Beginner’s Guide on Starting a Garden Services Business in the United Kingdom
The pandemic may have been dreadful for many businesses, but not for the garden services sector. The time in confinement has brought back the interest of the many to tend to their lawns and gardens. As a result, the landscaping and gardening businesses are experiencing a surge in demand for their services. Starting a garden services business in the United Kingdom is a very feasible venture this year, with a positive outlook for growth in the coming years.
However, starting a garden services business is more than just knowing how to care for plants and groom them. This business requires a canvassing of a potential market and strategizing to build a considerable customer base. Additionally, there are also the legal procedures of building your company and registering the business. But worry not! Here is the guide on starting a garden services business in the United Kingdom, which explains the industry practice, business registration, licenses, and permits.
What Is a Garden Services Business
Garden services businesses provide designing, installing, and grooming services to residential lawns and even company grounds. In particular, these services include planting shrubs, mowing lawns, pruning branches, fertilizing and disposing of brushes. Garden service providers offer assistance to those who cannot or have no idea how to maintain their gardens or lawns.
Garden services businesses can earn up to £25 an hour and £15,000 per year for their services. This will, of course, vary depending on your location, service offering, rate, and local competition. To start a garden services business, you’ll need a capital of around £3,000 to £10,000. This amount should cover your property investments, tool and supply acquisition, insurance, and vehicles.
Starting a garden services business in the United Kingdom does not require any specific qualifications. However, it would be advantageous to get the market’s trust, to get horticultural skills and certifications. You don’t want to be known for offering low-quality services because you got too excited. Some of the qualifications you can acquire including a Diploma in Horticulture and Amenity Horticulture and a Certificate in Practical Horticulture.
With the positive outlook in the garden services sector in the UK, the industry expects a 5.2% increase in aggregate revenue in 2022. As the economy starts to reopen and the disruptions in the supply chain return to normal, industry revenues are expected to reach £5.4 billion. Further, new market entrants don’t have to worry about competition. The garden services industry has no big players with more than a 5% market share in the UK. Therefore, it’d be easy to secure a considerable customer base, given you have a good garden services business strategy.
What Do I Need to Start a Garden Services Business?
To start a garden services business, you need information, so it is important to conduct market research. You will want to see if you have enough service demand from your locality. Check out other garden services businesses in your area to assess the competition and get an idea of how that would affect your startup. Observe the competition’s capacity, price rates, range of services, and reputation so you can better gauge what you’re up against.
Plan Your Competitive Advantage
Next comes the planning. Think about why the market should choose your business over the others. How do you achieve that? You need to have an edge. From your market research, you should be able to see a gap- a need in the market that no one has ever addressed yet. For example, there may be a demand for lawn mowing or some basic garden maintenance for elderlies. Or maybe the market is looking for more affordable garden services. Making sure that you have a competitive advantage will ensure that your business has a purpose and a goal.
Once you have come up with a competitive advantage, you should already have an idea of what services you’d be offering. You can offer some of these garden services: garden design, ground clearing, drainage installation, hedge planting, flower bed preparation, compost making, and general gardening tasks. Moreover, your service offering should co-inside with your capacity and budget, too. You cannot offer so many landscaping services if you do not have enough power, knowledge, or skills to handle them.
How you will promote a new business is always crucial. Word-of-the-mouth advertising has proven to be effective in advertising services. So always make sure that you and your staff are providing quality and reliable services. Building a website and using social media is also a useful channel you can use to showcase some of the works you’ve done. Networking, joining organizations, and radio station advertising will also widen your reach and give opportunities to meet prospective clients.
How to Register a Garden Services Business?
You can buy an already existing garden services business. But if you want to start on a clean slate, you have to form the business, register it, and start operations from scratch. You can complete the business registration on your own, online, or through the post, but you may also hire a UK corporate service provider. Hiring a professional not only frees up your time but completes the process without issues and missteps.
Entrepreneurs prefer to organize their business as a limited company because this structure provides good protection for the owners. To register a limited company, you have to provide a company name and a business address. Additionally, you would need to appoint a director and company secretary who will handle the administrative aspects of the business. You also need to submit the company’s memorandum and articles of association.
If you opt for postal business registration, it takes 8-10 days of processing and costs £40. To complete this, you have to use the form IN01, and make out a check to the Companies House, and send the application to the address in the form. Meanwhile, online registration only costs £12 and will be processed within 24 hours.
Moreover, you can register for corporation tax at the same time as registering with the Companies House. However, you may also apply separately with the HM Revenue and Customs, online, via post, or agent. To register for corporation tax, you’ll need your company registration number, the date when you started the business, and the date in your annual accounts. After the registration, HMRC will inform you what records to keep, your tax obligations, and their deadlines.
Licenses and Permits in Starting a Garden Services Business
Depending on your service offerings, certain regulations require a garden services business owner to acquire various permits. For example, you need to acquire a chainsaw certificate if you use chainsaws in your landscaping jobs. Additionally, you have to register as a waste carrier if you carry away garden waste. You’ll also need the permit from your local authority if you use skips or dumpsters and place them on the highway.
Moreover, a garden service business also needs to adhere to the various safety and local regulations. In particular, there may be local ordinances that guide the use, storage, and sale of potentially hazardous substances like fertilizers and chemicals. The Environmental Protection Act provides rules on composting and burning of garden wastes. The Horticultural Trades Association (HTA) provides guidance on working with potentially harmful species of plants in the UK.
To ensure that you are following the rules related to the conduct of activities in a garden services business, you may inquire directly to your local authorities. You may also ask the counsel of professionals as to the legal compliance you have to complete. 3E Accounting United Kingdom provides a guide to company registration in the United Kingdom and other important matters relating to business startups.
Company Formation Services in the United Kingdom
Starting a small business may sound like an easy feat. But if you really want to get the best out of the protections of a private limited company, you have to go the hard way and incorporate your business. Fortunately, the process does not have to be very complicated at all. You just need the right support from professional firms offering UK company incorporation.
3E Accounting is a trusted name when it comes to company formation and corporate services. The firm is internationally recognized for helping not just big companies but also small and medium enterprises. Our services are economical, fast, convenient, and effective. Contact us today to learn more about how our experts can help you reach your business goals.