Lawn Care Business Forum Lawn Care Business Book Lawn Care Business Blog Lawn Care Software
Home Forum Contract & Flyer Templates Blog Software Videos Podcast Calculators / Estimators Store Mower Review Design It Yourself Lawn Business School

Go Back   GopherHaul Landscaping & Lawn Care Business Marketing Forum > Just starting your lawn care or landscaping business? > Starting a lawn care business.

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.

Leave the leaves to the newbies.


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.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
  #1  
Old 09-08-2007, 05:56 PM
StartALawnCareBusiness's Avatar
StartALawnCareBusiness StartALawnCareBusiness is offline
Keith
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 731
Rep Power: 0
StartALawnCareBusiness is on a distinguished road
Default

Hi all:

I was digging through some of my old blogs last week and I came across this article I wrote about taking on new customers during leaf raking season.

Leaves are already beginning to turn and fall in some parts of the country. *So, this article might be of interest to you.

Leaf raking can be a very profitable job for a lawn care business. *However, be aware of some common traps in raking a customer’s lawn.


As Autumn draws on and the green leaves of summer turn to the golden colors of fall, this is an exciting time for anyone in a lawn care business.

Leaf raking is a big profit point in the lawn care industry. *Damp leaves left clumped on a lawn can damage grass. *They clog gutters and down spouts. *They also make flower and shrub beds look untidy.

With all the potential problems that leaves contribute to a lawn, homeowners will soon be calling you for leaf management advice.

We are often asked by lawn care companies: “How do you estimate leaf raking for a new client.” *We tackle the estimating process and how much you should charge in our lawn care business course. *

In this week’s tip I want to caution you about taking on new customers at this time of year.

This is a true story that happened to me in my first year of owning a lawn care company. *A new customer called to get an estimate for raking the yard and cleaning out gutters. *He had several large trees in his yard. *Although his yard was covered with leaves more than half of the leaves were still on his trees. *Since he had a mulching area to keep me from having to haul off his leaves, I gave an estimate of $150. *He did not want to spend that much and said that if I would do it for $110, he would let me cut his yard next summer. *The leaf job went well and I collected my money and went home. *The next day he called to say that I had not raked all the leaves and that I needed to come back by. *I explained that the leaves in his yard had fallen after I had finished and that I was not responsible for those leaves. *Not wanting to lose his business next year, I went back and did a quick touch up job which took an hour. *Still, I was satisfied as it was a big yard and I would get to do his mowing work all the following year.

When Spring rolled around, I took my equipment to his house and was told that someone else had already been contracted to mow the lawn for the season. *I reminded him of our agreement and he said that the other people were doing it for $5 less than my estimate.

Though it made me mad, I didn’t think too much about it until the next fall when he called and said that his other lawn care company had quit and he wanted me to rake his leaves again. *My response was to remind him of our previous agreement and I told him the price for leaves alone would be $250. *He declined saying he would get someone else to do it.

I learned a few lessons from this customer.

1) *I did not have a signed agreement - You should be very careful about taking a customer’s word that they will let you do their lawn “next season” in return for a cheaper price today. *If the agreement is verbal it is very easy for a customer to back out of the agreement.

2) *Price each job as an individual effort - If a leaf job is worth $250 to you then bid it accordingly. *Do not let the potential of other work influence your price significantly downward. *That other work may never materialize.

3) *Explain to the customer that leaves on the trees are not included in the price - Leaves continue to fall through the entire season. *If you contract to do a leaf job, let the customer know that any leaf droppage that occurs after the job is done is not covered under the quoted price.

When we consult with new lawn care business owners, we often tell them that leaf pickup is very easy to under price. *A job which looks like it should take less than 1 hour can often wind up taking 4 times that long. *

This Autumn, when your phone starts ringing with new customers looking to get a great price on leaf management, take extra caution when giving estimates.



Keith
__________________
Start a profitable lawn care business.
Reply With Quote

Stop guess-timating. Learn how to estimate and make money! $$$
Mow Time Estimator Lawn Care Price Estimator Mulch and Topsoil Calculator Snow Plow Estimate Calculator


  #2  
Old 09-08-2007, 11:51 PM
Little's's Avatar
Little's Little's is offline
Brandon
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Shasta Lake CA.
Posts: 814
Rep Power: 8
Little's is on a distinguished road
Default

Lawn care business tipsLawn Care Business Book
When I started my business, I had a property management co. give them a bid on a leaf clean-up job. The yard had 3 large elms on it. I gave the bid of $150 and submitted it in writing. Well it was more than 2 weeks later when they had gotten back to me with the approval , and I told them I will get right on it tomorrw. In that 2 weeks, at least 3 times as many leaves had fallen, which turned a 2 hour job into almost 5 hours. It was a nightmare, not to mention it had rained the few days before. It was awful. This year I am going to tell people the bid is good for 48 hours, and bid accordingly. :blush:
__________________
Northern California
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 09-09-2007, 01:30 PM
StartALawnCareBusiness's Avatar
StartALawnCareBusiness StartALawnCareBusiness is offline
Keith
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 731
Rep Power: 0
StartALawnCareBusiness is on a distinguished road
Default

A 48 hour expiration on a bid is a grand idea. That will work on a variety of different tasks such as bed maintenance and shrub trimming...and those crackpot customers who get estimates in March and then call you back the end of May when their grass is 3 feet tall.

