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Humberto
04-13-2013, 12:10 PM
Ok everyone check this out..how come when a plumber or electrician comes to ur house charges you 70-80 bucks an hour gives the homeowner this huge bill and for the most part gets paid...But when a landscaper/lawn guy comes the homeowner and quotes 35 for the lawn and 35 to remove a 3foot hedge. The customer goes sure go ahead,and then when your done they go...but you were only here for just over an hour thats just ridiculous he said. He still paid me (cusin and a grutin) the whole timei guess he thought id be there for several hours..this is my first encounter. Im sure it wont be the last.Any body knows what i should do to avoid this next time??

BLC7
04-13-2013, 12:49 PM
Ok everyone check this out..how come when a plumber or electrician comes to ur house charges you 70-80 bucks an hour gives the homeowner this huge bill and for the most part gets paid...But when a landscaper/lawn guy comes the homeowner and quotes 35 for the lawn and 35 to remove a 3foot hedge. The customer goes sure go ahead,and then when your done they go...but you were only here for just over an hour thats just ridiculous he said. He still paid me (cusin and a grutin) the whole timei guess he thought id be there for several hours..this is my first encounter. Im sure it wont be the last.Any body knows what i should do to avoid this next time??

You're in this business to make money. He agreed on your price before you started. It doesn't matter how long it takes, and tell them that.

I just paid a tree removal business $200 bucks to cut up and remove a huge tree that had fallen in the yard.

It took them just over an hour to remove it.

It would have taken me days.


how long would it have taken your customer to mow, remove the shrub, and haul it off?

Probably more than the hour it took you. Sometimes you have to be blunt with folks.

The Cleaning Doctor
04-13-2013, 03:14 PM
Take more Breaks.,.:D

What they are paying with plumbers is knowledge and tools. That is the same thing they are paying you for. Labor is only a minor portion of it. The problem is that people think they are only buying labor.

GreenBlue
04-13-2013, 04:16 PM
Ok everyone check this out..how come when a plumber or electrician comes to ur house charges you 70-80 bucks an hour gives the homeowner this huge bill and for the most part gets paid...But when a landscaper/lawn guy comes the homeowner and quotes 35 for the lawn and 35 to remove a 3foot hedge. The customer goes sure go ahead,and then when your done they go...but you were only here for just over an hour thats just ridiculous he said. He still paid me (cusin and a grutin) the whole timei guess he thought id be there for several hours..this is my first encounter. Im sure it wont be the last.Any body knows what i should do to avoid this next time??

That's just the way people are, and this won't be the last customer you run into that's like this unfortunately. Just remember what you quote the customer and don't let them back you down very much on the price. Customers are always going to bulk at some of your prices, but you have to explain what they benefit from by hiring you to do the job they are wanting performed.

stevef1201
04-13-2013, 05:39 PM
I saw a comic once, the home owner asked the electrician "Is this something I could do myself?"
The Electrician said "Sure, with 20 years of experience and about 50K worth of tools!"

I tell people that "Yes that seems high but, remember I also haul this crap away. The dumping fee is xxx, and it takes me another hour of work to get there and unload this crap."

LawnBoy0311
04-14-2013, 09:48 AM
Ok everyone check this out..how come when a plumber or electrician comes to ur house charges you 70-80 bucks an hour gives the homeowner this huge bill and for the most part gets paid...But when a landscaper/lawn guy comes the homeowner and quotes 35 for the lawn and 35 to remove a 3foot hedge. The customer goes sure go ahead,and then when your done they go...but you were only here for just over an hour thats just ridiculous he said. He still paid me (cusin and a grutin) the whole timei guess he thought id be there for several hours..this is my first encounter. Im sure it wont be the last.Any body knows what i should do to avoid this next time??

A lot of people can't do electical or plumbing work. So they hire someone.

But why do people hire us? BECAUSE THEY ARE LAZY!!!!! They can cut their own lawn, but they don't because of the usual looooooooooong list of reasons why they can't do it.

