2010=year of the lowball

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Mahoney3223, Apr 5, 2010.

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  1. Mahoney3223

    Mahoney3223 LawnSite Senior Member
    from midwest
    Posts: 995

    Sooo....we bid out a 4+ acre church for weekly mowing.....and I just received word as with most everything else commercial we bid new this season...that the winnning bid was $90.00........This year has to be the worst I've ever seen in my life for lowball numbers be it from large Lco's to solo's...this is almost getting comical....anyone else seeing some ridiculous hack numbers?
     
  2. Yater

    Yater LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 687

    Supply and demand. There's an increased supply of lawn guys and the demand for them has lowered.
     
  3. DixieFerris

    DixieFerris LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 440

    Partially your own fault. You have to be in front of these people all the time and sell them on the business/safety/reliability of your service. Price should come up last if at all. Stop competing on price, its a dead end road. We have lost some this year too on price don't get me wrong despite everything we tried to tell them, but we are winning waaaaaay more on the story of our company, not on the pricing and we are usually in the middle to upper price range
     
  4. mowerdude777

    mowerdude777 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,732

    I have seen a lot of ididots on cl offering 10 dollaring mowing, I am considering SLOWLY ditching mowing and moving up to hardscaping if this crap continus
     
  5. Yater

    Yater LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 687

    The problem with mowing grass is:

    EVERYONE has done it. In other trades, people hire a tradesman because they can't do the work. Welders, plumbers, electricians, mechanics, et cetera. "Quality" is a tough sell to someone who just wants their grass "knocked down".
     
  6. mowerdude777

    mowerdude777 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,732

    Very well said I think that some think it will also be easy money by charging next to nothing when they are really practialy paying the coustomer. Almost all of my coustomers hire me because I provied high quality work, but the ones who just want the grass knocked down suck because when they see someone offering mowing for half my price they will think they are getting the same work.
     
  7. ffemtmcd

    ffemtmcd LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 532

    1. these $10 lawn guys will put themselves out of business relatively quickly
    2. Do you really want the customers that just want their grass knocked down (as commented above)?

    Might also ask customer if the $10 lawn guys are insured and licensed - especially if applying chems
     
  8. Mahoney3223

    Mahoney3223 LawnSite Senior Member
    from midwest
    Posts: 995

    Trust me buddy I sold them on the company. I gave them the licensed speech, how we've won chamber of commerce awards, our large properties we mow and do work for...you know what won on PRICE! He even told me on the phone, I don't know how well it's going to work out for that price but we've got to go with the lowest bid...in Ohio, on account of the awesome economy, I knew we would be down this year. I get it. I get the fact that licensed, insured criteria is by the wayside in our recession. The only thing that speech works on is commercial snow removal because of the liability issue. It's a lot easier to sell safety with snow vs grass. No one is going to slip and fall because the grass isn't striped right. The problem is price is winning out 100%. These laid off guys and even big companies are totally messing up the market.
     
  9. Stevegotcrabgrass

    Stevegotcrabgrass LawnSite Member
    Posts: 248

    yea, it sucks...i've ranted before about it. What I do now is give my potentials my price. If they try to negotiate, I just say no. If they say " so and so will do it for cheaper" I say You get what you pay for and leave. I am not wasting more time on customers who do not want a landscaper and company to maintain their property and only want a guy to cut grass. I like my customers who appreciate the little things we do which most fly by night companies will not. Little things like bring the paper up to the door. Bring up the trash cans for the old ladies. Maybe even telephone calls to the customers to see how things are going and if they are happy. Taking the time to talk with the customers about their properties, their dreams, their visions etc. Customer service goes a long way. The best customer is the one who says, just do it and bill me. No questions asked about money, if a customer starts talking too much about pricing, and how his last guy did it for less etc. I ask them why they are looking if the last guy was cheaper..
     
  10. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,654

    That's rough, even for a church and even lowballed, that's just way bad lol
    I did assume you did get the acreage right, on the other hand 3-4 acres on a church is not unusual.

    But I was waiting for the usual thread where folks speak of lowballing yet the winning bid ain't half bad,
    that's the kind of crap I been seeing quite a bit of here lately, I was waiting to see the figure $150'ish...

    This however?
    That's beyond comical, I'll give you ridiculous, it's just wrong.
    LOL, yeah, $90 for 4 acres, that's bad.

    golly

    On the other hand, LET them take advantage of these guys, sucks that you lost the contract but hey...
    I look at it this way...
    I get so sick and tired of some of the BS on LS, they ask these total noob questions (and not everybody is like this)...
    But we try and try and tell them, they either don't listen (this I can handle) but when they start to wanting to argue...
    Gets to the point it seems in ways the only way some of these guys are going to learn to respect this industry is
    after some folks have done got took and raked through the coals, you know, learn things the hard way.
    Sucks to have to be done that way, but what can you do?

    Wish them luck.
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2010
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