PDA

View Full Version : Another lowballer add GRRRR


jasonw
12-09-2009, 12:31 PM
How am I suppose to eat with this crap? The add is below, names and places have been removed.

"Mowing & Weedwacking.
I do yard work. Excellent references available. I charge $10.00 per hr. or an agreed upon flat rate. Please call ***** at ***-****

I was averaging $140 per hour over the summer and with all expenses still had trouble getting ahead. Clearly this guy is not licensed or insured or paying taxes.

Steve
12-09-2009, 05:51 PM
There will always be someone doing that and there will always be some customers willing to have their property hacked apart.

Those offering such services at such prices never seem to last very long.

CHEESE2009
12-10-2009, 08:38 AM
"We cuts your long grass & grass on house we cut it for 1 dollar & if you are nice we cut for $0.50 good service, pruhfezzinal & lawn amazing service, if you wanted a full season service we charge $3.00 for twenty 4 cuts, goodbyenight."

^ Typical craigslist advertisement.

Those damn professionals man! :rolleyes:

jdrt09
12-19-2009, 04:39 PM
i dont know about you but im staying on the high end and high quality workmanship.

jdrt09
12-19-2009, 04:54 PM
you know if you have good equip. good appearance and do quality work and be fair. you will get the work i know it sucks but just keep doing what you do best and it will take care of its self.

Steve
12-20-2009, 02:46 AM
you know if you have good equip. good appearance and do quality work and be fair. you will get the work i know it sucks but just keep doing what you do best and it will take care of its self.

Do you have any suggestions on how one can leverage or market their appearance and quality of work to stand out and attract new customers?

cklandscapingorlando
12-20-2009, 08:44 PM
First of all, if 140 per man hr cant keep your head above water then you really need to work on production cost. You should be looking at 15-20 per man hour in cost. I run over 4mill in insurance and I'm on the low end of that.

You market your education, quality, reliability, and customer satisfaction. Why can you do a better job? How can you inhance the property? If you target quality clients then they will want a better comp. You just need to let them know why he charges what he does, and why you charge what you do

zellers custom lawn care
12-21-2009, 08:35 AM
i see more and more of this bull all the time. im dealing with it in snow removal real bad this year. sometimes it comes back to use, like i put a mowing bid in for
$300.00 per mow, and a other guy put one in for $50.00. well the company called and said he was a no show and my bid was the lowest other than his
and i got the job. i think he knew he bit off more than he could chew on this one. these people can not be a real company theres no way, on this job for fuel for the truck, mowers, trimers, is like $25.00 so he would be making $25.00, take your tax out of that, they need to stop, they are killing us.:eek:

turfmaster
12-21-2009, 11:23 AM
i see more and more of this bull all the time. im dealing with it in snow removal real bad this year. sometimes it comes back to use, like i put a mowing bid in for
$300.00 per mow, and a other guy put one in for $50.00. well the company called and said he was a no show and my bid was the lowest other than his
and i got the job. i think he knew he bit off more than he could chew on this one. these people can not be a real company theres no way, on this job for fuel for the truck, mowers, trimers, is like $25.00 so he would be making $25.00, take your tax out of that, they need to stop, they are killing us.:eek:

Most of the people your talking about have no real experience in this biz. They are people that lost their job and are trying to get into lawncare because it is a easy business to start up (money wise). These people don't know their true costs. Ya it sucks trying to compete on bids with these people but 99% of them will fail and not be in biz very long. You can only control what you can control.
Forget about the wannabe's. Do good work , network with people and things will take care of it's self.

zellers custom lawn care
12-21-2009, 05:40 PM
Most of the people your talking about have no real experience in this biz. They are people that lost their job and are trying to get into lawncare because it is a easy business to start up (money wise). These people don't know their true costs. Ya it sucks trying to compete on bids with these people but 99% of them will fail and not be in biz very long. You can only control what you can control.
Forget about the wannabe's. Do good work , network with people and things will take care of it's self.

thats true, im just hoping for a good winter with lots of snow, so i can make some money. its great im still getting snow contracts this late
in the season. i have picked up most of my accounts just in the last two
weeks.

picframer
12-21-2009, 07:07 PM
How am I suppose to eat with this crap? The add is below, names and places have been removed.

