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PGA
03-10-2006, 04:28 PM
I just landed a 3 acre Church lot and its almost a $30,000 contract for the year.

Heres a breakdown of the pricing.


There are about 3 acres to mow and somewhere around 2000 total feet of sidewalk to edge. There is also 1500 total feet of beds to trim and edge. Mowing will be done at the price of $550.00 per week. Of course that includes trimming, edging and blowing.

A 5 step fert/wc program will cost them $495.00 per application.

Maintaing the beds and trimming the bushes 3 times a year at $540.00 per visit.

A total of 55 yards of mulch will be bought and installed at $5400.00

Snow removal will be done at $600.00 for 1-5 inches and a 15% increase for every 2 inches after that.

Straight salt will be applied at $375.00 per application.




Im sure most of you are going to call me out on this and accuse me of lying. IM NOT. My point of sharing this is to tell all you guys who are cutting at $25.00 per acre that you can move elsewhere and make 2 or 3 or 4 or 5X that amount.

Im a solo operator and this is 1/2 days work for me. They took my bid which was $78 per cut more then the company that was doing it last year and accepted it.

My point is you guys dont have to work for peanuts. Make people pay you what you are worth! If you come across as hillbillies then you will get treated like one. We are all business owners. Obviously we are all smart enough to strike out on our own and take a chance! Make these people respect us just like they repsect every other "white collar" business owner.

zim bob the landscaper
03-10-2006, 04:36 PM
nice nice, that is cool hope u have good luck with it.

well i mow a 2.5 acre lawn for 65.00 per week and i includes trimming with that. is this to low??

PGA
03-10-2006, 04:38 PM
nice nice, that is cool hope u have good luck with it.

well i mow a 2.5 acre lawn for 65.00 per week and i includes trimming with that. is this to low??




Do you think its to low?

ICE
03-10-2006, 04:39 PM
That is SWEET! Congratulations to you and good luck with it!

Tim

PGA
03-10-2006, 04:41 PM
That is SWEET! Congratulations to you and good luck with it!

Tim




Thank you. This is without doubt the biggest account I have ever taken on as far as detailed work goes. I will be giving this account quite a bit of attention. Their Church has over 1200 parishoners and to me that is 1200 potential clients. I need to be on my best behavior with this one.

deereman
03-10-2006, 05:55 PM
Yes take REAL good care of this one !!! This could make you or break you with that many people looking at everything that you do. And also congrats on the new account. The good ones like that are getting far and few inbetween the way people are watching there budgets. Good luck!:)

palawnman
03-10-2006, 06:22 PM
I just landed a 3 acre Church lot and its almost a $30,000 contract for the year.

Heres a breakdown of the pricing.


There are about 3 acres to mow and somewhere around 2000 total feet of sidewalk to edge. There is also 1500 total feet of beds to trim and edge. Mowing will be done at the price of $550.00 per week. Of course that includes trimming, edging and blowing.

A 5 step fert/wc program will cost them $495.00 per application.

Maintaing the beds and trimming the bushes 3 times a year at $540.00 per visit.

A total of 55 yards of mulch will be bought and installed at $5400.00

Snow removal will be done at $600.00 for 1-5 inches and a 15% increase for every 2 inches after that.

Straight salt will be applied at $375.00 per application.




Im sure most of you are going to call me out on this and accuse me of lying. IM NOT. My point of sharing this is to tell all you guys who are cutting at $25.00 per acre that you can move elsewhere and make 2 or 3 or 4 or 5X that amount.

Im a solo operator and this is 1/2 days work for me. They took my bid which was $78 per cut more then the company that was doing it last year and accepted it.

My point is you guys dont have to work for peanuts. Make people pay you what you are worth! If you come across as hillbillies then you will get treated like one. We are all business owners. Obviously we are all smart enough to strike out on our own and take a chance! Make these people respect us just like they repsect every other "white collar" business owner.

Congrats on that contract, thats a nice account for a solo operator, I am jealous. Just a question... A total of 55 yards of mulch will be bought and installed at $5400.00...
How much do you usually charge per yard....thats almost $100/yd, I have never heard of anyone that can get that much, especially since it is that many yards, usually you would get a price break on that amount.

Congrats and Good luck with it.

Ron

also

jkkalbers
03-10-2006, 06:56 PM
How big is the parking lot for $600 per push?

Adam3669
03-10-2006, 06:57 PM
Wow, nice job.

Thats very impressive.

PGA
03-10-2006, 07:18 PM
Congrats on that contract, thats a nice account for a solo operator, I am jealous. Just a question... A total of 55 yards of mulch will be bought and installed at $5400.00...
How much do you usually charge per yard....thats almost $100/yd, I have never heard of anyone that can get that much, especially since it is that many yards, usually you would get a price break on that amount.

