View Full Version : confession time

10-07-2000, 12:38 AM
Boys mine is not really a lawn care service. Its
really a handyman do whatever service for the
handicaped and elderly who are trying to stay out
of resthomes and remain independent.In season
its about 80% lawncare work.My real reason for
being here is to encourage you pros to look for
these needful folks and give cut rates or free
service to help them stay independent. Im not
talking about folks that send their hired boy
out to get the lincoln ready.There is huge problem
in this country you fellas can do a lot of good if
want to. Ill be cheecking out now but you are welcome
to email me on this subject.Marks13822@cs.com
This forum is about lawncare etc so I wont post
anything else about it here.Thanks for your time.
good mowing T M

lawrence stone
10-07-2000, 01:05 AM
Do you have a wife and/or kids awm?

10-07-2000, 01:08 AM
AWM when you get a chance fill out your profile and anyone else that hasnt filled theres out please do, it helps finding out locations,intrest ages ect.
Thank you.

10-07-2000, 01:26 AM
I have a lot of friends that are 30 years old and younger and make 6 digit net incomes and they are in a position to help. Unfortunatly they are not the type to give out dollars but they are helpful with advice. Most of them are spoiled rich boys. I agree with helping the elderly. They are old and should be respected in some way or another.

Eric ELM
10-07-2000, 08:44 AM
I have mowed several over the years for free or at a reduced rate for the elderly. I still mow 2 free ones and I hope if I ever need the help someday keeping my lawn up that someone will give me a break and return the favor.

I agree with Landscaper3, please fill in your profile members, if you haven't already. It helps to figure out how to give advice if we have an idea what part of the USA you are from. If you don't want to give the town, put in what part of the state you live in, for example North East Illinois. I don't understand why some don't have anything filled out in their profile, but some times give out their town or email address in a post. Please Fill in your Profiles everyone.

10-07-2000, 09:13 AM
I am going to charge them more money because of this thread

10-07-2000, 11:12 AM
No offense, because I know where your coming from, but who's going to ensure my independence while I'm giving away my services for free? Who's going to get my pay accounts done? Who's going to pay my mortgage when I don't?

My grandmother doesn't live in my town, or I would take care of her place for free, whether I was in this business or not. My mother is retired up north on my brother's property in a mobile home I acquired for her. I cut lawns for some of my clients grandparents, and send the bill to them. Maybe what needs to happen is families need to be more proactive to their own elderly.

Now that would be a change for the better...


10-07-2000, 11:26 AM
Eric said:

"Please Fill in your Profiles everyone"

Eric, man, I've been saying that right along with you for months, wondering why these freakin' people won't fill theirs out!

Today, I took a look at mine and realized is was sorely incomplete. I think I had my location as 'West' or something like that. I thought I'd filled it out better than that, but I was wrong! Guess I'm a 'freakin' people', too. :)

Folks, double-check your profiles. You might only think you've done it right... ;)


10-07-2000, 11:35 AM
I have been reading and participating in this forum since April. The one thing that I have learned is that a lot of the members are doing good deeds to help others. Some of the members mow church property while some mow for elderly folks without compensation or mow at significantly reduced rates. However, all of us are making a contribution to the elderly and or infirmed by simply paying our taxes and by being good citizens.

Iím on board with you to help elderly couples to stay at home. Itís simply a matter of economics: it costs taxpayers less money for the elderly to live at home vs. a nursing home. On the other hand, itís difficult at best to do sympathy/charity mowing when you know the elderly couple has healthy adult children who will not left a finger to help them out.

Soapbox off mode.

cutting edge
10-07-2000, 12:08 PM
I don't think the point here is for you to stop what you are doing and go out to look for people who need help and give them the platinum service for free. The point is while you are out there doing your job and you run across someone who could use your help and you have time to help them that you do it.

