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Thread: New Limo Business/OWNER IS THE DRIVER/Need Advise

  1. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by Elegant Limousines of Palm Coast View Post
    This is why a husband and wife team like ourselves works great. My wife runs the office, I fix the cars and we both do the driving and we have one chauffeur. After 6 years my wife will start taking a pay check. That is this year. To get into this business a lot of sacrifices have to be made. Like a lot of hard work and long nights with no compensation. But some day it will all pay off.

    It sounds to me like you and your husband should own the biz and just hire him as a driver as that seems to be all he is bringing to the table. Good luck.
    ^^^^ This is good advice.

    If the other partner can't afford to finance / buy his own limo, what's going to happen when the limo needs $5k worth of repairs? Or when he decides to cash in all his accrued wages that he feels he is entitled to? Who decides his hourly rate? There are just too many variables and unknowns that are present in this situatuion. And too many awkward conversations that need to take place.

    To me, a partnership has in it all the stress and risk of ownership but only a limited amount of freedom in how to best run the business and make critical business decisions.

    For a one limo operation, this partnership just looks to be more stress than it is worth. Just my opinion.

    Whatever you decide, I wish you the best of luck.
    Last edited by Vintage Limos; May 15th, 2012 at 06:36 PM.
    Andrew Armitage
    Vintage Chauffeuring LLC
    Andrew@VintageChauffeuring.com
    www.VintageChauffeuring.com

  2. #32

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    A lot of people are pointing to a lot of negative things about getting into the limo business and/or starting a partnership. I tell people it isn't the greatest business if they are looking to get rich or have a simple kind of job. But if you like limos and you like people, it can be a great lifestyle. For me, I enjoy driving and most of the people I drive. This is a huge plus for me, because i believe in quality of life.

    So my advise to people is not to get into limos unless you enjoy them. As a partner, you will be able to enjoy going out with your friends and family in the limo when it's not booked and it will only cost you gas and driver. If this is something you will take advantage of, owning a limo will be a lot of fun. Looking at it this way, even if it just pays for itself, you have a free limo and whoever is driving it has a fun job.
    Tough times don't last. Tough people do.

    Limo Kings Limousine Service
    www.limokings.net

  3. #33
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    I had a Prom Dad Saturday that met me in front of the mansion where the kids were taking pictures . As he walked down the driveway he looked at his watch. I was about 15 min early. He asked to look in the Limo. He then steps back and says thank you. He told me he was pleased with the Limousine and that I had showed up early. Those are the things that are fun . Making parents happy on there little son or daughters Prom night and then taking the time to let me know. Gives you that warm fuzzy feeling . The Limo business can be very rewarding in many different ways. I am proud to be a part of it

  4. #34

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    Hey Pyro, thats great service and the warm fuzzy feeeling is GREAT, however, to help the original question posed--it doesn't. Warm fuzzy feelings and sense of pride in service aren't what pays the bills.

    And Geoff, that sounds wonderful.......but in a "partnership" when one partner is out with their friends using only the gas and car (which really isn't the only cost involved with the vehicle--forgot regulatory agencies fees, airport deposits that aren't returned until you are out of business not just doing airport runs, insurances, maintenance, repairs,detail/ clean up, supplies, drug.alcohol testing, cost of phones, advertising, expense of storage of the vehicle and office to meet clients, etc etc) and the other partner is driving for the hourly wage and tip..that would get pretty old quickly in a "partnership" as the original question was posted. And who's to say the "partner" isn't charging his friends on the side.......Surely that wouldn't happen in a "partnership"....(sarcasim) A partners investment in the business/vehicle needs to make a return unless the financing partner is using it to offset income in another business for tax purposes..... But truly how many of us are that well healed that we're crazy enough to keep pouring money into a hole just to offset taxes...

