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Old 12-09-2013, 04:06 PM
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XC skier XC skier is offline
LawnSite Member
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Poughkeepsie, NY
Posts: 207
I agree with those who state that cleanups and vac removal prices can vary from year to year due in no small part to the weather. If you quote someone a price for vacuuming their leaves on day 1 they may not get back to you until day 4 and if it rained or there were freezing temps it is going to take you more time. The vacs that most of us are using cannot handle drenched leaves because they just clog up, so even if they are fluffy on top by the time that you get to the bottom it can be a nightmare. I price all of my jobs by the minute. This way I charge exactly the right amount and the customer pays a fair price. This is not likely to work for new customers so we are all just guestimating and hoping that we come out on top. I have worked out a formula based on the man hours to actually vac the leaves, and to drive round trip to dump them, equipment and vehicle costs and fuel. I have a 19 yd capacity truck that takes 1.25 man hours to fill (we can a lot more in if days go by between jobs), 23 hp loader (1.25g per hr) and although dumping is free it takes me 1.5 man hours round trip to dump. If you ever wonder how much you should apportion to equipment costs see how much rental companies charge and extrapolate- they've figured this all out. Based on these calculations I charge $2.60 per minute. I am not leaving any money on the table and I have a rational determination for a competitive charge. I don't have a minimum but, I'm not going to go out of my way for a $20 job. I'll hit it when I pass by to another job.
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