View Full Version : lesco'price base different from contractor to contractor

10-01-2000, 09:17 AM
why is lesco's price so different from contractor to contractor? i am not big contractor but i am loyal to my venders,with lesco being one of them it seems like i always pay a few $ more then some others. and those guys are big landscape companys but do no sales in fertilization,spend a total of $2000.00 a year at lesco and they pay less. last time i got grass seed i went throu a friend to save .17 cents per pound.DONT GET ME WRONG I AM NOT A BOTTOM FEEDER, I PAY MY BILLS ON TIME. I AM LOYAL. heck i sent a homeowner there and he paid the same for fertilizer.i have an anderson salesman that is a friend of mine and his productd are cheeper.
what do you think?

10-01-2000, 10:54 AM
Hello Anthony:

I do not know what to say, but in most cases the more you buy the better discount you get & then there is exceptions!

In all cases of me buying power equipment for shop, the more I buy the more I save.

Say for instance they have a minimum, like one of the biggest names out there says you have to buy 30-21" walk behinds to get free freight & get the Dirt Dealer Discount, this is their minimum.

If you buy less than 30 you pay freight & get a tiny discount & no dating, most of time get billed at the end of the month.

So you buy 30 units they give you 6 months to pay for them, as you sell them you have to send them the money in 24 hours during this 6 month period & if they come by & do audit, then they find out you didn't pay for 5 of them that you sold, then you pay on the spot or they go get Sheriff & chain & padlock your store till you pay. NO EXCUSES! All they want is their MONEY!

BTW, If you still haven't paid for them in the time frame they give you. You have 2 options, you pay them off or pay 1 1/2% of the unpaid balance monthly till you pay for them. If you have bad sales, this then kills your ungodly 18% to 25% mark up that you make a fortune on.LOL

They do not care if it takes you 5 years to sell some of those models, but then if you buy 50 you get a extra 5% off & get 9 months to pay for them. It goes on & on like that. Til you get to the Gold Dealer dealer discount & then they are doing everything they can do to help you sell these models, big discounts, LOL you even get plenty of brochures, you get the new models way before the Dirt Dealer does & all the other Luxeries that go with it. If at the time you can't buy the minimum, LOL they just cancel your dealership & "That's a Fact Jack!"

If you can't buy the minimum your are nothing & probably will not be able to get the Dealership back? No loyality, just like mostly everybody else, the all mighty dollar is all that counts. It doesn't matter if you did business with them 10 years & always payed on time & honored your warranties like you should & even did warranties for the Gold Dealer too. The Gold Dealer sells product & that's all that counts! Gold dealer doesn't have to honor warranties & he can't be made to, because it's against the law.

LOL, I sold a $800 Commercial mower Friday, I had it since 1996 & I made $50 over my cost for a almost 5 year investment. The guy told me I was a thief & I even gave him 1 blade & container of oil. That's why I stick up for dealers so much, I've been on both sides of the fence.

Sorry about that I had to squeeze that in, because I get tired of hearing about dealers being thieves!


On the other hand & this could possibly be your situation. I had a Parts Supplier that really wanted my business real bad & he told me if I buy a minimum of $500 in parts at the time I get extra 10% off & free freight. Well I jumped on that because I do not even make 10% of my gross, but I'm Dirt Dealer & I only got a $500,000 cash investment in my business, so I'm small potatoes & I'm treated that way by Power Equipment Manufactures all the time! Parts Suppliers are a little different. I thank them so much, because they try to help all Dealers, that pay on time.

All the other dealers around me do not get this discount, some buy less & some buy a lot more. I personally do not think it's fair to others, I think it should be based on the quanity that is bought at the time of purchase but I'm what they call Dirt Dealer, so what I think does not count for much of anything.

These are just my thoughts only, I think if you are buying on the spot & paying on the spot. That you should get discounts based on the amount of your purchase. It's the only fair way to do it & it makes sense to me? But what I think does not matter?

Hey it doesn't really matter, because all these Gold Dealers probably will not be selling in the next 10 or less years because the Manufactures will be selling on line. The Gold Dealers that sell mainly Equipment will go out of business, unless they go after Parts & Service, this is lot of hard work & hard to do. This is why most of them have that look of disappointment on their faces now! JD has already said that half of their dealers will go out of business, because of this, unless they change their way of doing business. But still half will go under.

If it makes any difference at all, I'm not a JD dealer.

10-01-2000, 11:04 AM
Anthony, I get a small discount because a buy a few pallets of seed/fert. However, a friend of mine gets a better discount because he buys many more pallets than I do. Along with that thought he also buys much more MSAM, Drive, Dimension, and whatever else.

