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musician/lawnman
02-17-2008, 10:17 AM
This might be a little self destructive if I have competition in the area reading this but I'm curious anyway...

I live in Southern Florida
Lots here in our area are 80'x125' *& if on a corner they're a little bigger. *Last summer provided it's a normal house * * * * * (normal amount of landscaping, fences, ditches to line trim around) I would quote $25/cut or $85/mo year round. *I didn't specify much as far as frequency other than to say during growing season I'd be there weekly & out of season It's usually about twice a month. *on a corner lot It was usually $30/cut or $100/mo.

A couple months ago as things slowed down with the per cut customers I really learned the value of those annual accounts & I need to stack on more annual accounts over the summer to be in better shape next winter. *So Found a way to get the pricing more competitive & lean the cards so I would get more annual accounts than per cut ( in theory anyway we'll see ). *Part of my new proposal form looks like this:


This proposal is for: the property at the address above. *Normal services include mowing, line trim, edging, blow off all concrete walkways/driveways * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

In this proposal the Monthly Fees are based on 34 services (visits) per calendar year as follows:
Month = # of visits to be made under this agreement :
Jan.= 1, Feb.= 1, Mar.= 2, *Apr.= 2, May= 3, June= 4, July= 4, Aug.= 5, Sept.= 5, Oct.= 3, Nov.=2,
Dec.=2 * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Billing options: *Per cut (weekly In summer months) $ * * wk *or Monthly billing with annual agreemnt $ * * * Month
So for example the same lawn I had been quoting $25/cut or $85 /mo. * before I would now do this.

If I want $25/ cut: *$25 x 34 services/yr = $850 Divided by 12 is $70.83 * *Rounded up I quote $25/cut ot $71/month

My prices is more competitve & I still make $25/cut when all is said & done.

If they need an extra cut in there its just that... extra!

So:
* * 1) how do you guys price basic lawn care ?
(cut, line trim, edge & blow off)
* * 2) how big are your average lots?
* * 3) do you think I'm over or under priced? *Or about on target?

Dzielak51
02-17-2008, 08:41 PM
I just started a lawn business in south florida also....the competion is real tough. Ive seen people charge as low as $20 a month. I dont see how they do it.

My average customer pays $70 a month or $30 a cut. The way i see it is i can offer $30 per cut and do it twice a month for a while and make $60 total but when wet season gets here and i do weekly cuts, my customers wont stick with $30 per cut and shell out $120 a month when they can just pick up the phone book and call someone else that will cut it for $20 a month. So its a risk to lose your customer that way.

My strategy is just to give them discounts on the first couple cuts to try to lock them in, then charge them $70 a month.

I dont know, im still learning alot though. I think properly bidding a job to you make as much as possible and still make it fair for the customer is the hardest part about this business.

musician/lawnman
02-17-2008, 10:23 PM
$20 a month? *That is nuts! *I wouldn't unload my gear for $20 /cut! * From what I can tell most of my clients biggest complaints about their previous company was on of these:
a) *The guy did good work but was unreliable & went to long bettween cuts.
b) *I signed the contract with him for monthly billing & he started scalping the lawn so he didn't have to come nearly as often.
c) *I signed the contract with the guy & never saw him personally here again & none of his employees speak english!

I show up & do every job as if I lived there, How would I want it to look if it was my home *(which is ironic because I hate doing my own lawn & it usually ends up looking worse than any of my clients homes). *I think there is a good percentage of people who will pay honest money for good relaible work. *

I figure to be profitable it is those clients I need on my roster. *I tell customers " I don't claim to be the cheapest, My prices are competitive... *but my quality is 2nd to none! "
If you do everything legitamate, claim what you make for taxes, have the right workers comp & liability etc. *I don't think you could afford to be that guy that low balls every job.

I started with that schedule of 34 cuts so my monthly prices would be lower & I though customers would value knowing exactly what they'll get for their money, Though I have yet to sign anyone under that new contract style. *I think it might be too much info!? * or maybe it's that people are hesitant to to sign up & pay $70-100 per month to you when they just met you & the next few months the grass doesn't grow much?

But I seemed to have better luck during the summer with simply saying verbally:
I also offer monthly billing, I know mrs. smith that $30 a week is alot to pay for lawn care & this time of year that can mean $120 -$150 a month! so here's what I do, I'll do it for $100/ month year round. *It's more budgetable for you & I can better budget my business knowing exactly what's coming in. *Basically, I agree to make less during the summer & fall *& you agree to help me feed the wife & kids in the winter time. *Either way it's up to you mam. *Which way would you prefer?

