Brothers' Keepers

posted on Friday, March 6, 2020 in The Dirt

pFive years after going into the landscaping business together in 2007, Wade and Dustin Vugteveen reached a crossroad. The brothers were working 80-hour weeks, planting trees out of wheelbarrows, and doing other backbreaking manual work. “Times were pretty tough,” says Wade. “We weren’t bringing home much money, and we had young families that we hardly ever saw. We asked ourselves how long we could keep doing this.”

It was at this juncture that the brothers agreed on two things. First, if they didn’t hit their revenue goal the following year, they were going to hang it up. Second, they desperately needed to buy a skid steer, or the grueling workload would take a toll on their bodies.

At the time it was just the two of them, along with an employee they had hired to cover the phone at their office in Grandville, Michigan. They knew if they couldn’t make it work, their dream of growing a company that would impact their community would be dead. With the help of a John Deere compact track loader (CTL) and a few great people, DeHamer Landscaping made its revenue goal that year and hasn’t stopped growing since.