He has sold me a few bags on times when I ran out, he is closer than Lesco to me and a was a little cheaper. Keep working and you will grow and eventully get the better discound. Maybe find another landscaper friend and go in half on stuff if you buy in volume.


10-01-2000, 12:35 PM
LESCO charges whatever they can get.

You may be able to negotiate a better price when you buy in volume, but THERE IS NO PRICE STRUCTURE.

Just another reason Lesco has such a notorious reputation.

10-01-2000, 02:15 PM
EACH APPLICATION i take 2 ton home unload it and work off the pallets. they gave no break. so i started to take 10 to 20 bags at a time from them insted of the pallets,why take up 32 cu.ft. in my barn.but what gets my goat is that they cant do any thing about the price.only if i bring in a "competators"price on a product that is the same. iv donot wont to stoop that low ,its like begging. they know that there is no outher in a 15 mile range.

only if there were a way .......
i spent $4600 so far this yr.
a friend pays 8.00 for soil test i pay 10.00
not a lot but i did 45 test this spring he did 2

i got to go any wipe my tears talk to you ladder

10-01-2000, 03:02 PM
Have you confronted the Lesco store about this? That is not how our store operates here, I will as Mike on monday and see what he thinks. I would still ask them.

10-01-2000, 04:21 PM
ray yes i did they said that i am in a "bracket" based on last yr. purcheses

gene gls
10-01-2000, 09:14 PM
Anthony: Give Jonathan Green a call,1-800-526-2303 or [url]http://www.jonathangreen.com. The home office is in New Jersey, free delivery with $500.00 min. to your door. They have a wide range of product and excelent service.

10-02-2000, 08:20 AM
I asked Lesco about this. Essentially I was told that they base your discount on how much you purchased the year before.

I asked about buying in pallet quantities to get a lower price, but was told that I would have to buy by the truckload(14?) pallets at a time to get any further discounts.

They have a system of brackets that you fall into. I don't know the numbers, but it is along the lines of 0-2000=Xdiscount. 2000-5000=xdiscount. 5000-8000=x discount...

Now, I THINK, that they have a price sturcture depending on your type of business, that gets you an initial discount off list price. It is different for LCO, PCO, cemetery, school, tree svc, homeowner... I think that this is a basaeline, then you get your quantity discount on top of that.

It is sad though. I can go in once a day and buy 10 bags, taking up 15 minutes of their time per day and get the same price as if I went in and bought 2 pallets of the same material in one shot, taking up a total of 10 minutes of their time.

BINGO, it just hit me. Lesco wants you to use them as a storage facility. If you do this, just like Anthony said, stopping once a week or so, rather than buying enough for a month at a time, you are in the store more often. If you are in there, you may realize that you "need" something else. You just might see the sale that they are having on something, and decide that you just have to have it.

This system gets you in the store more often. THe more often that you are there, the better chance you have of buying something extra.

BTW- The discount program is only for seed/chemicals, not parts of equipment. THey don't count twords your "bracket"

10-02-2000, 08:35 AM
grassmaster said:

"I do not know what to say,...."

you were kidding...right?


10-02-2000, 09:53 AM
Hello GEO:

Yes, I was kidding sort of!

I normally have a mouth full to say, but my problem is staying on topic. I'm working on it very hard & one of these days, I will stay on topic? I promise!:)

10-02-2000, 12:00 PM
GM--just checkn' on your sense of humor!


12-05-2002, 09:46 PM

12-05-2002, 10:06 PM
Me and 65HOSS compare prices all the time. Being only 3 hours apart and in the same state we find it funny that prices are based on region. If I get a pallet of tall Fescue I ALWAYS get it maybe up to .10-.15 cheaper than him. But he gets Bermuda much cheaper than I can. Hence, we use much more Fescue, and they use much more Bermuda.

With that being said, are you using a product that they dont get much call for? If so it will be higher, but shouldnt be too much more than the big guys pay. They will always get as better discount than us Ant, because they do more TOTAL per year than we will ever do.

Go ask, who knows when you get a better price. If you do then try to get it locked in for the whole year. Lesco will do this, me and HOSS are working on this very thing.

