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Old 02-08-2005, 04:57 PM
mastercare mastercare is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Shelby Twp., MI
Posts: 289
No estimates or contracts

Like others, I don't use any contracts for lawn care. I tell my customers that I don't need a contract to keep customers. They like the fact that they don't have to sign anything, and that my work ethic alone will keep them a happy paying customer.

And, as far as an estimate sheet: The only time I use one is if they want to "think about it." It's just company letterhead that says - After walking your property we have determined a weekly cutting price of $xx. for the 2005 season. Please call soon if you'd like to be added to our busy schedule.

But, many will tell you that you need to sell it on the spot. If you get a "let me think about it" you're closing ratio is much smaller. This means that the person you're dealing with is either not the decision maker, is getting several quotes, or just putting you off. Your best customer is one that you can sell on the spot. In that case, I typically don't put anything in writing unless they request it. I give them a price verbally, I show up when I'm supposed to, do good work, and send them a bill exactly as I quoted them. Never had any problems.

Just a tip for you though: When you do get people who want to think about it or check with the spouse, be sure to call them back quickly. Some people refuse to do follow up calls. My first year I didn't do any follow up calls, and only got a couple of them. The next year, I would call a prospect 3 days after I left them a quote....I got about triple the response rate. When you call them back, tell them that you're just calling to follow up on your quote, and that you'd like to know if they want to be added to the schedule. My phone never stops ringing and we're filling up our schedule quickly. I just wanted to call and make sure you were taken care of since I gave you a quote first, and wanted to give you the first chance of getting on our schedule.

This shows some urgency and pushes them to a decision. It also prevents them from having time to get 320 quotes from every scrub out there.

Hope I was of some help.
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