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View Full Version : Trim 40 shrubs for 35 bucks?? 20 minute drive, How funny


4.3mudder
04-22-2009, 07:17 PM
So, I had this funny one today. Lady from a friend from a friend deal I gave a call to wanted to know how much to do her hedges for. So, I get there, now this is 20 minutes from where I was at. This is in a nice neighborhood, Ashburn Glen in Ovilla. This is kind of like Highland Park nice. So, I get there, husband and wife come out, older couple tell me that they had someone doing it then they were doing it themselves. Now, I counted all the schrubs. There were 34 small ones, between yaupon hollys and nandinas, and then 6 of the big round tree shrubs, that have the red berries. Well, while I was looking at them she told me. "ya, the guys that we had were really only doing the small shrubs and not the bigger ones", funny I wonder why? She told me that she was giving them 35 bucks :hammerhead:!!! I wondered why they were doing half azz work. They went up on her 5 dollars so she cut them off and did it themselves. It would take me maybe and hour and half to 2 hours tops. They were in nice flower beds with red mulch. So, I knew it would be time consuming getting everything out. So she asked me the price, well mame, it is going to be double. "oh, we can't do that" Well, thanks for you time then. Jee whiz, I mean, people must be tighter than a ticks asss on money or something. I mean, nice house, yard, landscaping, and they live in a frigin nice neighborhood. Cheap scates. I just thought it was so funny. :laugh:

Looking Good Lawn Service
04-22-2009, 07:24 PM
Tell me about it, Don't you know, you're not supposed to make money, what did you think this is a business, we are only the outside janitor,lol....I cant believe people sometimes, you live and learn, the worst part is it cost you $$ in fuel and time you wasted that you will never get back in your life,lol...they should know that their clock is ticking faster than yours.

Stillwater
04-22-2009, 07:36 PM
35 apiece mam....................

4.3mudder
04-22-2009, 07:41 PM
Tell me about it, Don't you know, you're not supposed to make money, what did you think this is a business, we are only the outside janitor,lol....I cant believe people sometimes, you live and learn, the worst part is it cost you $$ in fuel and time you wasted that you will never get back in your life,lol...they should know that their clock is ticking faster than yours.

Ya, she just had back surgury too, that was where the money went. :hammerhead:

david shumaker
04-22-2009, 09:03 PM
It's time consuming and a pain to get the little clippings out of the beds. I have one house where I have to put tarps around the shrubs to keep clippings out of the pine straw mulch.

Sometimes I feel like telling people that want work done next to nothing to hire one of those people that "work for food".

4.3mudder
04-22-2009, 09:09 PM
It's time consuming and a pain to get the little clippings out of the beds. I have one house where I have to put tarps around the shrubs to keep clippings out of the pine straw mulch.



That's exactly what she told me to do. Pugh, I don't think so, never did it that way and never plan to. Show me the dough and we will see. :laugh:

QualityLawnCare4u
04-22-2009, 09:12 PM
This is the reason I know longer advertise nor solice any shrubbery work. The same people who don't mind paying 50 bucks for a one hour yard mow will not want to pay 50 for 10 hours of shrub work. Or thats the way it is in my neck or the woods. When I get a call and they start telling me what they have I tell them its going to be x amount from what you are telling me and when I go to look at it could be higher. This eliminates a lot of wasted drive time and gas. If they take the first price I give then I don't mind going to see what they have.

4.3mudder
04-22-2009, 09:15 PM
This is the reason I know longer advertise nor solice any shrubbery work. The same people who don't mind paying 50 bucks for a one hour yard mow will not want to pay 50 for 10 hours of shrub work. Or thats the way it is in my neck or the woods. When I get a call and they start telling me what they have I tell them its going to be x amount from what you are telling me and when I go to look at it could be higher. This eliminates a lot of wasted drive time and gas. If they take the first price I give then I don't mind going to see what they have.

I'm going to have to do that from now on. Or, even give a guy a quote and never hear back. I no longer hold my breath for anyone.

Rcgm
04-22-2009, 09:21 PM
I tell them 5 dollars for a small one,8 for a medium and 10 dollars for a large one with a 150.00 min charge. 2 guys we knock them out pretty quick. We do alot of trimming shrubs. Alot of yews and junipers.


Brad

jnrogers
04-22-2009, 09:21 PM
They would need to add a 0 to the end of that $35 for me $350:) I hate doing shrubs anyway so I would price extremely high so they would get someone else.

