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gator11
01-21-2010, 10:57 AM
I am new to this site and fairly new to the industry. I have seven years of experience working on a golf course. Two years of working on groundscrew of university I attended and a year of irrigation installation experience. Recently I started doing lawn care as a side business because people from my first business had asked if we would do that service for them. The problem I am running into is I feel I have been where I needed to be as far as costs on bigger acerage jobs, but yet I have been getting blown out of the water on pricing. I even gave a discount because of the size of the jobs? I am a firm believer of holding strong on pricing because i refuse to work for free. Any suggestions or should I just hold on untill I receive some jobs that prefer quality over pricing? Thank you for all and any help or suggestions. Also let me know if I am using this site wrong only been on one day!

djchiodo3
01-21-2010, 01:15 PM
What's to say that even the job you are doing for less then you want turns into something big. I never said no to work when I started. Always looked for an opportunity for more work, hoping that people would appreciate the good job. Sometimes I would lower my price just to get an account knowing that down the road the neighbor would hire me too because I did quality work. The more accounts you can get in one area the lower your expenses. Once you have been hired, offer the client rewards or referrals if he can get you the neighbor as well. If you lower your price a little to get the job you are not doing it for free you are being competitive.

MikeKle
01-21-2010, 03:16 PM
thats true, When I first got into lawn care, I would lower my price just to get the work sometimes, also known as low-balling, but I wouldnt do it now because I already have many customers, and while getting more clients is always important, its not AS important as it used to be for me. But you will find in this industry, there are lots and lots of companies that will low ball, and some that will damn near work for almost nothing!! Just something we all must put up with every season though, and it is getting worse everywhere as many people are getting laid off and figuring they can make tons of money doing lawn care. Many of them try to start their lawn businesses with little more then their own garden tractor, and homeowner grade handheld tools. Typically these types do not last thru the season, but when there is so many of them in any area, it makes it bad for those of us that have been in this industry for a long time, before the recession started.

gator11
01-21-2010, 03:20 PM
Sounds good thanks for the advice. I will reevaluate and know exactly what my bottom line is. This is the year I want to make this a full fledged business instead of just riding whatever my other primarey business brings it.

MikeKle
01-21-2010, 03:31 PM
It took me about 3-4 years to build up enough business to be able to do it full time, but I still had to find work in the winter too. You just have to stick with it to get to the good times. Yes, you will get those crappy accounts and one timers and price shoppers too, but again, you just have to stick with it and keep chugging along. You will also go thru those times when you are getting a good number of clients, and suddenly you will loose a bunch, but you will also gain some to. I look back on my first few years and cant believe I made it to where I am at now! I can be kinda picky now at the work I even take on. You will get to that point if you stay with it. Good luck.

gator11
01-21-2010, 03:39 PM
Thanks. I know the ropes I guess cause its that way with our other business. Get some good accounts and then lose a few. I have been doing some sort of lawn care since I was 14 and I just cant seem to get away from it. I have a full time business so I can take my time growing this one, but I think its the desire to prove that I can do it! I have kind of just let it grow slowly but have decided to try and really work it with marketing and actually trying to sell it this year.

djchiodo3
01-22-2010, 04:58 PM
thats true, When I first got into lawn care, I would lower my price just to get the work sometimes, also known as low-balling, but I wouldnt do it now because I already have many customers, and while getting more clients is always important, its not AS important as it used to be for me. But you will find in this industry, there are lots and lots of companies that will low ball, and some that will damn near work for almost nothing!! Just something we all must put up with every season though, and it is getting worse everywhere as many people are getting laid off and figuring they can make tons of money doing lawn care. Many of them try to start their lawn businesses with little more then their own garden tractor, and homeowner grade handheld tools. Typically these types do not last thru the season, but when there is so many of them in any area, it makes it bad for those of us that have been in this industry for a long time, before the recession started.

This strategy worked for me so well that all of my lawn accounts are in the same gated community. I have areas where I mow 20 lawns at once. The average spread is 10 lawns in a row or across from each other. How many guys do you now that can mow 20 lawns in one day and be home at 2:30pm. I am cutting on average 20 per day. I did not consider my self a low-baller. I was looking to the future at how I wanted my business run. Because all my lawns are basically in a big circle I maximize time and energy. I have zero wasted time driving from one lawn to another across town. My fuel costs are low and when I require help I can maximize my employee's time out of the truck. Because my over head is lower, I can be very competitive with my bedding(or as you call it low-balling).