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Meier
08-16-2003, 12:43 PM
Just thought I'd run this by the folks at Lawn Site to see if I'm charging enough. Don't think I am. Would like input.

I just started in January and I have 27 residential accounts. I mow 22 of them on Wednesdays. I wake up at 5:45am on Wednesdays, get a bag of ice, get my Mexican and start cutting by 7:00am. Typically, I'm done by 4:30 or 5:00, but by the time I drop off the Mexican and drop off my trailer, I've put in 12 hours.

With me and the Mexican, it's a two man crew. I gross $630 on Wednesdays. I pay the Mexican $120 and buy his lunch. I end up making $510 before gasoline or any other expenses.

My route is real tight...not much drive time at all.

Am I working too cheap?

Thanks in advance and I'd like to hear what y'all are able to make in a day and what y'all are paying labor and how many hours y'all are working per day.

Later,
DFW, TX

DUSTYCEDAR
08-16-2003, 12:47 PM
thats 42.50 an hr

MacLawnCo
08-16-2003, 12:57 PM
based on working from 7 til 4 30 with 30 mins lunch, that is a 9 hour day....or 18 man hours. $630/ 18 man hours gets you $35 per hour. Only you know your expenses, so are you charging enough?

I would bet that your helper is very pleased with his wage. $120/ 9 hours is $13.33 per hour, plus lunch! Id almost work for that much. Again though, only you know if you are doing well.

GLAN
08-16-2003, 04:12 PM
I think your doing OK.

But, with only 27 lawns why you need a helper?

Meier
08-16-2003, 04:48 PM
++++But, with only 27 lawns why you need a helper?++++

Here in Dallas it's 100 degrees normally. Roughly there abouts.

I can work two days in the heat and make $630 or get a Mexican and work one day in the heat and make $510.

Guess I'm lazy, but I fugure my time on day two would only pay $120...I'm worth more than $12/hr.

Later,
DFW, TX

GLAN
08-16-2003, 07:23 PM
OK

Tim Canavan
08-17-2003, 03:33 PM
Your average price per yard is 23.33. You must have some small yards to be getting 27 done in a day with just two of you. By the way, does your worker have a name or is it just my Mexican?
Either way, I think you are doing well. Why all in one day? Do you have another job?

Meier
08-17-2003, 10:53 PM
++++You must have some small yards to be getting 27 done in a day with just two of you++++

We're only doing 22 lawns in one day.

How many lawns are other folks able to do in one day...How much do you gross...how many men in a crew...how much are you paying your crews?

I'm curious to see how my operation compares to others'.

Thanks.
DFW, TX

Lance L
08-19-2003, 10:15 PM
well im in the dallas area, south dallas and i make at least 35 an hr. i work by myself and have my yards spread out so im done before it gets hot... but im using a 21" toro. yea it does get hot and if im ever behind i havea friend help me. you shouldnt pay your worker more than 10 an hr if he is one of the guys off royal or somewhere where they all hang out and wait for work... the amout u are paying him well lets just say this you could pay him 200 for 2 days and you sit at home if you use him on a reg basis... and he knows everything but if he is illegal i doubt he has a license.

o and last year when i had my 32" hydro i was making 60 an hr.

pm me if you want to get sum lunch or sumthing and talk about it some more....

u have another job? that why only work wed?

Meier
08-21-2003, 06:24 PM
++++last year when i had my 32" hydro i was making 60 an hr++++

I'm using a 32" hydro also. How do you gross $60/hr with that by yourself?

My next door neighbor used one of the more popular lawn services last summer. This company, I would assume, has their pricing set correctly. Anyway, they paid $28 to have their lawn mowed. The lawn is about 4,200 sq ft, has an alley driveway, a swing set and two trees that are not pruned high enough, forcing a lot more time with the lawn mower.

If I use my 32" hydro and do all the work by myself, I can barely make $35/hr on that account. That price allows for 48 minutes with zero drive time. If you factor in 4 minutes of drive time, you've got to be done with that lawn in 44 minutes. For me, that's tough to do.

I'd be lucky to mow that lawn using my 32" hydro and be done in 44 minutes. It would probably be a little closer to 50 minutes, I'd guess.

Anyway, how do you come anywhere close to $60/hr by yourself with a 32" hydro?

And if you were making $60/hr with the 32" hydro, why did you decide to start using a 21" mower?

I just don't think I could come anywhere close to $60 per man hr and win any business. With my pricing where it's at right now, I'm struggling to gross $30 per man hour.

Later,
osu2winbig12

Green in Idaho
08-21-2003, 09:34 PM
DFW,
It reads to me like you are working outside the law based on your post.

