Register free!
Search
 
     

The Green Industry's Resource Center


Click for Weather
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #17831  
Old 05-24-2013, 12:50 PM
Outdoors_Unlimited's Avatar
Outdoors_Unlimited Outdoors_Unlimited is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Oxford, Michigan
Posts: 447
I've got a question for you guys.

His do you guys go about determining what the market will bear pricewise.

If I go with the formula of figuring out my costs, and going with that, I'm leaving money of the table because I operate with as small of a budget as possible.

I "think" I'm starting to get the lawn pricing figured out, as I am hitting the hourly rates I'm shooting for. I'm looking more along the lines of the irrigation work. Last week I installed a lake pump for a friend, thought I made decent money doing it, only to have the neighbor tell me he couldn't even buy the pump for what my installed price was. When I talked to the guy at the irrigation supply I found out I under sold myself by $200. I dont want that to happen much more. So this week, on a valve replacement I thought I would try to up the price I was charging a bit, to have the customer tell me I was way high. I've always charged $125 to replace a valve, and tried $175 this time.

We are always getting compliments on how nice of a job we do, so I know I'm pretty much covered on the quality side of business, now to figure out how to be more consistent and in line on the pricing department. How did you guys learn this part. I once heard, Johnny's plumbing company didn't fail because he was a bad plumber, its because he didn't understand business. Basically that's what I'm afraid of. I KNOW the work/field/crew management aspect of being a business owner, but I never knew/ still learning the business side of it.

Would it be best for me to take some business classes? What tips can you offer?

Edit: I'll add that I am still small, with one helper, but want to learn these things before I grow much more, and run into issues, risk loosing everything I work so hard for.
Posted via Mobile Device
Reply With Quote
  #17832  
Old 05-25-2013, 08:07 PM
3rdDayBrad 3rdDayBrad is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: MI
Posts: 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by Outdoors_Unlimited View Post
I've got a question for you guys.

His do you guys go about determining what the market will bear pricewise.

If I go with the formula of figuring out my costs, and going with that, I'm leaving money of the table because I operate with as small of a budget as possible.

I "think" I'm starting to get the lawn pricing figured out, as I am hitting the hourly rates I'm shooting for. I'm looking more along the lines of the irrigation work. Last week I installed a lake pump for a friend, thought I made decent money doing it, only to have the neighbor tell me he couldn't even buy the pump for what my installed price was. When I talked to the guy at the irrigation supply I found out I under sold myself by $200. I dont want that to happen much more. So this week, on a valve replacement I thought I would try to up the price I was charging a bit, to have the customer tell me I was way high. I've always charged $125 to replace a valve, and tried $175 this time.

We are always getting compliments on how nice of a job we do, so I know I'm pretty much covered on the quality side of business, now to figure out how to be more consistent and in line on the pricing department. How did you guys learn this part. I once heard, Johnny's plumbing company didn't fail because he was a bad plumber, its because he didn't understand business. Basically that's what I'm afraid of. I KNOW the work/field/crew management aspect of being a business owner, but I never knew/ still learning the business side of it.

Would it be best for me to take some business classes? What tips can you offer?

Edit: I'll add that I am still small, with one helper, but want to learn these things before I grow much more, and run into issues, risk loosing everything I work so hard for.
Posted via Mobile Device
You have some great questions, Outdoors...

A business class or two is never a bad idea. They will give you direction when you're making those important decisions for your company.

As for what you charge....

As long as you are covering your costs and making a respectful profit, then you are doing it right. You will not get every potential customer you talk to.

But you will get the customers who believe you are being fair, have heard of you beforehand and know your work. These customers will be willing to pay what you are charging.

I do not do any advertising... haven't for 10 years. All my work is referrals. I have some good customers who have given my number out quite a few times. I also have formed some great relationships with other business owners who work in our field.... sprinkler installers, tree companies, suppliers, etc. They also have given me some great referrals thru the years.

Keep doing what you are doing. Do good work, and always give the customer a little extra when you are there, they will see that.

Seems like you are on the right track. Good luck!
Reply With Quote
  #17833  
Old 05-25-2013, 10:09 PM
Outdoors_Unlimited's Avatar
Outdoors_Unlimited Outdoors_Unlimited is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Oxford, Michigan
Posts: 447
I spent this winter studying plant id/care. I'm thinking it would be a good idea to enroll in a few classes for business next winter and try to dial that end of the business in.

