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View Full Version : Gas prices killing this industry?


georgialawn88
08-28-2012, 10:53 PM
squirt and fert is not something that is a need. its a want. As the economy get worse and we have to rise our prices due to fertilizer thats effected by gas and gas alone will this industry fail? seems gas goes higher and higher and peoples pay is the same. will this industry fail or stay firm and we will work through this? yea sorry this just depressed the hell out of me also but i had to ask..

I mainly pressure wash and it is straight killing me. chemicals, gas gas gas. and gas. eating into my profit big time.

Who went through this before in 2005 and can give me some assurance everything will be ok and we will not all go broke. :confused:

thanks

jetta
08-29-2012, 09:47 AM
hows that epa working for ya

kbrashears
08-29-2012, 12:41 PM
Raise your prices accordingly.

Duekster
08-29-2012, 01:14 PM
I just sent letters to two commecial clients and asked for a raise. It was based on the CPI over the last 3 years. I got both price increases. It will be harder to do to my residential clients since so many flyer are advertising lower prices than I work for now.

Considering dropping the credit card processing and going straight to e-checks, checks and cash. Only residentials use it/.

GALAWN
08-29-2012, 09:30 PM
I'd say vote for someone other than the guy there now. The biggest problem for us would be if the US dollar loses it's world currency position. This is a problem because when any country buys gas they have to buy it is US dollars, then convert it back to their currency. Too hard to go into it and not bore you but if this step changes due to our country going too far in debt (that's what happened to England and why the pound lost their position decades ago) and there is a new world currency we would be looking at gas prices in line with the rest of the world, $8 - $9 dollars a gallon. Yeah it's kinda a big deal.

charmill26
08-29-2012, 10:59 PM
find your niche in the market and raise your prices to what you want them to be. find something that makes your clients and future clients want you and not just anyone that does a decent job and doesn't charge hardly anything. Overtime my client base has turned into people that hire me for me and not just because they need someone for this or that. High end full service residential, not meaning homeowners with that want to blow money and assume that the more they spend the higher the quality, but people that want quality and are more than willing to pay a fair price for it. I do charge more than the "average" but my work always shows that you get what you pay for. I don't advertise anymore because I got tired of random calls and PITA customers that assume they will eventually find the best quality for the cheapest price. Find customers that want YOU because of your work. I can honestly say I don't have any competition because I sell on the work done. prices are secondary to my customers. I do know different parts of the country are different. I hope that helps you

RigglePLC
08-29-2012, 11:08 PM
Plan your routes more carefully.
At least the gas prices affect low-ballers just the same. Unless they start using motorcycles.
Naturally, a fuel efficient truck will be helpful.

greendoctor
08-29-2012, 11:16 PM
Plan your routes more carefully.
At least the gas prices affect low-ballers just the same. Unless they start using motorcycles.
Naturally, a fuel efficient truck will be helpful.

I know many low ballers that are hurt by their gas hogs. Single digit fuel mileage and $4+ gas stings. They also cannot go where the money is because it costs too much to get there.

lawn king
08-30-2012, 08:02 AM
I installed a fuel tank (diesel) It lasts 4 weeks, it saves me some money & its very convenient but nothing really takes the pain out of 4 dollar diesel!

DUSTYCEDAR
08-30-2012, 08:29 AM
we all pay at the pump --- try to find ways to get people that can afford what you do.
run a sign up the neighbors add to get more jobs at one stop.

Duekster
08-30-2012, 08:33 AM
Energy is the root of most inflation.
Cost money to move people, raw materials and finished products.

When you print money, you lower the value of it so you have to pay more to buy the oil and other commodities. We can offset this some with our food exports.

rcreech
09-01-2012, 09:26 AM
$4 gas sounds like a lot...but compare to $3 (which was a long time ago) and you will see that is really isn't that big in the overall picture.

Trust me I am not happy about it and I think it sucks but step back and look at these numbers.

Say your route is an average of 50 miles a day and your truck gets 12 mpg.

That is only 6 gallons of gas per day rounded up and lets add another 2 gallons for a ride on or skid sprayer.

So using 8 gallons a day it is technically only costing you $8 a day or $40 a week. Not a big deal really....skip lunch and you will get that back. :)

I would worry more about Three Way going up 20% or buying your fertilizer or other inputs right.

If you don't buy your inputs right though it could cost you $100's of dollars a day vs fuel costing you less then $10 a day.

EXAMPLE: If I wouldn't have gotten my Three Way locked in before this last increase my cost per acre was going to go up $4. We can do 10-15+ acres per truck per day so it would have cost me $40-60 more per day per truck.

Now that would hurt!!!!

We do buy our fuels ahead to try and save but I have also been on the flip side. This summer I heard fuels were going up and filled with $3.80 gas and it went down to $3.40. Diesel didn't drop as much but we just ended up filling at the pumps...but moral of the story...fuels are the least of my worries. If you are charging enough for your services it isn't that big of a deal.

phasthound
09-01-2012, 11:26 AM
Americans like to complain about gas prices. Let's put things in perspective, people in other countries pay far more for gas than we do. Take a look at this chart to see how we compare with the rest of the world. http://www.mytravelcost.com/petrol-prices/

With better leadership (which I don't see in the near future from either Party) America can improve our energy policy by intelligently increasing domestic production (not Drill, Baby Drill) coupled with sound conservation (Remember when the auto companies fought against higher MPG?). The answer is in the middle. Our country needs to work together again.

