You might want to look at other approaches to the problem.
I blow beds into the lawn, mulch leaves on the lawn with one ZTR and if needed for a high end use another mower with a bagger to clean up any remnants. But it usually isn't necessary if you hit them at least every 2 weeks as they fall. As long as the grass variety there isn't cut really tall (you lose vaccum ability and mulching is less efficient above about 2.75") the right mower can do it surprisingly nicely. Trouble is many decent mowers suck at true leaf mulching (to a near powder that looks like kitchen herbs rather than large fragments) even if they discharge quite nicely.
Others use the "grinding" technique of repeated passes discharging them to the center of the lawn to greatly reduce their volume and move them into a row, then they rake/gather them up and haul them off. A final pass may be needed to leave stripes and leave things neat.
But for a 'cleanup' it sounds like your price is even too low to make a whole lot. To me that implies a lot of leaf buildup removed all at once. And for $80 with two men you'd better not be there much more than half an hour because you still have to factor in hauling and disposal time.
The problem with having too little equipment is you're going to be less efficient. But the problem with too much is that your pricing and business volume has to support it. A pricey truck loader would help physically remove leaves, but would you do enough leaf jobs at $80 to make it pay? And you still have to get them to the loader, which is not practical 100% of the time due to terrain and obstacles.
It makes me tired just remembering how hard tarping could be.
Originally Posted by smallstripesnc
Currently my business consists of myself and one employee. We are running a special for leaf removals. $80 for under 1/2 acre. Yes I know once we get close to the 1/2 acre mark its time consuming but blowing the leaves into piles isn't what takes so long. Its the raking leaves onto the tarp and putting them into the bed of my truck and the trips to the dump site that kill time and limit us to two leaf removals a day.
Our process is this.
-Blow leaves into piles
-Rake piles onto a tarp and empty tarp into bed of my truck.
-Once we mash the leaves down and get as many as we can in truck bed we fill the four tarps we have and tie them up full of leaves and put them in my trailer.
-Go dump at dump site.
Equipment for leaf removals
-1996 Cummins 12V long bed truck
I have talked to many people who can do at least 5 leaf removals on 1/2 acre lots a day. They have a crew of three but thats only one more guy than I have. So I don't think the extra person would make it faster.
BUT the leaf loader trucks I keep seeing around must really speed things up.
Does anyone have any advice to make the process we have quicker? Also it seems I'm in a lowballer area because people say $80 is way too much because guys do it for $45 for the same size lawn.