"Mowing & Weedwacking.
I do yard work. Excellent references available. I charge $10.00 per hr. or an agreed upon flat rate. Please call ***** at ***-****

I was averaging $140 per hour over the summer and with all expenses still had trouble getting ahead. Clearly this guy is not licensed or insured or paying taxes.

It's like a bad itch, sooner or later it will go away and the customer gets what they pay for, we took on a few new customers who had initially signed with what we call low ballers and the quality of the work would make most of us shake our heads.

You may want to take a look at your business, if you are averaging $140.00 and still having problems, you might want to bring in someone that can give you some direction, we offer just about every service going a homeowner could want and other than spraying, I don't know of any that can average that much, even in excavation which is really good money I might average $105.00 before expenses and financially we are doing very well.

Steve
12-22-2009, 05:22 AM
Do you feel the low ball ads appear for snow plowing too? It seems many members talk about making good money with plowing, over mowing. Maybe it just costs more to get into plowing?

picframer
12-22-2009, 08:53 AM
Do you feel the low ball ads appear for snow plowing too? It seems many members talk about making good money with plowing, over mowing. Maybe it just costs more to get into plowing?

It does cost a lot more to get into plowing although one could just get a good blower and throw it in the back of your truck or a trailer, but it seems many in the mowing business at least where I live can't even afford to do that so no I don't see it for plowing.

Learning curve is much steeper and the first time to dig a clients lawn up, you have pretty much signed off and that customer will be gone, it happens in a heartbeat thus training.

I can for example plow a gravel driveway and loose almost no gravel, this has taken a lot of time to master but I have it and clients comment all the time, because in the sprint I see what the competition has done, granted they made work for us.

zellers custom lawn care
12-22-2009, 09:47 AM
Do you feel the low ball ads appear for snow plowing too? It seems many members talk about making good money with plowing, over mowing. Maybe it just costs more to get into plowing?

its worse in lawncare, but its getting bad in the snow removal at least in my area. there is people that dont do lawncare but have plows. and they lowball plowing to make some side money. But again they dont have the overhead. I have been plowing lots sense 2003 so i see it more and more
each year. people dont want to pay us $25.00 to do there driveway because kids with shovels will do it for $10.00 not saying its bad for the kids to get out and make some money, but it does slow down business.

picframer
12-22-2009, 03:31 PM
people dont want to pay us $25.00 to do there driveway because kids with shovels will do it for $10.00 not saying its bad for the kids to get out and make some money, but it does slow down business.

And it could be that way in the city here however we worm in the burbs where people have driveways from 150 to 900 feet long either on the ocean or a lake, kids walk away from a foot of snow in that stuff. Now in the city the average driveway is probably 30 to 50 feet long and I could see tough competition there, but that is not our targaret market.

Steve
12-23-2009, 06:54 AM
Now in the city the average driveway is probably 30 to 50 feet long and I could see tough competition there, but that is not our targaret market.

This is another good lesson. Try to find niches and customers that either won't want to be serviced by lowball/poor service companies or find customers that can't be. As in this case because their driveways are too long to hand shovel or use a snow blower on.

jasonw
12-23-2009, 10:15 AM
you know if you have good equip. good appearance and do quality work and be fair. you will get the work i know it sucks but just keep doing what you do best and it will take care of its self.


I totally agree. I am NOT lowering my prices do to competition or the economy. I know I charge a lot for my area but everyone seems to agree its well worth it. Eventually the low baler will have a break down and not be able to fix it and there customers will call me to take up the slack.

jasonw
12-23-2009, 10:19 AM
First of all, if 140 per man hr cant keep your head above water then you really need to work on production cost. You should be looking at 15-20 per man hour in cost. I run over 4mill in insurance and I'm on the low end of that.