Keith
__________________
Start a profitable lawn care business.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 09-09-2007, 04:52 PM
Clean Lawn Clean Lawn is offline
Members
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 124
Rep Power: 8
Clean Lawn
Default

I am new to the business and don't know how to bid for fall clean-up so any advice for accurately bidding for it would be greatly appreciated. My worker and myself have done things for others but never had to price anything before. I know our customers will want it done and Hampton Roads is too large an area for us not to throw our hats in the ring for more fall work.
Any bidding help would be a blessing. Thanks so much for this post it was great!
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 09-11-2007, 04:41 AM
svelasquez
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Keith, thank you for a lucid and insightful post. I'm very new to the business. This past summer is my first season and many of my customers are calling about leaf removal for the fall. I don't know how to answer their questions since I've never done this before. Many want to know if I'll take the leaves away, but I have no idea where to take them if I did. I've been offering to bag them and leave them for the client to dispose of.

Thank you again!

Steve in NJ
My Webpage
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Tags
fall cleanup

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Forum Jump

» Recent Threads
  RatingTitle, Username, & Date Last Post Replies Views
These are the days on...
ExtremeLawncareServices
03-22-2014 09:12 AM
Yesterday 09:10 PM
by JLM
82 4,774
Mow and leaf cleanup bid
SGL1
07-29-2014 07:28 PM
Yesterday 07:39 PM
by SGL1
15 195
Late charge
Simon Abousaada
Yesterday 07:23 PM
Yesterday 07:23 PM
by Simon Abousaada
0 33
Need input on a bid
phlawncare
07-28-2014 08:51 PM
Yesterday 06:35 PM
by phlawncare
6 185
Building credit
Matther777
07-27-2014 05:20 PM
Yesterday 05:50 PM
by Matther777
11 243
New from Texas
Livingston Lawn Care
07-25-2014 11:17 AM
Yesterday 01:03 PM
by Steve
5 207
Single tree, mow customer
WesleySnips
06-27-2014 10:12 AM
Yesterday 12:31 PM
by Steve
17 735
Formulas Used
BaileynSamsMum
07-29-2014 06:40 AM
Yesterday 12:19 PM
by Steve
3 132
Spreading Weeds?
WesleySnips
07-27-2014 09:46 PM
Yesterday 06:29 AM
by kslawn
5 177
Will summer ever come
ExtremeLawncareServices
07-29-2014 08:27 AM
07-29-2014 08:29 PM
by SGL1
5 134
From Concord NC
SouthernRootsLawnCare
07-26-2014 02:34 PM
07-29-2014 02:28 PM
by Steve
3 134
Have you ever had to...
SouthernRootsLawnCare
07-26-2014 02:41 PM
07-29-2014 02:28 PM
by Steve
4 191
Echo Edger 'Neutral'
WesleySnips
07-25-2014 05:28 PM
07-29-2014 02:25 PM
by Steve
4 186
Left handed edging with...
SGL1
07-23-2014 08:59 PM
07-28-2014 07:39 AM
by SGL1
15 377
Echo PE 266 edger
stevef1201
07-01-2014 01:28 PM
07-27-2014 10:14 PM
by WesleySnips
5 384
Texas lawn care company...
Livingston Lawn Care
07-25-2014 11:29 AM
07-27-2014 08:16 AM
by Just for Cuts
7 224
need some help geting...
dalvan0
07-13-2014 09:28 PM
07-26-2014 04:39 PM
by BLC7
7 376
new trailer help
mattthelawnguy
07-11-2014 08:21 PM
07-25-2014 06:31 PM
by mattthelawnguy
13 571
You know it;s gonna be a...
stevef1201
07-25-2014 08:50 AM
07-25-2014 01:34 PM
by Steve
1 139
Customer letters
kslawn
07-23-2014 06:17 AM
07-25-2014 01:20 PM
by Steve
5 262
Got my first lawn job...
SGL1
06-11-2014 09:19 PM
07-24-2014 07:09 PM
by SGL1
29 1,339
Need help determining...
Jbss861
07-20-2014 02:33 PM
07-24-2014 01:11 PM
by Steve
13 448
Should I ?
googus
07-22-2014 04:06 PM
07-24-2014 12:10 PM
by Steve
4 286
My First Apartment...