4.3mudder
04-22-2009, 09:28 PM
I don't mind doing shrubs, these were low to the ground and easy to work with, but not no 35 bucks. I will be in that area tomorrow, I will swing by and take a quick pic so yall know exactly how big and the amount. People amaze me sometimes.

topsites
04-22-2009, 09:28 PM
THIS is the part I hate about this business...
I lower my price to $30 an hour TRYING to be a nice guy and TRYING not to
quote these folks an outrageous $60 an hour rate, right?

But some I just can't give a good price, they gotta try and knock it down another $10-$20 an hour.
And that's when the anger starts, which...
Oh well, I guess I'd be wasting my energy if I held my breath.

4.3mudder
04-22-2009, 09:31 PM
I just don't understand why people are so cheap. I saw this one guy in HD buying a weedeater featherlite trimmer 70 bucks, saw him getting in his practically brand new fully loaded with 22's, Escalade, like I said, people amaze me.

lawnpro724
04-22-2009, 09:37 PM
I charge and get $100 an hr for two man crew and if they don't want to pay oh well, that's my rate. I had a lady today call for a mowing estimate she was in her early 70s and said the guy she had for a couple years had quit since he had gotten a full time job. She asked me to give an estimate for her house and the one next door (her rental) and the empty lot across the street. She told me she couldn't afford much but she has a very nice rental and a nice house she lives in and the empty lot across the street. I told her my price and she said oh no I can't afford that the other guy was mowing everything for only $30 a cut. She said she didn't get much on social security and just couldn't afford what I was charging which was only $50 a cut and I thought that was very low but decided to give her a deal since she was retired and on social security. She flipped out ! and said the other guy said $30 was fine since he liked to mow anyway and were talking about a job that would take around an hour and half to two hours and that's with my 60" Z. I told her I couldn't do it for that and she said if I couldn't she would find someone else. Some people.

4.3mudder
04-22-2009, 09:39 PM
She probably had a nice car she was driving too.

ED'S LAWNCARE
04-22-2009, 09:48 PM
People have nice houses and cars because they hold on to a buck

4.3mudder
04-22-2009, 09:49 PM
People have nice houses and cars because they hold on to a buck

I'm learning that the hard way by finally seeing it in their eyes.

red12
04-22-2009, 10:36 PM
I did a bid on a mulch job was around 1000 sq ft had to make around 4 runs to get the mulch and they had 2 different kinds of mulch. I told them I would do it for 515 and they said no thanks ill have my grand kids do it for mothers day or something like that. I took off about 200. I figured well they are my sister in inlaws grandparents ill cut them a deal. I know they have lots of money from what my sister inlaw says. It is really amazing out people want to be soo cheap.

4.3mudder
04-22-2009, 10:56 PM
I guess that is why people are rich, they save their money until they squeak cuz their so cheap.

Florida Gardener
04-22-2009, 11:29 PM
i try to get $50/hour for whatever i do. sometimes i lose my shirt by underestimating and sometimes i will go down a little if its a good job. one of my newer and best customers wanted his palms trimmed as well as some hedges and other plants on the property. i gave him a price of $350 and he told me he needed it to be at $225. i said you know what, your a great customer(which he is. he always is giving me side work and im making good money on the maintenance) so i did it. i ended up making $45/hour which im totally cool with and he will have me do this another 2 times during the growing season. now, if he said he needed me to cut the price in half, i wouldnt have done it. i agree, there are a lot of cheapos out there, i just try and find the ones that dont mind spending a little more to get a quality job done.

4.3mudder
04-23-2009, 12:43 AM
Well, these people were not intending on spending anymore than the last guy, oh, well what happened to the last guy, uh half asz job. Well, hes only getting paid for half the work so....

Fox Lawn & Garden
04-23-2009, 07:11 AM
I think some older people are still living in the 1950's.
They have no sense of realistic prices...except perhaps at the beauty parlors..

4.3mudder
04-23-2009, 10:31 AM
I think some older people are still living in the 1950's.
They have no sense of realistic prices...except perhaps at the beauty parlors..

:hammerhead:, they need to wake up and smell the new roses outside.

kaferhaus
04-23-2009, 11:12 AM
We did one yesterday, 320' of azalea bushes that hadn't been trimmed in 3 years.

$400 and we took the clippings to the curb. Took two guys 3.5hrs. I quoted that job 6 weeks ago... guess I priced it too cheap! I'm sure they called eveyone they could find. Nice home, two, new Lexus SUVs in the driveway.

