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mikey
01-17-2002, 11:16 PM
hi
starting out this spring..what i primarily want ot do is to sell my future customers on cutting their lawns once a week instead of
every 10 days cuz i get the xtra 35-40 bucks from each customer
what pitch does everyone think i should use...how many customers u think i might get if i advertise and be aggresive how
many lawns u think i may get i have a new equipment a honda mower,john deere wacker ,echo blower and rakes and all that
reasonable guesstamite?i basically wanna find out if i can get a lot of lawns to cut to make a decent living

joshua
01-17-2002, 11:34 PM
we cut our residential lawns every 5 days until mid-june if not longer. and commercials every 3 or 4 days if they need it that soon. you can't say to someone that you will cut it once a week in the spring because of how fast the grass grows. it will be tough for you this year because you're new. you may be better off working for a contractor for a year or two to get some education on how to bid, how to run the equipment safely and good, and how to please a customer. or you can do what alot of guys do and make a lot of sacrifices for the next year or more to build everything up to make a decent living. either way good luck to you. start going door to door, advertise if you feel you need to, talk to friends, neighbors, and family to try and help you get jobs. good luck

JimLewis
01-18-2002, 01:15 AM
You bring up a lot of mixed questions here but I will answer the bigger ones....

As to mowing weekly rather than every 10 days, YES. That is the way to do it. It's much easier for a multitude of reasons. As you've already figured out, it's better for your overall income. But there are a lot of other benefits. The other main benefit is that you then will have a regular weekly dependable route. For instance, our clients know they'll see us every week on, say, Thursday around 10:00 - 11:00 am. It's like clockwork. They know they'll come home every Thursday to a crisp freshly cut lawn. People like that.

The other nice thing is that you will be setting yourself up with a good system if you ever decide to get bigger and hire employees. Employees always work better with regular schedules as well. My guys always know exacltly where to go every Monday, Tuesday, etc.

As for how to pitch this to people, there are a few concerns here. One is, if you are finding that a lot of customers are balking at the idea and saying stuff like, "But what if I don't want to have it mowed that often?" then I would suggest that you are probably pitching to the wrong market. These people don't have much money. They are saying this because their broke. Begin to focus on upper middle class and upper class neighborhoods and you'll find a much better response.

Regardless, here is what I always tell people if I get that question, "Well if we don't come every week your lawn will begin to look too long and ragged. And since we take care of the fertilizing in all of our programs, your lawn will be growing faster than it does now so it will need mowing more often. We use some very good fertilizer. And it will keep your lawn very nice and lush. But it will also need mowed weekly." Some people understand and say, "Oh. Ok." Some people say, "Hmm. well I really was just looking for something every two weeks." The latter is a clue to me that they are broke and I don't want that kind of customer. I just politely explain that this is the only service we offer (weekly) and wish them good luck.

There's another tip hidden in that last paragraph. You should never let the fact that you are desperate for money or business make you take clients who really aren't good for you in the long run. It's better to turn down an okay account and save that time in your schedule for finding a good account than it is to settle for the bad account just because you need some quick money. If you don't heed this advice you'll find you're schedule will soon be filled up, but it will be with bad accounts that aren't making you as much money. Then you won't have time to look for the really good accounts because you'll be too busy.

How many lawn accounts could you get if you were aggressive? It all depends on your area and the economy there, etc. But I know if I were starting out again, knowing what I know about how to get accounts (flyers, truck signs, etc.) I could land 30 or more accounts by summer if I really wanted to.

As for making a good living at it, sure. That's very possible. Even when you are new. But it all depends on how good you are with people, your business sense, your work ethic, etc. If you have a good work ethic, try your best to look sharp, and pay attention to the advice you get in this forum you could do very well very quickly.

LAWNS AND MOWER
01-18-2002, 12:17 PM
As always, Jim makes some very good points. Stay away from 10 dayers if you can help it. They are scheduling nightmares. I have about 60 accts and 40 are weekly, 15 are ten dayers and 5 are every two weeks. Most of my 10 dayers are in clusters so it's not that bad plus if you should fall behind your 10 dayers can become floaters which means you can fit them into your schedule as you see fit.

