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MICHPLOWER
01-30-2011, 06:27 PM
I am starting up in the spring of 2011" was just wondering what everybody thinks about my pricing on just mowing,trimming,edging, and blowing.
Thanks for any input or help

0-5,000sq.ft. = $20.00
5,001-10,000 = $25.00
10,001-15,000 = $30.00
15,001-20,000 = $35.00
20,001-25,000 = $40.00
25,001-30,000 = $45.00
30,001-35,000 = $50.00
35,001-40,000 = $55.00

OR

0 - 7,000 = $25.00
7,001 14,000 = $30.00
14,001-21,000 = $35.00
21,001-28,000 = $40.00
28,001-35,000 = $45.00
35,001-41,000 = $50.00
41,001-1 Acre = $55.00

ffemt1271
01-30-2011, 06:34 PM
i dont drop the gate for less than $40 per stop. i think you are underpricing yourself, but that depends on your location, setup, etc.

mattfromNY
01-30-2011, 06:57 PM
Too many variables for a cookie cutter pricing schedule. Hills?, lots of trimming or edging? customer wants biweekly svc, corner lots, fertilized/ unfertilized lawn, kids toys or dog bombs.....
I think we all have a base price that we will use on square, easy, flat lawns and add to that price depending on the variables. Once you price out a few hundred lawns, you will be able to know how long it will take to service that property, and price accordingly.
good luck with your endeavors!

Lefet
01-30-2011, 07:01 PM
i dont drop the gate for less than $40 per stop. but that depends on your location, setup, etc.

Ditto.....

Jason Rose
01-30-2011, 07:21 PM
I'll avoid the "you are too cheap" accusations. If you have price checked in your area and small lawns are generally 20 to 25 bucks then that's where you are probably going to have to start... The $40 minimum here would get you laughed off the front porch at pretty much any "in town" sized lawn.

I do agree that having a pricing structure solely based on lawn square footage is horribly flawed. Size is a factor but so is obsticles, slope, ditches, fenced areas (gate width), quality of turf, etc.

Time it takes to cut is the best way to determine price, figure out what you need to gross per hour to be profitable and go from there. If you are just starting out it's hard to determine time just from looking at it though. Estimating for mowing is very difficult and the next bid comes in $1 a cut less and they are likely going to go with the other guy unless you have been referred to the customer by someone else.

POWER STROKE
01-30-2011, 07:27 PM
thanks to every one for the input and help

Lefet
01-30-2011, 07:27 PM
I'll avoid the "you are too cheap" accusations. If you have price checked in your area and small lawns are generally 20 to 25 bucks then that's where you are probably going to have to start... The $40 minimum here would get you laughed off the front porch at pretty much any "in town" sized lawn.

I do agree that having a pricing structure solely based on lawn square footage is horribly flawed. Size is a factor but so is obsticles, slope, ditches, fenced areas (gate width), quality of turf, etc.

Time it takes to cut is the best way to determine price, figure out what you need to gross per hour to be profitable and go from there. If you are just starting out it's hard to determine time just from looking at it though. Estimating for mowing is very difficult and the next bid comes in $1 a cut less and they are likely going to go with the other guy unless you have been referred to the customer by someone else.

Nice post Jason, I should have done a little better with explaining too.

Jason Rose
01-30-2011, 07:46 PM
Nice post Jason, I should have done a little better with explaining too.

thanks. I do try to put some thought into my posts, and I try to avoid the rants. lol.

Lefet
01-30-2011, 07:59 PM
thanks. I do try to put some thought into my posts, and I try to avoid the rants. lol.

Seen & respect that.

yardguy28
01-30-2011, 08:05 PM
i think if those are the prices your market will bare and give you the profit you need or want then go for it.

i noticed a few people threw in "your to cheap" comments, one even tried to do it without actually saying those words.

every market is different and everyone's cost of living is different.

just because one guy can have a min. of $40 doesn't mean every market will bare that. i think a min. of $40 is outrageous and i'd like to see that person try and make it in my market, where you have min. at $25. average size properties go for the lower $30's. if your charging $40 or above, it's a decent to large sized property.

BINKY1902
01-31-2011, 12:06 AM
I see what your trying to do with the table but there are just too many differences in each property of the same size. One may have a ton of trimming and one hardly none at all. One may even have a 30" backyard gate that you have to get into with a smaller mower. I take into account how difficult the property is to service as a whole. If I have two lots, one with wide open area, and one with sidewalks, fences, and hills, the tougher one is going to cost them more.

Florida Gardener
01-31-2011, 12:34 AM
I never, repeat NEVER use some kind of sq. Footage table to determine what I will charge. There are too many variables that can cause the price to go up and no two properties are the same.
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twowheelted
01-31-2011, 02:00 AM
Hey Yardguy28. Where are you located?

toac
01-31-2011, 10:19 AM
I use a table just like that. As long as you are making money with that pricing then you are fine.

