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View Full Version : Well the other guy is only charging $65 a month...


lawnmaniac883
06-28-2007, 07:11 PM
So I get a call yesterday, lady says that she needs a new lawn service because her existing guy has run over hoses, chewed up her christmas decorations, along with the extension cords supplying them power. To add to the list he has apparantly run into her house and pool enclosure a few times. So I drive by the place on my estimate run tonite and take a quick look from the truck then drive to my next estimate.

I call the lady on the phone and quote her $100 a month get this big sigh on the other end. Right away I knew it was going to be a jee thats just too high situation but pursued it anyway. She says how oh she understands why my price is where it is but the current guy is only charging 65 a month no matter how many times he comes to cut it. BTW property is a corner lot. Well she says if he does something really bad then I will call you first dont worry. Said she must have been grandfathered into the price when she bought the house.

Now to the point, I'm not the most expensive game in town by any means but I do good work and expect to be payed well for it. But 65 dollars a month, how do you even pay for the fuel, wear and tear on your equipment, truck and trailer for 65 a month. Good grief this is ridiculous.

Right after that though I got another 100/month account added so it evened things out.

Just thought I would share this experience lol anyone got stories like this to add?

HOOLIE
06-28-2007, 08:06 PM
I think everybody's got a few stories like that...

Heck I'd run over the X-mas lights too...it's almost July...take 'em down already :laugh:

fiveoboy01
06-29-2007, 02:20 AM
Happens to me too.

I quoted a gentleman 98 bucks + tax to aerate his property this fall. Just a tad under a quarter acre total lot size. He said that was fine. Then he contacts me a couple weeks later and wants a bed created around the perimiter of his house, and if I could mow one week that he was gone on vacation mid-july. I said no problem, that it would be 30.00 for the cut as long as he kept it cut up to that point.

Now I picked up on the fact that he was cheap by the usual things cheapos say(house is going up for sale, don't want to spend a lot, will it be in the hundreds or thousands of dollars?) etc, etc.

So rather than waste my time, I informed him that a rough estimate would be $3200 if he wanted mulch in the beds, and $3900 if he wanted stone.

Of course, he declined. No problem. I asked him if he still wanted me to do the mowing and the aeration. Here's the cut and paste of his reply:

I would like to get one mowing done anytime between July 20 and 23. Would you be able to do the aeration for $70. I could pay you $100 + taxes for both the jobs. The quote I am getting from true green, which I use for my lawn maintenance(fertilizer and weed control) is less than what you are quoting me for aeration. I looked in craigslist because I initially thought it would be expensive to get it done by True Green. Let me know if it works for you and we can go ahead with mowing and aeration.

Now, this guy is a bonafide liar, or he's trying to work one company against another. If he can get Chemburn to do it for less, why is he even contacting me back?

My reply?

Sir, if you can find another company to perform the services at a lesser cost to you, then by all means do so. I am sorry but my prices are not negotiable. Please let me know how you would like to proceed.

With the obligatory Thank you, my signature, blah blah blah.

I'm not sure how he'll reply. He seemed like a very nice mild mannered man when I spoke with him in person.

You guys aren't kidding when you say people from India(or indian descent) are bartering people and like to get a bargain.

capetan
09-29-2007, 12:27 PM
honestly thats really the only thing that makes me furious, when i go to landscape or cut someones lawn, and there is junk all over the place, honestly i could careless if i accidentally ran over someones christmas lights..... stay away from customers like that you should be glad shes not your customer :)

lawnspecialties
09-29-2007, 02:09 PM
............Right after that though I got another 100/month account added so it evened things out....

Honestly, there isn't a yard small enough to charge only $100/month.

Vikings
09-29-2007, 04:30 PM
Honestly, there isn't a yard small enough to charge only $100/month.

Yes there is.