I did pretty well, No I didn't get every one. *but I'd say more than half! *

So my other question is this, *Do you think I'd be better to use my old way or the new way of presenting montly billing?

Thanks for your replys on this one in advance, *I really need the input here to decide which way to go. http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/thankyou.gif

Rouskey Landscaping
02-18-2008, 01:58 AM
I would say your right about on target. Im up in Illinois so pricing can be different. I usually charge per square foot (area x .0015) but its best to find out what you can afford. Take overhead into account. If you have insurance, workers' comp., equipment costs, etc.

musician/lawnman
02-18-2008, 08:24 PM
thanks Rouskey Landscaping for the reply.

Any one else care to key in? I'm hoping to get a few opinions!

Steve
02-18-2008, 08:31 PM
Hi Chuck,

This is a great post.

Could you share some insights on this.

What is the average amount of time it takes you to service the average yard.

What are your total costs for servicing that yard in that time frame?

What profit would you like to hit per yard?

musician/lawnman
02-18-2008, 09:31 PM
AS far as time, *I work by myself most $25 / cut lawns I get done in 20-25 minutes.
(once I have done it a few times & have the lawn under control & "trained" The way I cut it, meaning the grass isn't too long, the trimming never gets out of hand & the edging has been done before so I don't have to dig out the edges of a driveway that have been covered over 2 seasons ago! http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif )

I have a few I can rock in about 17 minutes. - Check the time, get out of the truck, mow, weed eat, edge & blow off, Trailer closed ready to roll, back in the truck. * I hussle like #### though. *I kinda get in a mode like a machine & keep going all day til my cut list is done. *I should say though, I've gotten very used to using a line trimmer to do edging, Kind of an artform to do it right but it saves lots of time, the machine is in your hand & running already!

I can't really say what profit I'm shooting for per lawn, I've always kinda tracked it by time. *when I'm out mowing I shoot for a $35-40 / hr. *mark including travel time (& my routs are not as tight as I'd want them. *As I go down my cut list I check em off & mark what I made on that lawn today... (Keep in mind my monthlys in the summer, If I get $85 / month & I have to cut it 4 times that month I count it as $21.25 for that cut. Some months are 5 cuts) so I rely on the per cut accounts to keep that figure up in the summer time. *last summer I shot for & usually hit about $225 (gross billed ) per day. * The most I ever did in a day by myself & it happened to be the hottest day of the season (103 deg., 98% humidity, & 106 deg. heat index) was 15 lawns (4 overgrown) for a gross of $650. *

As far as cost per lawn I don't know, If I could do a month with x# of lawns (the same lawns) every week I could figure it out, but it varys alot I'm sure. *I do remember when my father was running his business (1990-1998) avg. price per cut was around $20 but fuel was only .98 cents a gal. *& I'm sure most expenses we're less then. *Avg. price now is around $25 bucks so I'm sure profit margins are less now than they we're then. *Plus the job market really, REALLY sucks here so every guy in the world that got laid off threw a craftsman tractor in the back of a little pickup & declares himself in the business. *(might be good for you though! More software sales!)
* * Lots & lots of low ballers & fly-by-night morrons.

makbootzy
02-18-2008, 10:43 PM
Do you think $59 for a 7500 sq ft lot would be to much? Mowing, trimming, edging and blower

musician/lawnman
02-18-2008, 11:06 PM
Sounds a bit high to me if it's on a regular basis.... like I said about lots here are 80x125 = 10,000 sf subtract the average house, garage/driveway..... 7500 sf is about right. I do have some vacant lots I mow for a customer (3 lots) once a month so she doesn't get fined. I run a 52" yazoo kees. the 1st time I had to remove my mulch kit to do it (which I charged $250 for the 3 lots to knock em down) after that I mow once per month with deck all the way up at 5" . I sold it as "field mowing" & let her know it wouldn't be perfect, I'd make 1 pass (flying) & keep the county off her back but that I wasn't going to abuse my machine like that (it's not really that bad) for less than $50 / lot. So I go once a month & make $150 in about 45 minutes. So if it's something like that.... no I think your good.

makbootzy
02-18-2008, 11:45 PM
Well my mom was charged $45 for just a mow but it was left uncut for awhile. With the sq ft prices I came up with for just a mow is $25 then extra for trimming and so on. maybe if I take the charge of the blower clean up off and just do it for free it might be a better price.....$44 each cut?

musician/lawnman
02-19-2008, 07:06 AM
Well I was hoping to get a good cross section of people sain averge here for that size lot is x but I don't think thats happening...

