View Full Version : I'm going to make like a tree and leaf....

10-10-2011, 01:54 PM
Cute Title right? Okay, well, starting sunday I have went to my client's properties to do my "free leaf removal" The street department takes leaves in bags, on the side of the street, etc for free. however, I'm just 2 days into it, 3 properties, and I ALREADY have a trailer full of about 25 bags. This is just blowing them, and putting them into the bags. Is anyone having this many leaves fall? I could have sworn they didn't fall like this til late october last year. Also, what else should I offer right now besides gutter cleaning after the leaves have fallen. Snow removal? or is it too early for that?

10-10-2011, 10:35 PM
Is the free service coming back to bite you in the a$$ yet, or did it bring in enough clients to make it worthwhile?

No, it's not too early to let people know about snow removal.

10-11-2011, 03:21 AM
leaves are barley falling off the trees here yet .But I have already been signing snow plow contracts so not to early to think of snow removal.

10-11-2011, 05:21 PM
well, starting sunday I have went to my client's properties to do my "free leaf removal" The street department takes leaves in bags, on the side of the street, etc for free.

Can you explain this more? How it works and why you decided to do this?

10-12-2011, 12:18 PM
Can you explain this more? How it works and why you decided to do this?

I remove leaves from my current clients lawns. On days I get bored and have nothing to do in-between school and sports. Why did I decide to do this? Because I HATE mowing leaves. Plusi tell them what it would cost if they paid me. Then they are all like "oh that's a great deal" and they stay with me for the next mowing season. One of my clients, a realtor, normally hires me for new properties when he gets them. Then I do the leaves, and he has me clear the snow off of all the driveways even though they don't need it. So it's a good deal for me. :)

10-12-2011, 01:03 PM
Man your lawns must be in a tree free area, or saplings.
The areas I work are loaded with mature Oak, Ash and Maple to name a few.When the wind blows no lawn is free of large amounts of leaves. Trees or not.
Leaves are profitable for me. If I were to do leaf pickup for free it would cut me income by more then a third.If I were to bag them it would cost me 100s of dollars in bags alone. Plus gas and wear and tear on equipment and ME.
Also bagging sucks. I either tarp them or mulch and pick them up and haul away. I'm luck my property has a reveen so I dump them there.
I did some free work years ago. Picking up sticks after wind, a light snow removal. little jobs. But its my experience people get uncomfortable with free work. Even long term clients. Anyway I don't do much free work any more.

10-12-2011, 04:27 PM
Do you try to charge your clients a little more throughout the year for mowing since you are giving them a free leaf cleanup?

Also, do you promote this or do you just do it as you feel like it?

10-13-2011, 08:35 AM
The clients I do it for, do overpay a little bit, because I thought it was going to be harder than it was. However, I kept the price, because I do stuff like this. I NEVER promote it. Doesn't seem like a good deal if you promote it. I just call (or text) them asking if they want me to do it sometime this week, if they say sure, I do it, if not. I make a massive mess of them with my mower, then they pay me to do it. Simple as that.

10-14-2011, 05:14 PM
As you are out there performing this service in this way, does it give you ideas on how you would like to handle it in the future? Will you be doing this next year too?

10-15-2011, 08:13 AM
How to handle it? Eh, buy a lawn vac. That's how I'd handle it in the future. Leaf blower and rakes suck compared to a lawn vac. However, I do the leaf removal early in the leaf falling, that way they come back and ask me to do it again, and I say that's only a one time thing (for me to do it for free) then I give them my hourly price. They usually say Okay to it. So it works. I'm not sure if I will be doing it next year or not. I have college next fall. About 40 miles south, and I might be living there. So coming up to mow might be about all I can do. I won't be sure until the time comes.

10-17-2011, 03:29 PM
Well it certainly is a unique way to attract more work and after reading this, others may want to experiment with it as well.

10-18-2011, 08:15 PM
Yeah it's more unorthodox so to speak, just DO NOT do it with the cheap clients. Waste of time. Only the ones that always say "I need this done" but never take initiative. When you go and do a small free service they have you do more.

I think this was the only experiment that has turned out good for business, all my others would have sent me to the asylum if I advertised them.

10-18-2011, 09:50 PM
For me I don't think I'd ever be able to offer a project as big as a leaf clean-up for free.....I'm thinking of offering a hefty discount to new clients this year, but that's only if they sign a contract for a year's worth of maintenance for next season......Discount to be credited to their account next season.....I wanna make sure I don't give the discount and not get the client.

10-18-2011, 10:05 PM
I've only done a few "mini cleanups" for free thus far and the only reason I've done so is because otherwise, I couldn't have mowed the lawn. If I can't mow the lawn, then they may get it in their head that it doesn't "need" cut any more and then I'm screwed out of my few last cuts of the season.

I ONLY blow them off the LAWN - not beds or anywhere else. This way, I'm not screwing myself out of a true cleanup - which I can be PAID for. (leaves are still falling too)