Am I the idiot?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by canopy2k, Jun 18, 2007.

  1. canopy2k

    canopy2k LawnSite Member
    Posts: 17

    Quoted a guy I know for doing his yard. About 1/2 acre with LOTS of shrubs, etc and LOTS of sidewalks that need edging. Told him $50 per visit, with weekly service. He says good deal! Lets get started! The night before I plan to go to his house to start service, I get an email from him asking if it really needs to be done once per week. Could I do it bi-weekly? I told him yes, I can do that. However, its going to cost $75 per visit. You can see the explanation in the quote below. He comes back with this.... Am I being stupid or is he? Im new to this, and I gotta say, Im not so sure I want to cut his yard even if we do come to an agreement....


     
  2. sheshovel

    sheshovel LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,112

    He changed that deal after the handshake did he not? You are in the right here and he knows damn well you are. He is playing you don't fall for it.
     
  3. bohiaa

    bohiaa LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,220

    this is just the way they will do you....

    almost every bid I have been on. the Customer will try to add something after they have the bid in writting, stick to your guns, if you dont you will be hating your self....

    What I have learned is when to keep my mouth shut.....Let them talk..... when your sure absoultey sure there done talking then give then the bid in writting...
     
  4. carcrz

    carcrz LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,085

    You're in the right. Try to keep him @ weekly maintenance & then just maintain the lawn whether it needs mowing or not. That way in the Summer you just need to stop by & check up on it. Let him know that it is an average price for the whole year. It takes longer in the spring than in the summer & fall. Also, charge extra for bagged leaves & will be billed accordingly.
     
  5. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,088

    Maybe we are bad sales people but in all our years we never ever convinced a customer to pay more on bi-weekly.....
     
  6. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,654

    The ones I dislike are those who wait about 3-4 services into the haul before they slip me the ole mickey, but if I can pre-screen my customers then I reckon they can do it to me (thou in real life it worked out backwards lol).

    But he does have a point, simply agreeing and not talking about the increase.
    Just do it, then leave the bill nice as can be (yes for 75, not another word, just lalala and tyvm).
    Then you might plan on it being over, but every once in a moon you get a serious customer who will turn into one of your most trusted allies. That's the thing here, test me and I test you back, how are you and have a nice day, lalala.
    I have done that so many times, 50-50 I guess, it is a gamble but what have I got to lose?

    Yeah I've lost many customers over it but it's the same when I take my car in for an estimated repair and I just got to add some lip service, next thing I know the bill is what it comes to... Teaches me to run my mouth, right?
    So sometimes it quiets customers down right quick, too, next thing you know it's the perfect relationship.
    Weekly at 50 or bi-weekly at 75, customer's choice here, bi-weekly is still the better deal, so why not?

    Because it's simple, change the contract, it costs more, everybody knows that.
     
  7. MOW PRO LAWN SERVICE

    MOW PRO LAWN SERVICE LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,566

    Well i have charged a little more for biweekly never 25% more it all depends how bad you want the job.
     
  8. DuraCutter

    DuraCutter LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 806

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't bi-weekly harder to cut because of the growth? If so, more money is needed isn't it? :dizzy:
     
  9. canopy2k

    canopy2k LawnSite Member
    Posts: 17


    Thats exactly why the price increase. This is not just mow blow and go, its also shrub and bush pruning. I didnt post the original exchange, but he basically told me that I was trying to rip him off and he was going to call other companies for estimates.

    I responded and asked him if this is the way he generally does business. Agree to a contract, THEN ask for more estimates?

    The whole thing just rubbed me the wrong way. This is not some guy I just met that responded to a flyer, this is a guy I have know for over a year.

    I replied this:

    "Do you think it would be fair if you gave a quote for $35 an hour, for weekly maintenance of a server. (hes a computer guy) then the customer said hey, you know what, I only want you to maintain it every other week. If you were doing it once a week, it would take you 2 hours, so you would be billing $280 per month. Now, with the change, you maintain it every other week and it takes you 3 hours due to the backup. Since you are charging hourly, each visit now costs $105, but the monthly bill is now $210. So which is less expensive? Did your hourly rate change? No. Did your time spent on the server change? Yes. You now spend less time, and your fee reflects that. Does that make sense to you?"


    Im still waiting to hear back from him, but I think its fair to say I wont be maintaining his property.

    c2k
     
  10. Sandgropher

    Sandgropher LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 909

    I would have said no i dont do Bi -weekly. :)
     

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