You market your education, quality, reliability, and customer satisfaction. Why can you do a better job? How can you inhance the property? If you target quality clients then they will want a better comp. You just need to let them know why he charges what he does, and why you charge what you do

I did average that but remember I did not work every day, maybe 2-3 days a week which barley covers gas and payroll. At the same time I am very illiterate when it comes to this business which is why I have taken measures to change the way my business is run. First of all for 2010 I have let go my employee. It was nice to have the help but lets face it I am way not busy enough to necessitate an employee, I have no problem keeping up with work I just don't like to work so hired someone. I also had a bad habit of going on shopping sprees for all the new cool equipment that I really didn't need. I started in June, Made a ton of money but right now as of the fiscal year end next week I am about $1,400 in the hole on my business account. Hopefully with more education and better business decisions 2010 will be my year to blossom.

cklandscapingorlando
12-23-2009, 06:40 PM
Quik question... Are you charging 140 per hour or 140 per man hour? If you dont need the help then forget them, you gotta make your money first. And short of 50 or 60 houses most guy's can do that solo. Buy what you need. I want alot of things but if I dont rent it enough in a year to pay for it, I'll keep renting

jasonw
12-24-2009, 06:50 PM
Quik question... Are you charging 140 per hour or 140 per man hour? If you dont need the help then forget them, you gotta make your money first. And short of 50 or 60 houses most guy's can do that solo. Buy what you need. I want alot of things but if I dont rent it enough in a year to pay for it, I'll keep renting

No I am averaging 140 per hour by doing about 3 houses at $50 each per hour. Thats why my business is hurting now because I had what I needed but got what I wanted and did not save for the slow months. Good thing for me I don't care if I don't work all winter. I don't need the money anyway so no worries.

Steve
12-26-2009, 08:05 AM
its great im still getting snow contracts this late in the season. i have picked up most of my accounts just in the last two weeks.

What kinds of things are you doing to market your snow plowing business?

RKTaylor
12-26-2009, 11:28 PM
you know if you have good equip. good appearance and do quality work and be fair. you will get the work i know it sucks but just keep doing what you do best and it will take care of its self.

very very true!! before long youll have a referral, and then another one, followed by another one. stick with it, and do quality work, its the most important thing

Steve
12-27-2009, 08:37 AM
before long youll have a referral, and then another one, followed by another one. stick with it, and do quality work, its the most important thing

Do you do anything to ask for referrals or to facilitate a better flow of referrals?

zellers custom lawn care
01-02-2010, 12:11 AM
What kinds of things are you doing to market your snow plowing business?

putting ads on craigslist on the computer,word of mouth, handing out cards. one big thing to remember rather its a house or a business, see if thats the only one they got in the area. i asked one and he said he had another location but it was a little ways out, come to find out it was only 10 mile north of my shop. its about 20 mile from his other location but im in the center, works for me. or if they have rental homes, offer a package
deal for all

Steve
01-02-2010, 08:43 AM
if they have rental homes, offer a package deal for all

What kind of package deal do you suggest using for customers with multiple properties?

zellers custom lawn care
01-03-2010, 12:46 AM
What kind of package deal do you suggest using for customers with multiple properties?

i offer a 15 or20 % discount for multiple property accounts, I also
have sr discounts for older people on fixed incomes. that helps a lot
and builds good word of mouth for your business. and it makes you feel
good at the end of the day. it saves them five or six bucks and makes you feel good, you cant go wrong.

cklandscapingorlando
01-03-2010, 06:47 AM
I give the old folks that need it a deal as well. If their a pita I just walk away. But if they let me do my thing I'll work with them for sure.