When they finally called back (last week) the wife's first question was could we come off the price.... now the estimate was done 6 weeks prior..... I knew they'd been "shopping" so I told her that the price "wouldn't go UP unless there had been significant growth since we quoted it" her response was "well I'm not paying a penny more than the price you gave me!" LOL

The guy that cuts their grass apparently wouldn't even give her a price on the bushes.

When she asked for a quote on the lawn service (see how cheap???) and I gave her one her only reply was "I'm paying much less than that now". I told her, "yes, ma'm I can see that"... whoever is doing it is doing a poor job of it.

ALC-GregH
04-23-2009, 11:17 AM
If they don't want to pay the price then you don't want them as a customer. Simple as that. Move on down the line. Let some kid do it for them and they'll pay the cheap price for a cheap job.
I gave a estimate last week to a guy that told me he was paying a guy almost half of what I estimated. I told him his best bet would be to call him up and have him do it. It's so funny when he said he DID call him but there was no answer and he just stopped coming around. I then told him to put 2+2 together. He looked at me funny and said I see what your getting at. At that point I told him the reason why my price was higher and explained to him that it will look as good as it possibly can when I'm maintaining your property. He is a regular weekly customer that after seeing the first cut and the finished product he's getting for his money, he wants me to do it each week so it looks that good more often. Note, the cheap guy was doing it every 2 weeks for almost half the price! I love it when good salesmanship and quality sell their self. :D I really like the saying someone has on here. "I cut grass for free and deal with people for money" :) It makes it that much easier to deal with people for money when they see a quality job each week.

mwh350
04-23-2009, 12:01 PM
Largest house in my town. Almost 3.5 Acres. He wants it Edged trimmed the whole shebang. I own a Lazer Z 60" a Great Dane 36 walk behind, a 21" and all the trimmers edgeres blowers to go along with that equipment.
I estimated that this lawn would take me 4 hours with a two man crew. Due to the fact that the Higher elevation lawn in the picture had to be mowed with a 21 inch push mower because there is no way to get the 36 onto the lawn. Also all of the trees in the picture needed to be push mowed underneath. He wants the lawn mowed once per week for the summer in montana. I quoted him $200 bucks and he thought I was off my rocker. Someone mows that sucker for $60 dollars. Of course the $60 dollar guy uses the owners John deere Riding tractor to mow the large acre area.

mwh350
04-23-2009, 12:17 PM
Oops forgot the picture.

grass2cash
04-23-2009, 12:36 PM
Tell me about it, Don't you know, you're not supposed to make money, what did you think this is a business, we are only the outside janitor,lol....


Ouch! I never thought of us as outside janitors until you mentioned it. I think my feelings are hurt. :nono:

TheC-Master
04-23-2009, 01:46 PM
If they don't want to pay the price then you don't want them as a customer. Simple as that. Move on down the line. Let some kid do it for them and they'll pay the cheap price for a cheap job.
I gave a estimate last week to a guy that told me he was paying a guy almost half of what I estimated. I told him his best bet would be to call him up and have him do it. It's so funny when he said he DID call him but there was no answer and he just stopped coming around. I then told him to put 2+2 together. He looked at me funny and said I see what your getting at. At that point I told him the reason why my price was higher and explained to him that it will look as good as it possibly can when I'm maintaining your property. He is a regular weekly customer that after seeing the first cut and the finished product he's getting for his money, he wants me to do it each week so it looks that good more often. Note, the cheap guy was doing it every 2 weeks for almost half the price! I love it when good salesmanship and quality sell their self. :D I really like the saying someone has on here. "I cut grass for free and deal with people for money" :) It makes it that much easier to deal with people for money when they see a quality job each week. I had the same thing with a good size gas station who wanted it for 30 bucks and he said "The guy just didn't show up." It's good to just get the good clients.

I don't mind shrubs, but some just don't want to pay much for them, and they wait until it's horrible. I'd rather do the basics, but maintaining them isn't half bad.

Richard Martin
04-23-2009, 02:23 PM
Nevermind. Sorry. My bad. It's a mistake. I can stop now. Yeah, right now.

Richard Martin
04-23-2009, 02:29 PM
Largest house in my town. Almost 3.5 Acres.

I'm only seeing about an acre and a half in your pic. Roughly 250 by 300. Where's the other 2 acres?