PHS
09-29-2007, 06:09 PM
fob01,

If it's a customer that you want, tell them that you want to earn their business (or some other sales B.S.) and ask to see the other companies estimate so that you can negotiate a deal. If they won't show you the other estimates they are just jerking around with you and you probably wouldn't want to work for them anyway.

I used to work in the tree business and got some of my best customers that way. Read their estimate, throw in some stupid "free value-added service" , and close the deal. Most tight wad customers will fall for it because they think they got a screamin' deal.

topsites
09-29-2007, 06:14 PM
That's the same thing that happens when I try and get an oil change for 15 dollars, they change the oil but not the filter.
Then they hound me the entire time over every little knick knack paddywhack is even slightly wrong with the car.
That's if they get to it.
Very frustrating, but amazing things happen when I pay $35 they do all that and even put air in a tire if it needs it, blam, it is done.

So 100 bucks a month and I do it right, 65 a month and you keep that guy.

..................
Now I didn't say this, but it's quite possible even if such a customer says yes that it's not over.
As in, it's always that thing, the penny pinching keeps getting the best of them :laugh:
I got one right now, every time I'm not 100% watching my back tries to get something for nothing...
Then they wonder why I don't show up to do whatever it was.
So some days I don't even fool with those, you not like-a my price ok no problem thank you.

Albery's Lawn & Tractor
09-29-2007, 06:48 PM
Honestly, there isn't a yard small enough to charge only $100/month.

Over a third of my customers are on a 3 cut per month @ $100 per month. These are quick and easy yards that take between 20-45 minutes. But of course, there are dozens of other LCO's here in town that will do it cheaper but they're the here today gone tomorrow type.

topsites
09-29-2007, 07:01 PM
I looked in craigslist because I initially thought it would be expensive to get it done by True Green. Let me know if it works for you and we can go ahead with mowing and aeration. [/B]

Now, this guy is a bonafide liar, or he's trying to work one company against another. If he can get Chemburn to do it for less, why is he even contacting me back?

You guys aren't kidding when you say people from India(or indian descent) are bartering people and like to get a bargain.

Nope, TruGreen's been around 28 years and provides nationwide service to 10.5 million homes and businesses a year. This corporation is owned by ServiceMaster, who's been around for over 55 years and is world wide. They own several leading brands, like TruGreen, Terminix, Merry Maids, and more.

Meanwhile folks who look in Craig's may feel like they're pulling your leg, but they're price shoppers and that comes with Craig's list.
Included, for free, like the advertising... Don't feel too bad, this was one of MY first lessons in you get what you pay for :laugh:

But yea on the middle east descent.

lawnmaniac883
09-29-2007, 08:53 PM
Honestly, there isn't a yard small enough to charge only $100/month.

Honestly you clearly dont live in florida. Down here you are lucky to get 100/month for lawncare on the majority of lawns. Here you have 5 mexicans in a pickup with a toro wb weedwacker and blower willing to do lawns 10 bux a pop.

lawnspecialties
09-29-2007, 10:45 PM
Yes there is.

For me, No, there isn't.

Over a third of my customers are on a 3 cut per month @ $100 per month. These are quick and easy yards that take between 20-45 minutes. But of course, there are dozens of other LCO's here in town that will do it cheaper but they're the here today gone tomorrow type.

I gave all my "three cuts per month" customers a choice two years ago. They either went weekly or went with someone else. Everyone went weekly and their rate went up about 25%-35%.

Honestly you clearly dont live in florida. Down here you are lucky to get 100/month for lawncare on the majority of lawns. Here you have 5 mexicans in a pickup with a toro wb weedwacker and blower willing to do lawns 10 bux a pop.

You're right there. I don't live in Florida. People who would even hire "5 Mexicans in a pickup with a toro wb weedwhacker and blower" don't get my attention anyway.

