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pjslawncare/landscap
04-30-2005, 08:10 PM
I know we Americans whine about the gas prices, heck weve been spoiled for so long. About 18 monthes ago we wer paying $1.20 a gallon, but u guys have been paying $3.00 - $3.50 per equivelant.
In the past my fuel costs were approximatly $260 a week and represented 9.6% of my cost of doing business. Today my fuel costs are approximatly $340 a week and represent 11.5% plus the cost of supplies are going up as well as the result of fuel increases so this year Ive increased all of my customers prices from $5 to $15 each yard. I havent had any complaints as of yet so I think they all understand.
My question to u Canadian, Australian and European lco's is how much do u guys charge for a typical 30 minute yard that we here in the states normally charge $30 (or so) for with your fuel cost as high as they are. Also what other ways do u compensate for your high fuel prices while running your businesses

cantoo
04-30-2005, 10:09 PM
I buy most of my equipment at auctions to lower my overhead. We have the same problems here as elsewhere, too many people wanting to cut lawns cheap. Also here most people cut their own lawns where I live. Fuel is definately one of my highest expenses very close to equipment costs. I buy at auctions and sell high to the new crop in the spring. Today we sold a Toro wbh that I bought 5 years ago for $450 I used in my business to spread fertilizer and cut a few rough lawns. We sold it for $1100, easiest money we have made. I go to several auction sales every week. We always have equipment for sale at the right price. We are dropping some of our bigger accounts because they cost too much in fuel for the price received. These people are not going to pay the price we need for the fuel used so away they go. To me it's all about overhead and keeping it as low as possible or I will be buying your equipment at the repossessed sale.

stuie
05-02-2005, 03:17 AM
An Australian perspective

Well fuel prices are a huge problem at present.I run a Diesel truck and diesel has been up as high as AUS$127.09 cents per litre ($1.27 L).This week it has settled down to $115.5 per litre.
My fuel bill for a week (truck only) is about $180 per week.Truck is quite economical but trailer towing and peak hour traffic really hurts.

Most lawns start at $35 (my min) here but there is the $20 scrub special. :)

I have changed my target area from where i first started to more local
region.
My current business can take me as far as 1.5 hrs from home.Yes a long way but once im there it is well worth the drive.
My new business located closer to home within a 20 km radius is my new target area.I am tougher on the routes and it is my decision as to when your house is on the schedule.I still try to fit in the wanted customer day but only if it is convienient to my schedule.
I now have a "Take it or leave it option" on my quotes no haggling the price is the price.I am in the position where i am not having to cut price to gain work. I am alot more wise and tougher with people and i do quality work and im qualified (horticulturist) so im not willing to lower my price to a guy with no Hort knowledge to win the bid.

The new business i have increased my hourly rate 5 $ and am tougher on material sale prices uping the profit i get from them.

My old area i have not raised prices as yet but i am eating the increased costs at present.I have the old business for sale so have been a little retiscent to lose customers from the books.I will have no choice come springtime but to raise the hourly rate as well as the basic mowing price.

STUART