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A.V. LawnService & Landscaping new to the site

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by avlawn, Dec 1, 2013.

  1. avlawn

    avlawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 9

    Hello everyone I am the owner and operater of my company. I started in resission in 2008 and have been in buisness ever since I do lawn service landscaping maintenance, irragation, designing and constuction. I have commercial & residential accounts. In 2008 it was started as a partime gig. I was working a fultime gig with sysco foods service delvering groceriers. In october of 2012 I broke my left femur riding a cr250r and i was terminated may of 2013 since then I have focused more on buisness and i am glad that i started it when i did. I have to admit I was emberrssed at first. I have 89 chevy long bed a 5x 10 trailer with 5ft walls, 2 honda mowers stihl trimmers chainsaws, and blowers. just wanted to say this site rocks . I was aslo hoping for some suggestions on how much you all are charging just to see if I am charging to high or to low. I am based out of the El Paso Tx where competion is very high due to it being a border city. are suggestions will be appcaited thanks and god bless alfonso
  2. A. W. Landscapers  Inc.

    A. W. Landscapers Inc. LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,287

    Welcome from Fort Worth, Texas.

    Comparing your prices to someone else's prices in another part of the country won't do you much good. Each company and each market is different.

    You need to figure out the minimum your company needs to charge per man hour of service in order to be profitable. Once you figure out that number, that's the hourly rate you start charging. Then you can increase that rate until you find out the maximum your market will bear.

    Good luck.
  3. avlawn

    avlawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 9

    Thanks alot Scott. whats the man hr rate out there in fort worth tx ?
  4. A. W. Landscapers  Inc.

    A. W. Landscapers Inc. LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,287

    It depends on who you ask.

    If you ask the "undocumented workers" who cut grass with dull blades, their rate per man hour is around $20 - $25.

    If you ask the low baller who doesn't know his costs who might provide a quality of service that could range anywhere from poor to outstanding, they won't know what you are talking about but you can calculate it out to be about $30 - $35 per man per hour.

    If you ask an average lawn company who provides an average to below average quality of service, their rate per man hour is around $35 - $45

    If you ask one of the better lawn companies who provide an average to above average quality of service, their rate per man hour is around $45 - $55.

    If you ask one of the lawn companies who provide outstanding quality of service to select clientele that expect only the best, their rate per man hour is $60 and up.
  5. avlawn

    avlawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 9

    Thanks for your feedback Scott I gues I wasnt to far off on pricing I can put my company right in the above average catagory. Im thinking of raising my price next year however being in the market that I am in it may be risky but then then enterpurners are risk takers right. Any suggestions on what percantges or how much to increase buy?? Thanks!!
  6. A. W. Landscapers  Inc.

    A. W. Landscapers Inc. LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,287

    It's hard for me to make a suggestion since I don't know your market, or what you currently charge, or the quality of your work, or when you last raised prices, or what your market will bear.

    If you haven't increased prices in a year or two, most of your existing customers will probably go along with the increase as long as you can justify the increase. Write a letter to all your clients which explains why you are forced to raise the cost of their service, when the increased rate will go into effect and how much the increase will be.

    Explain that over the last 2 years (or whenever their last increase was) fuel prices for the mowers and for your vehicle have increased by x.x%, insurance costs has increased by x.x%, maintenance costs for the equipment has increased by x.x%, postage costs have increased by x.x%, increased time & costs associated with billing & check processing, etc. Explain that your company has absorbed these increases over the past 2 years but in order to provide them with the same quality of service you will be increasing the cost of their service by x.x%. This is also a great time to announce that you are now offering paperless billing and online bill payment "for their convenience".

    Then give them their numbers:

    Old rate from 2011 to 2013: $60
    8.5% of $60: $5.10
    New rate effective 1/1/14: $65.10 for paperless billing & online bill payment only
    If you wish to receive a paper bill and require check processing, an additional charge of $6.25 will be applied to each invoice.

    Make sure to thank them for their business.
  7. avlawn

    avlawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 9

    We'll since my last post on here I increased my prices and landed two new fairly good commercial accounts for the new year and some very good landscape commercial projects for next year .. How ever I was offered my old job through a settlent through my attorney with my ex employer.. They my ex employer offered I take my old job back with lost wages or I don't take my job back and take the settlement and run.. I was making 55-60 k per year at my old job..The bad thing is they haven't talked any numbers yet.. What to do ?? What to do ??
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  8. A. W. Landscapers  Inc.

    A. W. Landscapers Inc. LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,287

    Take the settlement. Do not go back to work for an employer that you sued. We have a good friend of our family that went back to work for the employer he sued through a class action lawsuit and won. He was the only one who took his job back instead of the cash settlement. Long story short, the employer made his time at work miserable for the next several years until he reached retirement age…they literally stuck him in a cubical, gave him no work, monitored him the entire day…no personal calls, no sleeping, no reading, no surfing the internet, no games on the computer, no interaction with other employees…if he was 1 minute late for work or returning from a break he got written up…any infraction resulted in his pay getting docked…he had to be at his desk at all times unless he was on a scheduled break or needed to use the restroom…he had to be at his desk so that his employer could find him in case they needed him…they never needed him.

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