SC Irrigator
04-23-2009, 05:44 PM
i had a lady the other day stop me to see how much it would be to cut her grass....she said that the other guy had been doing it for 25 to cut and 15 to trim bushes...for us to do it it would be $55 a cut......she also so that she thought she was being ripped off buy him charging that....looks to me like she was doing the ripping off lol

mwh350
04-23-2009, 05:57 PM
I'm only seeing about an acre and a half in your pic. Roughly 250 by 300. Where's the other 2 acres?

325 ft X 427 ft 138775 Square feet . 43560 square feet in an acre

Approximately 3.18 Acres. Not quite the 3.5 I touted, but With push mowing the inner and trimming am I just to slow at this? With a 60 inch Lazer Z and push mowing that inner part 2 guys trimming permiter, and push mowing under all trees in the picture I figured about 4 hours? Is that too slow? Even at 2 hours it should be easily between 100 to 200 a mow shouldn't it?
Keep in mind I live in Montana and our season is only 4 to 5 months long.

DennisF
04-23-2009, 06:27 PM
Most people hate to pay someone to do something that they could do themselves. There is something in their thinking that tells them that if I can do it...I shouldn't have to pay too much to have someone else do it. The work may be back breaking drudgery and they don't want to bust their butt to do it, but they don't think that it's worth paying much for someone else to do it. Hard to figure people sometimes, but that's the way it is.

Richard Martin
04-24-2009, 05:06 AM
325 ft X 427 ft 138775 Square feet . 43560 square feet in an acre

Approximately 3.18 Acres. Not quite the 3.5 I touted, but With push mowing the inner and trimming am I just to slow at this? With a 60 inch Lazer Z and push mowing that inner part 2 guys trimming permiter, and push mowing under all trees in the picture I figured about 4 hours? Is that too slow? Even at 2 hours it should be easily between 100 to 200 a mow shouldn't it?
Keep in mind I live in Montana and our season is only 4 to 5 months long.

Believe it or not.... Now that I know the scale of the picture I was able to roughly figure the area. About 100,000 sq ft since the corner is knocked off and the house and drive take such a large sq footage. About 2.3 acres give or take.

I can't see it taking 8 man hours to cut that. I could do it by myself in half of that time and I take my time. I'm thinking $100 to $125.

ALC-GregH
04-24-2009, 10:50 AM
Richard, it looks to me that it can be done in even less time then that. I'd bet it could be cut in less then 2 hours. I'd probably estimate $80-100. 2 guys 4hrs? That's crazy.

topsites
04-24-2009, 10:54 AM
Richard, it looks to me that it can be done in even less time then that. I'd bet it could be cut in less then 2 hours. I'd probably estimate $80-100. 2 guys 4hrs? That's crazy.

I will chime in, customer cheapness aside, also I am not disagreeing when I say that just out of
not having the proper equipment doesn't mean we can charge more, the job costs what it should cost.

So if someone can come in with a batwing mower and knock it out in 1 hour, the cost to the consumer
should be the same as if someone mowed it with an 21" push mower and it took all day.
Or at the least, the cost should be similar, within a relatively close range.
So I was thinking $120 myself, that's assuming either 3 acres no pushing, or 2.5 with that push area, roughly.

100, 120, maybe 140, all this seems to be in the ballpark.
Tall grass is another story thou there's ways to work with that as well.

Richard Martin
04-24-2009, 11:01 AM
Richard, it looks to me that it can be done in even less time then that. I'd bet it could be cut in less then 2 hours.

Yeah, a regular crew of 2 without the boss present could probably cut it pretty quickly. Like I said though, I'm not in any hurries to get anything done and I take my time. Good or bad, all of my lawns look the same from week to week. :)

ALC-GregH
04-24-2009, 11:07 AM
Yeah, a regular crew of 2 without the boss present could probably cut it pretty quickly. Like I said though, I'm not in any hurries to get anything done and I take my time. Good or bad, all of my lawns look the same from week to week. :)

Hey, we feel the same way then. I don't sacrifice quality for price. :nono: :)

mwh350
04-24-2009, 11:34 AM
I will chime in, customer cheapness aside, also I am not disagreeing when I say that just out of
not having the proper equipment doesn't mean we can charge more, the job costs what it should cost.

So if someone can come in with a batwing mower and knock it out in 1 hour, the cost to the consumer
should be the same as if someone mowed it with an 21" push mower and it took all day.
Or at the least, the cost should be similar, within a relatively close range.
So I was thinking $120 myself, that's assuming either 3 acres no pushing, or 2.5 with that push area, roughly.

