Big company mean higher or lower prices

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by meets1, Feb 20, 2006.

  1. meets1

    meets1 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,781

    I have read numerous post stating the big guys (i am assuming that is 3 or more employees???) can get the job cheaper cuz they need the work to keep all there guys busy. Yet later on in post I see the big guys rate is up and beyond what the little guy charges?

    Just thinking about this. In my area, probably within 60 miles I have the largest mowing/fert company in total lawns, employees, etc. There are numerous solo and double opps here. I am the highest. We offer awesome work compared to others. Never a complaint - I shouldn't never last here trimming bushes one the guys hacked through a garden hose which I had to replace. I can offer a better price I think - be more competive and maybe drive a solo guy out. What to do? A school for instance is getting bids. I know what they get. $140 for the school - he runs a 52 and 60 Z. It takes them a few hours. I would come in with a WAM and 1 52 Z for the front and I think maybe tops - 1.5 hours. Heck I would charge them $100 even being a private school. Do I or don't I start lowering my rate a little? Yes I know my cost, what I have to do for a bare bones bid but I know I could stay ahead of the game with lower prices but should I??
     
  2. beautifullawns

    beautifullawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 313

    I think that the bigger compaines are bidding low just to get the job. They mostly get the mentality that the can bid low and get the job so their employees have work and they can pay equipment. I wouldn't do that. If you know what they are getting bid the same or a little higher and sell them on a better job.
     
  3. Az Gardener

    Az Gardener LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,899

    More employees means you don't have to make as much on each employee to "cover your nut" Typically with more employees and equipment comes more overhead to even out the playing field. I don't worry so much about what everyone else is charging. I have my rates and it costs what it costs regardless of what others are charging. Do you want to expand? Is the job easy, travel, access etc? Will the work provide marketing opportunities to generate more work? Then maybe you could afford to drop your rate. But don't do it to drive someone else out, karma will catch up with you. see Earl. The beauty of owning you own company is you can do whatever you want. I take care of an older lady's home with a cool Japanese garden, tea house, 8,000 gal. koi pond, the works. I don't make a dime on that job but I love the place and she is a trip, very pleasant. She just ran out of money, didn't invest well, lost her job, whatever. But its close to some other properties and although I don't make bank on her place, it probably only costs the company 1-k per year. I'm investing in my karma.
     
  4. KCLandscape

    KCLandscape LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 526

    I am all about the karma/little money thing.
    I am also all about the karma/make great money too
    A balance is what I enjoy the most.

    And doing your OWN thing
     
  5. MMLawn

    MMLawn LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,569

    A company with 3 employees is hardly a "big" company. Really not much bigger in revenues than many bigger Solos in lots of cases. I wouldn't consider a company even "bigger" until they had 25 or more employees, and not "big" until they had more than 200. But that is just me.
     
  6. Lawnworks

    Lawnworks LawnSite Fanatic
    from usa
    Posts: 5,407

    I think the more experience/knowledge you have, is what should really influence your rates. Your target client should also influence your rate. The more we understand our clientel and business should determine your rates.

    Mike,
    How many employees do you have?
     
  7. meets1

    meets1 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,781

    Ok, so I should base rates upon what I want as a company owner? which can be either new equipment all the time, a bigger better truck? etc right?

    I guess I feel as though they look at our compnay and think, gee he's doing ok, I'm not even going to ask XYZ company cuz they look like there big enough or to big to be on my yard so maybe I'll call joe blow and give him my biz.
     
  8. Lawnworks

    Lawnworks LawnSite Fanatic
    from usa
    Posts: 5,407

    Your probably not missing anything if they call joe blows then. Serious lawn care clients want a serious LCO. Then they will spend serious money w/ you. I find the more knowledgeable. experienced, and proffesional that you make your business you will find your customer base shifting to people that need your type service and not joe blows working out of his ford ranger.
     

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