Congrats and Good luck with it.

Ron

also






The price of mulch around here is up to almost $45.. a cubic yard. Thats up $15.00 from just a couple years ago. That also includes delivery fees and paying the 2 guys Im hiring to do it.

PGA
03-10-2006, 07:21 PM
How big is the parking lot for $600 per push?



There is about 175,000 sq ft of parking lot and road to plow. The good thing is he has a janitorial staff to do the sidewalks so its just straight plowing.

robertsturf
03-10-2006, 07:25 PM
Way to go. It's about time that we as professionals do something about the prices that we charge. It's a shame that we have to struggle sometimes to get prices that were charged back in the 1980's. It's all relative, lowball and everybody expects it. It also reflects on the image of our industry.

PGA
03-10-2006, 07:26 PM
Another reason I got a good price on the mulch is because I told him next year I would re-dye at my cost. Its the cedar dyed java brown.

PGA
03-10-2006, 07:28 PM
Way to go. It's about time that we as professionals do something about the prices that we charge. It's a shame that we have to struggle sometimes to get prices that were charged back in the 1980's. It's all relative, lowball and everybody expects it. It also reflects on the image of our industry.





The funny thing was I was talking to my ex boss who has basically helped me out since day 1 of my going into business and he's the one who talked me into raising the price of the mowing. I was going to go in at $325 a cut and he looked at me and laughed. He said I could easily get another $200.00 per cut. Ive always taken his advice about being an LCO seriously since he has made 20 years as one. Im glad I did.

CC Lawncare
03-10-2006, 08:05 PM
What part of the country are you located PGA? Your mulch cost is literally twice what we pay. I hope that ours stays reasonable.

PGA
03-10-2006, 08:21 PM
What part of the country are you located PGA? Your mulch cost is literally twice what we pay. I hope that ours stays reasonable.




Kansas City area.


Im not to sure why its gone up evey year for the past couple years.


Here are some prices of what I pay.

http://www.suburbanlawnandgarden.com/mulchesandsoils.htm

baddboygeorge
03-10-2006, 08:49 PM
i think your a little low on the price hope ya make money see ya george but congrats anyway

PGA
03-10-2006, 08:53 PM
i think your a little low on the price hope ya make money see ya george but congrats anyway





What part do you think Im low at?

cantoo
03-10-2006, 09:13 PM
We are considering snow removal in a couple of years and we think that lots that only need done on certain days are something we are considering to start with. I have a couple of questions.
Do you have to keep the complete lot plowed at all times?
Is the price that high because you will only be doing the complete lot once per week (for sunday services) so the snow could be failry deep?
What is the square footage of a parking lot that can park 1200 members? I realize there isn't room for 1200 cars.
Blowing insurance is fairly expensive here so most legal guys just use plows. The rest that blow are farmers who have no insurance. Right now the churches in my area are done by farmers so I would have to compete with people who are not paying for insurance so their overhead is lower. They also already have the tractor and blower so any money they make is considered "free". I am not sure that I can compete with them but I may try. Do you do any blowing?
I would think you could likely truck mulch a fair distance and get it cheaper.
How many manhours do you think the mowing is going to be? We used to cut a church property and lost it to a member who said he would do it for free. He lasted one year then they asked us if we would take it back. We said noand said maybe someone else from the church could do it. We still do the spraying but that's all we do.

PGA
03-10-2006, 09:21 PM
We are considering snow removal in a couple of years and we think that lots that only need done on certain days are something we are considering to start with. I have a couple of questions.
Do you have to keep the complete lot plowed at all times?
Is the price that high because you will only be doing the complete lot once per week (for sunday services) so the snow could be failry deep?
What is the square footage of a parking lot that can park 1200 members? I realize there isn't room for 1200 cars.
Blowing insurance is fairly expensive here so most legal guys just use plows. The rest that blow are farmers who have no insurance. Right now the churches in my area are done by farmers so I would have to compete with people who are not paying for insurance so their overhead is lower. They also already have the tractor and blower so any money they make is considered "free". I am not sure that I can compete with them but I may try. Do you do any blowing?
I would think you could likely truck mulch a fair distance and get it cheaper.
How many manhours do you think the mowing is going to be? We used to cut a church property and lost it to a member who said he would do it for free. He lasted one year then they asked us if we would take it back. We said noand said maybe someone else from the church could do it. We still do the spraying but that's all we do.





1) Depends on the day and on the company. If they are in business hours then the lot is cleaned once after a few inches and then touched up. If its our of buisness hours then its cleaned after its done snowing.


2) Its that high because its a big lot and will deserve extra detail as its a Church and School.

3)I have no idea of how big a lot would be to hold 1200 cars.

4)I dont do any snowblowing

5)The mowing+trimming+blowing Im estimating to take me about 5 hours.

