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View Full Version : Do you charge a different price for weekly,10 day or 14 day service?


cmpenn67
03-23-2010, 11:16 AM
I am trying to get everything lined out before I open up for business and was curious if people charge the customer the same if they want their yard mowed weekly, every 10 days or bi-weekly. Or do you charge differently for the frequency. I tend to lean towards the one price but i was curious and wanted to know what more experienced people do.

Thanks

jklawncare
03-23-2010, 12:01 PM
I think it just depends on what your comfortable with..neighbors talk and if one says oh i pay 32.50 and the other says wait..my yards smaller and im paying 35
there not likely to go through and figure out there on different schedules.

I plan on raising my price slightly for bi-weekly customers but only to new ones..theres no way id do it to ones i already have.

it really all depends on if you think youll get the customer that way or if you have to..

are you getting all of your costs covered? is there wiggle room in your income? are you crunching to get yourself,your employees,and your costs covered..

lawn mowering
03-23-2010, 03:32 PM
I've been in the lawn mowing business for a little while now and had to deal with some stuff throughout the years. customers who just want it done every 10-14 daysjust want the same service for 1/2 the price but not only is this bad for your bottom line (profit) it also makes your customers lawn look like **** and make a huge (-):mad: impression on you business. Best way to ensure you dont have to deal with this is collect you $$$ at the start of the month if they dont pay you for all 4 weeks/at all DONT MOW! and return the partial payment with a sorry we must mow weekly company policy.:)

Steve
03-23-2010, 07:43 PM
Why every 10 days? Isn't that going to make for a scheduling nightmare?

Can you mow them weekly?

Some members on here will charge $X per weekly cut and 1.5 x (X) for a bi-weekly cut.

So if they charge $30 weekly, they will charge $45 bi-weekly.

The higher the lawn, the more time it takes to cut. The more wear and tear it puts on your equipment.

And like the others said, the lawn looks like crap if it goes to far between mows.

I do wonder if the customers that want it mowed as minimal as possible are just not the customers you want to focus on.

What's your view on that?

J-Rod
03-24-2010, 10:28 PM
As Steve mentioned a 10 day service is a scheduling nightmare. I did a condo association a few years ago on a 10 day schedule and it was ok but it was a big contract. I could not imagine having multiple residentials on this type of schedule.
Depending on the type of grass in your area a bi-weekly service may not be frequent enough. In Georgia we have mostly centipede, St. Aug, and Bermuda. Centipede is fine to mow bi-weekly but Bermuda needs to be cut at least once a week in peak season. Also realize that if the yard has lots of trees that bi-weekly will have double the debis on the ground.
My mentality is not to charge more for bi-weekly, but charge a little less for weekly. Weekly customers are your best customers, they will have better looking lawns which will eventually lead to more business.

cmpenn67
03-26-2010, 02:04 PM
Why every 10 days? Isn't that going to make for a scheduling nightmare?

Can you mow them weekly?

Some members on here will charge $X per weekly cut and 1.5 x (X) for a bi-weekly cut.

So if they charge $30 weekly, they will charge $45 bi-weekly.

The higher the lawn, the more time it takes to cut. The more wear and tear it puts on your equipment.

And like the others said, the lawn looks like crap if it goes to far between mows.

I do wonder if the customers that want it mowed as minimal as possible are just not the customers you want to focus on.

What's your view on that?


You are right steve...Those are not the customers I want to focus on. I appreciate the info and I will definately not offer the 10 day mowing.... I would love for eveyone mow weekly but i know that won't happen as I already am mowing my wife's friends yard on a bi-weekly basis because she can't afford it weekly. Again I thank you guys for your time and input, it helps alot

mark123
03-26-2010, 03:58 PM
Why every 10 days? Isn't that going to make for a scheduling nightmare? ...
It does. I have two customers on "approximately" every 10 days. I do a 10 day and then 11 day schedule so that I can keep them on Mondays and Thursdays.

Here is how you set it up in Gopher:
http://images.imaginekitty.com/10DaySchedule.gif
I guess you could make it 10 days as well but 9 days keeps it all in place with the day choices selected. You just have to make sure it skips the proper number of days.

One week Monday, the next week's Thursday, skip one week then repeat. This makes 3 cuts per month. It is not the best plan but if it keeps a customer it may be worth it.

I do it that way because Monday is my miscellaneous day. Fertilizer, weed spray, pick up product, maintain equipment, etcetera so if I have to do a lawn or two on that day every once in a while it doesn't really bother me. Now when I get more fertilizer customers, they are going to get dropped. :p

mark123
03-26-2010, 04:17 PM
By the way, I do try to get 1.25x a weekly price. I found that 1.5x was just too much.

