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aced76
11-17-2010, 08:04 PM
Hey everyone. Seems to be some confusion in Denver area concerning fall leaf removal. So with that I am soliciting some answers from you guys on contract structure regardless of your location.
Generally our contracts specify that spring clean up and fall cleanup are not included in base price of April through October maintenance contract . Any thoughts? Any suggestions? How is your contract structured and how much are you charging? Thanks for the help!

Craig3
12-10-2010, 07:36 PM
Hey everyone. Seems to be some confusion in Denver area concerning fall leaf removal. So with that I am soliciting some answers from you guys on contract structure regardless of your location.
Generally our contracts specify that spring clean up and fall cleanup are not included in base price of April through October maintenance contract . Any thoughts? Any suggestions? How is your contract structured and how much are you charging? Thanks for the help!Decide if its worth losing the account over a "free" leaf job. When/If you re-bid/re-do the contract raise the cost.

Darryl G
12-10-2010, 07:50 PM
Our contract is for mowing April 15th thru Oct 15 but it states that we perform spring and fall cleanups on all properties we service unless it is clearly not necessary or the client makes other arrangements and informs us in advance. It also states that the lawns we service need to be free of debris in order for us to safely maintain them.

Spring and fall cleanups are billed hourly at $60/hr with a 1 hour minimum. The only problem I really have is people telling me they don't need a spring cleanup when there's sticks laying all over the place, etc. I do have a few customers that do all or part of their fall cleanup by themselves which really doesn't bother me....I work with them on that. As long as I don't shedule it and show up to find that it's already done. I don't feel I'm in a position to tell people they can't clean up their own yard...you know.

DollarSign
12-11-2010, 04:31 AM
If you charge by the hour you're an idiot, plain and simple. Sorry to say it but it's true. It rewards inefficiency, the longer the job takes the more money you make, just does not make sense to do as a contractor. If you have one guy doing it and it takes 2 hrs to do, $120 made. If you have two guys workin on it, and you get it done in half the time (both guys are just as efficient) you only made $60. Idiotic to charge by the hour!!! :hammerhead:

Darryl G
12-11-2010, 08:53 AM
ummm..that's per man hour, lol (i.e. charge for both guys).

DollarSign
12-11-2010, 08:54 AM
Well in that case, sorry I went off on a tangent like that. You know what you're doing! :waving: Ya gotta clarify that it's per man in the field, especially for a guy that's new to it like the OP

aced76
12-13-2010, 02:20 AM
Thanks for help guys.

aced76
01-07-2011, 03:58 AM
My point is, that yeah I have the equipment to do the fall cleans, notably a 60 inch diesel exmark w ultravac. Problem is even after doing cleanups that remove 50- yds of debris,I take that price and plug into contract and most of the time it is too high averaged on a monthly basis. I dont get it. The price I charge is more than fair(less then most) for the cleanup in the first place. So how are you guys pricing these cleans in contract? At this point the commercial customers have the choice of doing it or not. Maybe half go for it and the others keep there lots looking like poop till spring hoping things blow off.

TScapes
01-07-2011, 04:27 PM
We do it in our contracts. I have always included it in our contracts. The problem lies in how many times you state that you will perform leaf removals. Most companies in my area will state 4x, some will say 3-5. However, that basically refers to a "Complete" leaf removal. In actuality, you may perform twelve partial leaf removals or so. It really depends upon the trees, when they fall and so on. Oaks (depending upon the variety) tend to drop 2/3rds of their canopies by December, then hold on until spring budding. Maples will drop usually around Nov-Dec here. Bradfords do the same, etc. See where I am going with this?

If you wait until they all fall, it's a brutal job!! If you can get them a little at a time while you are still mowing (our season is probably longer than yours) it helps. But then again, most of my contracts include 42 or 52 visits per year. So I get paid just to make a visit! If your customer doesn't want this in their contract, then you have to explain your position and what it will cost them per occurance. Leaf removal and pruning are the most labor heavy tasks on a contract. If you don't bid them correctly, you can lose your ass!