Landscaping is a seasonal job for most of us. I explain to them its pretty hard to mow lawns with snow on the ground.

dpld
04-14-2013, 11:20 AM
plumbers and electricians have to be licensed and insured as well as their license can be revoked if they are not insured.
they also have to work as a apprentice for a few years and have to have sponsors that are licensed in order to take the exam.

i could be a garbage man with a few thousand dollars in the bank and one day decide that i want to be a landscaper and go out and buy a machine and trailer and such and bam, i am a landscaper.

i mean no disrespect to anyone but 3/4 of the people on this site have no clue as to what they are doing and have no prior experience and never worked for a landscape company and viola, they are landscapers.

we have printers, insurance salesman, teenagers and kids in grammar school that either lost their job and decided to start a business or just have visions of grandeur that they are gonna make the big time cutting lawns by passing out flyers with no insurance and don't even put their quotes in writing who think that they don't need to do so.

and you wonder why customers treat us the way they do.

bruces
04-14-2013, 12:01 PM
plumbers and electricians have to be licensed and insured as well as their license can be revoked if they are not insured.
they also have to work as a apprentice for a few years and have to have sponsors that are licensed in order to take the exam.

i could be a garbage man with a few thousand dollars in the bank and one day decide that i want to be a landscaper and go out and buy a machine and trailer and such and bam, i am a landscaper.

i mean no disrespect to anyone but 3/4 of the people on this site have no clue as to what they are doing and have no prior experience and never worked for a landscape company and viola, they are landscapers.

we have printers, insurance salesman, teenagers and kids in grammar school that either lost their job and decided to start a business or just have visions of grandeur that they are gonna make the big time cutting lawns by passing out flyers with no insurance and don't even put their quotes in writing who think that they don't need to do so.

and you wonder why customers treat us the way they do.

very well said .

stevef1201
04-14-2013, 05:22 PM
The biggest reason is US. We don't do anything about the unlicensed, uninsured, and just plain illegal operators. If Bevis is not licensed, he is not paying taxes IRS TAX FRAUD, STATE TAX FRAUD, He has no insurance - leave a note with his customers that they will be held financially liable if Bevis damages some else's property, if some gets hurt, of if Bevis gets hurt. See Bevis spraying chemicals, REPORT HIM. Most states have a requirement to specially licensed or like in Florida 5000 dollar fine for the first offense, can go to jail for up to 10 years

willshome
04-14-2013, 08:31 PM
You are not going to get rich MOWING almost anyone can do it and tools are very cheap. Things that make the best money take special skills or tools like.
stump grinding
tilling
aerating
dethatching
power washing
anything that needs a large truck

Cashin H&P
04-14-2013, 09:35 PM
plumbers and electricians have to be licensed and insured as well as their license can be revoked if they are not insured.
they also have to work as a apprentice for a few years and have to have sponsors that are licensed in order to take the exam.

i could be a garbage man with a few thousand dollars in the bank and one day decide that i want to be a landscaper and go out and buy a machine and trailer and such and bam, i am a landscaper.

i mean no disrespect to anyone but 3/4 of the people on this site have no clue as to what they are doing and have no prior experience and never worked for a landscape company and viola, they are landscapers.

we have printers, insurance salesman, teenagers and kids in grammar school that either lost their job and decided to start a business or just have visions of grandeur that they are gonna make the big time cutting lawns by passing out flyers with no insurance and don't even put their quotes in writing who think that they don't need to do so.

and you wonder why customers treat us the way they do.

Dpld, It is posts like this that make me respect you the most on this site. I am young (20) but landscaping is not a game to me it is my career. I am glad there are people like you on this site for us to learn from.

stevef1201
04-15-2013, 07:03 AM
You are not going to get rich MOWING almost anyone can do it and tools are very cheap. Things that make the best money take special skills or tools like.
stump grinding
tilling
aerating
dethatching
power washing
anything that needs a large truck

Very true! I see guys everyday that went to walmart bought a cheap lawn tractor, and weedeater. Then go out an "mow lawns".

dpld
04-15-2013, 10:00 AM
Dpld, It is posts like this that make me respect you the most on this site. I am young (20) but landscaping is not a game to me it is my career. I am glad there are people like you on this site for us to learn from.


i appreciate the kind words and it means a lot to me to hear that.
there are so many things to know and do that it can be overwhelming for a young guy starting out and i had the fortune of working under some great people when i started out and i try to do my best to return the favor.

i will say however that i am not the know all be all and some things that work for me may not be the best way for others and all i ever try to do is be helpful to anyone who cares to listen.
there are also many ways to be successful and there is no one basic plan that has a one size fits all approach for everyone.
whether it is me or anyone else the person on the other end has to take the advice with a grain of salt because there are so many factors from state to state that some things may not apply to them.

you seem as if you are off to a great start and you got your act together. i wish you and everyone here all the best and continued success and don't ever be discouraged by anyone and don't think that you have to be a big company to be successful because there is no significance in that and the most important factor for you and anyone is that you are making a good living and providing for yourself and your families.

thanks again for the kind words, Dan.

