Does this happen to you... or is it just me?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Lawn-Scapes, May 19, 2003.

  1. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,810

    Cutting a lawn in a community for almost 3 year. The surrounding neighbors see you.. sometimes even wave to you while they are cutting thier own lawn as you tend to your account. Then one week you pull up to your account and out of the blue there is a new lawn service cutting the next door neighbor's lawn. You know... the one you've been smiling at and waving to for 3 years.. :confused: ???

    To me there is nothing more irritating in this business!

    Anyway... in case you haven't figured it out.. It happened to me today. So.. I walked up to the homeowner (while the LCO was still cutting his property), handed him my card and said "I've been cutting next door for 3 years.. If you'ld like a price or it doesn't work out let me know."

    He says... Yeah okay. You do a great job over there. I'll let you know.

    :angry: UN FREAKIN' REAL :angry:
     
  2. crazygator

    crazygator LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,048

    They have to use someone else, because of being jealous of your work at their neighbors house. Neighbors are funny people sometimes!
     
  3. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Posts: 8,745

    exactly. I am doing a doctors house last year and the number across the street sees how good of work I am doing and drops her LCO right then and there and tells me to take care of hers from now on. She told me that whatever I do to the doctors house, she wants it done to hers as well.
     
  4. fblandscape

    fblandscape Banned
    Posts: 776

    It's all about selling yourself. Your work can be good as gold, but if you don't know how to sell, you're gonna be SOL. Have you ever spoken with the neighbors at your houses? Have you ever handed them your business cards? If the answer to those questions are no, then you can blame no-one but yourself.
     
  5. Green in Idaho

    Green in Idaho LawnSite Senior Member
    from Idaho
    Posts: 833

    I second fblandscape's point.

    For all accounts, at least once a year drop a flyer or other marketing tool to the neighbors to get something in their hand for when they want service.

    My highly recommended tool is a magnet. Like the business card magnets. The cooler the better. something someone puts on the frig just cause it looks cool (happens to have your name and tele).

    Before season start up "I;ll be in the hood again, I can add your lawn too."

    Or something lawn related. A postcard of something cool (your city/ golf green/mountains/ etc) on side and your biz info on the other.

    Or do it at certain times of year - 4th of July. Memorial Day (next week). Easter. Or whenever you do an add-on service " We mulched your neighbors flower beds at 123 Main. We can do your too."

    - MARKETING!
     
  6. Shuter

    Shuter LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,171

    I go through the same thing. There is a higher end home neighborhood ($500,000 - 900,00) with about 50 homes completed and another 15 lots left to build. I started 3 years ago with 5 accounts in the neighborhood. I now have 25 for lawn maintenance, 3 more landscape only, and 2 others fertilizer only. Everyone in the neighborhood knows who I am, but some still call upon other companies every year. I guess this creates friendly competition, which is good. The only problem is when other companies go through the neighborhood trying to bad mouth me and chop down the price.
     
  7. KenH

    KenH LawnSite Bronze Member
    from CT
    Posts: 1,622

    Dont forget----everyone knows a landscaper. Might be a friend of a friend or family member doing thier lawn.
     
  8. Premo Services

    Premo Services LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,516

    It happens to me too. I believe it is the price. I have one that is always nice to me, offers me cold water. She asked for a bid last year. The people doing it do not trim, and leave clumps of hay all over the lawn. I gave her a bid and she never caled about me cutting the lawn. She still comments about how nice the 2 lawns next to her that I am doing. The price is the factor. Obviously the other company is not charging enough, they don't even trim. But she is getting what she is paying for.
     
  9. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,810

    The guy asked me if I would like to cut his lawn. I said... okay. ;)

    He never called the other LCO and they showed up while I was there. Kinda awkward... but he was a decent guy and told me he was just starting out. He said it took him 2.5 - 3 hours with a helper and hoped I was getting more than he was.. (already knowing that he was getting $80) I told him I was and make sure to bid a little higher next time. He left and I finished up the lawn in 2.5 hours solo :D
     
  10. SWD

    SWD LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 989

    Yes, this has happened to me several times. Apparently, the prices I get for the work I perform shooed some customers away. I am not concerned as this reduces the pita load by a great deal.
    What I find really funny is when the homeowner has another company come-in, they butcher his turf, and I am hired to straighten it out.
    Most of these homes are in the 750K to 3M range, are second or third homes, and the owners want work for less or free.
    I don't argue or negotiate prices anymore.
    I tell the owners, you want to price shop, you will end up with what you have now - you want it done right, the first time and every time, give me a call.
     

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