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BobbyKnight
09-01-2004, 03:47 PM
At this point I don't have many accounts (10). Mowing is not my full-time job, but I love to do it. My full-time job is teaching. A lady I teach with has approximately 7 acres she cuts between her home and her mom's house. She says she is sick of it, but I don't know how much she is willing to pay. It is mostly open ground with some trees and trimming around the homes. She won't be picky, or in other words, it doesn't have to be perfect. She just wants to make sure the grass is cut on a weekly basis. I don't want to blow her away with a price, but I would like to get the job and make some decent money from her. I think once she sees what I can do she would be pleased. But, like I said, I'm fairly new to this. I have only bid small jobs; nothing this big. Give me some help.

lawnmowingboys
09-01-2004, 03:57 PM
You should be able to mow 3 acres an hour with your JD 54" 23 HP Kaw. That's a little over 2 hours rider time. Figure total of 3 hours if you trim. A low rate, $20/hour = $60 per week.

Leone LawnCare
09-01-2004, 04:00 PM
holy crap stop giving advice man 60 dollars is way low. It should be around 250 to 300 dollars if there is alot of triimming involved. I cut a 2 acre property for 110.

mcclureandson
09-01-2004, 04:17 PM
Amen!! I've got half a dozen good-sized lawns...$110 for 2 acres/$85 for 1.5 acres/$75 for 1.5 acres etc... It's all relative, but if it's wide open like you say I would start at $200 at a minimum. Anything but the roughest of cuts would be more (and are you sure you want to put your signature on 7 acres of poorly serviced lawn?) Charge for and provide a quality service! I've turned down jobs because they 'don't care how it looks' or just want it mowed w/no trimming or edging etc...Word of mouth can work against you, too!

PLM-1
09-01-2004, 04:26 PM
i agree...$60 is WAY TOO LOW. I am $60 an acre for up to 3 acres then it drops to $40 for each after 3. But it's your choice...start high...you never know...she may think it's a good deal!

lawnmowingboys
09-01-2004, 04:29 PM
Holy Crap?

It's a lady he works with!

I mow a property next to a 3 acre doctor's home where the LCO cuts it for $75 a week and I am in a city of 17,000. Where this guy lives, may be lucky if there is half that amount of population. You charge a lady $1,000 month to cut vacant land in rural Southern Indiana and you'll be called a thief!

If you charged $250 for 3 hours of work, that's $83 per hour. Do you think you'll get that out of one of your residential lawn accounts? If you can let me know...I'll give it a try....at that rate I would quadrouple my monthly income! Not to mention make well over $40,000 year from 10 lawns!

Wow!

MMLawn
09-01-2004, 04:30 PM
$60 for 3 ACres???!!!! Dude get off the pipe! A GOOD price would on her part would be $125-$150

chevyman1
09-01-2004, 04:37 PM
MM Lawn, how fast is your equipment? I mean, I try to charge around $1 a minute my time, and I have a 3 acre account I can do in 1 hr with trimming and blowing, and I charge $65

Geoffrey
09-01-2004, 04:39 PM
$60.00 for 3 acres. Man that makes me laugh, loud, I mean way out loud where people can hear me. Sorry lawnmowingboys but this is really way out there low.

Geoff

chevyman1
09-01-2004, 04:41 PM
I'm shocked you can do that much better in Alabama to be honest, not exactly the richest area of the US

lawnmowingboys
09-01-2004, 04:45 PM
MMLawn,

Get off the pipe?

You said $125-$150?....the lady has 7 acres....at your charge of $150, that's only $75 for three acres. What are you going to charge for all 7 acres?

To the rest of you......I originally posted .....a low rate would be $20/hr. I didn't say that's what I would charge. I don't price property without looking at it first.

There still no way any of you are charging $83 per hour! What are you guys attorneys? You can't be CPAs!

CJ GreenScapes
09-01-2004, 04:52 PM
Originally posted by chevyman1
I'm shocked you can do that much better in Alabama to be honest, not exactly the richest area of the US

Yeah, and I guess its also true that people from 12144 are dumb@sses...;)

BobbyKnight
09-01-2004, 04:54 PM
Middle of the road is probably what I am looking for. As for what she can afford, she has been teaching for 25+ years, so she makes 55,000+. She can afford middle of the road. Don't be hard on Lawnmowingboys! Like he said, I work with her, so I don't want to make an enemy, but I don't want to be cheap labor either. One of my cheapest jobs I do (my wifes grandma) is my most demanding accounts. "Do this" or "do that" is all I ever hear from her. So, I would like to make some decent money from this, but it doesn't have to be $83/hour.