10-07-2000, 12:29 PM
Cutters edge you said it better than I
thanks much T M

10-07-2000, 01:01 PM
Well most of us barely have time to eat during the day. I don't think any of us are in the league of walmart. And I think we get enough of guilt trips from the customers we work for what we charge them. The majority of companies on this forum just make a decent living and are trying to plan for our retirement if that is even possible. I probably be riding these mowers when I am 90. Why don't you find a lawyers or a doctors forum to beg from

10-07-2000, 01:02 PM
We do several homes with elderly that have been customers for 15 years. There rate has never changed in that time. The company owner says these and the shelter for batterred women that we provide full care for at no charge are part of his minestry and they are all untouchable. I concur completly.

You must give something back to your community has part of a social responsibility as a business owner, community profile business person, and because it's the right thing to do.

Just build it in as part of the operating budget. If your profitable, it won't hurt you. Take a tax credit for it.

lawrence stone
10-07-2000, 01:24 PM
turfman wrote:

>You must give something back to your community has part of a social responsibility as a business owner, community profile business person, and because it's the right thing to do.

So the 50% of my income goes to taxes is that not enough?

Charity starts at home. Take care of YOUR family by charging top dollar for every hour you work. Forget these losers that did not have the ambition and drive to make it in this world.

If they need help offer them a reverse mortgage. If they own a home they are not poor and do not deserve to be treated like a indigent.

10-07-2000, 01:59 PM
Thanks to the positive responces.
To the negatives everyone has a right
to his opinion but remember theres only
one alternative to getting old and life
just dont always go according to plans.
Ihope you dont face what im talking about
its not a pretty thing to just wait to die.
yaa be takin it easy

10-07-2000, 06:01 PM
Listen, it doesn't sound like you are running a business, you are providing a service because of your human element. Nothing wrong with that. You probably do it on the side after work.

This IS work for US. This is a business. A business has only one reason for being: Profit. The human element of me might help someone. The business element of me must only look out for one thing, the bottum line. Thinking that a business's role is other than that is both naive and non-american.

10-07-2000, 07:07 PM
<So the 50% of my income goes to taxes is that not enough?

Charity starts at home. Take care of YOUR family by charging top dollar for every hour you work. Forget these losers that did not have the ambition and drive to make it in this world.

If they need help offer them a reverse mortgage. If they own a home they are not poor and do not deserve to be treated like a indigent.>

Giving back to your community does not mean you have to write out a check. Most of the giving I talk about is after hours type of thing. Visiting a widow, helping the kids in the shop at the high school, donating my time and the company backhoe in a municipally funded tree planting program. Donating pickup and trailer for the homecoming parade.

All of our donations are in kind. We make no cash donations. Helping out the battered womens shelter seems like a good cause.

Losers and no ambition ?? My parents survived on Social Security and minor pensions while living on my property in a mobile home. Guess I should have offered them a reverse mortage or kicked there asses off, huh??

I am not even close to the 50% income tax bracket, so I will not pass judgement on your bitterness to those in the 15% bracket.

Mix in a better tax adviser or attorney and structure your business a little differently, you may keep more of that income.

cutting edge
10-07-2000, 08:25 PM
I think you missed my post. If not then reread it.

Remember what you give will be returned to you tenfold, not too many investments can claim this.

10-08-2000, 03:59 AM
I have been mowing an old couples [90 & 99 yrs. old] lawn on a irregular basis for the past year. They try to pay me, but I refuse the money. It makes me feel good to help them. I guess thats because I grew up beliveing in helping others. If you dont help, thats your business. Same for if you do help others. I have seen where some of you talk about a fellow competitor loaning you their equipment when yours broke down. Seems to me you might have lost some jobs if they had not helped you out. Just my 2 cents worth.