SECTLANDSCAPING
04-15-2013, 11:59 AM
You are not going to get rich MOWING almost anyone can do it and tools are very cheap. Things that make the best money take special skills or tools like.
stump grinding
tilling
aerating
dethatching
power washing
anything that needs a large truck

This is very true. The largest landscaping companies are doing hardscapes, masonry, asphalt, tree work, etc. All these are skills that need experience and equipment.

So far this year my big earner is gutter cleanings. Theres really no skill in this but most people dont price it right. 99% of homeowners will not get on a ladder to do it themselves. The hacks will do it for $50-$100.

I am one of the most expensive gutter cleaning and pressure washing companies in my area. I land about 80% of my work even when I'm twice as high as the next guy. I have a reputation and A+ grade on Angieslist that speaks for itself.

With mowing your dealing with homeowners that will mow their own lawn or hire the cheapest guy. Its lawn mowing not rocket science. There is money in lawn treatment if you can get enough clients.

I really have never had to target residential mowing. I will this year just because I have some openings but Ill never be that guy that says hes going to get 50 lawns. Its like plowing driveways a waste of time.

Steve
04-15-2013, 12:34 PM
This is a very good question!

but you were only here for just over an hour thats just ridiculous he said. He still paid me (cusin and a grutin) the whole timei guess he thought id be there for several hours..this is my first encounter. Im sure it wont be the last.Any body knows what i should do to avoid this next time??

It seems it all comes down to a value the customer puts together in their head. This customer might have based it on the time you spent versus how much he gets paid an hour himself.

Now it may be difficult to avoid this from happening, but it might be prudent to smooth over when it does happen if you want this to be a return customer.

How might you do this? You could explain to the customer how it costs quite a bit to keep your operation going. You could point to a mower and say that mower alone costs me $X dollars and needs to be replaced every X years.

If you can show the customer that you are able to get the job done because of the infrastructure you have created and are paying to keep together, they may better understand that they can't compare your hourly wage to how much they make an hour because you have A LOT of bills that need to be covered from your fee.

In the end, you want the customer to feel they got a good deal and the price is a lot cheaper than if they had to buy the equipment and spend the time to learn how to perform the work. If they feel they got a good deal, they will call back and they will also refer you to others.

Does this help you?

Billy Goat
04-16-2013, 06:05 AM
my first encounter. Im sure it wont be the last.Any body knows what i should do to avoid this next time??

Some customers will challage you when they do the math. The less you try to explain your pricing method the better. I try to remember unrelated examples to try to mirror back to the customer. Use examples like "Do you change the oil in your car? Most will say "No" Then ask them "Why" and stand back and listen to them try to explain why. Then you can challage them on all the things they forgot what it takes to change the oil from the very beginning (going to the store) to the very end (disposal).

LawnBoy0311
04-16-2013, 08:20 AM
and you wonder why customers treat us the way they do.

I've burn lurking on here for a while, even before I joined this forum. I think its a great thing everyone is here to help eachother. But over the last few weeks, it's really got me frustrated that people join and the first post is "How do I bid this job?"

I think we should all AS A TEAM let these new people know that they should do research on past threads, then ask us questions if they can't find anything. That will at least show that they are a little dedicated to learning. Most of us are a bit too quick to help people (me included). And these new people mow a few yards, realize the work is hard, and fall off the face of the earth. That gives us a bad name.

willshome
04-16-2013, 01:15 PM
[QUOTE=LawnBoy0311;125762] they should do research on past threads, then ask us questions if they can't find anything. QUOTE]

Or start by watching steve's videos
<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/o3NQr5NVy2g" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
But the best way to learn is to ask questions before you F everthing up

FORUM Noun
1.A meeting or medium where ideas and views on a particular issue can be exchanged.
2.An Internet message board.

GreenBlue
04-16-2013, 01:29 PM
I have to admit that I've asked some questions on here and I've learned alot, and there have been a few times that I have blown up on a few issues, but I quickly realized that everyone was trying to help me understand. I read posts on here every day and learn stuff everyday. I'm not going to be someone who is going to get my business started and think that over night I'm going to be making $50K per year. There are still a few things I'm trying to get my understanding of, but I've been getting there with what others have posted and said in response, and also been researching things on the internet. I just wanted to say though that I am very thankful for this website, because I've learned quite a bit from all of you who have already started your lawn service and been successful with it for years. I look forward everyday to someone posting about a job that they got and learning things that come from these posts. I may have looked stupid with some of my posts, but at least I got valuable information from the ones who took the time to reply with help and suggestions and advice. I am depending on everyone on this website for many suggestions and advice that will come eventually when my lawn service is opened, but at least for now I'm still learning and preparing. :)

SECTLANDSCAPING
04-16-2013, 01:45 PM
I've burn lurking on here for a while, even before I joined this forum. I think its a great thing everyone is here to help eachother. But over the last few weeks, it's really got me frustrated that people join and the first post is "How do I bid this job?"