MMLawn
09-01-2004, 04:55 PM
Chevydude I'm sure our Z's are as fast as yours :) But you can do all the 3 acres you want at $65 and if I see any around here I'll give your name :)

MMLawn
09-01-2004, 04:58 PM
$40 an acre and that would be a deal for her or anybody else. Remember if you strat giving everybody you know a "deal" then before long that will be all you will have, plus for every deal you cut that is time away from where you could be doing a decent paying cut.

chevyman1
09-01-2004, 04:59 PM
Sorry MMLawn, just looking at it from an hourly perspective. I know Greensboro is a very upscale area....I just can't imagine being able to get more than $80 per cut for a lawn like that, but who knows! CJ, that comment was meant to be for everyplace in Alabama...what I was saying is it surprised me...in the Northeast, all we hear or see when we go down there is how poor the economy is (cost of living is less though) and how superior the NE is...

MMLawn
09-01-2004, 05:01 PM
No sweat at all chevydude! If that is your areas rate that is what you have to charge. But I also have an NFL players lawn we do here that isn't even an acre but has lots of obsticles and landscaping to cut around that we charge $65.

chevyman1
09-01-2004, 05:05 PM
Mowing by the acre doesn't work up here too much...it's pretty much time most go by...I try to avg $50-60 per hr residential and $100-120 commercial as I grow my part time company

Geoffrey
09-01-2004, 05:10 PM
Chevyman1, I'm confused by the 80.00 per cut comment. But like CJ said the time per cut is the same no matter where you live. So your saying you don't understand what the market will bare in another state! Ok, just it came across rare offensive before your clarified. I'm not busting anyones balls or pricing structure but 60.00 for 7 acres is close to nuts.

Remsen1
09-01-2004, 05:11 PM
If she is really mellow and not demanding $110 per week, since it sounds like you know her you should know whether she will be picky or not.

I wouldn't recommend using this approach for people that you don't know cause you never know exactly how picky they will be and if you under price it, it could turn into a nightmare where your're not making enough to work for a customer that you cant stand. In fact if you have ANY sneaky feelings at all about what this account will be like in the future, you should price it like you would any other customer.

MMLawn
09-01-2004, 05:15 PM
Originally posted by Remsen1
If she is really mellow and not demanding $110 per week, since it sounds like you know her you should know whether she will be picky or not.


So you would cut it for $15.71 an acre? $110.00 for 7 acres of cut? That amount won't cover the the fuel and wear and tear on the equipment cutting 7 acres straight a week. I gotta respectfully strongly disagree with that advise.

lawnmowingboys
09-01-2004, 05:31 PM
I'll clarify....my rate would be $105 per cut. That's how I price. 3 hours @ $35/hr. On this job, 2 hours of rider time, and an hour cushion for the trimming.

On a residential lawn that takes 30 Mins, I have a minimum of $20. Heck that's $40 an hour.

It may be supprising, but several other LCOs in our area are still cheaper than that. I have lost 12 bids this year because this rate is too high. I can name 7 LCOs that I see about town (remember population is around 17,000) on a daily basis. All their prices are all in the same ballpark. I know this because my rate was higher by only a few dollars on bids against them.

Remember you area has a lot to do with price points. 5 years ago there were 2 LCO's in town. In our area businesses paid their employees to mow!

Sure $60 buck is too low, but it's $60 bucks you won't have.

And remember I said a low rate would be $60.

I appologize for firing back with the attorney comment. But you couldn't charge a business $83/hr around in this area.

Lawn-Scapes
09-01-2004, 06:39 PM
Holy smokes............. I thought the quotes I was seeing in my 5 acres thread were bad. :eek:

If it's a true 7 acres of turf with an average amount of structures/obstacles to go around.. and you have a 54" mower... I think it'll take you a minimum of 5 hours.

Flex-Deck
09-01-2004, 07:11 PM
Folk, all I see here is people with different mowers trying to give advice. Someone on this thread actually said that a 54" deck could mow the 7 acres in 2 Hrs. ( Wow - it had better be one smooth 7 acres, and that 54" mower better be able to go about 50 mph)

I just happen to mow an exact 7 acre John Deere store (Lots of lines of equipment to mow around - minimal trimming)

Me and my little ol JD 595 mower does the job in 1 hr. 20 minutes. - I charge $110 per mow. I am making money folks. Efficiency is where it is at. You guys can suck on the $1 per minute theory all you want - You can brag about needing $50 per acre to make a living all you want - I just never seem to see a thread on this site that addresses the REAL ISSUE AT STAKE as an LCO -

HOW Can I make money with minimal investment in equipment?

What machines will mow the most per hr. related to initial Cost?

What machines are out there that mow in-under-around - to save me trimming time.

My Little JD Garden Tractor (595) and I mow an average of about 5.5 acres per hr. Thanks Brad

Lawn-Scapes
09-01-2004, 07:34 PM
Brad,

How much do you have invested in that mowing monstrosity of yours? What would the costs be new? How fast does it go?

