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smitty2688
03-31-2008, 01:24 PM
So im just starting out in the business, i bought out about 20 accounts from a guy that was taking care of these yards last year. For the past couple of weeks i have been driving around to meet everyone face to face and take a look at their yards. On several occasions there have been yards that need alot of spring clean-up, in one case the yard was so packed with leaves that i gave the customer a quote of 5 hours at 45 per hour to clean everything up. I have come to find out that the last guy never did spring clean-up and so some of these customers are getting one hell of a sticker shock when i quote them these prices. They dont mind so much that i have bumped their prices from $25 to $30 but they have never had to pay for clean-up. I have explained to them that im not the neighbor guy running around taking care of yards but that this is a business. Now they are calling around to get a quote on other peoples prices and im afraid that im going to lose alot of them to the "low ballers" out there. Any advise?:confused:

greenspaceny
03-31-2008, 01:34 PM
Smitty..
Let them get some other quotes, You can't worry about the low ball guys out there. You need to get your price bottom line. In the mean time get out and sell sell sell. Than if you don't hear back from some of those other clients you still have work coming in..

Carolina Cuts
03-31-2008, 02:35 PM
ummm, how much $ did it set you back to 'buy' these 20 customers?

KGR landscapeing
03-31-2008, 02:48 PM
Its the good old saying You get what you pay for. let them go some place eles, they can change diffrent people everytime they dont enjoy the service

americanlawn
03-31-2008, 03:27 PM
smitty -- things will work out if you put in enough time & effort in. Saturdays are great so you can catch people at home. Heck----I've even worked on Sundays, and nobody minded at all. Actually they were impressed that I was working on Sunday. Meeting people face to face greatly improves sales (cuz they can explain their needs & wants), and you can also ask them if a neighbor might be interested in your service. Consumers like to see who they are dealing with. Sell yourself. You'll do fine. Larry:waving:

WHIPPLE5.7
03-31-2008, 05:26 PM
Run an add and get out and beat on some new doors. 2/3 of the bids I give are OK with customers and the 1/3 are those bargain shoppers who hire lowballers but 1/2 call me back to finish what the lowballer started anyway. I just hope you didn't pay much for the 20 accounts.

stevenf
03-31-2008, 05:36 PM
If there on contracts, offer to stretch out the payments for 2-3 months. If there not on contract and you are in dire need of accounts, I would do little bits at a time and charge accordingly($5.00 for an extra $5.00 minutes)
They wont mind if you do parts at a time, they didnt mind that the previous guy didnt do it at all.......

smitty2688
03-31-2008, 05:48 PM
I didnt pay very much for the accounts, pretty much i bought the guys commercial mower and he gave me the accounts for free. For the customers that are saying no way they are going to pay me to do their clean-up ive told them to try to find some kid that can do it cheap and then i can maintain it for them and it will not cost as much next year for clean-up if its done right in the fall. My biggest problem with it is that some of them are saying just take care of mowing the grass and weeds and just leave the rest. but that makes me look bad when the neighbors ask "whos taking care of your yard"

ALC-GregH
03-31-2008, 06:07 PM
Thats a tough one to figure out. If you need the work, I'd go with it for now until you find better clients. If your not in a bind for work, let them know that you don't practice lawn maintenance in the manner they are asking it to be done. Apologize and tell them if they want to reconsider, you'd be more then happy to do the service for them. Your image is of some great value and the finished product needs to reflect that image. By leaving the finished lawn looking worse for wear, you might be better off ditching them.

Turfrific
03-31-2008, 07:01 PM
mow it and go. let em keep it like that until the get tired of it and pay you extra to clean it up.

DiyDave
03-31-2008, 09:23 PM
If you let them walk over you, you will be out of business, just like your predecessor! If they don't want the cleanup, don't worry over it, just do the mowing and let it go at that.

topsites
03-31-2008, 09:43 PM
You may not like what I have to say, but I'm gonna break it down because so you don't say I never was of any help, or if later you should figure it out that you don't say I gave you bad advice... Now it's already been mentioned, this isn't the best time to get into the business, and this is the reason, too.

Go watch the news and let me know what you gather, but here's the rundown: We're in dire straits, the country is at the brink of a deep recession and probably a depression and either we change our tune NOW or we're only asking for things to get worse, much, much worse. But the real problem is, the customer ain't gonna let us anyhow, so who cares?

See... What got us here is business owners like myself took charge, we worked long and hard to gain the customer's trust because we had it going on! They trusted us, and as is a foregone conclusion we promptly allowed greed and other factors to get the best of us and so we done drove them straight into this mess, sometimes laughing all the way to the bank.

Now they're fed up and they ain't taking it anymore, because the customer is PISSED OFF! But we gave it to them, man I tell you guys like me took them for the ride of their lives and they loved every minute of it LOL uh-huh... Or did they?

Either way, no matter how you look at it, now it's their turn.
Yes sir, none of what we know matters at all, so just put the customer in the driver's seat and let them DRIVE your Business!
Go on already, bend over backwards and go out your way and break your own rules, let them push your buttons and let them command you and your business all around and all over the place, now it is THEIR turn to do it to us, yes sir it sure is.

Or another way to say it, sell yourself. It hurts a little bit at first but you get used to it and that's all you gotta do. I know and you know where this leads, but I already said we gotta forget everything because we have no other choice but to play super dumb and for the first time in so many years we have to accept, that right now the customer does know best.

That's it, I'm still chewing on it myself but that's how it's gotta be.

For the customers that are saying no way they are going to pay me to do their clean-up ive told them to try to find some kid that can do it cheap and then i can maintain it for them and it will not cost as much next year for clean-up if its done right in the fall. My biggest problem with it is that some of them are saying just take care of mowing the grass and weeds and just leave the rest. but that makes me look bad when the neighbors ask "whos taking care of your yard"

That attitude ain't gonna work no more, even if it is what I've been preaching for the past x years these days are, for the foreseeable future, over and done with.

Sorry to break the news like this, and I know you're as well off for the coming future to go work for someone else, but what choice do we got? In time this will also help separate the men from the boys, hope you're ready and if you're not might as well get out the lube Lmfaolol oh hohoho and merry xmas hehehe

J&R Landscaping
03-31-2008, 09:59 PM
If some customers don't want their lawns cleaned up, don't sweat it. The mower will shred the leaves up and mulch them right in. Not all of my customers get clean-ups done but their properties look great!

jds720
03-31-2008, 10:02 PM
Hmm cant say I agree 100% we are all biz owners, and should be compensated FAIRLY. Maybe adjusting our prices and doing a little more, but we should not be taken advantage of due to the economical state of the country. I think most of us started a biz in order to have freedom, and not to be a slave. We are all hard workers; im sure people have taken advantage of people in this biz, so why should we all suffer??

Iím sorry but there is ALOT of fish in the sea, some dead, some that donít taste too good, some are just yummy. Sometimes catch and release.