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Starting a lawn care business. How to start a lawn mowing business, lawn care business, or landscaping business. If you are starting a lawn care business, ask your questions here.

Charging for grass catchng?


Starting a lawn care business.

How to start a lawn mowing business, lawn care business, or landscaping business. If you are starting a lawn care business, ask your questions here.
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  #11  
Old 10-13-2012, 07:43 PM
Hedgemaster Hedgemaster is offline
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I guess it depends on the type of grass, grass height, and type of mower used because I rarely need to bag and it doesn't look like "crap", nor are there clumps.

I'm not using anything special either - just a Toro Super Recycler.
I have noted that my 36" Ferris walk behind does not mulch as well when wet. I think it's because of the greater volume of grass being cut at once.
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  #12  
Old 10-13-2012, 07:45 PM
LawnBoy0311 LawnBoy0311 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenscaper123 View Post
again, how can you not bring this up? and how can the clippings be a natural fertilizer when the grass is so high and wet it leaves big nasty clumps on the grass that will create dead patches in the lawn? and if I explain to them the benefits of mulching the grass, how do you explain that you have to charge more when the grass is either wet or growing really fast if you just said that you shouldn't bring up charging more?
I don't bring it up because they don't ask. They pay for a service...for me to mow. If they do ask, tell them you don't bag it, and they really can't tell the difference. Nasty clumps = long grass that should have been cut a week prior. I have some customers who refuse to get weekly cuts, so they pay for biweekly. When I mow and it leaves clumps, I strap on the blower and walk the yard. They of course pay extra.

With customers and sales....the more you open your mouth, the more likely you are to lose the sale. My best advice...quote them and SHUT UP!!! So when you advertise, and someone says "Hey, I want you to cut my grass. How much is it??" And you quote back "Well Sir, for me to come weekly, it would be $40." He then says "$40 a week? NO WAY!! I want it cut every 2 weeks!" At this point, its a perfect time to educate him on why its so good to cut the grass weekly. (I'm not typing why its good to do it weekly because Im lazy) You can explain to him that you cut weekly when the grass grows fast, and change to biweekly when the grass grows slow. Thats how I do it...because it gives me time to free up my schedule so I can advertise more, and take on a bunch of side projects.

You shouldnt charge more when the grass is wet. And if its raining, you shouldnt be mowing. A little damp is fine to cut.

Everyone here has a different way of doing things, so each guy/girl will have a way they do it. We all live in different areas, so everyones different. For example...I can't offer snow removal, but my cutting season is March/April to early November.

Last edited by LawnBoy0311; 10-13-2012 at 07:51 PM.
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  #13  
Old 10-14-2012, 12:13 AM
greenscaper123 greenscaper123 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LawnBoy0311 View Post
I don't bring it up because they don't ask. They pay for a service...for me to mow. If they do ask, tell them you don't bag it, and they really can't tell the difference. Nasty clumps = long grass that should have been cut a week prior.
i still don't think you're quite understanding me.. i do cut weekly.. in fact i refuse to cut biweekly. i see your from the east coast, where at exactly? i'm in NJ and most of my lawns grow very fast in the spring. so like i said, every week when i come to cut the lawn it's wet and really long in the spring. a lot of the lawns i have with sprinkler systems continue to grow pretty fast all throughout the year. so to not make a mess i HAVE to bag. if i were to stick to a strict no bagging system, i would have to tell the customer it's going to cost more in the spring. so again, how can you not bring this up? just bag it in the spring and throw an extra charge on there without telling them?
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  #14  
Old 10-14-2012, 12:45 AM
Hedgemaster Hedgemaster is offline
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This isn't rocket science. If you're going to bag on a regular basis, you charge more for it - you have to. You spend more time dumping bags, loading into truck, driving to dump, paying dump fees...

No need to "bring it up", just charge accordingly and mow away!
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  #15  
Old 10-14-2012, 02:09 AM
willshome willshome is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenscaper123 View Post
. a lot of the lawns i have with sprinkler systems continue to grow pretty fast all throughout the year.
I bid with bagging for yard with watering systems, they are willing to pay to look good
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  #16  
Old 10-14-2012, 02:21 AM
Grass Doctor Grass Doctor is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenscaper123 View Post
again, how can you not bring this up? and how can the clippings be a natural fertilizer when the grass is so high and wet it leaves big nasty clumps on the grass that will create dead patches in the lawn? and if I explain to them the benefits of mulching the grass, how do you explain that you have to charge more when the grass is either wet or growing really fast if you just said that you shouldn't bring up charging more?
you have to charge like u are bagging all the time of course even if u are not (easy as that ) u are not going to tell the customers of this of course most of the weeds are really watery so when u mow, high grasses, that will be be a clean up here in the south TX anything over 6 inches will be consider a clean up at least for me it is. And if the grass is higher than that will require an extra pass and or 2 just to looks manicure it needs to be charge extra, just to get it to 3 inches for st. Augustine grass or 2 inches in Bermuda. not to talk about weed lawns. i have one customer like this, if i can call her customer.i only call customers to those that are willing to sign a year round contract with my rules and stipulation. i always have to tell her when she needs to cut her lawn full of watery weeds and she always says next week.

i just say OK. you know its gooig to be extra if u let it grow to high. its ok she will say.