FYI, if you are posting those prices for your customer's to see be sure you put "Starting at $20.00, $25.00, $30.00"

I have plenty of lawns that are a higher price than listed because they have a fence, corner lot, have 20 trees, have a in ground pool, is on a hill, etc... If this causes me to be there longer than normal I will charge them more.

yardguy28
02-01-2011, 05:30 PM
Hey Yardguy28. Where are you located?

where the market min. is commonly $25.

J & D Greens
02-01-2011, 06:08 PM
I am starting up in the spring of 2011" was just wondering what everybody thinks about my pricing on just mowing,trimming,edging, and blowing.
Thanks for any input or help

0-5,000sq.ft. = $20.00
5,001-10,000 = $25.00
10,001-15,000 = $30.00
15,001-20,000 = $35.00
20,001-25,000 = $40.00
25,001-30,000 = $45.00
30,001-35,000 = $50.00
35,001-40,000 = $55.00

OR

0 - 7,000 = $25.00
7,001 14,000 = $30.00
14,001-21,000 = $35.00
21,001-28,000 = $40.00
28,001-35,000 = $45.00
35,001-41,000 = $50.00
41,001-1 Acre = $55.00

Since you are starting out I would use the lower price table as a base price to start from for giving people an Idea whether they should have you do an estimate. Don't go lower than any of these figures, no matter what the customer says. "the last guy charged me $XXXX." Make sure you bid for extra things like steep hills, excess trimming or edging and so on. Walk away if they say your to high and go do your next bid. You will find that if you are truly with in the price range of the area, most people are going to look further into what kind of operation you are running (professional?). Are you a stand up kind of person? Are you personable when you need to be? (very important in this line of work). And most of all the work you do will win them over. (references from willing clients when needed. I have a list of clients that are more than willing to give a good word.)

You will find that your price table is just for your first year. You will also find that you will under bid several of your accounts and learn why. After that you will be able to bid and know how much you can make from that property before you walk away. And know it will be well worth taking on.

I am in my fifth season, second trying to go full-time. (primary job) This season I want to expand to about 50 accounts solo.

Good luck with your endeavor. David

twowheelted
02-01-2011, 11:00 PM
I would certainly find another business if most of my competition was charging $25. I would do some real market research and be sure that's the case. If it is, you can make 10-15 a yard picking up dog poop without having tons of equipment. :)

J & D Greens
02-01-2011, 11:57 PM
What is nice about those small $25.00 min. lawns is usually you end up with three or more lawns at one stop. So making a min of $75 (usually $90.) at a stop in 1.5 hrs. is not so bad. Out of all my accounts 30 more than half have two or more at a stop and they all are with in a 5 mile radius.
Most people are in this business to make as much as possible as fast as poss. but slow growth is the way I prefer to go. I feel I will have less head-aches in the way I intend to grow my Biz. and less risk.

yardguy28
02-03-2011, 01:37 PM
I would certainly find another business if most of my competition was charging $25. I would do some real market research and be sure that's the case. If it is, you can make 10-15 a yard picking up dog poop without having tons of equipment. :)

i personally see nothing wrong with a $25 min. thats for postage stamp properties.

i'm not looking to get rich in the business. just looking to pay the bills. and all the accounts i have (even the $25 a week accounts) are doing just that.

POWER STROKE
02-03-2011, 11:38 PM
Thanks to every one for your help and input.

T_Koteles
02-11-2011, 10:46 AM
I would go with your second quote . It seems more reasonable. I am still trying to figure out a price for my business for 2011. Thinking about using goIlawn this year to do my estimates. I usally priced a lawn by looking at it and its obstacles , like hills stuff in the yard. Then estimated a time it will probaly take. But with goIlawn i never used it before so its all new to me

Penncare
02-11-2011, 11:49 AM
The thing I like about the guys who cut for $25 is that within a year or so I can buy their equipment for pennies on the dollar. That approach might work if you are in a subdivision where you have say 5-7 customers close to each other. I would not cut my next door neighbor's yard for $25. If you own the business and you still make minimum wage, get out or sub the accounts to a kid with a mtd push in the back of his pinto.

yardguy28
02-11-2011, 03:21 PM
the additute of people about $25 cuts makes me laugh.

markets are different EVERYWHERE. take this south carolina guy. by his statement his market obviously bare's more as a min. and he makes his statements like $25 as a min. is way to low everywhere.

we are talking different markets and small postage stamp size lots. i'm not talking lots you can put a 52" or larger mower on. these are places you can barely get a 36" on and if you did you'd be done in 2 swipes. lots that take less than half an hour with a push mower.

not to mention you open up a whole different can of worms talking about how much a business owner should make.