12-06-2002, 02:21 AM
You can beat them down to what ever you want to pay. Just keep at it, they will give in---- oh this only works when you order out of the sales office, not service centers

12-06-2002, 04:41 AM
the question "is this the best you can do" ALWAYS reduces the price. with regards... devildog

12-06-2002, 08:38 AM
i posted this thread 2 YEARS AGO. and it seems that for 2003 they seemed to wise.
i think it's the sales manager...if he wonts to do the leg work and beat or meet the price he will.
if there are lazy they don't care...

i took me 2 years


12-06-2002, 08:47 PM
Well, I do about 20 ton of granular a year, and my price has not changed hardly at all. My friend John does 20 ton before the grass turns green, and he gets his about $80 a ton cheaper than me. And yes, I've bought it from him, too. I was doing this, and he was splitting the difference of cost with me. It worked out well. I would save about $40. a ton, and only have to drive half as far to get it. (The only thing was, is that I would have to load it by hand, though.)

12-08-2002, 10:00 AM
Maybe the guy just doesnt like you > LOL Maybe you need to establish a relationship with him.. You take care of him and he will take care of you .. I think it comes down to the actual people not the company.. I have been using lesco for years and early on had a similar situation where I was just pushed off to the side so to speak, then I went somewhere else, wasnt happy with the produts , so went back to Lesco and there was new management there, nice personable people , I established a relatinship with them and I get treated just as good if not better than the company who goes in and buys a billion bucks of fert... I walk in and they call me by name.. They have now become my favorite supplier and I buy whatever I can from them, I now use their string trimmers, mowers, spray canisters, parts, whatever they have that I use , I now buy from them , Except back pack blowers cause we all know that nothing touches the Redmax....... Anyway.. I think it all comes down to relationships and people...

12-08-2002, 10:07 AM
Ohh for example I had a situation a few weeks ago at my equipment dealer.. I'm in there buying some small parts , maybe $100 bucks worth, at the counter talking about what I need this guy walks in who owns this hugh company and stand s next to me , And all of a sudden I have become invisible ? What gives.. here I am paying for my stuff and ordering more, and the counter guy just walk s away and starts helping this other guy, Ahhh Helllooooo , At least the busisness ower( and I mean the landscaper who walked in after me ! ) apologized to me...But still what kind of service is that , It isnt... How do they know I wont buy a few new lasers next season, Well if I do now , they are not getting the business... It's a shame that when you are small or dont spend significant amounts at a time, they wont give you the time of day... This is why some businesses do better than others, Customer service....... You could really stink at what you do or offer a crap product , but if you have the service and curtusy to back it it changes everything...Sad but true.. Fortunatly for me though I have hit paydirt with Lesco.. I get the greatest products and awsome service.. Just wish I could find that at some other suppliers too......

12-08-2002, 03:21 PM
Funny how there's NO response from TREMOR on this thread. He lalways gives great advice andanswers esp. when there's a LESCO question.
Anyway, I only scanned some of the responses to this thread, but I do know that the more you purchase, the more of a discount you get. Is it fair?? You may argue no, but then think also about your pricing structure. You have a minimum price for your applications say $30, and this may be lawns up to 2500 sq ft. so a lawn of this size gets you $8.33 + per 1000 sq.ft. You could not charge this rate to an account of an acre or more. They're usually under $5/1000 sq. ft. So I guess our clients could also argue that our practices aren't fair.
I look at it this way. We get our Lesco products at a discounted rate over Joe Homeowner. The more we purchase from LESCO, the bigger our discount becomes. I realize I will never be the largest LCO in my area, but why not strive to attain the next level?


12-08-2002, 11:05 PM
Lesco has burned me a couple of times on this subject too. when we first started out, we got quotes on fert and misc other goods. When I saw how much they wanted I almost passed out. WE found a local distributor that will annialate their prices. This company will delivery 1 bag of fert to my door with no delivery charge. The big joke about it is that the company I buy fert from buys the fert I use from lescos fert plant in florida in massive quantities then bags it in their own bags.
When I told the Lesco salesmen that I was already using his fertilizer his face lost its color. Man was'nt that fun!!!
Now he practically begs me to give him a shot at pricing out this coming years rounds. I'll continue to buy some stuff at lesco, but I'll never be dumb enough to get everything there. Besides the company I curretly deal with is awesome. They will even do custom blending with a one pallet minimum. Can't beat them.

12-09-2002, 11:46 AM
I'm surprise I've stayed out of it too. But it's been crazy busy here. Just had the IV antibiotic drip yanked out of my arm. (Lime Disease) Three birthdays this month, Christmas (presents & decorating), & obviously our Early Order Program.

Plus I'm not sure where to start. To do this thread justice may require one of my more wordy novels. But here it goes.