Duekster
09-01-2012, 12:03 PM
Americans like to complain about gas prices. Let's put things in perspective, people in other countries pay far more for gas than we do. Take a look at this chart to see how we compare with the rest of the world. http://www.mytravelcost.com/petrol-prices/

With better leadership (which I don't see in the near future from either Party) America can improve our energy policy by intelligently increasing domestic production (not Drill, Baby Drill) coupled with sound conservation (Remember when the auto companies fought against higher MPG?). The answer is in the middle. Our country needs to work together again.

I would not expect domestic oil production to lower prices much. It would still be part of the free global market. It would help create jobs and reduce trade deficits.

phasthound
09-01-2012, 12:14 PM
I would not expect domestic oil production to lower prices much. It would still be part of the free global market.

You're probably right. Here's a good explanation on gas pricing.

http://abcnews.go.com/Business/us-oil-production-gas-prices-high/story?id=16186002#.UEIlqtZlTUY

fl-landscapes
09-01-2012, 03:27 PM
Americans like to complain about gas prices. Let's put things in perspective, people in other countries pay far more for gas than we do. Take a look at this chart to see how we compare with the rest of the world. http://www.mytravelcost.com/petrol-prices/

With better leadership (which I don't see in the near future from either Party) America can improve our energy policy by intelligently increasing domestic production (not Drill, Baby Drill) coupled with sound conservation (Remember when the auto companies fought against higher MPG?). The answer is in the middle. Our country needs to work together again.

A large majority of the world doesn't have plumbing either.....doesn't mean we should set our standards to anyone elses situation. Gas prices have double over the past few years and that sucks when we have SO much natural resources here. "drill baby drill" went out in the fifties. With the EPA, and al gore around you can rest assure the only drilling will be responsible drilling.
The problem is the environazi's have made it nearly impossible to responsibly extract oil or natural gas and coal from our own land. You are correct the answer is somewhere in the middle, I only hope we get our heads out of our butts and start making some pretty simple common sense decisions very soon.

fl-landscapes
09-01-2012, 03:29 PM
I would not expect domestic oil production to lower prices much. It would still be part of the free global market. It would help create jobs and reduce trade deficits.

Supply and demand.....your right it is a global market, but when you put more oil regardless of where it comes from into the market it drives up supply and lowers demand and also would help with the monopoly of OPEC.

fl-landscapes
09-01-2012, 03:33 PM
You're probably right. Here's a good explanation on gas pricing.

http://abcnews.go.com/Business/us-oil-production-gas-prices-high/story?id=16186002#.UEIlqtZlTUY

I don't agree with much in this bias article.....oil prices are effected by speculation. If oil speculators thought we were truly going to get all the oil we could from our country they would dump those commodity futures and move to something more profitable.....prices would drop over night if federal land was opened to new permits.

Duekster
09-01-2012, 03:39 PM
From the ABC article above by Phasthound. Crude oil accounted for nearly three-quarters, or 72%, of the retail cost of a gallon of gasoline in February, according to the most recent data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the analytical arm of the Department of Energy. Refining costs/profits accounted for 12%, federal/state taxes for 11% and distribution/marketing for 5%.

We get very little oil from the Middle East but they are such big producers they impact the price. Most of our oil is from Mexico, Canada and our own.

I have no problem with green and renewable energy sources but they will not replace fossil fuels quickly or completely. We can not conserve our way out of this either.

Wind Energy is not able to compete with natural gas prices right now.

Even if we increase our capacity which is equal to 1% of the worlds oil production we have generated jobs and reduced trade deficits. The Government gets the oil royalties too if on public lands.

fl-landscapes
09-01-2012, 03:41 PM
Natural gas production in the united states has ramped up significantly over the past decade.....if you don't believe in supply and demand take a look at this chart of natural gas prices over the past seven years plummet

http://www.ontarioenergyboard.ca/OEB/Consumers/Natural%20Gas/Natural%20Gas%20Rates/Natural%20Gas%20Rates%20-%20Historical

BPS##
09-01-2012, 05:36 PM
find your niche in the market and raise your prices to what you want them to be. find something that makes your clients and future clients want you and not just anyone that does a decent job and doesn't charge hardly anything. Overtime my client base has turned into people that hire me for me and not just because they need someone for this or that. High end full service residential, not meaning homeowners with that want to blow money and assume that the more they spend the higher the quality, but people that want quality and are more than willing to pay a fair price for it. I do charge more than the "average" but my work always shows that you get what you pay for. I don't advertise anymore because I got tired of random calls and PITA customers that assume they will eventually find the best quality for the cheapest price. Find customers that want YOU because of your work. I can honestly say I don't have any competition because I sell on the work done. prices are secondary to my customers. I do know different parts of the country are different. I hope that helps you






For the most part any where in the country is going to have these customers. You just have to find them.