Steve
03-26-2010, 09:14 PM
By the way, I do try to get 1.25x a weekly price. I found that 1.5x was just too much.
Do you explain that to the customer or just bid it higher?

I could see either way having its pluses and negatives.

mark123
03-26-2010, 11:08 PM
Do you explain that to the customer or just bid it higher? ... I only bid the weekly price and I state this price is for WEEKLY mowing only. I only take biweekly mowings if I want the job and/or they are willing to pay the extra.

Steve
03-27-2010, 06:29 PM
I only take biweekly mowings if I want the job and/or they are willing to pay the extra.

But I was wondering do you tell the potential customer that you charge more for bi-weekly service?

Does that ever help in getting them to instead choose weekly service to have the lower per cut price?

Or is it better to simply give them the higher bi-weekly price and not tell them it is more than a weekly price?

iadams
03-28-2010, 02:18 AM
Seems to me that if you are in a position that you want to, or have to do 10 day mowings, you should explain what your weekly price is, and then explain how 1.5 is still providing a discount, but that it may not look as good as a weekly mowing. Chances are that if they are requesting a 10 day mow, that they have done it themselves in the past, and only have done it every other week. They probably don't know how good it can look. Explain about grass disposal fees (if you have them), and how you will take twice as much grass off of it, and spend more time on the lawn per visit. If you do that, it seems that 1.5 seems better than 2.0 ( $45.00 is less than $60.00). <-That is what it looks like to customers, they aren't in the industry, they don't understand (for the most part) about how it's going to look in the second week. That being said.... If it were me, I would try to negotiate a lower weekly price. Like Steve said, more time, more equipment wear, more grass taken at once... I would rather give a discount per week, in order to be able to mow it weekly. Looks better overall, and keeps scheduling normal as well. But don't starve yourself either.

mark123
03-29-2010, 06:58 AM
But I was wondering do you tell the potential customer that you charge more for bi-weekly service? Yes, but they don't ever like the idea.

Does that ever help in getting them to instead choose weekly service to have the lower per cut price?It does. Not as often as I'd like though.

Or is it better to simply give them the higher bi-weekly price and not tell them it is more than a weekly price?No, prices are very competitive in this area. Most leads already know what they want to pay before I give a price. I usually ask what their old lawn care company did it for and then give them my price whether it's higher or lower.

mark123
03-29-2010, 07:07 AM
I'm considering doing something differently. Maybe I'm going to try to up the cost and then offer discounts for weekly mowing. Maybe I'll run it monthly so that folks that try to cancel a mowing in the summer when it isn't growing as much lose the discount temporarily.

What do you think?

jasonw
03-29-2010, 11:01 AM
I've been in the lawn mowing business for a little while now and had to deal with some stuff throughout the years. customers who just want it done every 10-14 daysjust want the same service for 1/2 the price but not only is this bad for your bottom line (profit) it also makes your customers lawn look like **** and make a huge (-):mad: impression on you business. Best way to ensure you dont have to deal with this is collect you $$$ at the start of the month if they dont pay you for all 4 weeks/at all DONT MOW! and return the partial payment with a sorry we must mow weekly company policy.:)

That is a horrible idea. More than half my customers left the last lawn care guy for this. Some lawns just dont need weekly mowing year round so why should the client have to pay for what they are not getting? You are just cheating them, plain and simple.

mark123
03-29-2010, 11:10 AM
It's not a rip off if you are doing twice the work in the spring and autumn for the same price. The customer has to understand that you are keeping your pricing low by offering constant service. Weekly mowing even if it doesn't look like it needs it is more beneficial than waiting until you are cutting 50% of the leaf tissue in a single mowing.

jasonw
03-29-2010, 11:28 AM
You are right steve...Those are not the customers I want to focus on. I appreciate the info and I will definately not offer the 10 day mowing.... I would love for eveyone mow weekly but i know that won't happen as I already am mowing my wife's friends yard on a bi-weekly basis because she can't afford it weekly. Again I thank you guys for your time and input, it helps alot

I ended up dropping one client because he only wanted his yard mowed once per month. The front was never a big deal but the back would get about 3-4' tall. I finally told him unless we did it more often I would have to haul larger equipment up there to do it which would end up costing a lot more. He never called me back. I see no problem though with biweekly mowing. Most of mine now are biweekly and for my area that is fine, maybe at most I might get a lawn that is 4-6" tall, no big deal there.

jasonw
03-29-2010, 11:44 AM
It's not a rip off if you are doing twice the work in the spring and autumn for the same price. The customer has to understand that you are keeping your pricing low by offering constant service. Weekly mowing even if it doesn't look like it needs it is more beneficial than waiting until you are cutting 50% of the leaf tissue in a single mowing.