Good Luck---LAWNS AND MOWER

bobbygedd
01-18-2002, 12:33 PM
its once a week or get someone else. i refuse to do the 10 day or 2 week thing, want to cut the lawn, not fight with it

LAWNS AND MOWER
01-18-2002, 12:42 PM
Most of my 10 dayers really don't need to be mowed but every 10 days. If I tried to do these every week I would have a hard time seeing where I have mowed. I've tried to get these accts on a fertilizer program but the customers won't go for it. They're scared of fertilizer. Afraid kids might get lost in the tall grass!!! Plus most of my ten dayers are older accts. New accts are done weekly unless grass doesn't grow that well and they are in a exisisting cluster of ten dayers. What about 5 dayers? Anyone blessed with these cashcows?

LAWNS AND MOWER

Scraper
01-18-2002, 12:46 PM
What's a 10-dayer? It gets cut weekly unless it doesn't need cut (due to summer heat and fall slowing growth) then it gets skipped. Most of my lawns would be better cut every 5 days, especially in the spring.

LAWNS AND MOWER
01-18-2002, 12:49 PM
Scraper- A 10 dayer means that the yard is mowed every 10 days.

LAWNS AND MOWER

mdb landscaping
01-18-2002, 01:01 PM
i cut all my lawns once a week. in the spring it may be every 5 0r 6 days during heavy growing season. i have a few customers who like it cut twice a week.

GreenStar
01-18-2002, 06:08 PM
i ran into a few issues like this in the past and i used the agronomic approach to make the sale. ya know maybe it's an urban legend but i had allot of older people tell me to mow every 10 day's. hey any of you "seasoned veteran's" want to clear this up? lol

leeslawncare
01-18-2002, 08:00 PM
Most of mine are 1 weekers. I do have a couple that i do 2 weeks .It all depends on if they fert or not water etc...For a 1 week client that waters an fert ...no way ,Find someone else. but "junk lawns" i can get by with 2 weeks.I would rather cut nice Grass instead of weed beds but $$ talks.

luv of green
01-18-2002, 08:17 PM
if you can get by cutting every ten days without leaving a mess this sounds like an opportunity to sell some fertilizer?

Nelson
01-18-2002, 09:52 PM
Well said jimlewis. I am just starting out & for now I have to EAT CROW with the little accounts I do have, all of them are every 2 weeks. Things will get better once I target the middle class & upper class residents..... This is something i will just learn, but it's a good thing !!!!! I LOVE this site !!!!!! :D

David Haggerty
01-19-2002, 07:53 AM
What's the grass growth pattern in Boston? Does the grass need cut more often?

I'd think it'd grow a lot like Ohio,Pennsylvania & New Jersey . But then I dunno.

If you need more work, get more customers.

If you're selling them something they need at a reasonable price, you'll have more clients than you can service.

Dave

jerry johnston
01-19-2002, 08:49 AM
I live in a community that has a lot of retired people. If you want to stay in business, you take on accounts to keep the money coming in. About 1/3 of my accounts are every other week. I also mow for people that like to sit on a mower, so I mow and bag their lawns every other week.

You may not like it at the time, but, you are happy at the end of the year.

Jerry

walker-talker
01-19-2002, 09:38 AM
For scheduling purposes, I would suggest every 7 to 10 days, or you could go 10 to 14 days. I suppose it's up to you whether you want to work weekends of not.

MATT

big james
01-19-2002, 11:11 AM
Where I live , you take what you can get whether it's once a week .ten days or two weeks , I just charge accordingly . My exmarks don't seem to care !:angel:

outrunjason
02-08-2002, 08:21 PM
I Live in dallas texas. If everyone is mowing every 5 days and stuff how do you work out the sprinkler system cycle with the customer. I know if I come out and the sprinkler is on I don't mow. If I come out a day late and the grass is wet the customer gets mad that I didn't call and let them know I was comeing.

Thanks, Jason

BRIAN GALLO
02-08-2002, 11:56 PM
I also have a good bit of 10 day and 2-weekers, and as someone said - it's a real battle to get those lawns looking good. Price accordingly$$$$! Let them know that you are going to have to go over it more than once, and it will cost them. These are usually older folks that just will not have it any other way. My advice is if you have to take the 10 - 14 day accounts let them know up front that there is no way their lawn is going to look as good as the neighbor's who cuts his every 4 days! The best one I like is when the old folks son/daughter comes around on the 13th day and says "your lawn guy isn't cutting it low enough"!!!!!