View Full Version : Trugreen Pricing ?

01-16-2003, 10:25 PM
I was wondering if Tru-green techs work on Commission? I had called them to price my yard to see they're pricing. I am considering getting into the business myself. Anyway About 2 weeks ago a guy from Trugreen came out and says I have 8,100 Sq feet price for 7 apps would be $49.00 per App. Last night I get a call from a differnt Lawn tech from trugreen that services my area and says that the price for my lawn is $68.00 per app for seven Apps but tonight only he can sell it to me for $ 59.00 per app.

Interesting how the prices changed for whom ever give the quote.
I told him that someone already came out from trugreen two weeks ago and gave me a price of $49.00. He wanted to know who it was and gave me the song and dance about talking to his manager to see if they could let it go at that price. I then told him Davey Tree Service gave me a quote for $36.00 per app and he then started bad mouthing them and all other companies in the area. Not very professional from such a large company. Thought it was funny

01-17-2003, 01:02 AM
Goes to show you the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing there.

Bad mouth from the worst LCO in the nation.

Around here the applicators make $375 a week plus comission.

The sales reps make about the same.

They are a marketing co not a lawn care co.

01-17-2003, 11:02 AM
It blows me away that people put down 7 applications. Does anyone really think that much is nessecary. I know when you spray you need more frequent applications but SEVEN?

01-17-2003, 11:43 AM
sometimes they do 8 or 9, depends how fast they burn through the route

01-17-2003, 11:44 AM
I too am amazed at the number of applications that these companies want to do. Here in SD we have a fairly short season. We do preemerge and broadleaf post emerge along with fertilizer in our first app. If you do a good heavy fall fertilization, you don't need to get that first one on so early in the spring. Also by using dimension for pre emerge you also have some early post emerge crabgrass control as well.

The big companies put down a little fertilizer and a preemerge first and then within two or three weeks, and sometimes even sooner, they;re back to do the broadleaf and a little more fertilizer. They use two apps to do what we do in one. In fact I don't think that sometimes they even put as much fertilizer in two apps as we do the one.

They also push an insect app. In this area, lawn insects are quite rare, and even in the worst years, less than 10% of our lawns show any noticeable symptoms of insect problems.

They sell six and seven apps, but probably don't actually apply any more needed product than some of use would put on with 3 or 4 apps

Austreim Landscaping

01-17-2003, 12:37 PM
thanks Doug-
I was hoping someone would tell it like it is. Currently i don't do Fertilizing because I don't have the man power, But I keep my Licensing requirements current just in case. Ethically I could never sell 7 apps. 4 apps. would even concern me a little, especially since I will be mowing it. My pet peeve is customers who get the 7 apps. and then complain to me that there lawn grows to fast and they want it cut shorter. Most of these lawns i have to cut twice to get through them. Just had to vent a little.

bubble boy
01-17-2003, 12:57 PM
we do 7 to 9 apps in usually 6 or more visits...

to be honest never considered only 3 or 4 visits. some companies here advertise programs with WELL over 10 apps...plus aeration...

01-17-2003, 01:51 PM
remember your in it to make money, sometimes money and ethics do not mix well. i offer six, just because i don't like to be in the cold around november..

01-17-2003, 02:43 PM
When trugreen starting ripping the competition he started saying that most of the other companies aren't licensed to put down the applications and the do it illegal, which I am sure is BS also he keep telling me how they mix there fert better than anyone in the area etc. I ask him what they put down for fert like Nitrogen level and he said it depended on what they were mixing that day. they must be a real piece of work for such a large company how do they get away with it. I'm guessing the homeowners aren't educated enough, and I am assuming but most are afraid of chemicals so they listen to whoever.


01-17-2003, 06:53 PM
we sell 7 apps. they include fert/weed controls, lime, grub controls. (typically done in 5 visits)

Now let me rephrase that, we sell a SERVICE that includes 7 apps. (or more or less, but 7 is basic) Seems to me the more often we are on a lawn the the less opportunity for problems with that lawn?

As far as making $$$ and ethics go, if you feel you cant do both, you should consider another line of work?

Somebody also said that when you spray you need more apps?? I can spray a fert that is so slow to release we will all be way to old to see the results! (so i dont understand that statement)

Now, is it best to do fewer apps with heavier feedings, or more apps with lighter feedings???
Probably get all kinds of crazy answers to that question.

Personally, i'd like to get all customers on a monthly service and 'spoon' feed their lawns rather than get out there every other month with a heavier feeding.

But, thats me

01-18-2003, 09:05 AM
our programs are 8 apps! here they are : #1 -pre-em with fert. #2 weed control. #3 pre-em . #4 fert(steps 2, 3, and 4 are in the same bag, but sold as 3 separate applications, as they all serve different purposes) . #5 grub/insect control. # 6 fert. # 7 grub/insect control. # 8 winterizer w lime. the name of the game is to make money, and our programs do. we charge $12 per thousand, x the 8 apps.