Rick, yesterday I downloaded & started reading the free publication available here (stop lowballing), According to some of what I read so far, I may be falling into the upper end of the low ball catagory. Though I have heard of a few guys that are $30-35+ a lawn in the area I think the majority are priced around me or lower. I understand If you push quality & demand more money there will be some takers & eventually higher overall profits. But thats easier to do once your busy as ####.... raise your prices & don't take any new work unless at a better rate then slowly drop your less profitable accounts as you replace them or get them to raise up too.

I have a wife & 2 kids to feed, I can't really afford to miss 7 out of 10 estimates to get 3 at a higher rate ya know?

I do need to diversify more, I offer mowing, prunning, small tree trimming (20 ft tall or so) landscaping & design. I need to choose a direction or 2 to add. i.e. hardscapes, irrigation, aeration, pest/weed control etc.

Have you guys heard of lawn paint? http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/offtopic.gif

Steve
02-19-2008, 11:52 AM
Hi Chuck,

I think you have brought up a lot of good points. Did you happen to see this post in our blog?

How your lawn care business should estimate mowing jobs. (http://lawnchat.com/?p=35)

Quote[/b] ]I do need to diversify more, I offer mowing, prunning, small tree trimming (20 ft tall or so) landscaping & design. I need to choose a direction or 2 to add. i.e. hardscapes, irrigation, aeration, pest/weed control etc.

You are hitting on something important here. The more you find a niche, the higher the profit potentials are. Why? Because less people are offering that service.

Have you looked around your area or talked to your current customer base and found that a certain service keeps popping up yet it's hard to find someone to offer that?



Quote[/b] ]Have you guys heard of lawn paint?

Yes. We were talking about this a while back. I remember there was a lawn care service provider that would use stencils to paint things on lawns like Happy Birthday or promote a certain team with a logo, if the customer had a child in a hs sports team or was a fan of a pro team.

What are you thinking about this?

musician/lawnman
02-19-2008, 03:54 PM
NO no no.....

I mean this
http://www.wpsdtv.com/news....rss=672 (http://www.wpsdtv.com/news/local/story.aspx?content_id=ce9d6e17-bab9-49c8-a5e2-24477a2d3f96&rss=672)

Steve
02-19-2008, 04:14 PM
Quote[/b] ]“They'll look at you about two or three times to make sure that's what you're saying,” said John Imand who owns Always Green Grass Painting Company in North Carolina.

Imand started the company last year and is now selling franchises across the country, convincing skeptical husbands and their wives.

Melody Teague and her husband will pay $465.00 for a single application

“I thought 'well, how much are you paying for this', how many water bills can we pay for this,” said Teague. “But it really does look good.”

That is AWESOME!

I can't believe people are paying that much for their lawn to be painted!

Are you considering starting that up?

Is there a need for it in your area?

Check out their website here http://www.alwaysgreengrasspainting.com

musician/lawnman
02-19-2008, 04:53 PM
I don't thing I'd buy into a franchise for $20k ust yet... I did some searching online & found a very similar paint.

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION: Essentially a harmless dye which is used on
grass and plants mostly for cosmetic reasons. Once mixed with
water, you then apply it to damaged grass. The application
can effectively mask and hide damage due to fungus, insects,
animals and drought. Though commonly used on golf courses and
other landscaped public venues, Lawn Green can be applied
to any yard safely. It poses no hazard to people and pets
and will wash away over a period of 4-8 weeks, generally
the time it will take for new plant growth to replace
that which was damaged. Applications also serve to alert
you to any new damage which is happening. Once you coverup
all the damage with one treatment, you can then tell
where new fungus or other damage is surfacing by easily
spotting new brown patches.
WHERE TO USE IT: On any type of grass or turf.

