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bobbygedd
01-11-2002, 01:15 PM
A FELLOW STOPPED TO CHAT WHILE WE WERE DOING A CLEANUP, we got on the subject of price, and he said the "national average" charge by the hour for cleanups is $37.50. anyone ever hear of this, or any other number?

65hoss
01-11-2002, 02:11 PM
That's amazing. He polled everyone in the country and then averaged it out. What a man!!:rolleyes:



With the price of equipment, bags and labor I think I would go broke.

accuratelawn
01-11-2002, 06:01 PM
37.50 is too low. That work is hard on your equipment and you.

gogetter
01-12-2002, 12:19 AM
You're sure he was just talking about clean ups? I read that the national average for Landscapers/Lawn Maintenance is $35/hr. in general.

I believe that was in a recent issue of one of the green industry mags.

That happens to be what I charge for clean ups. I really don't think I could get much more then that in my area. Or perhaps I should say, in the area that I work. It's very much middle class blue collar workers. Now, if I went in the other direction when I left my house, it's a bit more upscale and perhaps I could charge a bit more hourly. But the properties are larger and I work solo and have limited equipment (small mowers).

geogunn
01-12-2002, 12:28 AM
I'd work for $37.5, but not an hour.

I might price a job at $37.5/hr for a four hour job but I would finish it in 2-2 1/2 hours.

GEO

David Haggerty
01-12-2002, 10:23 AM
What good is that?

I don't see even how a state wide average would be of any use to me. I think the magazines promote this myth because that's how they sell magazines, and their advertisers sell their products.
....NATION-WIDE.....

Look at how extreme the variations are. On the east coast the cost of living is twice what it is here. In the south the cost of labor is half what it is here.

A "National Average" is just wierd.

IMHO

Dave

gogetter
01-12-2002, 10:36 AM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by David Haggerty
[B] I think the magazines promote this myth because that's how they sell magazines, and their advertisers sell their products.
....NATION-WIDE.....


Huh? I don't follow ya. What would a magazine have to gain by "promoting a myth" such as this?
Actually, this came from a survey.


>Look at how extreme the variations are. On the east coast the >cost of living is twice what it is here. In the south the cost of >labor is half what it is here.


Yes, that's why it's called an "Average".

Integrity
01-12-2002, 11:56 AM
Never heard of a national average in this business. And I sure think that 37.5/hour is too low. We'd go broke at that rate.

Turfdude
01-12-2002, 12:44 PM
Originally posted by bobbygedd
A FELLOW STOPPED TO CHAT WHILE WE WERE DOING A CLEANUP, we got on the subject of price, and he said the "national average" charge by the hour for cleanups is $37.50. anyone ever hear of this, or any other number?

I'm not really sure about the national average at all, I'm more concerned about my area of the state. The average varies dramatically in NJ and is very high in north Jersey, and very low by the south Jersey shore.


I think what we should all be concerned about is making a fair rate that is acceptable in our geographic area and fall in line w/ other professions. Bottom line guys is that in the service industry, we're UNFORTUNATELY not near the top:

Mechanics, plumbers, electricians and other industries where more training and certification is needed reflect higher pay rates (this is why lawn care techs get better money than lawn jockeys mowing grass!) we are usually better paid than painters and janitorial service companies.

My point is this: In our area, auto mechanics $60+ shop hour, small equipment mechanics $50+ shop area, Electricians and plumbers $40-$45+ per hour
No, we're not brain surgeons, and no we don't have the higher overhead of garages, nor necessarily the higher mechanic rates, but we should be able to get our rates up a little in this industry especially since the Z's, bigger blowers, extendable trimmers, etc. get the job done so quickly. The investment in these tools isn't cheap either. The more educated clients realize this and usually are willing to pay for the service. It will take a little more time for the average Joe Shmoe to realize this too.

Bob

Randy Scott
01-12-2002, 02:39 PM
An average is just like what some said here, an average. And that may have been derived at by someone charging $100 an hour and someone charging $20 an hour. You have to use your judgement in your area and what the market will allow.

XOFMOT
01-12-2002, 07:35 PM
Here is one of the "BAD" factors pertaining to this industry: You go to Mr. & Mrs. John Doe's home to give them an estimate for, lets say....Leaf cleanup. They ask you how much you charge an hour...you say $40.00. You estimate a 3 hour cleanup to charge them $120.00. You do this clean up and it only takes you 2 hours....what do you do? You want to get paid $120.00 but your employee today worked like SUPERMAN. Do you charge $80.00 or $120.00? By the way MR. & Mrs. Doe have been home while you were working there.

My point is this.....Lets take you local power equipment repair shop. You bring in your WB because it's been backfiring. You drop it off at his shop. The shop charges $60.00 per hour, you have a bad coil, shop estimates 2 hours to replace, you give the OK. The shop now does the repair after you OK'ed the estimate. They end up completing the repair in 1 hour. What did they charge you? 1 hour? Or the approved 2 hour time you agreed to? I bet they charge the 2 hours to you, after all you were not there to watch and you approved it.

gogetter
01-13-2002, 12:00 AM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Turfdude

and fall in line w/ other professions. Bottom line guys is that in the service industry, we're [B]UNFORTUNATELY not near the top:

You got that right!


> we are usually better paid than painters and janitorial service companies.

Don't know about painters, but I just started a part time job cleaning carpets in restaurants. This is along the line of janitorial. The first one we cleaned, the owner of the carpet cleaning service told me he gets $625 for this particular restaurant. It takes him about 6-7 hours by himelf. That's roughly $95/hr.
The equipment is cheaper then lawn equipment, very low overhead, and there's nothing to learn, anyone can do it.


>but we should be able to get our rates up a little in this industry especially since the Z's, bigger blowers, extendable trimmers, etc. get the job done so quickly. The investment in these tools isn't cheap either.

I definately agree with this!

bobbygedd
01-13-2002, 12:36 AM
xmot, what u do, is get paid for your two hours, and get to the next job, seems simple enough. now, on the other hand, what happens when mrs. doe figures to be a 3 hour cleanup, and it takes 4 and a half, then on top of it, shes a real pain in the grass, and starts nitpicking? so 5 hrs later, u r still workin on gettin paid for that 3 hr labor charge. i started cleaning leaves this year at $65 per hour, i think its the only way to charge. leaves are impossible to estimate acurately, u either go too high and dont get the job, or too low, and get smoked in the end. by charging an hourly rate it is fair for both me and my customers.