10-08-2000, 07:23 AM
I feel lucky to live in an area where the economy is really booming. The funny thing about it is that it isn't booming for everyone. My business is part time but I am very serious about it. One quarter of my customers are widows.
Some widows live in 250k houses on the river and some live in the small brick ranch their husband built 50 years ago.
I try to treat everyone with respect and only ask for the same in return.
Having a small operation allows me to get to know my customers better. I know which customers have the means and which are a little less fortunate. I have not raised the rate on 1 of my 24 customers for 5 years. Partly because she is a widow that wants to stay in her house and mostly because she and her son helped my business grow by referring me to many people in town resulting in lots of business for me. She still pays (first check in my mailbox every month) and never complains. I also do small extras for her like take the dead flowers and sticks to the compost for her. But I won't raise her rate.
Take a look at your customers, I am grateful for all of mine. Your situation is different than mine. You have to feel good about what you are doing as well as make a profit and a living. I am fortunate to be able to do this.

Good Luck.

[Edited by MOW ED on 10-08-2000 at 10:26 AM]

10-08-2000, 11:03 AM
Most seniors still pay the prices they were paying 10 years ago. When you go up on them alot of them just look for some new guy to replace you. If you are a new guy and getting 25$ per yard. That was the going rate 10 years ago also for most areas. Seniors will tell you what they can afford. And most often thats all they are going to pay. I paid 35% in taxes last year and like Lawrence said I think that is enough charity. Since lawn care prices havent changed that much in 10 years I think I am giving there too. How are you suppose to work for free and plan for your retirement at the same time? Our job is to make sure we dont in up indigent like alot of the elderly in this country. Run your business like a business and send a check to charity if you want. But what you charge effects what you are going to get from the rest of the community in the years to come. Word gets around fast

10-08-2000, 04:24 PM
i agree with charles 100%

10-09-2000, 01:39 AM
First of all, by looking or listening to the elderly you really don't know if they are broke are not. All of them went thru the depression and have saved and lived like hermits to hoard money. You forget one thing, most of these people know how hard it is to earn a living and really do want to pay you something. I do give a little break to the elderly or mental cases, I even do some things for free.

Before my grandfather died 2 yrs ago, if you saw him you would have thought he was just getting by. Never spent alot of money for anything. Going thru the depression had scared him that he might not have anything so he never spent much. I was amazed at what he had put in just a standard savings account. BUT, he also believed it not screwing anybody out of anything. He worked very hard his entire life, and he never complained about what was fair.

10-10-2000, 12:17 AM
Where are these people's families? I cut for 2 very old people (a relative and a neighbor) and do give them a break on the price. I just can't give it away. (I do this and hope God will remember me when (if) I get old.) I don't think there's anything wrong with donating your time or money. If you want to volunteer, there are lots of ways to do it.

The one thing I notice about most people is that they almost never appreciate anything they get free. Also, the first season I started mowing, I cut a lady's lawn for $10. I felt sorry for her because her neighbor gave me a sob story about how poor they were. It turns out that her hubby was a wealthy doctor and they had several million dollars. These people were close to 100 years old so they weren't scared they'd outlive the money, she was just stingy.

10-10-2000, 01:02 AM
There has probably been enough post. Idid what I
INTENDED to do. You have your reasons for
helping or not. Sure (sons) they should be the answer
and are more often than not. Ive also seen sons
be part of the problem .TAKES all kinds.
If they have some money Iwish they would use it
to enjoy whats left of life but they seldom do.
They just dont under stand there is never enough
money to pay for long term illness ending in death.
Now this is something ive made my lifes work and
thats not going to change.Now Iappreciate the post
and those willing to help with the problem.
Ido know who benefits most when you help your
fellow man.Do you?
Yaa have a great day tommorow

10-10-2000, 01:59 AM
Have a customer that is an elderly lady. Wanted me to build a flowerbed in the front. The materials were going to run about 100 bucks. I was going to charge 150 in labor for me and my helper and take us 3 to 4 hrs. She said that was way to much for her to afford. BUT, she is living in a 100,000 house and drives a 1999 Crown Vic. Her house and car are more than mine and 150 in labor is to high??? I know the difference between poor and stingy. She never went to work and thought it was ok for her employer to not pay her what she was worth. For someone in need I will help, but someone with a priority problem, that pisses me off! Most have priority to what they want (flashy items) and then expect us to be just lawn boys in junior high wanting to earn some extra money at min. wage. Why don't you go with them next time to the ford dealership and explain to the sales mgr that they are elderly and could have some financial problems at some point and ask him to give them their next Crown Vic!!!!