RATE OF APPLICATION: This will vary. It is recommended that you
start with 4 ounces of Lawn Green to a gallon of water and
see if that creates a color dark enough. If not, keep adding
one ounce till you get as close a match as possible. Generally
a mix of 4-8 ounces is all that is needed per gallon if you
are spraying grass which is already mostly green. When treating
turf which is dormant or brown, it could take as much as
15 oz per gallon of water. Coverage should be in the 500
square foot range per gallon of finished product. That
means you should get 5,000 to 15,000 square feet of turf
treated per gallon of concentrate depending on the
strength you use. It is also recommended that you apply the
finished product with a sprayer which is able to "mist".
We have many that will accomplish this goal including our
2 Quart Sprytzer. It does a great job of this creating a
mist which is similar to that which comes out of a can of spray
paint. When mixing up product in our 2 Quart Sprytzer Sprayer,
(ITEM # 287747), you will only need to use 1-4 ounces per tank
since it only holds a quart of finished product. Again, for
thick grass like Bermuda, expect to get 500 sq/ft of turf
treated per gallon of finished product; for sparse grass
like bent or Fescue, coverage could reach 1000 sq/ft per
gallon of finished product.
$30 / qt
$100 / gal or 4 gal for $340

could be good margines here, & yes I think there would ba a market, no rain, drought conditions & limited watering schedule. Apparently I would need am helper though, from what I understand & it makes sence.... 1 man spraying he other holds some kind of large piece of plastic to guard driveways, landscape curbing etc. from getting painted.

I wanna get some & try my lawn first.

Steve
02-19-2008, 05:03 PM
This sounds exciting! Can you take some pictures of what you are going to do, both before and after?

I bet we all could come up with some great marketing ideas for this.

Also, you should take some video of you doing this. Put it on youtube and get it on your site. Then why not contact the local press to promote it?

I bet you could get some airtime or print in the paper!

Also, what about making a jingle about this service with your band and then have it play in the background of the video? Sing something about painting your lawn green.

musician/lawnman
02-19-2008, 05:17 PM
Haha, yeah actually, writting a jingle wouldn't be hard.
I letcha know how it goes.

I have the pics on my camera by the way from saturday night, loading the musical gear & whatnot. I'll upload em & post em.

Steve
02-19-2008, 05:29 PM
I am looking forwards to seeing the pics.

Ok how about some jingle lyrics.

If your lawn is brown
and it makes you wanna frown
there is something you can do.

Just pick up the phone
and we'll come to your home
to spray the lawn green for you...

Lawn Paint.
Environmentally friendly
Lawn Paint
Conserves water
Lawn Paint
Your yard will look lively

Real it ain't
but it looks real great!


HAHAHHA there you go
http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/yourock.gif

musician/lawnman
03-01-2008, 12:04 AM
Steve, we had gotten a bit off my original topic here so
I'm posting here again to hopefully arrive at a general concesus... are my prices alright here? Or am I falling into the lowballer catagory? What do you guys think? Please reply.... give me somemore opinions!

UniversityLandscapers
03-05-2008, 01:11 AM
I personally rely on a strategy of lowballing to compete, however the prices you're talking about seem quite low. I mow all different sizes of lawns from large apartment complexes to small houses, but I find the average residential lawn in Vancouver, BC is around 2500 sq ft.

I use a base of $15 for all cuts and add $0.01 per square foot to that, so for 2500 sq ft, that would be $40.

musician/lawnman
03-05-2008, 08:42 AM
Ok so by your math if our average lots are 10,000 sq ft - say 3000 ft (house & garage) = 7,000 - 800 sf (driveway) 6,200 sq ft. would be $62.00 + $15 base = $77 per cut? If I got that right......wow. I don't think this market is anywhere near ready for those prices. Is that really "lowballing" it for your area?

UniversityLandscapers
03-05-2008, 11:02 AM
The average lawn in my city isn't nearly that big, so I rarely end up charging those kind of prices. I've done a couple of lawns at large properties in the upscale neighbourhoods in Vancouver, and I still use the same formula...one lawn I ended up charging $105 per cut (~10,000 sq ft).

My pricing strategy was based off of other companies; I called them to get quotes for my lawn (~2500 sq ft) and came up with a strategy that brought me in below all their prices. I've had a couple friends bring in quotes for their properties as well, just to get a comparison, and I've always come in near or at the bottom.

I guess based on your market you'd have to adjust...I find with all the trimming and blowing added in, my pricing strategy works out to about $35/hour billed (which is what I charge for most other labour).

If that helps, let me know.

musician/lawnman
03-05-2008, 09:36 PM
Quote[/b] (UniversityLandscapers @ Mar. 05 2008,12:02)]I find with all the trimming and blowing added in, my pricing strategy works out to about $35/hour billed (which is what I charge for most other labour).

If that helps, let me know.
So does it take you over an hour to mow a 2500 sq ft yard?