    Elegant Limousines partnership could work, it's a husband and wife building their business together and sharing the costs 100% and the profits 100% however he did say Marlo is just now, this year, going to be paid a salary after 6 years of her hard work and time and efforts......in a "partnership" as described by the original poster, one partner would be very upset in 6 years.....

    As suggested throughout the thread---get professional advice, learn more about the business, find a mentor or consultant, have lots of checks and balances to keep each other honest, learn about ALL the costs before getting into a partnership where the other partner only wants to drive. The driver/chauffeur is just a portion of the work ---our drivers/chauffeurs made more $$ % wise on the runs that we did when all was said and done.

    Just my opinion.
    Kathy
    City Heat Limousine

  5. #35
    Senior Member Elegant Limousines of Palm Coast's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by City Heat View Post
    Elegant Limousines partnership could work, it's a husband and wife building their business together and sharing the costs 100% and the profits 100% however he did say Marlo is just now, this year, going to be paid a salary after 6 years of her hard work and time and efforts......in a "partnership" as described by the original poster, one partner would be very upset in 6 years.....

    Kathy
    City Heat Limousine
    Just a side note. The reason we waited so long to start taking a paycheck was so we could pay off all debt. By December we will have all cars paid for and already have a year of savings put away for future vehicle replacements and upgrades. The best way to build a successful business is get to the point when you can sleep at night knowing there is money in the bank and your only bills are operating costs.

  6. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by City Heat View Post
    Hey Pyro, thats great service and the warm fuzzy feeeling is GREAT, however, to help the original question posed--it doesn't. Warm fuzzy feelings and sense of pride in service aren't what pays the bills.

    And Geoff, that sounds wonderful.......but in a "partnership" when one partner is out with their friends using only the gas and car (which really isn't the only cost involved with the vehicle--forgot regulatory agencies fees, airport deposits that aren't returned until you are out of business not just doing airport runs, insurances, maintenance, repairs,detail/ clean up, supplies, drug.alcohol testing, cost of phones, advertising, expense of storage of the vehicle and office to meet clients, etc etc) and the other partner is driving for the hourly wage and tip..that would get pretty old quickly in a "partnership" as the original question was posted. And who's to say the "partner" isn't charging his friends on the side.......Surely that wouldn't happen in a "partnership"....(sarcasim) A partners investment in the business/vehicle needs to make a return unless the financing partner is using it to offset income in another business for tax purposes..... But truly how many of us are that well healed that we're crazy enough to keep pouring money into a hole just to offset taxes...

    Elegant Limousines partnership could work, it's a husband and wife building their business together and sharing the costs 100% and the profits 100% however he did say Marlo is just now, this year, going to be paid a salary after 6 years of her hard work and time and efforts......in a "partnership" as described by the original poster, one partner would be very upset in 6 years.....

    As suggested throughout the thread---get professional advice, learn more about the business, find a mentor or consultant, have lots of checks and balances to keep each other honest, learn about ALL the costs before getting into a partnership where the other partner only wants to drive. The driver/chauffeur is just a portion of the work ---our drivers/chauffeurs made more $$ % wise on the runs that we did when all was said and done.

    Just my opinion.
    Kathy
    City Heat Limousine

    Kathy, I shouldn't have said, "take advantage" of using the limo. I should have said, "enjoy the fringe benefit" it. If the limo isn't going out and you wanna use it, why not? It adds to quality of life. Plus, the more I take it out, the more it advertises itself. Gas and wear and tear are nothing compared to the good morale of enjoying your own limo. Plus, the other costs you mentioned are already being paid for anyway. So it really comes down to wear and tear, after paying for gas and tipping your chauffeur. Most good limo owners will even let their loyal drivers enjoy this benefit. But taking advantage wasn't the best of words.
    Tough times don't last. Tough people do.

    Limo Kings Limousine Service
    www.limokings.net

  7. #37

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    I like Geoffs take on it. I am a small operator and enjoy the limo biz but I also have another job. And my wife helps out too. What I wonder is who actually owns the car (from the original post). That makes all the difference.