6)I doubt a parishoner could do a church like this. Its in a high end area of town and it needs to look perfect.

cantoo
03-10-2006, 09:49 PM
PGA, the guy that took my church job ended up buying a Gravely ZTR and doing other jobs with it. He also "took" half of the town work I bid on. His bid was half of what the other 4 bidders was. He only cuts 1 to 1 1/2 days a week the rest of the time he runs his butcher shop. He got tired of being inside every day. He also does a farily good job so it's not like he is making a mess it's just that he under cut the job pretty bad. Now even if he quits the price will remain low for awhile.

3)I have no idea of how big a lot would be to hold 1200 cars.
I was just trying to figure how big the lot was that you are doing? Churches around here only hold a couple of hundred cars at the most. Maybe around 3/4 acre. They are done with snow blowers and take about 45 minutes and for $75 to $90 at the most per visit. They are only done twice a week at the most.

Mr. Vern
03-11-2006, 01:09 AM
Another reason I got a good price on the mulch is because I told him next year I would re-dye at my cost. Its the cedar dyed java brown.

How do you plan to dye the mulch brown? Do you have coloring machine? If you do it would seem you would be getting your mulch for a lot less than $45/yard.

cleancutccl
03-11-2006, 01:30 AM
PGA you're getting ripped on mulch prices. Find a wholesaler, I get the cocoa mulch, java brown stuff, for 24 a yard. As soon as I have a place to take in in bulk I can get it for 14 a yard. This is coming from midwest mulch out of Kansas city. Find a better deal on mulch and make even more money on that job.

topsites
03-11-2006, 02:15 AM
Do you think its to low?

I do, I get that much for 1.3 acres... But it depends on where you are, too...

topsites
03-11-2006, 02:17 AM
Kansas City area.


Im not to sure why its gone up evey year for the past couple years.


Here are some prices of what I pay.

http://www.suburbanlawnandgarden.com/mulchesandsoils.htm

Man that's crazy, $12.50 cubic yard is what I pay for mulch. Designer mulch now, that's 45-50 / yard ...

MOW ED
03-11-2006, 06:20 AM
Congrats on the nice job. I have a big church about 1 mile from me, just about 5 acres of grass. There is also a guy that feels it is his duty to repay so this 4 million dollar complex is mowed by him for FREE. I guess that is nice that he does it but I am wondering what they are gonna do when he croaks.
Your job sounds sweet, it certainly has the potential for you to lose the "solo" tag if you impress a portion of those 1200 potential clients.

PGA
03-11-2006, 07:59 AM
PGA you're getting ripped on mulch prices. Find a wholesaler, I get the cocoa mulch, java brown stuff, for 24 a yard. As soon as I have a place to take in in bulk I can get it for 14 a yard. This is coming from midwest mulch out of Kansas city. Find a better deal on mulch and make even more money on that job.






Ive been looking around and will probably leave Suburban very soon.

PGA
03-11-2006, 07:59 AM
I do, I get that much for 1.3 acres... But it depends on where you are, too...





Thats awesome if you can get over $500 for an acre!

PGA
03-11-2006, 08:01 AM
Congrats on the nice job. I have a big church about 1 mile from me, just about 5 acres of grass. There is also a guy that feels it is his duty to repay so this 4 million dollar complex is mowed by him for FREE. I guess that is nice that he does it but I am wondering what they are gonna do when he croaks.
Your job sounds sweet, it certainly has the potential for you to lose the "solo" tag if you impress a portion of those 1200 potential clients.





Thats pretty much why I took the job. Ive been wondering what it would take for me to get to the next level and I think this is it. I was a little sceptical at first even bidding on it but I kept thinking if I didnt take a chance I would never know.

Randy J
03-11-2006, 08:02 AM
...
My point is you guys dont have to work for peanuts. Make people pay you what you are worth! If you come across as hillbillies then you will get treated like one. We are all business owners. Obviously we are all smart enough to strike out on our own and take a chance! Make these people respect us just like they repsect every other "white collar" business owner.

Congratulations PGA, sounds like a good contract. This is the point I was trying to make in another post - you don't have to be tied to the "market" price. You can set your own "market" price - within reason of course. Determine your costs, and desired profit margin to come up with your price. Then make sure you're worth it!

Splicer
03-11-2006, 08:38 AM
Way to go brother!!! Congratulations!!! Killer contract you have there! How did you go about getting it if I may ask? Did you just walk in the church office and say "hey, can I cut your grass for you"?

PGA
03-11-2006, 08:41 AM
Way to go brother!!! Congratulations!!! Killer contract you have there! How did you go about getting it if I may ask? Did you just walk in the church office and say "hey, can I cut your grass for you"?