Call it what you will. I dictate who my clientele are, not them. I dictate what my prices are, not them. I offer a quality service and if they want a lowballer rate, I tell them very nicely they probably need to find someone else.

lawnman_scott
09-29-2007, 10:57 PM
Honestly, there isn't a yard small enough to charge only $100/month.You have to realize here that $100 a month is about $35 a cut when you figure in nov-march mowing every other week and a couple skiped cuts.

lawnspecialties
09-29-2007, 11:12 PM
You have to realize here that $100 a month is about $35 a cut when you figure in nov-march mowing every other week and a couple skiped cuts.

You're exactly right. And I'm trying my best not to sound like an arrogant azz here.

But I've just gotten to the point in my business that I don't cut every other week and I don't skip. My monthly fee is the same if I cut it 5 times a month or once. When we're in a drought or something similar, I still show up every week. I may just clean up a little and blow off the driveway but their monthly bill is the same January-December.

lawnman_scott
09-30-2007, 02:01 AM
You're exactly right. And I'm trying my best not to sound like an arrogant azz here.

But I've just gotten to the point in my business that I don't cut every other week and I don't skip. My monthly fee is the same if I cut it 5 times a month or once. When we're in a drought or something similar, I still show up every week. I may just clean up a little and blow off the driveway but their monthly bill is the same January-December.
I dont think you get it. We charge a set rate per month, and only cut every other week in winter, or skip it. People see $100 and think $25 a cut, and its nothing like that here, no one works per cut around here.

Rons Rightway Lawncare
09-30-2007, 08:23 AM
I remember when I moved to Florida in 1999. My first lawn estimate was a fairly large corner lot on a canal, and he wanted a price. Here in Charlotte, in 1999, that would have been a easy 30$-40$ per cut lawn, or between 120-140$ per month. I told him 100$ per month to try to be cheap enough to surely get the contract..... Nope! His current guy he was using - who he was unhappy with because that guy hauled ass through his yard and wasn't doing a real good job - was only charging 65$ per month. I told him that for 65$ per month, not to expect much and he is lucky to get what he has been getting for that price.

I ended up quitting the lawncare business down there after 2 months due to the cheap prices that market has.

A year later I had to do something, and decided to give it another shot.... I advertised in a good place and picked up a bunch of accounts, over 80, and even though the average yard was only 65$ per month, they were easy and fast to service and there wasn't far to drive between them. I ended up making okay money just by having more accounts than I would have had up here.

QualityLawnCare4u
09-30-2007, 08:56 AM
As you can see, location is everything! If you only took every week clients here you would be gone real fast as well as year round mowing. Here you mow every other week and in the winter you better have a part time job or starve. On the plus side our price per cut as of late have gotten in the 35-40 range. There are still some 20 and under lco out there but are going out finally but not before doing some damage.

Stillwater
09-30-2007, 09:46 AM
So I get a call yesterday, lady says that she needs a new lawn service because her existing guy has run over hoses, chewed up her christmas decorations, along with the extension cords supplying them power. To add to the list he has apparantly run into her house and pool enclosure a few times. So I drive by the place on my estimate run tonite and take a quick look from the truck then drive to my next estimate.

I call the lady on the phone and quote her $100 a month get this big sigh on the other end. Right away I knew it was going to be a jee thats just too high situation but pursued it anyway. She says how oh she understands why my price is where it is but the current guy is only charging 65 a month no matter how many times he comes to cut it. BTW property is a corner lot. Well she says if he does something really bad then I will call you first dont worry. Said she must have been grandfathered into the price when she bought the house.

Now to the point, I'm not the most expensive game in town by any means but I do good work and expect to be payed well for it. But 65 dollars a month, how do you even pay for the fuel, wear and tear on your equipment, truck and trailer for 65 a month. Good grief this is ridiculous.

Right after that though I got another 100/month account added so it evened things out.