Do you have any recent photos of your work? I'd like to see what the finished product of 7 acre/1 hour cut looks like.

What do you haul a 9 foot mower around on?

How much time do you have invested in your creation?

BTW.. I'm glad you are making money.. but I think you are priced too low.

Patrick.B
09-01-2004, 07:55 PM
WOW !!! $83 an hour ....That alot of money if Bobby know this lady ...i would charge $20 to $30 an arecs and add another $20 to $25 for triming ,,,,,,,,,

Patrick.B
09-01-2004, 08:01 PM
i have a customer right now got 9 acres and cut once a week ,,,,i charge $175 per vist ....not to much triming maybe 30 mins trimming .....sometime i think i under bid on that job but it paying the bills ...........

Flex-Deck
09-01-2004, 08:08 PM
Originally posted by Lawn-Scapes
Brad,

How much do you have invested in that mowing monstrosity of yours? What would the costs be new? How fast does it go?

Do you have any recent photos of your work? I'd like to see what the finished product of 7 acre/1 hour cut looks like.

What do you haul a 9 foot mower around on?

How much time do you have invested in your creation?

BTW.. I'm glad you are making money.. but I think you are priced too low.

Lawn Scapes - All New would be around $14,500
All my properties are so rough that I seldom can put the peddle to the metal - but it does go 8 1/2 mph - This spring when it was soft - I kept the thing floor boarded and mowed the 7 acres in 62 minutes.

The right side deck with its own engine comes off by flipping two ball hitch recievers off, then I pull in front ot the extra mower, and have a hook that hooks on the hitch, and pull it on the trailer behind me. (About 1 minute) - To unload, I just unhook the extra mower, and shove it down the ramp, and it coasts out about 15 feet, then I back the tractor off, and drive into the ball hitches, snap them shut, start the engine and go - go - go.


http://JD

Flex-Deck
09-01-2004, 08:13 PM
Originally posted by Lawn-Scapes
Brad,

How much do you have invested in that mowing monstrosity of yours? What would the costs be new? How fast does it go?

Do you have any recent photos of your work? I'd like to see what the finished product of 7 acre/1 hour cut looks like.

What do you haul a 9 foot mower around on?

How much time do you have invested in your creation?

BTW.. I'm glad you are making money.. but I think you are priced too low.

I have about $15,000 if everything was new invested

It goes 8 1/2 mph, but most of my commercial properties are too rough to go that fast - This spring when it was soft, I kept the peddle to the metal, and did the 7 acres in 62 minutes.

The right side mower is pulled on behind the tractor to transport - just flip two ball hitch recievers loose, back away from it - pull in front and flip a hook onto the tractor hitch, and pull it on the trailer (1 minute tops). Just unhook, and give the extra deck a shove down the ramp, back the tractor off the trailer, and pull into the ball hitches, snap them shut and go-go-go

Pic of the JD yard - ditch included.
http://JD

Lawn-Scapes
09-01-2004, 08:34 PM
Got any more pics?

You mow and weedwack 7 acres inbetween & around all the machinery in one hour and twenty minutes?

I guess I have to see it to believe it.

Mycannon
09-01-2004, 09:09 PM
Lawnmowerboys I'm sorry but when the most of us bigger lawn services go out we always make 100 to 200 hundred a hour when we are out and your telling this guy that $20 dollars a hour is a good price he might as well go work at taco bell cause by the time you add in wear and tear on equipment and gas hes making $8 to 10 an hour. I would say if your a solo mower you should make around 50 a hr depending on your equipment.

Envy Lawn Service
09-01-2004, 09:17 PM
Originally posted by Flex-Deck
Folk, all I see here is people with different mowers trying to give advice. Someone on this thread actually said that a 54" deck could mow the 7 acres in 2 Hrs. ( Wow - it had better be one smooth 7 acres, and that 54" mower better be able to go about 50 mph)

I just happen to mow an exact 7 acre John Deere store (Lots of lines of equipment to mow around - minimal trimming)

Me and my little ol JD 595 mower does the job in 1 hr. 20 minutes. - I charge $110 per mow. I am making money folks. Efficiency is where it is at. You guys can suck on the $1 per minute theory all you want - You can brag about needing $50 per acre to make a living all you want - I just never seem to see a thread on this site that addresses the REAL ISSUE AT STAKE as an LCO -

HOW Can I make money with minimal investment in equipment?

What machines will mow the most per hr. related to initial Cost?

What machines are out there that mow in-under-around - to save me trimming time.

My Little JD Garden Tractor (595) and I mow an average of about 5.5 acres per hr. Thanks Brad

Brad,

Jesus man... you have the right idea, but you are taking it the wrong way! Personally I will live by the $50 per acre minimum. A 7 acre property is a $350 minimum job per cut before I get off the mower to trim.