i am not going to mow with the bag, higher than 6 inches, the bag gets nasty if is weeds im mowing, so i charge 10 or 15 extra just because i have to wash the mower after i mow her yard and i leave all the clippings or i should say nasty clumps of weeds, hey she does not have a lawn or grass she have a yard full of clover weeds and that is not my problem, or hers cause she rents, she just live 5 houses up in my street that's no drive. and i still charge like im driving if i mow over 6 inches i have to charge extra and will tell the customer to expect a brown lawn cause his lawn haven't been service at least for 3 weeks prior and if the grass gets to freaking high we are not talking about manicure lawn and that will obviously will not benefit the grass plant if u mow all the time like that all the time it can be done once in great while.


mowing lawns is easy, knowing the type of grass you mowing, and mowing in it in healthy ways, that's where you need to go the extra mile. on understanding the type of grass u are working with Kentucky, Fescues, ray grass Bermuda etc they all look green but each plant its different i don't know i know my southern grasses st. Agustin 3, or 3 1/2 inches Bermuda grass 1 to 2 inches when it gets hot 3 inches, zoysia grass 2 to 3 inches every grass is different and required different care.

just charge like u baging and when u fill not to bag then dont do it and if they ask you something i will say i can bag for you for an extra 5 bucks.

Last edited by Grass Doctor; 10-14-2012 at 02:29 AM.
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  #17  
Old 10-14-2012, 10:04 AM
greenscaper123 greenscaper123 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willshome View Post
I bid with bagging for yard with watering systems, they are willing to pay to look good
well yea that makes sense and that's what I'm planning on doing next year. but lets break that sentence down. "they are willing to pay to look good"

for a person to be "willing" to do something there kind of needs to be other options presented to them. because to be "willing" is to favor an idea over another. if they are willing to pay to look good, you're basically saying that the customer understands the lawn will look better if you bag it. which means the issue of bagging or not bagging is being brought up. but everyone keeps saying to not "bring it up" i'm gonna lay down a PERFECT scenario of something that happend this year with a customer.

i was asked for an estimate by a neighbor of an account I was already cutting earlier this year. i told her $35, and that I would come and bag it. she said "oh okay that's a little too high for me." next week i come back to cut the lawn and see another landscaper there cutting it without the bag. now I'm thinking to myself.. "this lady didn't even care to have the grass bagged, I could have easily told her $30 and gotten the job had I mentioned it would be cheaper to not bag." this is where the issue of not bringing it up to the customer bothers me. think about all the customers you're losing because your basing your assumption on the fact the customer wants it bagged.

okay now a situation that occurred where i based my bid price on not bagging a customer. I told the customer it would be $25. two weeks later he comes out and says, "hey can you bag the grass from now on, i don't like the mess it makes." sure i said, but it's going to be $30 if I bag it. he had a FIT about it. and i had many other customers this year that didn't seem to like it either.

i would love for somebody to still come on here and tell me that you shouldn't be bringing it up, when this kind of stuff constantly keeps happening. you're either bidding too high for the customers that don't care if it's bagged or you're bidding to low for the customers that do want it bagged. if i were to just explain to them up front on the price difference, then there would be no confusion later on..

Last edited by greenscaper123; 10-14-2012 at 10:08 AM.
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  #18  
Old 10-14-2012, 10:22 AM
Hedgemaster Hedgemaster is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenscaper123 View Post
This has always been one topic in lawn maintenance that completely illudes me. Some guys bag grass at no additional cost, some do, and some absolutely refuse to bag all together.

I have always personally felt that it should be necessary to charge extra because it usually takes longer (especially in the spring) and, of course, there is the cost of dumping issue. I'm starting to focus my marketing on high income areas where the lawns are a lot nicer and everyone seems to bag. I'm not sure if they are charging for this or not. I would like to give the customer the option, but I have found in some cases people are turned off to the approach of charging extra. For instance, I have one customer that signed on in the spring. I said to him it would be $25 for no bagging and $30 for bagging. His repy was, "why does it cost me more to have the grass clippings bagged?.. doesn't everyone bag?" I explained to him the additional cost in dumping and extended labor but he still didn't seem to understand. I wonder sometimes if people who own Walkers, for example, just include the price of bagging into the quote. I mean I could say it's $30 to bag, meanwhile the guy next door with the Walker might be saying it's $30 as well. But he wouldn't even be giving the customer the option because he just bags all his customers anyway.


I'd like to hear from everyone what there take on this is. Do you charge, if so, how much more? If not, why don't you?

It doesn't really sound like you want to hear anyone's take on this at all actually.
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  #19  
Old 10-14-2012, 11:12 AM
LawnBoy0311 LawnBoy0311 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hedgemaster View Post
It doesn't really sound like you want to hear anyone's take on this at all actually.
I agree. Your over thinking this whole thing. Good luck finding an answer to your question.
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  #20  
Old 10-14-2012, 12:23 PM
greenscaper123 greenscaper123 is offline
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Originally Posted by Hedgemaster View Post
It doesn't really sound like you want to hear anyone's take on this at all actually.
no i do actually.. thats why i posted the thread. it's just that everyone is contradicting themselves. and i don't believe i'm over thinking anything. this is something that can greatly have an effect on the profits you bring in. but yet there seems to be no rhyme or reason to it like in MOST other business. i mean i just read a thread where guys were saying they don't charge more if it's 3 ft tall or 3 inches tall haha. unbelievable.. probably why everyone says this industry is going down the crapper...

Last edited by greenscaper123; 10-14-2012 at 12:29 PM.
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