Just thought I would share this experience lol anyone got stories like this to add?


dont feel bad about this these are customers you most likely not want anyway

Charles
09-30-2007, 11:31 AM
I went to give a estimate the other day and had to come down 60$ per cut because the other guy was doing it much cheaper(he was doing a poor job). I still stepped them up 30$ over his price. Right now its come down to what people are willing to pay or they will get 50 other estimates easily:rolleyes:

Vikings
09-30-2007, 04:13 PM
I have a window cleaning customer, he's a good guy, owns a small trucking company. Anyway, he starts talking about his lawn care people and how unhappy he is. It didn't look too bad to me, he tells me they were good when the owner was doing the work but now he has crews.
It takes 2 guys about 20 mins and cost $25 for his yard and he said to me that HE knows that when he does his own yard it takes 3 hours to do it properly.

I didn't say anything because I was like:dizzy: , then he tells me some business advice, "Never go big".:nono:

:laugh: I didn't even try selling him yard care, he has a pool, flag stones all over (I just hate those) and obviously a bad attitude.

Bill M
10-09-2007, 12:09 PM
I have a window cleaning customer, he's a good guy, owns a small trucking company. Anyway, he starts talking about his lawn care people and how unhappy he is. It didn't look too bad to me, he tells me they were good when the owner was doing the work but now he has crews.
It takes 2 guys about 20 mins and cost $25 for his yard and he said to me that HE knows that when he does his own yard it takes 3 hours to do it properly.

I didn't say anything because I was like:dizzy: , then he tells me some business advice, "Never go big".:nono:

:laugh: I didn't even try selling him yard care, he has a pool, flag stones all over (I just hate those) and obviously a bad attitude.yeah that does make no sense, he is clueless. Heck it takes me 2 + hrs to cut and edge my yard with a 21" Snapper, but I'm sure 2 guys with 36's could it in 20-30 minutes. I worked for a lawncare company in my late teens, but working during T-storms and riding in the back of a uncovered pickup truck(illegal by the way) turned me off after one week. The work was not too hard, just did want to die before I turned 21.

Gardenworker
10-20-2007, 06:06 PM
Over a third of my customers are on a 3 cut per month @ $100 per month. These are quick and easy yards that take between 20-45 minutes. But of course, there are dozens of other LCO's here in town that will do it cheaper but they're the here today gone tomorrow type.

Damn! $100 a month is way too cheap! Just put $80 into my trucks gastank.
You guys would have to work your asses off just to eak a miserable living. I wouldn't even bother. Fortunately the answer is simple....start chargung more!

Albery's Lawn & Tractor
10-20-2007, 06:45 PM
Damn! $100 a month is way too cheap! Just put $80 into my trucks gastank.
You guys would have to work your asses off just to eak a miserable living. I wouldn't even bother. Fortunately the answer is simple....start chargung more!

Well it depends. I have the equipment I need & the correct truck for my needs. Now some people think they have to have a new crewcab dually to tow there 6x12 trailer so they try to charge higher prices and eventually fail. The yards that are on $100 a month are quick and easy yards, most are done in less the 30 minutes. All areas are different.I've been doing this a while now so I think I know what works for me.:usflag:

Dunn's
10-20-2007, 06:57 PM
I hope $100 a month yards don't take more than 30 minutes.

radracer
10-23-2007, 01:54 PM
Don't knock $100.00 a month jobs. In Pasco county there are thousands of homes and about a hundred lco's and most of them charge around $55.00 per month for 40 - 42 cuts per year. The routes are tight and can be done (mow, trim, edge, blow) by one person in less than 20 minutes.

Dunn's
10-23-2007, 04:00 PM
Don't knock $100.00 a month jobs. In Pasco county there are thousands of homes and about a hundred lco's and most of them charge around $55.00 per month for 40 - 42 cuts per year. The routes are tight and can be done (mow, trim, edge, blow) by one person in less than 20 minutes.

That is onlt $15.00 a cut so yeah I will knock it that is ******ed. 20 minutes a cut for one person should be around $30:laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: