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  #1  
Old 04-05-2000, 02:25 PM
AB Lawn Care AB Lawn Care is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Ontario
Posts: 585
Don't worry this is not a stupid question like &quot;how much do you guys charge?&quot;or&quot;will $13 on hour be a good rate to charge?&quot;What I want to know is a harder question than that!I have been in business for 5 years and I am paying all my bills but not making much!What I want to know is do any of you have a way to look at what you are charging and see if you are making enought!I have seen sevral times before in the forum people have looked over there books and realized that they must charge more.If anyone has any ideas how I can improve my situation plese let me know!I hope this does not sound like a stupid question but that is my problem! <p>from:Adam <p>AB Lawn Care
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Old 04-05-2000, 03:08 PM
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lawrence stone lawrence stone is offline
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Location: anthracite valley, commonwealth of pennsylvania Winter residence: Charlotte County FLA
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Adam wrote:<p>&gt;I have been in business for 5 years and I am paying all my bills but not making much!What I want to know is do any of you have a way to look at what you are charging and see if you are making enought!<p>The only thing I can think of is to get a visa/greencard and move to the United States.<p>From what the other Ontario contractors in this forum<br>have to say it's MHO that you Canucks are<br>working for starvation wages.<p>If you can move to where the $$$ is the next<br>best thing would be to increase your productivity and/or lower your overhead.<p>Sam Kinison once said about people<br>who were starving in Africa:<p>&quot;Why don't they just move to where<br>the food is&quot;<p>
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Old 04-05-2000, 05:31 PM
AB Lawn Care AB Lawn Care is offline
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Thanks for the idea but i'm sorry that is out of the picture.I like my area and don't wish to move to the U.S.Yes our wages are not as good as in the U.S. but i'm sure that the other guy from canada on this forum would agree that it is a nice place to live.Thanks anyway!<p>from:Adam <p>AB Lawn Care
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Old 04-05-2000, 05:57 PM
steven Bousquet steven Bousquet is offline
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not picking on you at all, but doing the same thing over and over again and expecting diffeent results is termed insanity. Change how you charge,how much you charge and how you sell and market getting more money has little to do with the work it has to do with marketing.
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Old 04-05-2000, 07:39 PM
AB Lawn Care AB Lawn Care is offline
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Steven Bousquet you said &quot;but doing the same thing over and over again and expecting diffeent results is termed insanity.&quot;Do mean by never changing your prices and or clients you will never make anymore money?If that is the case I have raised all my clients prices 10% last year and today I gave one of my clients a 60% raise.I,m not asking how much I should charge or how to get better clients,I have no problem there what I need to know is how can I look at my current financial situation and see right away where my prices need to be.For the past year or two now I have been raising my prices at least 8% each year but for all I know maby I need to raise my prices by 30%.So it would take 3-4 years to hit the price I need to be at.I'm asking this question so by the end of the year I will know where I have to be.Maby this will clarify my question!Any ideas?<p>from:Adam<p>AB Lawn Care<br> <br> <br>
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Old 04-05-2000, 08:04 PM
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Charles Charles is online now
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A&B price are controlled pretty much by what the competition is charging. The customer goes by what the have been charge by other lawn service companies in the past. And some go way back and try to keep the prices the way they were in the 1980s and even the 1950s. I know I should be charging alot more in 2000 prices with inflation etc. Its frustrating but I dont think any of us will ever make what we should be making in this type of business.
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  #7  
Old 04-05-2000, 08:22 PM
mountain man mountain man is offline
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Location: North Carolina
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The key is to identify where all of your revenues are coming from and then break down which areas are more profitable. Once you know which are more profitable then you can focus and market those areas.<p>There is an article on page 10 of this months Pro magazine that talks about a 22 year old company that had to reorganize and get rid of some unprofitable business. After losing money for the year they did a study and realized that several of their core areas had always lost money and a couple of divisions had been carring the whole company. When the cash cows had an off year the other divisions couldn't pick up the slack because they had never been profitable. Now they are smaller but more profitable.
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Old 04-05-2000, 08:26 PM
cutntrim cutntrim is offline
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Adam,<p>We live in the best country in the world...CANADA. We're taxed alot higher than the boys down south but that's something that all of us up here have to deal with. Your competitors face the same economic market that you do. But you know that.<p>I'd suggest that before continuing to raise prices, you try to lower your expenses and increase your productivity. For us that has meant purchasing a Z-Master 52&quot; and selling our oldest 36&quot; WB, and trying to do more of the routine maintenance of our own equipment rather than having our service guy do it all. One thing you can do (if you haven't done so already) is check into the government programs for hiring students. The government will subsidize you up to $4.50 per hour for 16 weeks of a student's wages. <p>Either get an accountant to do it, or do it yourself but you need to know exactly how much it costs you to operate your business and once you know that and you're sure your running as lean and mean as you can then you'll know the minimum amount you need to charge for your services. <p>Hope that helps, if only a little. Gotta go, baby is cryin'.<p><p>----------<br>Dave in S.Ontario<br>www.cutntrim.com
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  #9  
Old 04-05-2000, 08:27 PM
steveair steveair is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: morristown, nj
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AB, you said it will take 3-4 years to be where you need to be. What does that mean?<p>Does that mean you don't expect to make any money for 3-4 years?<p>Thats insane. You need to be making money NOW.<p>I think the root of your problem is you are being too NICE to your customers. If you have to raise your prices 30, 40, 50 or even 100 percent, then you better do it. If the customers don't like it, then they weren't good customers anyways. They were cheap customers. If you can't find customers that will pay what you want, or need to make for that matter, then seriously consider the option of either moving or trying another line of work.<p>Also, you say that this is a more complicated question than &quot;what should I charge&quot; To me, it sounds like it is that simple. Obviously, if you are broke, then maybe you need to figure out what to charge for simple things like planting one tree or edging 100 ft of bed. There's obvioulsy either something wrong with your system, which usually start with the litlest things and snowballs all the way up to larger items.<p>I'm sorry for sounding a little bit out of line here. I don't mean to rip your head off or anything. I just get mad to hear people, who do all that hard work, and then don't get anything for it. You are entitled to it, so don't settle for less.<p>One more thing, as someone else will say here soon I'm sure, get some books. They are a tremendous help. Even if you hear things in this forum, you still need to learn and read for youself as much as you can. <p>Don't work for free.<p>Steveair<br>
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  #10  
Old 04-05-2000, 08:27 PM
osc osc is offline
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Location: southern ohio
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When you're making several hundred dollars a day and you get off work before dark, you know you are doing it right.
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