I decided to target some churches in the area for the past couple years. I went throught the phone book and took down every address for the churches, composed a letter and sent them out.

Ive picked up a couple small ones in the past but this one is in a highend area of town. I was actually pretty surprised when they called me. :dizzy:

cantoo
03-11-2006, 04:42 PM
topsites, do you have a picture of the site you cut? It must be pretty cut up for that much money per acre? I would cut an acre with a 6" mower for $500, I might even collect the grass.

gqnine44
03-12-2006, 11:14 AM
If the church only has 1200 members they must be a very wealthy 1200 members to spend so much on their landscape maint. Which means they all will be good potential clients. Good work and good luck!

KCLandscape
03-12-2006, 01:59 PM
Yea, Suburban is getting too big for their britches with those prices. I get mine at marrs for 20 per yd dyed.
Where is the church located at?

rodneyskip
03-12-2006, 03:09 PM
Congratulations!

Do a good job and save all the money you make- this one won't last long at that price.

PGA
03-12-2006, 03:54 PM
Yea, Suburban is getting too big for their britches with those prices. I get mine at marrs for 20 per yd dyed.
Where is the church located at?





Im going to be heading to Marrs also from now on. Youre not the first person to say they are leaving Suburban.

The Church is in Leawood.

The landscaper
03-12-2006, 04:14 PM
Its nice to hear something like that. Now if everybody can start bumping their prices like that we can take nice vacations in the winter.

Just hope no one steals it from you for about 100 bucks a week.

PGA
03-12-2006, 04:16 PM
Its nice to hear something like that. Now if everybody can start bumping their prices like that we can take nice vacations in the winter.

Just hope no one steals it from you for about 100 bucks a week.






If they do it wont be till next year.

lawnrangeralaska
03-12-2006, 05:21 PM
PGA can you post some pictures of this church you will be maintaining. I am actually in the process of bidding on a few churches. Thanks

PGA
03-12-2006, 07:37 PM
PGA can you post some pictures of this church you will be maintaining. I am actually in the process of bidding on a few churches. Thanks




I dont have any right now but I can get some later on in the week or early next week.

jschu13
03-13-2006, 09:44 AM
Good job on getting such an account. Quality work, no matter what the industry, does tend to cost more than the other option of low quality.

Lawn-Scapes
03-14-2006, 01:13 AM
I don't understand why they would pay $550/cut.. kind of rediculous.. but good for you. Everything else looks about right. Good luck with it.

Randy J
03-14-2006, 07:37 AM
... Quality work, no matter what the industry, does tend to cost more than the other option of low quality.

That is so true. Everyone that is a business owner has, at some point, to make a decision. Do they want to compete based on price, or based on quality. PGA has obviously decided to compete based on quality, and is reaping the benefits of such - he get's a job that pays tremendously for the work required. There's nothing wrong with competing based on price instead, but it opens you up to competition far more than competing on quality will. If you find someone who is willing to pay for quality, they will tend to be far more loyal. Whereas if you find someone based on cost, they will always be looking for the next lowest priced competitor. Of course competing based on quality has cost associated with it also. It'll take a while to find and build a customer base. There's probably more investment in better equipment, etc. The thing is, the investment - while often taking a while to pay off, is almost always worth it.

Richard Martin
03-14-2006, 08:09 AM
topsites, do you have a picture of the site you cut? It must be pretty cut up for that much money per acre? I would cut an acre with a 6" mower for $500, I might even collect the grass.

Yeah, I'd like to see where you're getting $550 for 1.3 acres of grass too Topsites.

Man that's crazy, $12.50 cubic yard is what I pay for mulch.

Is that for pinestraw, non-treated or treated mulch? I'm just wondering, not being critical.

toac
03-16-2006, 12:02 PM
I think topsites is talking about the second post in the thread:

"nice nice, that is cool hope u have good luck with it.

well i mow a 2.5 acre lawn for 65.00 per week and i includes trimming with that. is this to low??"

Big Wes
03-16-2006, 03:14 PM
nice nice, that is cool hope u have good luck with it.

well i mow a 2.5 acre lawn for 65.00 per week and i includes trimming with that. is this to low??

Probably not low for the republic of Mass., but here in the free state of Virginia it's low. I get that for 1 acre. It all comes down to geographical location I do believe.:)

Fox Landscape Services
03-16-2006, 04:59 PM
Man I would love to make 5400.00 for 55 yds. of mulch

brucec32
03-16-2006, 05:38 PM
$550 for a half day's work (minus all the time it takes to do the other stuff on the account) mowing by a solo op. Yeah, sounds about right. On Pluto.

PGA
03-17-2006, 07:23 AM
$550 for a half day's work (minus all the time it takes to do the other stuff on the account) mowing by a solo op. Yeah, sounds about right. On Pluto.





Typical...