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Old 04-25-2014, 10:17 PM
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Choyle Choyle is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Charlotte NC
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New to bidding and need help pricing jobs : lawn care

Hello, I have been in landscaping/lawn care for many years. As an employee and crew leader. I have all the necessary tools and equipment to get the work done and have wanted to "go out on my own" for a long time.

GOAL: To get roughly 20 yards to maintain through out the week after my full time job. Mostly lawn care and pruning and other jobs that aren't very complex or too difficult to accomplish.

PRICING: Here is my arising problem, I have only gained about 7 regular customers and I am noticing the I may be pricing jobs too cheap. Most of my lawns seem to be 1/4 acre or 1/2 acre that are not high in detail. Here is my scale that I kind of base pricing off of. I am afraid that I may be a little off. I fear that if I bid too high than the potential client would hop and skip to the next landscaper. I have no "business" overhead as this is side work, Just the regular gas, equipment overhead.

1/4 acre not much detail - $20
1/4 acre with lots of time detailing - $25

1/2-3/4 acre not much detail - $25
1/2-3/4 acre with lots of detail - $30

1 acre plus is $30 an acre

PRUNING: I have played the whole crew leader role for many jobs, but I have never done bidding. I would like to think with pruning jobs I can have a base price of $25hr, but I am certain that after driving to the job, using my equipment, and paying a disposal fee, $25hr isn't enough. How should I price pruning jobs.

THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP! I'm just a small town guy in Charlotte, NC trying to make extra dough for my family. I'm not trying to get rich and mow America.
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  #2  
Old 04-26-2014, 12:25 AM
TheLugNutZ TheLugNutZ is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Howell, NJ
Posts: 348
I'm probably going to be $10 to $15 more on pretty much every line there.
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  #3  
Old 04-26-2014, 12:45 AM
Crammin'Mows Crammin'Mows is offline
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Location: Sisters, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLugNutZ View Post
I'm probably going to be $10 to $15 more on pretty much every line there.
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Yep. Do a thorough job and charge more. Stand behind your work nd don't short yourself.
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  #4  
Old 04-26-2014, 12:54 AM
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Cedar Lawn Care Cedar Lawn Care is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Utah
Posts: 661
Here is where I am at. I use an Exmark 30 everywhere I can, and a 21 where I can't. I am sure people with larger equipment would be cheaper on some of the larger properties. Using my Exmark 30 I earn an average of 60+/hour on the actual job edging, mowing, trimming, and clean-up. The Bi-Weekly lawns I charge 40% more because they at times require being double cut. Got to findlotsize.com and you can measure the square footage of the grass you're cutting.

Weekly Mowing Prices:

$22 0-1800 Square Feet.
$25 1800-3000 Square Feet.
$28 3000-5000 Square Feet.
$32 5000-6500 Square Feet.
$35 6500-9000 Square Feet.
$40 9000-12000 Square Feet.
$45 12000-16000 Square Feet.
$50 16000-20000 Square Feet.

Bi-Weekly Mowing Prices:

$30 0-1800 Square Feet.
$35 1800-3000 Square Feet.
$39 3000-5000 Square Feet.
$45 5000-6500 Square Feet.
$50 6500-9000 Square Feet.
$56 9000-12000 Square Feet.
$63 12000-16000 Square Feet.
$70 16000-20000 Square Feet.
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  #5  
Old 04-26-2014, 12:54 AM
PenningsLandscaping PenningsLandscaping is online now
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Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 1,097
You are way way way too low.

Cedar's price structure is close to mine. I have no set prices, it's what I think it's worth, but it ends up being really close to that
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  #6  
Old 04-26-2014, 01:00 AM
PenningsLandscaping PenningsLandscaping is online now
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Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 1,097
The best way I've found to estimate pruning jobs is give a minute amount per plant. Decide what you want to make an hour, then look at each plant and assign it an amount of time for pruning, clean up, and disposal.

A medium sized boxwood or barberry I would say is 6 minutes.

Always have a job minimum. If it's three plants just charge an hour at least.
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  #7  
Old 04-26-2014, 01:10 AM
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Choyle Choyle is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Charlotte NC
Posts: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cedar Lawn Care View Post
Here is where I am at. I use an Exmark 30 everywhere I can, and a 21 where I can't. I am sure people with larger equipment would be cheaper on some of the larger properties. Using my Exmark 30 I earn an average of 60+/hour on the actual job edging, mowing, trimming, and clean-up. The Bi-Weekly lawns I charge 40% more because they at times require being double cut. Got to findlotsize.com and you can measure the square footage of the grass you're cutting.

Weekly Mowing Prices:

$22 0-1800 Square Feet.
$25 1800-3000 Square Feet.
$28 3000-5000 Square Feet.
$32 5000-6500 Square Feet.
$35 6500-9000 Square Feet.
$40 9000-12000 Square Feet.
$45 12000-16000 Square Feet.
$50 16000-20000 Square Feet.

Bi-Weekly Mowing Prices:

$30 0-1800 Square Feet.
$35 1800-3000 Square Feet.
$39 3000-5000 Square Feet.
$45 5000-6500 Square Feet.
$50 6500-9000 Square Feet.
$56 9000-12000 Square Feet.
$63 12000-16000 Square Feet.
$70 16000-20000 Square Feet.
Very good replies so far thank you! Great scale Cedar and FindLotSize.com is the perfect site to measure with and I see myself using it on every client. I will need to adjust some prices.
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  #8  
Old 04-26-2014, 08:14 AM
Dr. Cornwallis Dr. Cornwallis is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Valrico, Fl
Posts: 476
You're way low. I have a $32 min and I charge $50 an acre to just mow, if there is trimming it's going to be atleast $70. Like someone else said, do good work and don't short your self.
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  #9  
Old 04-26-2014, 10:08 AM
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southerntide southerntide is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Alabama
Posts: 1,768
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Cornwallis View Post
You're way low. I have a $32 min and I charge $50 an acre to just mow, if there is trimming it's going to be atleast $70. Like someone else said, do good work and don't short your self.
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I agree prices are very low do not short yourself on your work people think this is an easy job, all yards and terrains are different.

We do not have a set price but we help elderly as much as possible though.

Down here in Alabama the yards can put a beating on your mowers and equipment, it is all priced per job and terrain environment.
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  #10  
Old 04-26-2014, 11:09 AM
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gcbailey gcbailey is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: southern WV
Posts: 2,104
Don't sucker yourself into flat rate pricing based on property size. We have some 2 acre fields that are wide open, cut only for $90 and some 1/4 acre subdivision lots with 45 minutes of trimming that are $70.

Terrain, obstacles, landscaping, accessibility, etc.... there are dozens of factors that should help dictate your price. We've picked up jobs in the past where guys were charging $40 for 1/2 acre and they were quitting mid season because they weren't factoring in all of the trimming.

It's good to have a "ballpark" number, but don't swear by them.
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