View Full Version : unbelievable!

12-12-2001, 02:15 PM
I was mowing one of my residental accounts th other day when a guy came out to ask me my price. He says that his lawn service just isnt cutting it on a regular basis.(i could tell since the grass was pretty long.) and wanted someone else. Now these homes are about $200 thousand dollar homes on 1/2 acre lots but they are pretty cheap in price for cuts around here ($45-50 month for 12 months) so I tell him that i would do it for 50 a month w/ a 12 month contract and he almost has a stroke. "WHAT" he said
"The guy only charges 40 dollars now and i have a pool in the back yard too". I look at him and say "And what a fine job he is doing" and walk away This guy just stood there looking at me then walked inside. I guess he was use to getting his own way.
As a former "scrub" I will no longer just give my hard work away to anyone.

12-12-2001, 02:22 PM
I think if the guy said that to me I might have said "Well the qaulity of work that guy does is obviously a $40.00 job. It actually makes your place look no so good- if you bring me on board for $60.00 a month I'll have your place looking as good as the lawn I'm doing now". "When would you like me to start?"


12-12-2001, 02:42 PM
$50 a month? or per cut?
$50 per month is only $600 for the year.
In florida you cut almost year round.
$50/4 = $12.50 per cut
or $600/34 = $17.65 per cut

This is for a 1/2 acre?? With those prices you couldn't be doing more than just covering biz expenses. Is it like that everywhere in FL?

Richard Martin
12-12-2001, 03:23 PM
65 hoss wrote:
This is for a 1/2 acre?? With those prices you couldn't be doing more than just covering biz expenses. Is it like that everywhere in FL?

And you busted my butt at the other place because I thought $82 an hour was high. My $40 an hour is way high for this guy's neighborhood.

12-12-2001, 03:27 PM

Why are you telling us this? I know that I don't care. The issue has been beat to death. If the guy doesn't want to pay your asking price, don't mow his friggin grass.

You charge what you believe is a fair price and if they want to pay it they will, if they don't want to pay it, so what. Just go mow somewhere else. Don't bit*h about it here.

We are in a business that mows grass and trims shrubs. Nothing special about it. Anybody can do it and it is not rocket science. Lawn work is easy and it IS good money.

So, quote your price, get an answer, and either mow or go home.

12-12-2001, 04:12 PM
This forum gets ruder by the day.:cry:

12-12-2001, 04:19 PM
Lately it seems that everyone here has a REALLY bad attitude. I remember a post a while back where someone said that this is like our break room. That being said, it's starting to sound more like a daycare center where a bunch of 4 and 5 year olds can't get along. People come here to vent their frustrations to people that know their situation...LET THEM VENT. If you don't like it don't read the post!!!

And the search feature...I agree as much as the next person that people need to use the search feature (lots of info in the archives). If you see a post that looks like something you have seen time and time again...DON'T CLICK ON IT TO READ IT!!!

I'm done.

12-12-2001, 04:39 PM
This board is all about attitude, especially lately. I wouldn't hire 3/4 of the folks that post here.
Alot of folks come and post questions and are shot down from arrogant posters here, although I agree the search isn't used enough. But its usually "you shoulda had a contract" or "if you knew what you were doing you wouldn't need to ask that question" Duh! I'm sure most of these know it alls don't no squat,and enjoy ribbing someone for the hell of it.

bubble boy
12-12-2001, 04:46 PM
i must agree with the last two posts

now i know in the past ive had confrontations with members and ive made somewhat rude posts but

KPYOUNG whats up your ass man?

the member was telling a story. obviously the experience is one we've all had, and can understand.

Fantasy Lawns
12-12-2001, 06:35 PM
where about's in fla ? .... either way on east side by the beach that job would be about $75 monthly ..... ornamentals extra ;->

we have a nice neighboor hood like that which a guy does about 50 homes @ $50 .... hard to get in but I have a few in there n charge $75 ....last year he got hurt ask me to cut em ...I told him my rate .....so he had some kids do em few weeks ....those homeowners did not even think of the legal risk they had ...he spray's n all ....one day thou ....he'll be gone

"anybody can mow grass" ....true ....I hire em every summer ....but as an owner you have to have people skills

12-12-2001, 06:42 PM
Must be all the holiday stress:eek:

12-12-2001, 07:01 PM
Originally posted by Richard Martin
65 hoss wrote:
This is for a 1/2 acre?? With those prices you couldn't be doing more than just covering biz expenses. Is it like that everywhere in FL?