Do half the people really give 2 ****s if there front yard looks like a golf course? Not in my area. they just want it cut, they want it cheap and want you in and out of there lives. There is no point in even working if you can go all day without emptying your bag. I find people around here demanding annual contracts and weekly mowing are just taking advantage of hard working people. Maybe in your area the grass grows 2 feet per week "I doubt it" but here it dose not. Thats fine by me though. If locally LCO's want to keep taking advantage of people I will just keep taking there business.

Jack Rabbit
03-29-2010, 01:40 PM
Customer service. That's what it is about, service. The customer has their own wishes and budget for their yard.

I'll charge the same price for each mowing. If the customer wants 1 per week or 2 or 3 per month that's fine. Glad to have their business. I'll explain the advantages and disadvantages of more or less mowing but it is their decision.

Instead of all the tricks with pricing and coercive contracts and payment schemes why not just honestly tell a customer, "I can't do that because I won't make enough money", or "That won't look good and I'm concerned about my reputation".

In essence, be good to your customers, be honest and treat them with respect, be grateful that they make your income possible, but don't be foolish about your business.

cmpenn67
03-29-2010, 01:56 PM
Customer service. That's what it is about, service. The customer has their own wishes and budget for their yard.

I'll charge the same price for each mowing. If the customer wants 1 per week or 2 or 3 per month that's fine. Glad to have their business. I'll explain the advantages and disadvantages of more or less mowing but it is their decision.

Instead of all the tricks with pricing and coercive contracts and payment schemes why not just honestly tell a customer, "I can't do that because I won't make enough money", or "That won't look good and I'm concerned about my reputation".

In essence, be good to your customers, be honest and treat them with respect, be grateful that they make your income possible, but don't be foolish about your business.


WELL SAID!!
I couldn't agree with that statement more. That is how I want to run my business when I get it started. That is who I am as a person and I would like for that to portray into my business.

mark123
03-29-2010, 02:23 PM
Do half the people really give 2 ****s if there front yard looks like a golf course? ...
Two or three of my folks just want to avoid a visit from Code Enforcement but the others all want my premium service. Of course all customers, even the tight-budgeted customers, receive a perfect cut every time. I can't imagine doing any less. I also won't take a job that will reflect poorly on my business.

... Maybe in your area the grass grows 2 feet per week "I doubt it" but here it dose not. ...
Lawns are kept at 3 - 3.5". It doesn't have to grow 2 feet per week. 1" is enough. However, I do have one lawn that is fertilized by another company and I can say it probably grows 6"/week in the spring. I'll have to take pics. It's ridiculous. Overfertilization is not a good thing.



I've just got to add that my lawn care is premium and so is my pricing structure. It has nothing to do with trickery or coerciveness. To imply that it's somehow dishonest is baffling. I don't force anyone to use my services. They are free to decline.

Steve
03-29-2010, 09:34 PM
I've just got to add that my lawn care is premium and so is my pricing structure.

Mark, when you market your services, do you offer a service that is called 'premium lawn care'.

I could see how naming the different packages could really help with selling them.

gonecountry
04-27-2010, 11:19 PM
The way I am going to do my customers is give them an estimate for weekly mowing, bi weekly mowing[I charge 10 dollars extra], fall and spring leaf removal. That way they can't come back at me later and say that didn't know that the leaf removals were going to be that much, in which I usually take the price I normally charge to mow their lawn in one week and times it by 4 or 5.

for example:

weekly mow- $35
biweekly mow-$45
fall leaf removal-140-175[depending on how many trees and what types]
spring leaf removal- same as fall

mark123
04-27-2010, 11:54 PM
Mark, when you market your services, do you offer a service that is called 'premium lawn care'.

I could see how naming the different packages could really help with selling them.

I don't offer any lower grade options for mowing. I suppose I could try calling the addition of fertlizing/weed control my "Premium Service". Hmm. Interesting idea.

mark123
04-27-2010, 11:56 PM
... fall and spring leaf removal. That way they can't come back at me later and say that didn't know that the leaf removals were going to be that much ... Now that's a great idea that I hadn't considered.

For leaf removal I usually charge by the hour. Some of my lawns get leaves up to your crotch! A fixed price may be really tough for those lawns.