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General Business Discussions A place to talk about general business discussions.

Charging customers for garden maintenance / clean-ups


General Business Discussions

A place to talk about general business discussions.
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  #1  
Old 04-14-2015, 07:34 AM
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Default Charging customers for garden maintenance / clean-ups

Hey guys,

So typically when it comes to extended clean-up work at a clients house ( gardening, weeding, pruning, basically all services that don't require the purchase of materials ) I charge 30$ per hour, and then notify the home owner on my arrival time and departure time and then settle up.

I'm just curious on how you charge for maintenance services outside of lawn care and lawn maintenance.

Do you use an hourly rate?

Thanks!
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Old 04-14-2015, 10:35 AM
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Charging hourly is a great way to make sure you don't underbid, that is, as long as your hourly rate is high enough.

If your customers are fine with this, great.

Once you have a good understanding of how long jobs will take you, you can bid a flat fee for a job and add in a certain amount of cushion in the job. If you are efficient and can finish faster than you estimated, you can make more money on the job than if you charged hourly.
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Old 11-06-2015, 07:04 AM
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I do a lot of work in Mississauga as well. I charge hourly for cleanups and have been for the last 15 years. I also charge anywhere from $50 to $65 per hour. I wouldn't move the truck, trailer and all that equipment for less than $50.
how do you stay afloat at $30?
For potential new clients that are asking for a price I tell them it's an hourly rate because it's too hard to judge clean ups to the exact time it will take. I will give them a ball park figure but it's never set in stone.
If they don't like it than they can call the next guy. I won't work for free. let alone lose money!!
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Old 11-06-2015, 08:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hard-Body lawn & garden View Post
Hey guys,

So typically when it comes to extended clean-up work at a clients house ( gardening, weeding, pruning, basically all services that don't require the purchase of materials ) I charge 30$ per hour, and then notify the home owner on my arrival time and departure time and then settle up.

I'm just curious on how you charge for maintenance services outside of lawn care and lawn maintenance.

Do you use an hourly rate?

Thanks!
When we gave the customers a weekly rate, some months have 5 Fridays and so on, so some months will have 5 cuts. The monthly bill will reflect it.

Leaves as follows weekly rate is double for Oct and Nov (If customer has a small amount of trees. Even customers with no trees. Leaves blow around and get into everything.) If customer has large amount of trees triple the weekly cut. If a customer is paying $ 35. per week Bill would reflect $140 for the cut and $140 for the leaves. If they argue the point the lawn does not need cut. Simple explain the machine picks up the leaves you still need to cut the lawn & empty the bag and the leave make extra work.

Another note: In NJ leaves fall hard on Nov 10th every year. I held the bill for Oct until Nov 10th when it's raining leaves, because I got complaints about no real leaves fell yet. So if you hold the bill till its raining leaves there's no argument and they appreciate the job your doing while their paying your October bill. So October Paid You Really Good !

That's leaves to the curb price, Bagging is more. Removing leave and dumping is a dump charge.

Don't put a hourly price on yourself. You know if you want to get it done faster you can run your butt off.

Last edited by Rocky; 11-06-2015 at 08:25 AM.
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Old 11-07-2015, 05:22 PM
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I think an hourly rate is the way to go, for leaf clean ups and landscaping etc.

For lawn cutting I charge a flat rate.
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Old 11-09-2015, 04:50 PM
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Quote:
I think an hourly rate is the way to go, for leaf clean ups and landscaping etc.
Can you see yourself charging by the job in the future or do you feel you will stick with this method?
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Old 11-11-2015, 08:28 AM
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Can you see yourself charging by the job in the future or do you feel you will stick with this method?
I do charge a flat rate for some smaller leaf clean ups but those are ones that I've done now for a long time and do good on those clean ups every season.

If you are looking at a NEW clean up or lawns that have a ton of leaves, then it would be more feasible to charge an hourly rate imo, just to be on the safe side just in case you run into unforeseen things that would take you more time than expected.

A good example of this is a clean up i just did a few days ago where it usually cost the customer around $350 or so....I ran into an area of his lawn where he had some trees removed and had holes and branches all over and I had to pick up a lot of branches and maneuver around the holes etc...The clean up took longer and cost the customer $450 this time.

If i had just charged a flat rate, I wouldn't have made the same money on that job. I could have negotiated a higher price with the customer, but you all know how that goes sometimes.

So its just good scents to charge an hourly rate for new or bigger jobs IMO!!!
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Old 11-13-2015, 02:58 PM
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This is easy to explain to customers. And in the right tone will give you a wow factor with them.

Customer...How much do you charge by the hour?

Me....I charge by the job.

Customer.....Why?

Me....Because you can't afford me by the hour.

True talk guys.
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Old 11-13-2015, 04:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biglee View Post
This is easy to explain to customers. And in the right tone will give you a wow factor with them.

Customer...How much do you charge by the hour?

Me....I charge by the job.

Customer.....Why?

Me....Because you can't afford me by the hour.

True talk guys.
Pretty much don't think I'd get many pruning/trimming jobs if I told the customer I get $150 an hour for a two man crew
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Old 11-13-2015, 08:51 PM
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Originally Posted by jrs.landscaping View Post
Pretty much don't think I'd get many pruning/trimming jobs if I told the customer I get $150 an hour for a two man crew
You will only need to worry about this on CraigsList bids.
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