St. Louis’ LawnMowingOnline Disrupts Lawncare IndustryBY: Corey Cummings | October 2, 2012
St. Louis startup LawnMowingOnline is looking to disrupt the lawncare industry for good with affordable rates and next day service. The startup has brought a whole new lawncare option to the market by crowdsourcing lawn mowing appointments through a selection of local contractors who can fill in their schedule with whichever appointments fit best for them.
LawnMowingOnline offers a simple way for homeowners to get their lawns mown without having to pay overpriced professional landscaping companies or get roped into a contract deal. Anyone can offer up a lawn to the community of contractors in their area at a flat fee of $19 for a basic quarter acre plot of grass (the price scales appropriately depending on the size of the lot and length of grass). Users can additionally specify if they’d like weeds trimmed, add other specific instructions for the contractor, and even tack on a tip to give potential mowers that extra incentive to pick their lawn. Contractors drive out with their own equipment, document before and after photos for the service, and receive up to 90 percent of a basic order, with the rest going back to the company and to cover PayPal fees.
The company was founded in the summer of 2009 by James Hassinger, a former computer science student who turned to real estate prior to the recession. Hassinger quickly became frustrated with the lack of options for getting the lawns of his properties in shape before showings, as many professional lawncare services aren’t willing to take smaller, one-time jobs. The entrepreneur decided there had to be a better way to organize an obligation-free lawncare service and started a basic website of his own.
At first Hassinger used Craigslist to direct traffic to his new website, and soon found that there was a large demand for the service on both the contractor and homeowner ends of the market. Hassinger’s service eventually grew into LawnMowingOnline, and since 2009 the company has expanded from St. Louis to Houston, Miami, and Dallas.
When asked about future features for the website, Hassinger said he’d like the mowing-exclusive service to eventually grow into a place for all kinds of homeowner needs. Hassinger said it could become an open Facebook-like community, where if someone needed their driveway shoveled, for instance, they could make a basic post about it and contractors could ask questions or make offers in the comments. The founder was quick to clarify that it would be less Craigslist and more of an eBay for homeowner services, where contractors earn their reputation through user feedback.
For now LawnMowingOnline is looking to continue expanding to other warm-climate cities, including Atlanta and potentially San Francisco in the near future. After very recently raising $1,000 on Fundable, Hassinger said that even though he’s open to additional capital, the company isn’t currently seeking it out.
Don’t hesitate to check out LawnMowingOnline if you’re in the St. Louis, Houston, Miami, or Dallas area. And if you’ve got a shaggy lawn anywhere else, stay tuned to the company blog to find out when the disruptive lawncare service mows its way to your home town.