01-18-2003, 11:06 AM
Our program is 6 rounds. #1. 24-5-11 + Fe. #2 is same, with a pre-m. #3 is dimension w/ Fe. #4 is usually 24-5-11 w/ Fe (depending on lawn and watering conditions). #5 is post m w/ Fe. #6 is 24-5-11 w/ Fe again. Occasionally, I'll blast it with K on this ap. All insect and disease control aps are extra.

01-18-2003, 12:07 PM
In Indiana TG-CL does pay a commission. How much should lawn service cost? All you can get. It's not a necessity. It is a luxery. After you learn your cost of app/M, cost of doing business/hr, per/day, /week & per year, forget it. Your customers are buying a lot more than NPK, 2-4-D, and the use of your equipment. They are buying the sum total of your education & experience as well as the portion of your life it will take to complete the work. To arrive at price that is fair to your customer and to YOU, add:
1. your cost of doing business
2. the value of your education and experience
3. the value of the portion of your life you are selling
4. a number of dollars set to aside for the future when your value isnt as great as it is today. Can a service call be overpriced?? How much are YOU worth? The next time someone tells you XYZ CO. will do the job for $XXX less than you, Smile and say Yes, but I am worth my price.

# of Service Calls? The customer alone determines the number of service calls. Most lawns would survive in some form with no service at all. Customers pay us to bring their grounds to meet their expectations. Maybe thats one call per year for broadleaf control, may be thats 10, or 12 service calls per year with spoon feeding, snow distribution evaluation, multiple soil testing of micro-climates, semi-annual aerations & slit seeding. There are a lot of different ways to make a living in this field. What works for you, may not work for me, and what works for me ..............

01-18-2003, 04:36 PM
Originally posted by bobbygedd
we charge $12 per thousand, x the 8 apps.

$12 per 1000 sq/ft X 8 apps = $96 per 1000 sq/ft total for the year. That's more than tripple the national average. And 1 visit you do $36 per 1000 sq/ft.

You sure you got your numbers right?

From the looks of your program you are not practicing IPM, but just throwing out pesticides.

01-18-2003, 04:47 PM
tripple the national everage? so then, a 3000 sq ft prop, should go for $4 per thousand? or $12 per app? my programs, for a 3000 sq. ft prop, would cost $288. thats high? i think its perfect. i sell lots of em too

01-18-2003, 04:49 PM
TG price is irrelevant. They spend so little they can charge whatever they want. They use the cheapest matls and buy it cheaper than anyone on this site. Heck they get fert cheaper than my supplyer can buy it for. If they get behind just ghost a couple. Skip the back yard. They will sell to the cheapskates cheap and the (what ever it costs) high. And they will discount till you sign and then make sure you get less than you pay for. I offer 6 apps. We don't applicate in Late July and August due to drought.

bobbygedd Do your customers know 3 apps are in one app? I have people that save flags to keep track of how many apps they get.

01-18-2003, 04:50 PM
no, i think u got it wrong. a 3 k prop is $36 per app x 8 apps=$288

01-18-2003, 04:51 PM
Originally posted by bobbygedd
tripple the national everage? so then, a 3000 sq ft prop, should go for $4 per thousand? or $12 per app? my programs, for a 3000 sq. ft prop, would cost $288. thats high? i think its perfect. i sell lots of em too

I can buy the 3-7,000M props but much bigger than your talking outragous pricing.

No you read it wrong, you go to the house for 1 visit and do a lawn for $36 per 1000 sq/ft for that visit. 3 applications done at one time? You said you charge for all 3 indavidially.

01-18-2003, 04:55 PM
Location,Location,Location, Bobby you wouldn't sell any here. Average yard around here is 8000-10000 with higher rent in the 20000 sf range. Its funny though, an aveg. small yard for the season here is about $300 for the season 6 apps.

01-18-2003, 04:57 PM
they dont know 3 apps r in one bag. my prices are high? how much would u charge for a full program for 3k?

01-18-2003, 04:57 PM
Can some one give me a web site address to NJ dept of AG? You have compatision this year.

Bobby and ANT both doing 8 apps, I am there.

01-18-2003, 05:00 PM
Originally posted by bobbygedd
they dont know 3 apps r in one bag. my prices are high? how much would u charge for a full program for 3k?

My 6 steps does not include insect but 3000M would be $36 each visit. add insect for another $36 to 1 visit. $252 total. I said I can buy the small lawns but once you add on sq/ft prices like that will put you out of biz, no one will buy it.

Also why 2 insect apps?