Steve
01-04-2010, 10:55 AM
What kind of senior discount have you found to work best? Do you offer a % off or a fixed dollar amount off?

cklandscapingorlando
01-04-2010, 05:25 PM
I just come up with a number that seems fair for the job. Or I throw in some free stuff. Like I got one old lady that I just dug a 20ft trench and added a roter. No charge out side of cost. But then right now she pay's me for maint every week and I might only go once all month. But she know's anything she needs with in reason I got her covered if not for free then cheap

Steve
01-05-2010, 12:33 PM
Do you keep a detailed eye on your income and expenses on such jobs to know what you can and can not do in such cases while still making a profit, or does this all come down to a gut feeling. Where at the moment you do what you feel is right?

cklandscapingorlando
01-05-2010, 05:10 PM
More of a gut thing. Just cause your old dont mean I'll do anything for you. But once I know you and know how tight things might be, I'll throw a bone from time to time. The one thing to it is I will only do things like this in the winter, and when I have time to. It took about 4 months for me to move that head for the lady. I just did'nt have time that I did'nt need and she never complained. Now if she would have wanted it done sooner I would have knocked 10 off an hour a charged her for it.

zellers custom lawn care
01-06-2010, 12:19 AM
What kind of senior discount have you found to work best? Do you offer a % off or a fixed dollar amount off?

i get lazy and just give them say 15% or so but you can do something
like 5% for every$20.00 spent, or even every fourth service at 50%
or even free. to me it all depends on how much the customer depends
on me, what all they have me do for them in the year,the better the customer the better the deal.

cklandscapingorlando
01-06-2010, 07:14 AM
I agree with that. I'm not gonna give things away just because. You need to be a good client and in need of it. If your 80 and live in a 500,000 dollar home, forget it. Or if your a pita or just have me mow when it absolutly needed, forget about it

zellers custom lawn care
01-06-2010, 07:29 AM
I agree with that. I'm not gonna give things away just because. You need to be a good client and in need of it. If your 80 and live in a 500,000 dollar home, forget it. Or if your a pita or just have me mow when it absolutly needed, forget about it

ya got that right, im in this to make money, ya make me money, i save you money, if you only call when the grass is 6 or8 inches high. NO WAY!!!

Steve
01-06-2010, 11:41 AM
The one thing to it is I will only do things like this in the winter, and when I have time to.

Do you keep a list of things you want to do like this throughout the year so when winter rolls around you can get them all done?

cklandscapingorlando
01-06-2010, 05:15 PM
I just keep one in my head. I'll tell you this though, no one takes a little help to heart like an old person. And it sounds real good as word of mouth

Steve
01-06-2010, 06:40 PM
Did you ever get a referral where a customer would tell you they chose you because of a good deed you did like that?

Any stories that stand out?

cklandscapingorlando
01-07-2010, 08:04 AM
I got my first comercial job from the old lady that I moved the sprinkler for. I got another lady that got me 3 maint jobs, 7 landscape jobs, 4 mulch jobs, and 9 sod jobs just last year from this. I dont know what they may have said but they certainly went of their way to get me work

Steve
01-07-2010, 12:33 PM
I got my first comercial job from the old lady that I moved the sprinkler for.

Now who would have thought that could happen! Could you tell us a little about this? How was she able to get you a commercial account? This might open others eyes to how people are all networked and can help you in ways you might not have initially thought they could.

cklandscapingorlando
01-07-2010, 06:02 PM
She was on the landscape board for her hoa. She just talked to the manager and got me a chance to bid. Which was easy because the manager liked what she had heard and told me what they payed. Which was good cause I was gonna bid less than they were paying

Steve
01-08-2010, 12:11 PM
That is great! You just never know when someone will have a connection like that.

She just talked to the manager and got me a chance to bid.

At the point you were given the chance to bid on that HOA were you prepared for it, do you feel? Or was this something that was not too big of a deal to come up with a bid price?

In another post we had talked about how sometimes a lawn care business owner was able to get a hold of the previous year's hoa lawn care bid. Did they offer this information to you or was it not important?

cklandscapingorlando
01-08-2010, 04:59 PM
On that one I just went by on their cut day to see what time the guy's started, then went back by a few hours latter to see when they left. I then used my manhr rate with their time. Which worked out well cause it took them 3 hours and me 1.5

She did give the bid price though

Steve
01-09-2010, 11:28 AM
That is a great idea and why not do that right?

