Develop Your Plan For You

Since 1999, Growthink has developed business plans for thousands of companies who have gone on to achieve tremendous success.

Click here to see how a Growthink professional business planner can create your business plan for you.