01-18-2003, 05:02 PM
im tellin u that app #2, 3, 4 are in the same bag. it contains a weed treatment, crabgrass treatment and fert. for a 3k lawn, this visit cost the customer $108. and what do u mean about the dept. of ag?

01-18-2003, 05:06 PM
Does it cost $108 cause you can only apply between the hours of 5:00 and 9:00 am?

01-18-2003, 05:07 PM
Easy dude.....

That's what I asked.

Whats the web site address, I am going to take the cert test and you have compatision now. I'm expanding to Jersy.

Hey Rodfather...............

What's a bag of this majic blend cost?

01-18-2003, 05:09 PM
im finding that cinch bug and grub treatments should go down in june. for props that have a history of insect problems, if i treated only the june treatment, there is sometimes a problem in august and sept. the two treatments are not mandatory, but if they choose not to have them done, if an insect problem occurs its their problem, not mine.

01-18-2003, 05:11 PM
5 and 9 am? what the heck r u talkin about?

01-18-2003, 05:12 PM
Originally posted by bobbygedd
our programs are 8 apps! here they are : #1 -pre-em with fert. #2 weed control. #3 pre-em . #4 fert(steps 2, 3, and 4 are in the same bag, but sold as 3 separate applications, as they all serve different purposes) . #5 grub/insect control. # 6 fert. # 7 grub/insect control. # 8 winterizer w lime. the name of the game is to make money, and our programs do. we charge $12 per thousand, x the 8 apps.

So on step 1 do you charge for the fert seprate from the pre em?

On #8 do you charge for the lime seprate?

01-18-2003, 05:28 PM
hope u r not one of my customers. step #1 is pre em with fert. i only charge this as one app. step # 2, 3, 4 are pre em, weed cont, and fert(all in the same bag) step #5 is grub/insect, it also contains fert so it is charged as 2 apps, being #5 and #6. step #7 is grub, step # 8 is winterizer and limecharged as only one app, cus lime is dirt cheap.

01-18-2003, 05:30 PM
So why are you charging for 1 app 3 times?

I am asking like a customer, but you have me wondering also.

01-18-2003, 05:32 PM
which app am i charging 3 times, #2, 3, and 4?

01-18-2003, 05:43 PM
Originally posted by bobbygedd
which app am i charging 3 times, #2, 3, and 4?

App #2, #2, and #2.

You are doing 6 apps and charging for 8. The extra pre em you are applying is a waste of the customers money. If you are applying team then that's your fault.

01-18-2003, 05:49 PM
VISIT #2 includes the following service. weed treatment, pre em/crabgrass treatment, and fertilizer. these are three different products combined in one bag. there for they are charged 3 times. would i be better off to bring 3 different bags? i dont get what u dont understand. or are u saying that because the 3 products are combined, i should give the customer a price break?

01-18-2003, 05:56 PM
OK now I am saying that the per-em you are applying is a waste of "your" money, and a waste of the "customers" money., unless you are applying team, then it's just a waste of money.

I didn't say "price break", I said "over charging," ripping them off.

Now that I have said it blunt enough.

Back to what you are doing, you are charging for 3 applications at one visit, nothing wrong with that except, you are charging sepratlly for 2,4-D, fert, and that wasted pre-em, all in one bag.

Cost of the bag is what, less than $17 a bag, and your using say 9# on that 3,000M lawn, and you get $108 for that app.

So why don't you charge $16 per 1000 per a visit instead of $12 and reaming the customer? That is now 4 times per 1000 than the national avg.

How do you show this on a invoice?

01-18-2003, 06:02 PM
why is it a waste of money and time? the weed treatment is needed to control weeds, the pre/post crab treatment helps with any late crabgrass, and the fert is also needed. so, why is it a waste? and actually the product cost $39 for 10 k. question: if YOU were applying a weed and feed, would u charge only for one treatment? we would charge for the weed, and for the feed.

01-18-2003, 06:56 PM
I am applying weed and feed at 1 visit and charging for both at one time on an averaged price.

A 3k lawn would be $36 each visit times 6 visits. No insect.

But I don't treat lawns that small. We just don't have them around here.

The wate of money is a second app of pre em less than 30 days from the first app. What are you using for pre em. I use Demetion.

It does not have post crabgrass control. You are using a pre em for post control also and applying another post control?

IPM remeber that when you took your test? I think you are over applying chemicals.

01-18-2003, 07:12 PM
I am not trying to put you down, just don't get how you guys can pump these lawns with chemicals, practice IPM, and then put down TGCL.

01-18-2003, 08:13 PM
5 and 9 am? what the heck r u talkin about?

If you are using granular post-emergent weed control it must be applied to wet turf. It also is effective on only the easiest to kill weeds. Unless you water the lawn before application, you must apply in the morning while dew is still on grass. My weed and feed is just a couple of bucks more than a straight feed . Liquid weed killer is the cheapest thing in the mix. Even when you use the good stuff.