First off is the stores. They cost about $250,000.00 per year to keep open. That's a lot of dough. For folks who don't own (or lease) a warehouse of their own, then go ahead & use these. They're already paid for. And we do expect to command a small premium to keep them open. I know a guy who back in the '80's, watched his price per bag creep up when he bought at the store over what he paid off our trucks prior to LESCO opening any stores around here. I almost signed his lease for my old business when he figured out that the rent potential on his building was $1500 per month. The luxury of shopping at the store was costing him less than that every year. So he pockets about $17,000 more than it costs him. And no hanging around waiting for a truck to show up.

This isn't how it works for everyone, I know. This person still uses a portion of his own yard & a small addition (to his now occupied building) & is right around the corner from our store.

With all due respect for the guys who run our stores (and I know what they do because I did it for 10 years), some of them might not have the experience to handle every situation. For those customers who may be in (or have grown into) a position where they might want to take direct ships, things could get awkward. The salesperson might quote off the most logical system we have been able to come up with to date. It's one that is "tiered". The more you spend, the lower the price. But only back to the last 2-4 quarters. So a new customer who walks in the door for the first time will have zero sales history to weigh the dicount program. If the sales person doesn't know the procedure to work through this, the customer may walk away shaking his head. I would. So make sure the sales person is aware of the volume you purchase & don't be afraid to point out where & why you shop. These sales people should be bright enough to ask. But some aren't. If all they do is punch in an item & a customer number, then everyones intelligence gets insulted.

So that's why there are road salespeople like me. I do the ugly bid work. I have to check raw material costs & freight rates almost weekly. But someone has to do it. Nearly all major turf markets now have a "Lawn Care Sales Rep". If it seems to make sense, either find out who it is for your area, or drop me an email with your anual expenditure & zip code. I will discreetly find out for you.

To complicate the price book still further is the fact that a region manager must decide which items the discount system works on. This is based on local sales history. The store could be very competitive on 2 or 3 popular round 1 materials. But then a customer wants to hear about something new he heard about at a trade show. The sales person checks the computer & low & behold, we have it. Punch up the price fields. No disount. So either the customer sticks with "old reliable", or they shop somewhere else. No one has told the computer that this new item should "feel" the discount program. All items can't be loaded at the same time. There's just too many of them & the system would become too difficult to manage. (There are 23 active Pre-M items in the store system. There's over 100 in the main files.) Some of the less tenured sales people probably don't even realize that this function (limitation?) exists. If they knew how to recongnize the indications, they would then move toward bringing your situation to the formal bid process. If they don't offer, then ask them to. You shouldn't have to tell them how to do their job, but let's face it, not all of them know.

And yes, there may be a degree of laziness in there too. As a matter of fact, I'll guarantee it. I met a person last winter on this website, who wanted to purchase Dimension instead of Pre-M. He asked his Sevice Center manager for a quote. It was something like $4.00 a bag more than the Pre-M the guy was using. I had just posted here that Dimension was a little better than Pre-M & therefore worth a little more (like, less than a dollar more). The customer still over paid for his Dimension. He just did it with another supplier. Our sales associate was either too lazy or ignorant to manage another SKU and do the leg work to get his price corrected. I never did disclose all of this information to our customer, but our sales associate will still here about it at the sales meeting next month. The lazy SOB was later quoted as saying he didn't want to have to special order 200 bags and that he had no room for it in the building. I was seeing red when I heard this. This person needed an attitude adjustment & some additional training. 200 bags qualifies for free freight. He could have shipped the stuff. I can stack 200 bags on the footprint of 2 pallets with my eyes closed. Anyone who can't store 200 bags isn't terribly serious about being in this business. Perhaps that was the case. I won't know until I confront the guy face to face. But I will.

I can't tell other salespeople how to conduct their affairs. But if someone feels there is a valid injustice being done, I'd appreciate hearing about it. I might even be able to help.

One thing I don't want to hear about is how some Ag blender is beating us on the price of some dusty all chemical fertilizer. The day they start screening all inbound raws & outbound blends is the day I'll start listening. But if every prill into the plant goes back out in your bags, then don't worry. You're getting a fair shake if that's what floats the boat. When they start patenting new Nitrogen sources, I'll lend an ear. Auger type blender for SCU? Good luck.... And check for clean ground water monitoring wells at their plant too. None there?...Lot's of new asphalt though?........Uh huh......Send me their name. I won't post anything negative.

Beleive it or not. This system does work pretty well in most cases. But it requires maintenance. And the input of intelligent, energetic, & enthusiastic people. Customers & salespeople alike, making a team effort.