Your helper ("the Mexican" as you refer to him with a racist undertone) is an employee of yours. If you are not paying employer taxes, withholding on his pay, etc. you are in sad shape.

Lance L is in the same boat with his "friend" helping him out.
:dizzy:

PPLMike
08-21-2003, 11:14 PM
Yep Idaho:

Isn't it a great thing that the lawncare industry isn't strictly regulated and these guys can roam freely without fear of prosecution?

Lance L
08-22-2003, 02:06 AM
im not about to fill out any paperwork for a friend that is helpin me for 4 hrs on a sat once every 2 months... and why do people always get off subject?

hmmm well i dont know how i make 60/hr i just did my yards that take me about 40 mins now i get 25 bux for and thats with a 21" mower. i sold my 32 because i needed the money i was tired of paying bill and i didnt have close to a full work load. so i decided to sell it and get the money and use my 21's when i have 40 hrs of work then i will upgrade to whatever.

o and with the 32 i cut all my times in half pretty much i didnt have really any yard i was at for more than 30 min except for a few big ones.

Rustic Goat
08-22-2003, 03:03 AM
THE point raised by Green In Idaho, is THE point!
If you're not running a legitimate business, your 'expenses' are not on the same playing field as others that are.
Whether you're hiring/paying an illegal or a friend, if the pay is under the table, you're still not in the same ball park as those who do things the way they're suppose to be done by law.

Meier, I don't look at things the same way you do evidently. Your figures and the way they are presented indicate you have no real idea what your % of profit is. Much less what your true cost of doing business is.
I'd be more concerned about the numbers per job and then the bottom line after all factors considered.

Maybe it's the difference between having a job cutting grass and running an LCO.

Meier
08-22-2003, 08:43 AM
++++Meier, I don't look at things the same way you do evidently. Your figures and the way they are presented indicate you have no real idea what your % of profit is. Much less what your true cost of doing business is.
I'd be more concerned about the numbers per job and then the bottom line after all factors considered.++++

I guess maybe my original questions were lost in your attempt to belittle me.

EBITDA -- Earnings Before Interest Taxes Depriciation & Amortization. That's all I'm trying to figure out...how much EBITDA I've got on a full days worth of work.

My questions for the board was and still is (a bit nosey I suppose, but no one has to anwer):

How much do you gross on a full day? How many men are in your crews? How much do you pay your crew? How many hours in a full day for that crew? How many lawns in a full day?

Thanks,
DFW, TX

Rustic Goat
08-22-2003, 12:25 PM
Meier,
Are there two of you? I ask, because the 'sound' of your first post is quite different from your last. Your questions in the first post were "Am I charging enough" and "how many hours are you working", and to make sure we knew you have a "Mexican" working for you. That is not what was asked in the last post.

Now that you've been called on the possibility of not running a legitimate business, you change your tune. Didn't mean to "belittle" you, but few here will take seriously a post from an 'off the books' operation.

Green in Idaho
08-22-2003, 01:23 PM
:D Meier, BTW I DID mean to belittle you! Just like you are belittling someone else by calling them "My Mexican". Reminds me of the days when people said, "" Well I'm sure even you can figure that out.... :p

GLAN
08-22-2003, 03:48 PM
I have no recollection

I can not answer the question for fear that any answer I give might give grounds to prosecution against me by law

:p

tiedeman
08-22-2003, 11:57 PM
Originally posted by GLAN
I have no recollection

I can not answer the question for fear that any answer I give might give grounds to prosecution against me by law

:p

LOL:D

Team Gopher
08-23-2003, 08:21 AM
Here is a great thread, Realistic Income...where do I plan.... (http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=47723)with a lot of insight for further investigation.

Meier
08-23-2003, 09:38 AM
Team Gopher,

Thanks. Interesting read. Green in Idaho appears to be confused about capital expenses vs operating expenses on that thread. Perhaps combined, they do eat up 50% of gross each year, but I don't see how they could. Assets like trucks should last a while.

To be perfectly honest, my operating expenses have so far eaten up about 65% of my gross this year. But most of those expenses are flat expenses that will be the same whether I'm working 80 hours a week or zero hours a week. I've also done a lot of non-mowing work this year because I'm starving (sod, landscape design & installs, etc), which have a much higher cost of goods sold than does mowing. My cost of goods sold for mowing has been less than 2% so far this year, but that figure doesn't include fuel for the truck.

I was really hoping to compare notes with others. Guess no one else is gonna tell me how much they gross in a full day, how many crew members, how many lawns they get done in a full day and how much they pay their crews.

That's fine. I understand the question is a bit nosey.

Later,
DFW, TX