Thanks for the response Brad.
Posted via Mobile Device
Reply With Quote
  #17834  
Old 05-25-2013, 11:28 PM
reliablelawn reliablelawn is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Detroit MI
Posts: 116
Coming from a finance major at MSU, business classes will only get you so far. If you are looking for a "business class or two" you will be forced to take a basic Marco/micro econ or a basic corporate accounting class most likely. These courses have little to no practice application to real world small business owners. Good basic knowledge to know? Yes. Game changer for running a business? I could not count on it.
Reply With Quote
  #17835  
Old 05-26-2013, 08:50 AM
3rdDayBrad 3rdDayBrad is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: MI
Posts: 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by reliablelawn View Post
Coming from a finance major at MSU, business classes will only get you so far. If you are looking for a "business class or two" you will be forced to take a basic Marco/micro econ or a basic corporate accounting class most likely. These courses have little to no practice application to real world small business owners. Good basic knowledge to know? Yes. Game changer for running a business? I could not count on it.
All due respect, Reliable, but taking some select business courses CAN be a game changer for running a business. Enrolling at a local community college gives you the option of choosing which classes you take. Micro/Macro economics is not one of them.... Business Mgt, Sales, or even Marketing are all good areas to gain some knowledge for running your business.

With knowledge comes power. And in this case, the power to make educated decisions that can only help you grow your business.
Reply With Quote
  #17836  
Old 05-26-2013, 08:56 AM
3rdDayBrad 3rdDayBrad is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: MI
Posts: 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by Outdoors_Unlimited View Post
I spent this winter studying plant id/care. I'm thinking it would be a good idea to enroll in a few classes for business next winter and try to dial that end of the business in.

Thanks for the response Brad.
Posted via Mobile Device
You are one step further than most of your competition, Outdoors. Having a Horticulture degree myself, I am constantly entertained by the many 'professionals' in our field that spew nothing but B.S. to customers just to get the job. To me, that doesn't reflect professionalism at all, but rather, ignorance and immaturity.

Keep doing what you're doing, Outdoors. As I said in my previous post, Knowledge is power.
Reply With Quote
  #17837  
Old 05-27-2013, 07:21 PM
puffyhead929's Avatar
puffyhead929 puffyhead929 is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Novi Michigan
Posts: 203
Quote:
Originally Posted by reliablelawn View Post
Coming from a finance major at MSU, business classes will only get you so far. If you are looking for a "business class or two" you will be forced to take a basic Marco/micro econ or a basic corporate accounting class most likely. These courses have little to no practice application to real world small business owners. Good basic knowledge to know? Yes. Game changer for running a business? I could not count on it.
Agreed. I'm doing the same thing right now. Those classes help to an extent but nothing replaces real experience.
__________________
A Poor College Student



www.ProTurfLawnServiceLLC.com
Reply With Quote
  #17838  
Old 05-27-2013, 08:36 PM
MJK MJK is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Michigan
Posts: 356
Hey guys, I'm looking to buy a diesel transfer tank system to put in my truck. I want to keep the fuel as clean as possible while brining it to the jobsite to put in skid steers. I was looking for a 50 gallon size. Any recommendations by those who have them?
Reply With Quote
  #17839  
Old 05-27-2013, 08:41 PM
Lightningllc's Avatar
Lightningllc Lightningllc is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: South Lyon , MI
Posts: 329
I took a semester of business/ finance and there is no comparison to real world first hand experience. You will learn how to mange money and create a profit and lose charts, you will be shown how a real world application is setup in a perfect world. Let me tell you this course is if you sit behind a desk at Goldman sacs or fidelity I would recommend it. But in our cut throat business first hand experience is king, Neil the best thing to do is sit down and figure out what you have into every job ( material, time, overhead) then tack on a 10% fee just for a mess up. Now you should see where your at. The big companies run at a 15% profit and smaller companies run at a 40% profit.

I have figured out my profit and lose it really makes a difference when you bid a job and when planning on the future of your business.
Posted via Mobile Device
Reply With Quote
  #17840  
Old 05-27-2013, 08:42 PM
Lightningllc's Avatar
Lightningllc Lightningllc is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: South Lyon , MI
Posts: 329
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJK View Post
Hey guys, I'm looking to buy a diesel transfer tank system to put in my truck. I want to keep the fuel as clean as possible while brining it to the jobsite to put in skid steers. I was looking for a 50 gallon size. Any recommendations by those who have them?
Put a inline filter on it. Put a lock on it too.
Posted via Mobile Device
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
alternative landscaping

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump





Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ©1998 - 2012, LawnSite.comô - Moose River Media
All times are GMT -4. The time now is 09:20 PM.

Page generated in 0.18606 seconds with 8 queries