01-18-2003, 08:30 PM
wrong. the stuff i use can be applied to wet or dry turf. awsome results

01-18-2003, 09:06 PM
Well? Whats the name of this magical mystery granual?

01-18-2003, 09:34 PM
well, if i told u, it wouldnt be a secret anymore. then i wouldnt be able to charge 100 an app

01-19-2003, 01:05 AM
Oh boy!:dizzy: :confused:

01-19-2003, 01:25 AM
Well if its a secret then its probably not labeld for residential turf. Maybe they should call the dept of Ag. I suppose it kills all the tough ones like clover, wild onion, nimblewill, ground ivy and violets? Shhhhhhhhh your secrets safe with me.

01-19-2003, 07:49 AM
well in the last year or so I've read some posts that made me dizzy....this one wins the prize for this week......AMAZIN'.....

01-19-2003, 08:14 AM
lol ....... the secret to beautiful turf is frequent applications.....This is from personal experience on turf with absolutely highest possible maintenance standards and is State University Tested.
8-10 apps. is ideal but were talking quick release with micro's 1/2-3/4 lb N/1000 rates every 3-4 weeks and the site must be irrigated. Have to use iron in the summer. Pre-M in the spring, Grub /Insect in June, Primo Maxx when turf starts actively growing. Unfortunately the public, new fert. applicators etc have been brainwashed into thinking "slow release is the holy grail".I'll be blunt...Slow release is for Dummies. (why?....the margin for error is so low). Unfortunately it is how our industry has evolved. Give me a lawn next to anyones here and if I use 8 applications of ammonium nitrate @1/2-3/4 lb N/1000 rates with irrigation plus iron and Primo you will be shocked. Mrs. Jones though wont pay for 8 apps because newbie said 5 is enough. Nowadays it seems every newbie can and does justs turns up at lesco, gets a 5 step program and woo hoo he is king of the kids.

In my humble opinion of course.

My point is you always get customers who want it looking like Augusta National but want 4 apps of slow release fert.........not going to happen. I Wish Ammonium Nitrate was more readily available unfortunately because of recent events it wont happen and those suppliers who do have it are few and far between so with transport costs its too expensive for me personally.

What was this post about..O Trugreen Pricing. It is a revolving door of new sales reps and techs and usually most have limited to no experience in the turf industry. All they see is a price guide per 1000 sq ft. and a name on the screen or invoice. Call it the worst job on the planet. Anyone of us here could hire 20 telemarketers and make 500 sales a week if we marketed ourselves properly but hey who needs that kind of stress.

Tony Harrell
01-19-2003, 08:19 AM
Dizzy? Me too!!! I was starting to think you guys should exchange phone numbers but, I got some pretty good info from reading your posts. BTW, is IPM mandatory in your states? Here, it's just a method. It started with the pest control industry and has spread to every type pest industry. IPM to me is,"using every tool in your bag". Sometimes it's confused with waiting for a problem and then reacting. I laughed when I got my issue of turf a few months ago and there was a story of using IPM on sod farms. I'm gearing up for fire ants after reading that one.

01-19-2003, 12:07 PM
yes, clover, onion, ivy, cats, dogs, rabbits, even snakes. but we charge extra for the snakes, cus now it falls under the classification: exterminating. i'll get that app up to about $600 by the time im done

01-19-2003, 01:16 PM
Just debating, and questioning.

8 apps would be better, but unnecassary. I spoon feed in 6 with slow release anyways. Less margin for error is always better.

Deal with employees' then you will learn what that mean, I do all the apps, but got to have my system in place before I put an applicator out on his own.

01-19-2003, 02:13 PM
boohoo I just going to guess you are 100% liquid applicator. Sounds like that would be my perfect "sales response" to why don't you use slow release? Either that or you work at Monsanto. Better living through chemicals Ehh? Yes maam! I wouldn't skip the growth regulation treatment, since we are zaping you yard with urea every 3 weeks you will need a baler in here if you don't use this. Speakin of du>>>> ies well I'm not going to call anyone names, but who can't do a great job with a prop. thats irrigated. You see thats why universitiy studies are just that, controlled enviroments that have little to do with the real world. Didn't you learn that in college? I guess that it is just human nature to hate the newbees, Hell I hate em. I been in this bnness for prtneer five years and these newcommers come in here with there nwfangled spreader contraptions and coated this and that. They got a lot of nerve!;) Well I guess I will just have to deal with it.


01-19-2003, 02:20 PM
huh? bobby< uneducated, no college dummy. thats me. but, im makin about twice what most of the people i graduated with are makin. thank god thier parents had the $ to send them to college, now some of them pump gas.