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff Levine View Post
    A lot of people are pointing to a lot of negative things about getting into the limo business and/or starting a partnership. I tell people it isn't the greatest business if they are looking to get rich or have a simple kind of job. But if you like limos and you like people, it can be a great lifestyle. For me, I enjoy driving and most of the people I drive. This is a huge plus for me, because i believe in quality of life.

    So my advise to people is not to get into limos unless you enjoy them. As a partner, you will be able to enjoy going out with your friends and family in the limo when it's not booked and it will only cost you gas and driver. If this is something you will take advantage of, owning a limo will be a lot of fun. Looking at it this way, even if it just pays for itself, you have a free limo and whoever is driving it has a fun job.
    You hit the nail right on the head.The limo biz is a crappy business particularly with this fuel crisis and it is very hard to make money however if you have a passion for fine automobiles there is no better business to be in.I love my job and especialy the fact im also my own boss.Go and buy an antique jaguar or something and chop it and stretch it your self and make it your dream limo,have fun and enjoy yourself go crazy.However if your looking for fast money in this economy buy a restraunt or something that is a much more stable business

  9. #39

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    Geoff, wasn't picking on your words....I was just stating an opinion that in a "partnership" enjoying the fringe benefits of the limo could create ill feelings between partners if not careful. I agree having the limo out being seen is good advertisement. Maybe I need to enjoy ours more....I must have been in a funky mood.......You know I love all on this forum!
    Congrats to Elegant Limousines on their success with their business plan. Great job!

    Kathy
    City Heat Limousine

  10. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by City Heat View Post
    Geoff, wasn't picking on your words....I was just stating an opinion that in a "partnership" enjoying the fringe benefits of the limo could create ill feelings between partners if not careful. I agree having the limo out being seen is good advertisement. Maybe I need to enjoy ours more....I must have been in a funky mood.......You know I love all on this forum!
    Congrats to Elegant Limousines on their success with their business plan. Great job!

    Kathy
    City Heat Limousine
    I know you weren't looking to pick on the words. Kathy, you're one of the nicest people on this forum. But I really shouldn't have used the words, "taken advantage", when talking about a small business partnership. But it is definitely a fringe benefit that we should all enjoy sometimes.
    Tough times don't last. Tough people do.

    Limo Kings Limousine Service
    www.limokings.net

  11. #41

    Default If your partnership works for you....

    Go for it! If I may.... Do something better than the industry norm.

    Changing the industry 2012.

  12. #42
    Senior Member KC's Avatar
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    I don't know if I'm posting late to this topic...But I did want to add a couple of notes since I'm in Houston.

    I personally been in the business since 1997 - I seen good years and bad ones. 2008 was a bad year many - post Hurricane Ike. But slowing it has been picking up to Pre-Ike levels.

    You won't be able to just start a company in Houston with only one vehicle. Per city ordinance - you must have four vehicles to start a company or a stretch and two other vehicles which can be Town Cars, SUVís or 15-passenger vans. The stretch may not be older than 10 years. The Town Cars or Van cannot be older than six years. The vehicles cannot have more than 100,000 miles when first put into service.

    You can find additional information at the following sites:

    http://www.houstontx.gov/ara/regaffa...portation.html
    http://www.houstonlimos.info

  13. #43
    Senior Member Bigdan's Avatar
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    These city ordinances are kust ridiculous, keep the big guys on top and keep anyone else from starting up. Seems like they are all corrupt too.

  14. #44
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    Personally, I don't see those conditions as totally unreasonable. There are people who can make the grade and those are the ones that likely would have the better chance at it. After all, we aren't opening lemonade stands, here. Wanting to do it isn't necessarily the same as being able to do it.
    Karl Jones

  15. #45
    Senior Member Bigdan's Avatar
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    4 vehicles under 10 years old under 100,000. I do believe that would require starting off in major debt and isnt that what we are trying to avoid?

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