I still average $35 or better per an hour with travel time because I can do a 10k sf lawn by myself mowed, trimmed, edged & blown off in 20 minutes.

Seems the market will bear higher prices in your area.

UniversityLandscapers
03-06-2008, 03:51 PM
Do you have a riding mower?

I mow all by hand with a push mower...I used to take about an hour or so to do a 2500 sq ft lawn, but I've gotten faster after a couple years of doing it.

I still have the same pricing, but it probably takes me about half an hour or so to do 2500 sq ft with blowing and trimming/edging.

musician/lawnman
03-06-2008, 07:20 PM
52" 23 hp Kohler Yazoo/Kees Mid max series commercial zero turn. Zero turn is the only way to go! It's gota be tuff pushin' em. I give ya alot of credit though. I won't even take on a lawn that I can't get my mower in (fenced etc.) Not worth my time & uses too much energy on 1 lawn.

makbootzy
03-06-2008, 09:47 PM
Quote[/b] (musician/lawnman @ Mar. 06 2008,6:20)]I won't even take on a lawn that I can't get my mower in (fenced etc.) Not worth my time & uses too much energy on 1 lawn.
I was thinking the same. I dont know if I want to be pushing around a mower all day, I would rather be cruisin on a zt.

Fernando's CleanCut!
03-07-2008, 12:14 AM
Hi Guys!
I also started with a 22" 6hp Yamaha push mower, but my blade was Razor/Chef Knife SHARP! (it is easier to sharp this ones) so I could go a little faster. OMG! was one of the hardest thing I've ever done... and I was doing like 5 houses (only 1 day tho), I WAS DONE! Drained!...
But then I bought a 32" Scag WalkBehind, I love it! I think this experience, I learned that I REALLY work very hard to get it, so I take good care of it.

going back to the pricing: I live in East-Central Florida, Brevard county to be exactly, and this area the competition is Real!... I've seen a craiglist add that said "mowing starting as low as $10/cut" I dont know how they do it either.
Anyways, my cuts go around $30 or $60-$130 a month. So I say that we are around the "competitive prices" LOL.

OH! my scag fits most of the fences, its like 40" gate is standard aroung here.

UniversityLandscapers
03-07-2008, 01:10 PM
Definitely a different market in Florida then...I've never seen nor heard of anyone mowing residential properties with riding mowers. The only time I see them around here is on larger commercial/apartment jobs, and even then it's mostly just two guys with push mowers.

I guess it's easier to do up here where we're not dealing with Florida heat.

musician/lawnman
03-07-2008, 04:51 PM
Yeah, The heat here can be absolutely brutal. There are very few services in the area running push mowers & most of those are not really lic/ins. & they aren't doing it full time. Most professional companys are running big zero turns, Some fly-by-nights, small companies &/or new companies run little tractor owers or residential grade zt's like the cub cadets. Those are nice mowers but as I understand it they won't last very long using them commercially.

clarklandscaping
03-07-2008, 08:10 PM
Wow, 80.00'ish per month? I wont cut anyones lawn for less than 30.00 a visit and dont give any price breaks for annual customers unless they pre-pay for service at least a month in advance. I wouldnt think that south Florida would be any different than central Florida, everywhere you look there is a lawn trailer rollin down the street. I think you could be making a bit more money if you could differentiate yourself from your competition. I am a new company and have no problem doing this. Heres an example......
I did a spring cleanup, 16 yards of mulch, trimmed 60' of hedges, planted 18 annuals, 5 perennials, and charged $1485.00. My profit for this job was around $950.00. How did I do it? I played the game and talked the talk with the customer, made them feel like they had found the very best landscaper in town. Dont get me wrong the job looked great when i was finished but the perception of the customer was far beyond the one man crew (me) that did the job.
Just something to think about anyway.

musician/lawnman
03-07-2008, 09:41 PM
Quote[/b] (clarklandscaping @ Mar. 07 2008,9:10)]Wow, 80.00'ish per month? I wont cut anyones lawn for less than 30.00 a visit and dont give any price breaks for annual customers unless they pre-pay for service at least a month in advance. I wouldnt think that south Florida would be any different than central Florida, everywhere you look there is a lawn trailer rollin down the street. I think you could be making a bit more money if you could differentiate yourself from your competition. I am a new company and have no problem doing this. Heres an example......
I did a spring cleanup, 16 yards of mulch, trimmed 60' of hedges, planted 18 annuals, 5 perennials, and charged $1485.00. My profit for this job was around $950.00. How did I do it? I played the game and talked the talk with the customer, made them feel like they had found the very best landscaper in town. Dont get me wrong the job looked great when i was finished but the perception of the customer was far beyond the one man crew (me) that did the job.
Just something to think about anyway.
Thanks for the reply Shane, That is the kinda feedback I need here. I have some questions though, How long have you been in business? I've found because there is so much competition prices are held down a bit, Once you have a good customer base & you give them good service you can:
1) raise prices a bit more as you've had a chance to prove yourself to them
2) go higher on new estimates as you don't really "need" every new customer.