Same place where my business is. Offering more services than mow and go to existing customers is better than constantly advertising to replace mow customers that die, sell their house, decide to let their kid mow it, or the neighbor's kid etc.

Target the high end customer that expects a high end job and once you land their work keep them happy.

My client base is taking me into more small landscape jobs for them along with the mowing. Its not all bad because often times they'll pay the price you ask with out bidding to the lowest bid............... because they know the job will be done right.

BPS##
09-01-2012, 05:39 PM
Americans like to complain about gas prices. Let's put things in perspective, people in other countries pay far more for gas than we do. Take a look at this chart to see how we compare with the rest of the world. http://www.mytravelcost.com/petrol-prices/

With better leadership (which I don't see in the near future from either Party) America can improve our energy policy by intelligently increasing domestic production (not Drill, Baby Drill) coupled with sound conservation (Remember when the auto companies fought against higher MPG?). The answer is in the middle. Our country needs to work together again.





I really don't care what other countries pay or don't pay.

I don't live or work there, its none of my concern.

phasthound
09-01-2012, 06:38 PM
Let me put it in a different perspective. When I started driving gas was $0.36, the average MPG was 10, the minimum wage was $1.60, the average new car cost $3,900, the average household income was $8,700, the average new house was $26,000.

Compare those statistics with today's along with the high standard of living we enjoy and I think most people will agree we have it pretty good. Would I like to pay less for gas? Yes! Do I think our price for gas is out of line in today's world? No. Is it going to cost us more in the future? Absolutely. Is it going to ruin the lawn care industry? Highly unlikely.

Dave Stuart
09-01-2012, 07:19 PM
Well said -

When you do a comparison from that time period ( I remember that period well ) and the evolution of costs of living, commodities , ect.. Through the years progressively were not as bad off as we think we are. If employment statistics were better it would ease some of the fear.

Brilliant cost analogy!

Dave.

Duekster
09-01-2012, 07:24 PM
I agree our standard of living is good. Best in history of man kind. I just wish we did not export so much wealth for importing energy.

CL&T
09-02-2012, 01:06 AM
Why is it that gas prices in Venezuela are $.18/gal? Because the government controls the prices and makes sure its own demand is satisfied BEFORE the oil companies can sell to other countries. Our government only cares about making the oil (and other)companies richer.

BPS##
09-02-2012, 01:12 AM
Why is it that gas prices in Venezuela are $.18/gal? Because the government controls the prices and makes sure its own demand is satisfied BEFORE the oil companies can sell to other countries. Our government only cares about making the oil (and other)companies richer.




Venezuela subsidies their gas prices.

ted putnam
09-02-2012, 01:50 AM
find your niche in the market and raise your prices to what you want them to be. find something that makes your clients and future clients want you and not just anyone that does a decent job and doesn't charge hardly anything. Overtime my client base has turned into people that hire me for me and not just because they need someone for this or that. High end full service residential, not meaning homeowners with that want to blow money and assume that the more they spend the higher the quality, but people that want quality and are more than willing to pay a fair price for it. I do charge more than the "average" but my work always shows that you get what you pay for. I don't advertise anymore because I got tired of random calls and PITA customers that assume they will eventually find the best quality for the cheapest price. Find customers that want YOU because of your work. I can honestly say I don't have any competition because I sell on the work done. prices are secondary to my customers. I do know different parts of the country are different. I hope that helps you



For the most part any where in the country is going to have these customers. You just have to find them.

Same place where my business is. Offering more services than mow and go to existing customers is better than constantly advertising to replace mow customers that die, sell their house, decide to let their kid mow it, or the neighbor's kid etc.

Target the high end customer that expects a high end job and once you land their work keep them happy.

My client base is taking me into more small landscape jobs for them along with the mowing. Its not all bad because often times they'll pay the price you ask with out bidding to the lowest bid............... because they know the job will be done right.


Excellent advice!!

As far as Fuel costs go. Fuel is merely a cost of doing business...and not a large one in what we do here with my business. We try to route efficiently and keep our area of coverage as consolidated as possible.(minimize windshield time)
Fuel prices and how they relate to the overall shipping cost/price of fertilizer is a much bigger concern to me than the price at the pump and keeping my trucks on their routes.

There's no way my business is going to get flushed down the toilet faster than everything else due to the cost of fuel

Ric
09-02-2012, 11:03 AM
Excellent advice!!

As far as Fuel costs go. Fuel is merely a cost of doing business...and not a large one in what we do here with my business. We try to route efficiently and keep our area of coverage as consolidated as possible.(minimize windshield time)
Fuel prices and how they relate to the overall shipping cost/price of fertilizer is a much bigger concern to me than the price at the pump and keeping my trucks on their routes.

There's no way my business is going to get flushed down the toilet faster than everything else due to the cost of fuel

Bottom Line: Are you in business to make money? or are just trying to make wages. A true businessman won't be hurt over a few pennies a gallon of Gasoline. If your margin is that slim, it is time to find an other job.

.

humble1
09-03-2012, 03:07 PM
I go up on my price every year you lose a few you gain a few.