I think we should all AS A TEAM let these new people know that they should do research on past threads, then ask us questions if they can't find anything. That will at least show that they are a little dedicated to learning. Most of us are a bit too quick to help people (me included). And these new people mow a few yards, realize the work is hard, and fall off the face of the earth. That gives us a bad name.
thats kinda a standard thing for a forum. Pretty much every forum I ever joined said search before asking but people are lazy. For general questions youll find threads with dozens of post instead of waiting for 2-3 people to post.

The questions that irk me though are about licensing or if something is legal in x county/state.

Google is a newbies best friend.

For more specific stuff though you need a new thread.

LawnBoy0311
04-16-2013, 02:32 PM
thats kinda a standard thing for a forum. Pretty much every forum I ever joined said search before asking but people are lazy. For general questions youll find threads with dozens of post instead of waiting for 2-3 people to post.

The questions that irk me though are about licensing or if something is legal in x county/state.

Google is a newbies best friend.

For more specific stuff though you need a new thread.

Of course I agree. But by no means would I jump to it to help others make money in my same field when I:
A. know nothing about them
B. know they are new and no clue what they are doing
C. think its quick cash and easy work

I think its awesome we're helping people, and learning a ton. But I also think we should make them research before we jump in to help them.

How many of us have been burned in the past because someone gave us a bad name?? I bet it happens more in this field than ever....DPLD gave a good reason why.

LawnBoy0311
04-16-2013, 02:35 PM
I have to admit that I've asked some questions on here and I've learned alot, and there have been a few times that I have blown up on a few issues, but I quickly realized that everyone was trying to help me understand. I read posts on here every day and learn stuff everyday. I'm not going to be someone who is going to get my business started and think that over night I'm going to be making $50K per year. There are still a few things I'm trying to get my understanding of, but I've been getting there with what others have posted and said in response, and also been researching things on the internet. I just wanted to say though that I am very thankful for this website, because I've learned quite a bit from all of you who have already started your lawn service and been successful with it for years. I look forward everyday to someone posting about a job that they got and learning things that come from these posts. I may have looked stupid with some of my posts, but at least I got valuable information from the ones who took the time to reply with help and suggestions and advice. I am depending on everyone on this website for many suggestions and advice that will come eventually when my lawn service is opened, but at least for now I'm still learning and preparing. :)

Whats in bold letters is what sets you apart. You've shown us your more than willing to learn. Your not the guy who makes an account, types 1 post, then stops showing up because he was frustrated its not quick money...and that he actually has to work for it.

I just think we sometimes post too fast. Lets make them work for our secrets!:D

SECTLANDSCAPING
04-16-2013, 02:59 PM
I just think we sometimes post too fast. Lets make them work for our secrets!:D

My only secret is known. Send all checks to SECTLandscaping. That goes for you to Lawnboy. I'm expecting half of your first roof cleaning job.

LawnBoy0311
04-16-2013, 07:41 PM
My only secret is known. Send all checks to SECTLandscaping. That goes for you to Lawnboy. I'm expecting half of your first roof cleaning job.

Yes master. I'll paddle up the coast to you in my new concrete sailboat.

Lelan
04-17-2013, 07:07 AM
Whats in bold letters is what sets you apart. You've shown us your more than willing to learn. Your not the guy who makes an account, types 1 post, then stops showing up because he was frustrated its not quick money...and that he actually has to work for it.

I just think we sometimes post too fast. Lets make them work for our secrets!:D

LawnBoy, I am a Newbie here and I'm asking some questions. With that being said, I agree with you to an extent. There are times that I could probably get info I can use from an old thread. And it's amazing how we as a society are programmed to feel we must rush in to keep someone from struggling. The fact is, struggling builds muscle between the ears and acroos the back.

On the other hand, I do ask questions, and most are open-ended. Why?
Because a detailed question forces us both to stay on a pre-determined course. An open-ended question (or an ongoing forum) lets us wander a little. We all get more information and insight. Things pop up that may seem only indirectly tied to the main question, but then we realize that those "side issues" have a big effect on how we feel about other things. It's a good way of discovering the connections in things for all concerned. You can't always get that fresh perspective from an old thread.