SSLCtn
05-26-2014 10:17 PM
07-24-2014 06:46 AM
by kslawn
15 970
Crop Rotation Techniques...
eastsidelandcare
07-17-2014 03:47 PM
07-24-2014 06:38 AM
by kslawn
3 266
Selling lawns like...
eastsidelandcare
07-17-2014 03:51 PM
07-24-2014 06:28 AM
by kslawn
3 321
Scag new "Eliminator"......
ExtremeLawncareServices
07-20-2014 10:45 AM
07-23-2014 05:37 PM
by Just for Cuts
9 370
need professional advice...
Fiddlers_green
07-20-2014 07:21 PM
07-23-2014 12:42 PM
by Steve
3 265
new to me box truck
jrayb39667
03-06-2014 10:20 PM
07-23-2014 12:40 PM
by Steve
15 1,487
Lawn Service back in...
LawnCareMan280
07-18-2014 09:00 PM
07-23-2014 11:48 AM
by Steve
4 294
Overspray?
stevef1201
07-21-2014 04:20 PM
07-23-2014 11:39 AM
by Steve
3 205
Hello Everyone! Newbie...
SLKlawn
07-17-2014 06:22 PM
07-22-2014 01:53 PM
by Steve
6 349
Proper height for lawn
rob lederhilger
05-26-2014 08:01 AM
07-21-2014 02:53 PM
by LawnDoctor
9 712
Blade sharpener
Just for Cuts
07-04-2014 12:31 PM
07-21-2014 01:48 PM
by Steve
9 573
What's my business worth?
Chaz
07-16-2014 01:35 PM
07-21-2014 01:45 PM
by Steve
4 361
1.5 Acre Jungle
WesleySnips
07-15-2014 05:57 PM
07-20-2014 11:31 AM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
21 699
Gopher schedule software
Ray
07-18-2014 04:13 PM
07-18-2014 04:13 PM
by Ray
0 254
2006 Chevy fuel pump...
KevinsLawns
07-17-2014 08:39 PM
07-18-2014 11:51 AM
by Steve
1 243
Halfway point of year!
Steve
07-01-2014 12:08 PM
07-18-2014 11:38 AM
by Steve
14 807
I got told to leave and...
gwilson98
06-16-2014 02:07 PM
07-17-2014 11:43 AM
by Steve
16 1,129
Hey guys this is the...
prmenter@gmail.com
07-07-2014 08:23 PM
07-16-2014 08:10 PM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
28 860
Mowing the hills
prmenter@gmail.com
07-08-2014 12:22 PM
07-16-2014 05:00 PM
by Just for Cuts
18 782
Say Hello !!!
Steve
03-19-2007 11:18 AM
07-15-2014 05:38 PM
by icon2000
1,184 321,468
Classified Ad Template...
bcfb
06-05-2013 02:40 AM
07-15-2014 11:16 AM
by Steve
15 3,803
Husqvarna pz 60
CDLAWNCARE
07-06-2014 06:50 PM
07-15-2014 08:53 AM
by kslawn
10 520
Lowballers
Chaz
07-11-2014 03:55 PM
07-14-2014 12:27 PM
by Steve
5 427
My new side job
Sprinkler Buddy
05-10-2014 05:23 AM
07-14-2014 12:15 PM
by Steve
10 881
Illegal spraying
GoGreenerKS
07-04-2014 09:11 AM
07-13-2014 10:36 PM
by GoGreenerKS
10 620
New Mower and Trailer
Chaz
06-25-2014 12:04 PM
07-13-2014 06:25 PM
by SGL1
7 643
What Fertilizer to Use?
acrajchel
04-07-2014 01:56 PM
07-12-2014 07:36 PM
by SGL1
21 1,982
» Popular Tags
4wd advertisement article marketing auger bid butterfly gardens charge christmas light service courtesy call credit card customers decorating estimate exmark ferris first truck fundraiser georgia gopherhaul grass gravely hills holiday holiday decorating holiday lighting how much to charge introduction john deere quik trac kansas city lawn lawn care lawn care business book lawn care business seo lawn care business show lawn care business website lawn care business website seo lawn care website leaf lighting marketing monthly mow mulch mulch price new buisness new mower organize payment podcast property management company pto reo scag schedule scripts seo snow starting a business starting a lawn care business start up lawn care business stihl theft toro toro grand stand trailer trimmer rack walker winter winter services zero turn
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.1.0

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:13 AM.


(C) 2011 Riggs Publications - Terms of use & Privacy Policy

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:13 AM.

(C) 2011 Riggs Publications - Terms of use & Privacy Policy