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The Granville Sentinal
Thursday, Feb. 8, 2007

More than just mowing the lawn

By L.B. WHYDE
Sentinel Reporter

Granville man turned high school business into permanent landscaping, excavation business

While some of his friends from Granville High School are just getting out of college, ready to begin their working lives, Jake Warner, 24, already has been through the school of hard knocks.
Warner started a lawn-mowing business when he was a 17-year-old senior at Granville High School. After 18 months of saving up his earnings to go to college, he realized he was doing well, so he continued to expand the business.

Jacob Warner, 24, of Granville, turned his high school lawnmowing business
into a full-scale landscaping and excavation business. (Photo by Michael Lehmkuhle)
Now, with two full-time workers, five part-time workers during the summer, a wife and three kids, Warner is going full speed ahead.
As Warner has grown his business throughout the years, he has changed his company’s name. At first, it was Jake’s Lawn Care, then Jake’s Lawn and Bobcat Services when he obtained his first piece of small equipment in 2000.
As time went by, he realized small equipment fascinated him. He kept acquiring pieces and gained new possibilities for jobs. All along, his goal has been to keep all the equipment busy.
Warner recently changed the name again, this time to Jake’s Property Service. His business has expanded accordingly to include excavations, solving basement drainage problems and even trash hauling.
“I really felt like people with a wet basement wouldn’t hire a lawn and Bobcat service,” Warner said, “I spent a ton of time to find one phrase that would represent exactly what we do.”
Exactly what he does is everything. He still handles lawn maintenance and repair, seeding, snow removal, downspout installation, driveway grading, footer and utility excavation, building pad installation and even playground fabrication.
But even though his business consumes him, Warner is family-oriented and involved with his wife, Sabrina, and their children, Kayleigh, 4, Anna Belle, 1, and Elijah Jacob, 3 months.
In fact, it was his oldest daughter who figured out what the JAKE’S stood for on her daddy’s company shirts. The J was for Jakes, A for Anna Belle, K for Kayleigh, E for elephant (because they didn’t have Elijah when the company was named) and S for Sabrina.
So when Elijah was born, he was named after Jake, whose middle name is Elijah and who was named for his great-great-grandfather, Jacob Elijah Warner, who bought in 1870 what now is the family farm.
The elder Jacob was the first to tap the maple trees in Granville for their sweet syrup. He sold it at the Sugar Shack. Most of the 130-acre family farm was sold in 1990, but Warner and his family still live in the home his great-great grandfather built.
Warner has had his share of ups and downs in the business. The contracts he uses for all his jobs are written carefully because of painful experiences in the past.

 

“It probably would have been cheaper to go to college,” Warner said, jokingly. “I am just very thankful for everything. I don’t want to be just a guy. I want to be the big guy.”