Now I am to the best of my knowledge competitively priced for my area as far as my per cut prices. Some are higher & I think that is attributed to being well established as I stated above. But there are adds in the paper here & on craigslist for my area at $15 bucks a cut! Granted most of them are probably in it for extra beer money & are unreliable to their customers but my potential customers see those adds too & know if I bid $35 per cut they can get it for probably half that however lousy the service may be.

So you offer no incentive for clients to sign an annual instead of staying per cut? How do you pull that off?

By the way... my annual/monthly clients are required to pay by the 1st of each month for the following months service. I'm afraid of cutting for a month billing them net 30 then cutting for another month & finding 2 months in that they don't pay so that's the only way I will bill for that type of customer.

clarklandscaping
03-08-2008, 07:47 AM
Quote[/b] ]So you offer no incentive for clients to sign an annual instead of staying per cut? How do you pull that off?

Sure! I get away with it easily, the customer doesn't know the difference. Keep in mind I no longer will mow someones lawn on a "per cut" basis. I have found out that those type of customers are not the ones we should be looking for.

Quote[/b] ]ve found because there is so much competition prices are held down a bit, Once you have a good customer base & you give them good service you can:
1) raise prices a bit more as you've had a chance to prove yourself to them
2) go higher on new estimates as you don't really "need" every new customer.

I agree with this to a degree but there is flaws in this logic. first and foremost you always "need" new customers. This is how you grow your business unless you are comfortable with keeping it a one man show. I personally dont want to stay in the labor end of the business forever. Secondy, if your prices are all ready so low how much do you think you can raise them before you start hemorrhaging customers? Plus can you really afford to service someones lawn for 80.00 a month? I know I cant.

Quote[/b] ]But there are adds in the paper here & on craigslist for my area at $15 bucks a cut!
I have those same adds here too but we must not try to run our business the way someone else runs theirs. Get a plan and stick to it, thats what I did and its proving to be successful so far. Also, the people that a "15.00 a cut" ad attracts are NOT the customers you want. I had to learn that the hard way.

Quote[/b] ]How long have you been in business?
Well I have been in business legally for about 8 months now and its the best decision I have ever made.
Keep in mind that these are my opinions and I dont claim to even know what Im talking about. I have based all of my answers off real world trial and error.

musician/lawnman
03-08-2008, 08:07 AM
Shane,
I understand your logic & thank you for your responses.
What area are you located in?
I have 9 months in myself & things are growing well I suppose but I'm always looking to improve the process.

I'm impressed that in 8 months you can no longer accept those per cut customers, You must be onto something for your area! Do you mnd me asking how many annual accounts you've managed to pick up?

NDALandscape
03-11-2008, 01:14 PM
I think I am in the same boat as you. Trying you find a good overall price to charge customers. I am located in New York. Not sure how different the pricing is down in Florida. This is my first year really trying to push the lawn care. The lawns I work on are alot bigger than what most people mention here. The houses all sit on 1/2 acre lots if not bigger. The houses average 2200-2400 sq ft, 2 car garages with long driveways. When I started calculating everything my game plan is to charge $35-$40 a cut, offering a 15% discount for the customers who sign a year contract and pay up front. Now I thought I was reasonable priced until my clients start getting quotes for $20-$23 a cut. Now, luckily I have 6 yrs of sales & marketing behind me. Just by presenting my flyers that were professional laid out and I knocked on every door I hang a flyer on. I swayed every customer to spend the $15-20 extra. I personally couldnt believe it and either could my gf who helped me flyer. Only problem with this strategy is that I dont cover much ground. Out of 100 houses I talked to maybe 1 to 3 people were receptive and willing to sign. All of which happened to be shopping around anyways.

The way you present yourself is everything. Your not selling a product, your selling a service. I am always more expensive. I dont try to be. I just dont want to work enough to just my bills. Hope this helps.