10-10-2000, 02:11 AM
Oh 65Hoss, very good point!

One of the 4 customers I just let go was an elderly couple. They had Brown Patch this summer, when I told them what it was and how much I was going to charge you would have thought she was going to have a stroke!! I was charging just above my cost for Bayleton! She drives a 2000 Honda Accord EX, and her husband drives a 1998 Acura Legend loaded with leather and the works. TIGHT!

10-10-2000, 02:39 AM
you should feel really bad Ray. Since you didn't give it to them, how can they possibly continue to buy nice things?

Kinda makes you want to see that brown patch grow, doesn't it?

Hey that an idea, if their yard dies then they want need to have it cut and that would save them money. So, AWM why don't you go to home depot and buy lots of round up and spray their yards so that nothing grows and you can move on to another group of hard working professionals to harass about not giving services away. Hhhmmmm, maybe the utility companies. I'm sure they will listen.

10-10-2000, 08:32 AM
boys hosses or whatever lets just drop it
Whether you agree with me or not is not
at the top of my list.You may not believe
in a creator buti do and Id rather my post
not be the reason for your getting taught
a lesson. So lets just talk about the work
or whatever.

10-10-2000, 09:06 AM
awn, calm down. Thats not the way the forum works. Once you start a post you can't just turn it off. Its not like your property or anything like that. It belongs to the administrator. Post usually run their course and are talked out and die on their own. Once everyone who wants to give a opinion has given one. You Knew this post might have negative responses when you made it. So if you are going to post you have to be able to except people who have differing views on subjects than you do. And hopefully learn from them or reject them. Whatever.

10-10-2000, 09:18 AM
now the cool morning hrs are getting away
lets get to work. 0815 here

lawrence stone
10-10-2000, 09:33 AM
IF you work for nothing for senior citizens you will have to work 7 days a week and never be a father to your five children.

BTW I really resent being called boy.

10-10-2000, 11:08 AM

It might be a bit easier if when you type in Your Reply: in the box, just keep typing, don't hit enter when thet cursor gets to the end. Its just like Columbus. The forum isn't flat, you will not fall off the edge. It just makes things easier to read when they are flowing and puntuated correctly.



10-10-2000, 01:57 PM
Lets quit this sissy talk and go about
our own buisiness.I eat dinner about noon
most days. Just ask the waitress for me at LOCUST NC
dinner. Itwill be where two fools
meet.I despise a pack fighting bully.Id rather
drop it . No bluff no hero either.

10-10-2000, 02:30 PM
Hey Tony, great double cheeze burgers at the Locust Grill huh. I worked for Stanley EMS part time for 8 years until my lawn business had me so busy I had to quit. Love to eat there, used to walk from the station over almost every shift I worked.

10-10-2000, 04:30 PM
Right about that burger. Tater wedges good too.
Sorry for agitation on the forum. Ithink im
just a lot older than these fellas.
If you are ever out let me know and well
eat a burger togather.
good mowing T M

10-10-2000, 11:36 PM
We own a retirement home where some of those poor old folks live, last year we had one die who had almost $million in 4 different banks and was always 3 months behind in his rent. We told the family not to worry about it they just laughed.. Damn were we all wrong about him, 8 years of free hair cuts, free cigs etc. Remember all is not always as it seems.

10-11-2000, 09:16 AM
You are right and ive seen that plenty.
You never know when you are dealing with
alshimer(i tried)demenchia or whatever.
Thats where i have to make a judgement
call.By the way i do other work at also
or i wouldnt be able to get by. My son
has me do his rental houses 4 .Other also
So its not all low dollar stuff.
appreciate your input Cantoo
good mowing