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Charging for labor

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by dtelawncare, May 9, 2007.

  1. dtelawncare

    dtelawncare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 227

    I just landed a dream customer. Wealthy and works away from personal home. He and his wife only come home a couple days every 3 or 4 months. The property is filled with flower beds and mature trees all over. No real maintenance has been done for 4 years. The beds are buried with leaves and full of weeds. Mostly azaleas and boxwoods remaining. Many of them dead or struggling. He and I agreed an honest estimate could not be made on how long it would take to get the place into tip top shape again. He and I agreed on 35$ per man hour. He simply told me to work on the place as much as I could to get it back in shape and send him the bill. After that we would establish a routine maint yearly price. I started last week. I took my worker with me ond we worked 8 hours at the place. Am I thinking correctly that this is 16 hours labor to be billed? A few guys I talked with said I should only charge what I pay my worker over the 35$ per hour.
  2. jeremyt1998

    jeremyt1998 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 71

    16 hours * $35 hours = $560. A 8 hour day for two effcient workers is worth at least $560. Don't be afraid of charging what you and your worker are worth. You pay for gas, truck, trailer, insurance and all the other stuff. You should have also charged a hauloff fee. I hope this helps. He probably knew that the total was well over $1000 to get that cleaned up. Did you get that in writing and a credit card number.
  3. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    Yeah I tell you, those dream customers sure are great when there's all this work due to neglect and they just want to hand over the money. Now just to be sure, I would wait until that first check clears the bank before getting started on much else, yes I would.
  4. NewWave

    NewWave LawnSite Member
    Posts: 93

    Per man hour means per man hour. Two men at your rate would equal $70 an hour.
  5. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    I don't know the local pay scale where you are but 35 an hour seems very low. Anyhow, are you going to stick to that rate if you include equipment (gas driven) or have to rent something?
  6. dtelawncare

    dtelawncare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 227

    I only have to take the leaves and debri about 40 yards into his pasture and dump it into a pile. Payment should not be a problem. He is a very public figure and those types of things would not look good. As far as the $35 per hour, that is about right for my area. Cost of living here in Alabama is lower than most northern states. I will not be maintaining the grass. An older gentleman does that and has been doing it for many years. He just can't take care of the beds and trees. Thanks for the sound answer on the labor. I had a couple guys really give me heck about the large amount. In 8 hours, we only got about half of the leaves up. A lot of it, a blower just doesn't help much. Lots of raking.
  7. mountianview

    mountianview LawnSite Member
    Posts: 100

    Ive got this multi millionair who says he won't pay anymore than 12 dollars an hour, someone else can be his landscaper.Funny how some people are ,also known for not paying after the work is done,beating his wife to death ?gave 5 mil to the local community college, saved a big company from going belly up buying at 3.00 share [ 1 million shares] sold at 100 dollars a share.Can't buy a personality or reputation tho or a landscaper for 12 dollars an hour?????

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