What does all this boil down to? Answer my questions and tell everybody else to go to the archives. JK :D

LawnBoy0311
04-17-2013, 07:59 AM
LawnBoy, I am a Newbie here and I'm asking some questions. With that being said, I agree with you to an extent. There are times that I could probably get info I can use from an old thread. And it's amazing how we as a society are programmed to feel we must rush in to keep someone from struggling. The fact is, struggling builds muscle between the ears and acroos the back.

On the other hand, I do ask questions, and most are open-ended. Why?
Because a detailed question forces us both to stay on a pre-determined course. An open-ended question (or an ongoing forum) lets us wander a little. We all get more information and insight. Things pop up that may seem only indirectly tied to the main question, but then we realize that those "side issues" have a big effect on how we feel about other things. It's a good way of discovering the connections in things for all concerned. You can't always get that fresh perspective from an old thread.

What does all this boil down to? Answer my questions and tell everybody else to go to the archives. JK :D

Oh I can't agree more. On- going threads help everybody. But, its the usual questions that have been posted for years:

"how do I bid this job?"
"what do I charge for mulch?"
"what equipment do I need to mow with?"
"how do I advertise?"
"Whats the best way to advertise?"
etc.

These questions come up alllllllll the time. Every spring someone thinks they are going to start up a lawn service. They log in, make 1 post "how do I quote this job?" then give us no more info.

But with a little reading and research from old threads....the answers are still 99.9% of the time the same as they were years before.

Your thread shows you've done research and you want to learn:
http://www.gopherforum.com/showthread.php?t=18522 You can tell by the answers you got.

Now read this thread: http://www.gopherforum.com/showthread.php?t=18249 This has been talked about over and over and over again.

And this one: http://www.gopherforum.com/showthread.php?t=18256

The same topic is gone over many times. We all see these people come and go. They post 1 or 2 things, then are never to be seen again. They want us to help them, but show no effort in wanting to succeed....they want us to spoon feed them info.

These kinds of posts will never stop, but I think it would clean up the forum a little and have more valuable discussions with people who have a desire to learn. Steve does a great job playing good cop/bad cop and the rest of us should tell these people to research. If they do the research and read some old threads, I have a lot more respect for them because they show they want to learn.

Steve
04-17-2013, 12:38 PM
What does all this boil down to? Answer my questions and tell everybody else to go to the archives.

LOL. I understand.

Lelan
04-18-2013, 06:46 AM
Your thread shows you've done research and you want to learn:
http://www.gopherforum.com/showthread.php?t=18522 You can tell by the answers you got.

Now read this thread: http://www.gopherforum.com/showthread.php?t=18249 This has been talked about over and over and over again.

And this one: http://www.gopherforum.com/showthread.php?t=18256

The same topic is gone over many times. We all see these people come and go. They post 1 or 2 things, then are never to be seen again. They want us to help them, but show no effort in wanting to succeed....they want us to spoon feed them info.

These kinds of posts will never stop, but I think it would clean up the forum a little and have more valuable discussions with people who have a desire to learn. Steve does a great job playing good cop/bad cop and the rest of us should tell these people to research. If they do the research and read some old threads, I have a lot more respect for them because they show they want to learn.

Thanks for the kind words, LawnBoy. Looking back on my post, I thought it was a little rude. You were very clear about the difference between simple and complex. If I offended you or anyone else with the preachiness, I apologize.

LawnBoy0311
04-18-2013, 07:02 AM
Thanks for the kind words, LawnBoy. Looking back on my post, I thought it was a little rude. You were very clear about the difference between simple and complex. If I offended you or anyone else with the preachiness, I apologize.

It's all good Lelan! No worries at all. You've shown everyone you want to learn. Hows the advertising going?

wandfsmall
04-18-2013, 08:45 AM
You know for a thread that could offend some of the people that would post on this forum this topic has never gotten to the root of the issue. Guess what every business has customers that think they charge to much. You have 3 reasons that the customers will feel this way no matter what you say or do.

1. Most of your customers do not know nor care what it costs to run a business.

2. a lot of lawncare operations start out with less then $500 in equipment no experience and call themselves professionals. Until you get a little experience in a lot of cases the customer could do it cheaper and do just as good of a job as you, they are just too lazy to do so.

3.EVERY INDUSTRY has this problem. How many times do I see stealership on this forum talking about a equipment dealership. If you do not think other businesses should be able to make a profit off of you why should your customers think you should make a profit off of them. I am not complaining about members of this forum just pointing out a trend in society, that people think business owners make too much.

Most of your lowballers do not even come on a site like this, they just go to the gas station and post yards for $10 or something like that.