Yeah sure, if you can mow it with that beast in 1 hr 20 mins for $110 per cut, that's all good and fine. That's a rate of $82.50 per hour, which is good. But again, Jesus man! Look at what it costs you to get to that productivity level... meanwhile you pass dang near every penny over as a savings to the customer... you leave a good $240 on the table for them.

That my friend is insane!

Your old saying "efficency = protfit" doesn't hold true if you give the productivity gains to the customer in form of a price break!!!

You have invested more in equipment, only to hire it out for less?

This is an error you will see the full spectrum of when you have worn that equipment out and it's time to invest another 15K in equipment, else you are in really huge trouble with your account pricing....

Supertiger
09-01-2004, 10:11 PM
I'm not sure the acres in my job but it takes me 6 hours to mow it and 2 people to weed eat it. but i get 675.00. per cut. Ive been mowing 6 years now and I'm still tying to find out how to be profitable and 20 bucks and hour will just get you put out of business as soon as something breaks on your mowers.

all ferris
09-01-2004, 10:58 PM
Cut grass for $20 per hour? MAYBE IN MEXICO. I live in the good ole U S of A and that don't even come close to paying my bills or the guy's down the street living in the cardboard box.

Remsen1
09-01-2004, 10:59 PM
Originally posted by MMLawn
So you would cut it for $15.71 an acre? $110.00 for 7 acres of cut? That amount won't cover the the fuel and wear and tear on the equipment cutting 7 acres straight a week. I gotta respectfully strongly disagree with that advise.

Working for somebody that he knows won't be a pain in the arse, I stand by my advice (approx $40 per hour). But if there is any doubt then he should charge his normal price.

Leone LawnCare
09-01-2004, 11:04 PM
sorry about the "holy crap" It just really supprised me when i saw how you were figuring it out. Tell you the truth if you wanted to make 60 bucks go and get 3 residentials that would take you about 45 minutes with a whole lot less wear and tear and a lot less gas spent. Just be reasonable with your quotes. Quote the job not the person. How will it help you succeed if you cant make enough money to pay your bills or to upgrade your equipment. Dont be cocky and want several hundred dollars, but try to make double your cost.

Lawnchoice
09-01-2004, 11:29 PM
A buck a minute/per mower is what I charge.

Mikes Lawn Landscape
09-02-2004, 12:19 AM
I guess the acres are bigger in TEXAS cause the best I can do is about 2 acres an hour and thats very few obstacles and pretty close to full speed with a 52"

txlawnking
09-02-2004, 12:50 AM
No Mike, they ain't bigger here... that's the same I can do.. about 2 cres an hr max, with my 52"er... wide open.. I think Flex-deck is using something almost like a WAM...

PMLAWN
09-02-2004, 01:40 AM
If you do know this lady, Ask her if you can mow it once and than find out your time to do it. You will also find out how bumpy the land is. On big jobs with a lot of open space I bring a bike and ride around for a while to test the ground. I bid on one last year than had been driven on and you could not tell to look at it but when you rode the Z on it you had to slow down so much that you lost a ton of time. Could have used the walk behind and been faster! So now I test all the lots first.
Back to your lot, tell her it could be as much as $200 -300, but you want to do it first and than you can tell her exact.

Flex-Deck
09-02-2004, 04:52 PM
Got any more pics? "This question was posed on page 3"

You mow and weedwack 7 acres inbetween & around all the machinery in one hour and twenty minutes?

I guess I have to see it to believe it.

My response:

Perhaps I was a bit unclear. I only weed whack
1. a cement pad with fuel tanks on it
2. 2 signs in the ditch
3. 3 culverts
4. One split rail fence with 20 posts.
5. 3 telephone poles with an occasional telephone or electric box by them.

All of these places are on the first outside trimming round, so I have a rack built onto the back of my tractor that holds the string trimmer, and what I do is start all the engines and let them warm up. Then I make the first perimeter round, and just stop - grab the trimmer, and trim as I go - You have to realize that it may be 200 yards between two little 2 second trim posts. so it is more efficient to keep the trimmer idling, when you come to the post or culvert of highline pole, just mow around it and stop - trim - reload and go.

As far as trimming the equipment - I just mow under it as far as I can, and they then move the lines about every three weeks. BTW- I can mow a long ways under that stuff.

Flex-Deck
09-02-2004, 05:02 PM
One more pic of 7 acres in 1 hr. 20 min. - You can see a few of the past angles in the pic - usually about the last 4 to 5 angles are visible by driving by., but pictures are hard to duplicate.
http://JD

Flex-Deck
09-03-2004, 05:21 PM
The other picture is in the abover post