Watching how long the competition takes to do a property can really help you nail the amount of time a job should take.

Did they tell you or did you ask if they were not happy with their current lawn care provider to find out where the potential issues may be?

The Cleaning Doctor
01-23-2010, 09:58 AM
In response to the original post here is what you need to do....

Place your own Craigslist ad and start with the following


We FIX $10 per hour lawn care!

Be sure to put your phone number.

Steve
01-23-2010, 04:43 PM
We FIX $10 per hour lawn care!

Be sure to put your phone number.

That is so fantastic! :D

I can only imagine what kind of responses you must get from people. Do they share with you some real train wreck stories?

z50kidd
01-25-2010, 07:35 PM
Yet another Craigslist lowballer here in Jacksonville Fl ruining the market for the professionals.



Wow - $25 (JAX)

********************************************************************************
Date: 2010-01-25, 11:32AM EST
Reply to: sale-wwrs9-1569590834@craigslist.org [Errors when replying to ads?]

********************************************************************************


>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Start the new year off with a bang, come be a customer of one of the best lawn service/landscape services in Jacksonville........ This is not a scam, not B.S. , we are a company ready to take on the world, if you are using someone now , we will beat the price and we will perform the work at a high level..... We have been in buisness for quite a few years and we are looking for more!!!! Please help a loyal and strong company move ahead!!!!
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Try our company and see the difference in what we are all about!!!! Our refer a freind program is CRAZY!!!!! Refer 2 freinds get 5.00 off every service on your home, refer 10 freinds your yard will be free every single week!!!! No catches!!!!
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

WE ARE OFFERING 25.OO SERVICES STARTING IN MARCH 2010!!!!! INCLUDES EVERYTHING, MOWING, TRIMMING, EDGING, BLOWING........... REFER A FREIND PROGRAMS, THAT ALLOW YOU TO REFER 10 FREINDS AND RECIEVE YOUR WEEKLY SERVICE FOR FREE!!!! NO SCAMS, NO JOKE, ........

WOW!!!!! TRY US AND SEE WHATS REALLY AVAILABLE TO YOU AS A HOMEOWNER OR COMMERCIAL BUILDNG REP, WE WILL NOT BE BEAT WITH SERVICE AND PRICE, IF YOU ARE CURRENTLY USING A SERVICE WE URGE YOU TO CALL US!!!!

SIGN UP NOW AND WE WILL START THE BEGIINNING OF MARCH, YOU ARE LOCKING IN YOUR PRICE NOW......... WE HAVE BEEN IN BUISNESS FOR 5 YEARS AND HAVE VERY RELIABLE CUSTOMERS AND EMPLOYEES!!!!!!! PLEASE GIVE US A TRY AND A CALL, YOU WONT BE DISSAPOINTED!!!!

Small company in buisness for 5 years, looking to add accounts to start the new year early...... We are offering 25.00 maintanence contracts........ 25.00 will include mowing, edging, trimming, hedge trimming, blowing...... This price is unbelievable and the work we perform is second to none........ We are writing new contracts now- Dec 31st, these will be contracts that run from the time you sgn up through 1 calender year. We do not charge the 25.00 fee when we do not come, in other words during the season when the yards are being perfromed 2x monthly you will only be charged for those 2 times we come.........


We are a small and dependable company , we are not looking to get big, we are only looking to stay in buisness and to be successful.......... We have numerous refrences (Large home builder refrences as well), we will not let you down and we will keep you happy and your yard well groomed.......

We also offer "refer a yard" programs that allow you to refer a freind or family member to us, and when 2 referals sign on, your visit charge drops 5.00 every visit, so refer 10 people that come aboard and your weekly visits will be FREE..... No scam, no catch, as long as they are our customer your yard will remain free or at the amount of freinds you referred........ We have at least 20 customers that havent paid a single dollar for normal maintanence to us in over 2 years..........

Give us a call and you will be glad that you did!!!!!

