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Cheap Cheap Lawn Mowing

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by DFW Area Landscaper, Jun 17, 2004.

  1. DFW Area Landscaper

    DFW Area Landscaper LawnSite Silver Member
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 2,116

    I knew when I got into this business that I'd always be competing with people who were new to the business and didn't have a grasp of their costs yet.

    Doing door hangers last month, I noticed somebody elses door hangers all over town. I mean, this guy distributed thousands of these things. It had a picture of a yellow cartoon bird and the head line said "Cheap, Cheap Lawn Mowing". Below that, it said $19.95 weekly, $24.95 bi-weekly. It was three color and they had the MC, Visa, Discover & Amex logo at the bottom.

    I found this door hanger in one neighborhood of postage stamps where it might make sense to be that cheap. But in every other nieghborhood where I found them, these prices just don't make any sense at all.

    Well, I never called the guy to find out what he was thinking. If I find another one of his door hangers, I'll be giving this guy a call.

    Over the last few weeks, I've had an absolute cancel-fest going on. I've signed a ton of new customers along the way, but I haven't been able to grow my revenues because customers keep cancelling.

    I know my customers aren't cancelling over quality because I'm on every lawn we mow with my only employee and we do good work. I simply didn't have a problem with customers cancelling just before the 100 degree temperatures last season, either.

    One lady called to cancel service today. Of course, I asked why she wanted to cancel. She said she had some unexpected expenses come up. She also mentioned that she had seen ads from other companies saying the price should be $20 and I was charging $30.

    I doubt this guy is signing customers left and right, though he may be. But what he is doing is leading customers to believe they're paying too much for lawn care.

    I'd like to crack this guy over the head with a steel pipe. He's just peeing in the pool. He's helping reinforce the "25 bucks gets my lawn mowed" mentality. I'd bet other landscapers in the area are having similar problems, though I haven't spoken with any yet.

    Considering a long term contract to prevent this schit from happening in the future. For those that work on long term contracts, what's your close percentage on estimates? Is life better since you went to long term commitments with residentials?

    DFW Area Landscaper
  2. Trevors Lawn Care

    Trevors Lawn Care LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,180

    you think to much.

  3. Norm Al

    Norm Al LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,227

    "IF" anybody would profess to be a "lawn cutter".....he would be totally missing the money making aspect of this industry!
  4. EagleLandscape

    EagleLandscape LawnSite Platinum Member
    Male, from Garland, Texas
    Posts: 4,347

    I completely agree with ya Trevor.
  5. NNJLandman

    NNJLandman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,306

    I have two $25 accounts, that is my house n my grandparents. Everything else starts at $35-$37 per cut and goes up. Its crazy what some people charge for lawn maint. All they need is there 21" mower n a station wagon and oh boy its time for lawn service. I mean if you were doing lawns with a station wagon n 21" mower but had prices starting at $35 per cut....everyone starts somewhere.

  6. Mudmower

    Mudmower LawnSite Member
    Posts: 102

    The Village idiots......Trevor and Jwingfield2k....have spoken.

  7. Itsgottobegreen

    Itsgottobegreen LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,177

    Some people just need to be taken out back and shot.
  8. Palmer Lawn Care

    Palmer Lawn Care LawnSite Member
    from Maine
    Posts: 42

    I lost an entire cold-de-sack(sp) to a bunch of kids (ages 10-14) charging $10/lawn when I was charging around $30 ;)
  9. Stephen M.

    Stephen M. LawnSite Member
    Posts: 192

    Even if $20-$25 seems cheap, at least he/she has a little self respect. I found a flyer yesterday put up by "a couple of local, hard working college guys" willing to do this kind of work for $10 per hour!!! Geeze!!
  10. Shuter

    Shuter LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,171

    Trevor took offense to the fact he is not charging enough.

    I had 1 customer last month tell me he found a new compnay. I have had this customer for 3 years, never changed the service or price the whole time. He resides in an $800,000 house. Customers come and go, so I ask why after 3 years he needs a change. The answer is: 2 guys just started a company, and to get accounts they are charging $10.00 per lawn any size. I say o.k.

    I then explain 2 things to the customer. 1. when these guys don't show up, don't call me back. and 2. I show him all his windows around the pool and ask how many lawns does a guy have to cut for $10. to be able to afford insurance to replace any damage done. He thinks for a minute and says he is not quiting.

    This customer lives in a neighborhood of 50 homes from $650,00 to $1 mil. I have 30 properties I take care of. These guys talked to everyone they could, and all my customers, minus the cheap one, said to take a hike. Meaning service and product are better than price.

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