100, 120, maybe 140, all this seems to be in the ballpark.
Tall grass is another story thou there's ways to work with that as well.


I forgot to mention that it all has to be bagged. Not to concerned abou the pricing I am just concerned about how fast my crew can get the job done. My prices tend to range on the high side on anything 1 acre or more due to the fact that the nearest LCO has to drive over an hour to get to my town, and they price in the drive. So why leave money on the table? I based the price of $200 per cut on two other lawns that I priced earlier in the week and got the jobs. One at .7 Acres for $90 per mow $10 extra if I trim the shrubs.
One at .85 acres for $100 per mow.
If I am bagging and 2 guys I still get the impression that I am a little slower than I should be.

mowerdude777
06-26-2009, 07:05 PM
Thats crazy I charge 25 bucks for 3 big hedges alone

moremow
06-26-2009, 09:15 PM
So, I had this funny one today. Lady from a friend from a friend deal I gave a call to wanted to know how much to do her hedges for. So, I get there, now this is 20 minutes from where I was at. This is in a nice neighborhood, Ashburn Glen in Ovilla. This is kind of like Highland Park nice. So, I get there, husband and wife come out, older couple tell me that they had someone doing it then they were doing it themselves. Now, I counted all the schrubs. There were 34 small ones, between yaupon hollys and nandinas, and then 6 of the big round tree shrubs, that have the red berries. Well, while I was looking at them she told me. "ya, the guys that we had were really only doing the small shrubs and not the bigger ones", funny I wonder why? She told me that she was giving them 35 bucks :hammerhead:!!! I wondered why they were doing half azz work. They went up on her 5 dollars so she cut them off and did it themselves. It would take me maybe and hour and half to 2 hours tops. They were in nice flower beds with red mulch. So, I knew it would be time consuming getting everything out. So she asked me the price, well mame, it is going to be double. "oh, we can't do that" Well, thanks for you time then. Jee whiz, I mean, people must be tighter than a ticks asss on money or something. I mean, nice house, yard, landscaping, and they live in a frigin nice neighborhood. Cheap scates. I just thought it was so funny. :laugh:

Tell people like this that you will let them use your hedge trimmer & equipment if they will pay you for the fuel used. And then tell them you will just wait there on the property and watch them do the work. It would be worth it to watch them sweat and feel their arms burning from the stress. Then after they are done tell them you have the same amount of schrubs on another job site and you will pay them $35 to do 34 of them. lol

4.3mudder
06-26-2009, 09:18 PM
Tell people like this that you will let them use your hedge trimmer & equipment if they will pay you for the fuel used. And then tell them you will just wait there on the property and watch them do the work. It would be worth it to watch them sweat and feel their arms burning from the stress. Then after they are done tell them you have the same amount of schrubs on another job site and you will pay them $35 to do 34 of them. lol

lol, that's a good one.

topsites
06-26-2009, 09:54 PM
This is the reason I know longer advertise nor solice any shrubbery work. The same people who don't mind paying 50 bucks for a one hour yard mow will not want to pay 50 for 10 hours of shrub work. Or thats the way it is in my neck or the woods.

That's funny, it's like that around here for leaf cleanups, why I haven't advertised for that in many years :p
It's too bad, they all hate leaves, I really don't think the work is that big a deal, that is...
Until they start to offering $10 an hour for it, and hauled away, too...
I learned fast: Now I hate leaves, too.

topsites
06-26-2009, 09:59 PM
This is the reason I know longer advertise nor solice any shrubbery work. The same people who don't mind paying 50 bucks for a one hour yard mow will not want to pay 50 for 10 hours of shrub work. Or thats the way it is in my neck or the woods.

That's funny, it's like that around here for leaf cleanups, why I haven't advertised for that in many years :p
It's too bad, they all hate leaves, I really don't think the work is that big a deal, that is...
Until they start to offering $10 an hour for it, and hauled away, too...
I learned fast: Now I hate leaves, too.

The best ones thou?
Are the one comes up start talking about "I have a BACKPACK BLOWER !!!"
(oh and said it just like that, yes, meaning they have one).

What do I say to that, do I start to pull apart their POS when compared to my leaf removal equipment,
or do I ask them why did they call me seeing how they have everything they need?
Which....

Sometimes I feel like telling people that want work done next to nothing to hire one of those people that "work for food".

I've done that, gently, in a nice way.
I know that sounds funny but it wasn't funny at the time,
I was so tired of it but I did say it real nice like, it went over well.
But wouldn't you know it, that doesn't change anything.