And you busted my butt at the other place because I thought $82 an hour was high. My $40 an hour is way high for this guy's neighborhood.

Yes, it would be a lot for him. I wasn't trying to bust your butt. Explaining that a $10,000 Walker should be making more. Its also opportunity cost involved.

12-12-2001, 07:29 PM
k pyoung

Why are you telling us this?

It is called conversation and information sharing. Lighten up.

Bunton Guy
12-12-2001, 08:39 PM
You charge 50-75 per month ???? how can you live on that....here in charlotte for the same peice of property (half acre) we charge 45-55 bucks PER CUT....thats around 200 bucks a month ...yeah you do the math. And that sometimes is hard to live on ! How can you southern florida guys pay for your expensive walker mowers ? with a 50 bucks a month payment per lawn ?

12-12-2001, 08:47 PM
Bunton guy, that's exactly what I was thinking. My average 12 mo account is 200/mo. And I don't have many props over 1/2 ac. either. I'd be living on Ramen Noodles if I had those kind of prices... not that there's anything wrong with that :)

12-12-2001, 09:02 PM
Where I am, 1/2 acre would be a double lot. For this I get 40.00-45.00 per cut. Yes there are those who complain that it's too high. I politely pass on these. You can make it fine down here if you use your head and stand firm on your pricing. It works for me. Some things are cheaper also, but it comes down to how well you manage you cash flow. We live very well on what we make.

12-12-2001, 09:20 PM

Chuck Sinclair
12-12-2001, 09:25 PM

Who got your panties in a bunch back off this is what we do here.:confused:

12-12-2001, 10:48 PM
Man, NOW I have sympathy for this former scrub guy for two reasons. One, was getting jumped on, (totally uncalled for) and secondly for the amount of money he is working for. Now, at 50. a month, that's $12.50 a cut for a HALF ACRE yet! Let's do some math. By the time I drive to a residential, 10-15 minutes, and drop my mower, I'm spending 3 to 4 dollars on fuel. (includes driving away) First there is tax. $4.25 {$8.25} Now, I have my wear and tear-depreciation on all equip. .50 {$7.75} Insurances, (per job stop) MINimum .50. {7.25} Now, this is for the 1 hours time that is into this job. Yes, it is one hour, because not only is there the travel time mentioned before, but there is maintenace time that is related, and this job is a factor in that. Of course, we didn't even MENTION social security. Now, with this $7.25, we are paying for storage - the facility to keep this equip.. (It doesn't matter if you already have it, and it's your's, it's STILL being used.) And of course, electricity for sharpening blades and seeing work on equip.. Then of course, we STILL have to pay ourselves for doing the bookwork, (don't forget the invoice costs) aaaaand what do we have left? How much do they pay for labor down there? Would it not be more logical to work for someone else and earn more money? See, what you GROSS, and what you net are two different things. We haven't even split up between the componies share (to put back in) and OUR own "payroll" yet. Oh, and let's not forget retirement! So, if we bust our hump for 10 hours a day, 5 days a week, for 7 bucks an hour, we clear a good $350 a week. I'm sorry, and I don't mean to be like a "bearer of bad news" or anything, but this just doesn't make any sense! I bet the retired snowbird that owns the house, and the new Caddy wouldn't want to work for that. When there are services that are willing to work like this, they just feed the downfall. (not necessarily you) Maybe there are some places in the U.S. that just aren't even feasibly marketable for this type of industry. I couldn't even iMAGine just DRIVING to a house 4 times for 50 bucks, much less going there and cutting the lawn, too. Really, former scrub, you should definitely look in to some different pricing structure. Well, I'll step down now.

12-13-2001, 07:49 AM
Thanks everyone for your input and believe it or not in the area where i work 50-60 a month for these lots is acceptable. Also realize that I do approx. 12 other lawns on this street at $50 each a month and the block takes me 3 hours by myself.

12 hours of work
600.00 a month

thats 50.00 an hour

no fences, no gates, minimum of line trimming, and edging
so I dont think its to bad. Anyone else work in the West/central Florida area make about the same?

12-13-2001, 08:29 AM
The last post goes a long way in explaining one of the mysteries of regional pricing.

We all would believe that he was working for dirt cheap but as a whole he has his time and costs down and is mowing multiple yards on the same block at a rate of 50.00 per hour.
That ain't too bad.

I as well as many of you couldn't do a single 20K sq ft lawn for 12.50 a cut. Thats why its so important to go and physically see what you are bidding on. There has to be some flexability in bidding. You know how fast you can do an acre with even one guy running a Z. I'd mow flat yards all day for 50 an hour. Little trimming and edging is what makes it even more profitable. What makes it work is that they are together.