T_Koteles
02-11-2011, 03:25 PM
Yea I know what you mean . I like those customers who try to compare your price with the kid with a mower neighbor kid . It makes me laugh cause here you are trying to run a business and you have expenses. And they try to compare you to the local neighbor kid who lives right across the street with no expenses and just trying to make a quick twenty dollars. I would like to figure out a way to get my prices more exact so I dont under estimate but dont over estimate either . Any ideas fill me in

Richard Martin
02-11-2011, 03:31 PM
the additute of people about $25 cuts makes me laugh.

markets are different EVERYWHERE. take this south carolina guy. by his statement his market obviously bare's more as a min. and he makes his statements like $25 as a min. is way to low everywhere.

I don't believe about 95% of what i read about pricing here on Lawnsite...

I get a $100 minimum.

jay12
02-11-2011, 04:10 PM
the additute of people about $25 cuts makes me laugh.

markets are different EVERYWHERE. take this south carolina guy. by his statement his market obviously bare's more as a min. and he makes his statements like $25 as a min. is way to low everywhere.

we are talking different markets and small postage stamp size lots. i'm not talking lots you can put a 52" or larger mower on. these are places you can barely get a 36" on and if you did you'd be done in 2 swipes. lots that take less than half an hour with a push mower.

not to mention you open up a whole different can of worms talking about how much a business owner should make.


I have to agree. Ive mowed small lawns for years for $25 and I assure you nobody will buy my equipment anytime soon for pennys on the dollar. Just because its too cheap for a guy in SC doesnt mean a thing. Its different everywhere, and if a guy mows alone and can take care of a lawn in 20 mins for $25 then he is probably making money. I see no problem in his pricing. Like one said earlier, around here a $40 minimum would get you laughed at, and in that case someone would more likely own your equipment for pennys on the dollar. We are all different in every city.

Cracker Station
02-11-2011, 11:00 PM
I have one $25.00 lawn. 82 year old woman that was my first customer 5 years ago and on a fixed income. I see no reason to raise her. The rest range from 32 to 160.00 per cut. The ONE I think makes me the most money is one that is $32.00 and takes 18 minutes to complete, gate down to gate up. What is that? $1.77 a minute. All of mine is fairly well concentrated. I shoot for the $1 a minute, don't always hit it. I started with a chart very similar as above 5 years ago. It got me started, and I adjusted from there. Now I can look at one and estimate the time within a few minutes one way or another. It never will be a perfect science, but does get better with time. Once I get started, sometimes I realize I could have done it a few dollars cheaper. Other times I am a few dollars short. When short, I continue to cut as agreed. As time goes on, I usually can cut it quicker. If adjustment is needed, do it at renewal at beginning of next season. That is my story and I am sticking to it.

JayD
02-11-2011, 11:39 PM
If you take the first two prices out of those column and slide all the rest up to the top and you might be about right there.

J&RLawn
02-11-2011, 11:44 PM
$25.00 for 30 minutes of work equals $50.00 per hour everywhere in the world. If your mowing by yourself I see no reason why that's to cheap. Why do people have to be such an a$$ on this site? The man just wanted some help!
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EquityGreen
02-12-2011, 12:47 AM
35 minimum here and I shoot for all my guys to make 50/60 per hr. If I have a two man crew they better not come back to the shop with less than 1k in revenue done for the day unless something with the equipment went wrong. Do good work and bump your prices every year. If a customer likes you they'll pay more every year.

Good luck all!!

Its going to be a great year!
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yardguy28
02-12-2011, 09:55 AM
i agree with doing good work.

but i totally disagree with bumping your prices every year and that clients will automatically pay them.

sure if you do good work you will have some clients that will keep you around no matter what you charge. but others will eventually have to leave because even though you do good work they can't afford it.

my prices are based off of what i want to make in a years time. that total that i want to make in a years time is based off of what my cost of living is. plus i try and have a little left over for a rainy day. but i'm not looking to get rich. so i try to cut my own cost of living down before ever considering raising clients prices. i only raise prices as an absolute last resort. if i have to spend less of my own money for entertainment purposes to keep from raising prices i will do just that.

in the short 4 years i've been in business i've raised prices once. and it wasn't for current clients. 2 years ago i raised my prices for any new clients i picked up. i've kept the rest of the clients at the rate i started with.

ALC-GregH
02-12-2011, 10:23 AM
Estimating for mowing is very difficult and the next bid comes in $1 a cut less and they are likely going to go with the other guy unless you have been referred to the customer by someone else.

This statement is exactly why I will not advertise. I work off referrals only. When I get to the property and price it, I usually get it and not because I'm cheap.

Robert Pruitt
02-12-2011, 01:44 PM
This statement is exactly why I will not advertise. I work off referrals only. When I get to the property and price it, I usually get it and not because I'm cheap.

Me too. I have gotten all of my work, word of mouth,except the first three i started with in seventeen years.still have those three.