1-800-lowballer



Start the New Year off on a good note, hire a dependable, loyal landscape company that has a desire to be the best and to treat their customer with the best treatment and hard work as possible. Lots of small companies out there promising the world, the difference is we back up what we say!!! Give us a call and after a conversation and a service performed on your yard, you will be happy!!!!
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>><<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<




Location: JAX
it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests



PostingID: 1569590834

Steve
01-25-2010, 11:28 PM
You should edit this postcard and put it after every such ad.

Steve
01-25-2010, 11:44 PM
Or how about this postcard design as well.

cklandscapingorlando
01-26-2010, 07:25 AM
It's a little hard to tell if a guy is low balling from an add. I know I adv 30min a yard so that would put you at 50hr. Plus it is a comon marketing tactic to list your lowiest price even if not the avg price. I know that around here prices go from 20-30 a cut for a basic yard. Low ballers are at 60-80 a month

jimlewis
01-31-2010, 04:09 AM
Come on! $140 per man hour??? Really??? That seems a little unbelievable to me. But maybe....

Regardless, the second comment flustered me even more. You're still having trouble keeping your head above water at that rate???? You got a whole ton of non-billable hours then or something? This just doesn't ad up.

In this industry, if you're making $140 per man hour you're probably in the top 1% and if that kind of money isn't keeping you afloat then there has to be something wrong.

MikeO
01-31-2010, 05:21 AM
Ive been over this in my head so many times I just dont even care anymore.
Again, its there bar tab compared to your's. Are they getting work? Probably. The important question is are you getting work? This is business there is always somebody going to be able to do anything cheaper. You get what you pay for. And the customer's that know that dont purchase that service. cmon guys thats business 101. And Im an idiot.

MikeO
01-31-2010, 05:27 AM
you know if you have good equip. good appearance and do quality work and be fair. you will get the work i know it sucks but just keep doing what you do best and it will take care of its self.

This person said it best at the beginning of this thread. I believe that 100%.

jimlewis
02-01-2010, 01:13 AM
....... And Im an idiot.

Well, I wasn't going to say anything.....but now that you mention it......... :D





.

MikeO
02-01-2010, 05:01 AM
Man, Ive been reading this one from day one even. I figure if your averaging $140 per man hour why would anyone care what the next guy is charging?
You can spare a few lawns at that point. (assuming)

T.J.F.
02-10-2011, 07:08 PM
Now thats funny I don't care who you are. LOL I am really new in this whole thing but I have done my homework, and talked with several surrounding lawn care company owners that are well established. It is hard not to give in to the temptation of "lowballing" but I promised myself that I would keep my prices competetive. I am now starting my second season and have at the present no overhead as far as equipment loans or other depts.
There are two main reasons for this. One I'm learning to crawl before I walk; in other words I did not buy $12,000 dallors in gear before my first day on the job. Second I DON'T LOWBALL it COST ME money when that practice is fallowed just do the math.
In all fairness I must confess that I still work full time in a corp. and do my lawn care business part time with the plan to go full time in a couple of seasons, steadily building a client base and networking with other business owners trying to set up possible subcontracting in the future. This cannot be done if one is lowballing everyone in the area, and you can bet no legitimate bussiness owner is willing to have you around if you are not paying TAX and/or NOT INSURED...if so they are just as wreckless as you are.

T.J.F.
02-10-2011, 07:20 PM
Anyhow man I really liked the ads you had in the article. The best way to deal with these people is let them starve themselves to death. Thanks again for a little humer on a not so funny matter.

elitelawnteam1
02-10-2011, 08:57 PM
yeah, i've gotten one of those guys around my area, they are so annoying, but the lowballer who works in Cary has a nice F250, huge 14' trailer, 2 36" exmarks and on some occasions he has helpers. He charges about $10-$15 a lawn.

he's pissed me off because he has already taken 4 of my clients!!!

but he took only 4 small properties, however the craziest part of all is that it takes him 2 HOURS to mow two 1/4 acre properties! he's his truck probably sucks up his "profit" before he even arrives!! and 2 hours to cut a small lawn with 2 exmarks? please!