The only danger is that if you lose a couple of these yards and only have one or two its gonna be harder to drop the gate for that price.

I commend you in your conviction to be paid a good wage for the work you do.

As for anyone who wants to hammer you for posting just realize that there are many people here who are willing to listen to what you want to say. There will always be the occasional reply that seems short and just basically not nice. Its hard to take back what you type once it is past the editing window. I would think that the gentleman above has had second thoughts about the tone in which he replied to you. Don't take it personally. Everyone is here to learn by questioning and/or relating personal experiences.

I think more than one person learned something from this post and it isn't all about the original topic.

12-13-2001, 08:59 AM
My business practices are changing. My minimum now is 100.00 per month, no more per cut accounts. I bid jobs here at 50.00 per hour for residential and 60.00 per hour for commercial.

12-13-2001, 10:45 AM
I know exactly what you mean when you can line up a bunch of small residentials and knock them off in the same day it can be very profitable. I am sorry that you got blasted by all of the rude comments here on lawnsite. It's such a joke sometimes...gets real old when some of us are just trying to use this forum for what is intended-to share information with eachother and learn!! Its really too bad to see such a good thing result in things like this. Good luck.

12-13-2001, 01:52 PM
If you can do 4 per hour then they are not 1/2 acres. I still think $50 per month is low for just about any lawn, but your doing better than the original post suggest. You are in a bad situation though, you can't raise prices on these or they jump ship on you. Its hard to get 12 on one street.

Just a thought, maybe you could start by going up on new customers and eventually you can upgrade your days into very profitable accounts.:)

12-13-2001, 04:30 PM
WOW !!!!!! I just started in Lawn Service not to long ago. Personally I could not make it on them figures. It just won't be worth my time. Each to his own though. Where in Florida R U ?
Let me know for I can find some other service to get into . I can not even come close in competing with them prices !!!!!!:dizzy:

No Sweat L/C
12-13-2001, 10:08 PM
My minimiun for any monthly year-round yard is 100.00 a month. It takes me usally 30-45 time to service a account at this price. At 50.00 a month they must not have any sidewalks, driveways, gates or fences to edge. I still wouldn't go for this type of yards. I usally go for quality, not for the quantity type of yards.

It seems you must be working the retirement areas over there. Or is this a Trailer Park thats the only area I know that you could do 12 yards in 3 hours solo !!
I wish I could do 12 yards a day working solo.

12-14-2001, 01:11 AM
Originally posted by kpyoung

Why are you telling us this? I know that I don't care. Don't bit*h about it here.

The guy makes 9 posts here in the 6 months he's been a member, and this is his contribution? Very helpful, thank you.

Btw formerscrub, $12.50 a cut??? Are you SURE this is the going rate in your neighborhood? Maybe have a nieghbor, friend, or family member that lives in the area that you work in call a couple of the bigger companies that have been around for a while and get estimates for thier lawns. Just to be sure you're in the right ballpark.
My Dad lives in a trailer park and I do a couple lawns there and even these tiny postage stamp lawns go for $20.
The neighborhood kids get $10 to mow and that's with thier dad's 21" craftsman. And that's just a mow (usually with clippings left on lawn). I trim, edge, and blow and I'm reliable. I figure that's worth double.
My point is, just make sure you're not shorting yourself. Take care.

12-14-2001, 10:03 PM
I say we leave the man alone. He is making his bed, as we all do. That is his market and not ours. Do whatever it takes bro.


12-15-2001, 05:42 PM
Sounds like the guy couldnt afford the 200k house he was livin in.
if he was screamin about the price.. Maybe next time offer to sell him a Mower!! like the one you use. then he would realize he should be livin in the Trailer park down the Road
Turfs up!!!

12-15-2001, 05:55 PM
Former Scrub. Do you by chance mean that the ENTIRE lot (house, drive, etc.) is 1/2 acre? So in reality you are only cutting, say, 1/5 of an acre?:confused:

plow kid
12-15-2001, 11:29 PM
Please now, that was a direct attack on a member. That large picture you posted is not the kind of behavior we want here.

12-15-2001, 11:52 PM
Originally posted by walker-talker
I say we leave the man alone

Matt, "leave the man alone"?? You make it sound like we were picking on him or something.
He posted a situation, some were trying to offer advice and help him out.
That what we do here ya know. At least, that's what we used to do here.