Ever give away lawns to your competition?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by 1MajorTom, Jul 4, 2001.

  1. 1MajorTom

    1MajorTom Senior Moderator
    Posts: 6,073

    We gave away two lawns yesterday to another Lawn Care Operator.

    They are side by side. Roughly a half an acre each. Minimal trimming. We had the one lady for three years. Did everything we could to get her to convert to a 10 day cycle, but she always insisted on 14 days. This year we picked up her next door neighbor. Another 14 day customer. $40.00 each for the lawns. $160.00 a month for those accounts.

    But we just didn't want them. Bi-weeklys now to us are simply awful.

    We saw a crew cutting across the street from where we were cutting. Matt says, "Do you think I should go ask them if they want those two accounts?" I said, "Yeah, go for it."

    Turns out the guy is really nice. He seemed real happy about it. He said he would go check them out.

    Matt talked to the customer and told her that we just couldn't do a 14 day cut anymore, but he had someone that was willing to stop by and take a look.

    Well we went by those two houses today, and we see that they are cut.
    So we're happy, the lawn care operator is happy, and the customers should be happy too. It's not like they even cared about their yards. They just needed them cut.

    Just wondering if others out there gave away any lawns to a fellow LCO?
     
  2. Jodi, what you and your husband did is just a matter of integrity.

    You never know when that other person will give the favor back.

    We have been doing this for a long time. Sometimes somebody wants something done a certain way, so I don’t want to deal with it. Other times, I get referred, but the client is not in my service area. So I will recommend a person that works in that area. Not worth it to me if I have to fight traffic, drive a half hour, just to earn a $10 profit. Believe me, I have given some highly profitable clients away to family friends in the trade. However, those favors have been always rewarded, at least for me.
    John
     
  3. Lawn DOG

    Lawn DOG LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 276

    Did it twice this week. I turn work over to other lco's all the time. Usually it is because it is in an area that I don't target and reccomend someone that I know works that area. Every once in awhile they return the favor. It is good business to do this. I used to think I must be crazy for doing this but people appreciate the help. Just like jodi said "everybody is happy" then that's all that matters.
     
  4. BRL

    BRL LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,211

    Do it all the time. If I can't or don't want to do it, and I know the job is someone else's "niche" or in an area that they are busy in, I refer it to others that I know.
     
  5. Chuck Sinclair

    Chuck Sinclair LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 336

    If they don't meet what i want as a customer (Area, Yard whatever) i refer them to a local LCO i met that does a real nice job.:)
     
  6. Calvin

    Calvin Banned
    from Ontario
    Posts: 73

    We dumped over 30 pain in the ass accounts this year. All good paying customers but with very difficult lawns (fast growing turf, steep slopes, ditches, alot of trimming, far drive time etc.) gave all of them phone numbers of other LCO's I had seen written their trucks. Wanted to keep good customer relations as many were neighbors of customers we wanted to keep. The smart LCO's would have passed or priced accordingly I figured. One of those LCO's now waves at me when we pass by so I guess he appreciated the work.
     
  7. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    I give away accounts, but it is to friends rather. I don't rally consider myself as having any competition. If there is something or some location that is not feasible for me to service, than hey, why not. Right now, I am having trouble because I am getting all these calls for shrubbery. I realize it's rather easy to refer out mowing jobs, but shrubbery is just something that I really have to see more results of before I can just say "here's a guy that can do a great job for you." This is kind of tough as no one really likes to do shrubbery in the first place.
     
  8. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 14,700

    We have what could best be described as a mowing ring here. We are 3 seperate LCOs. AM Lawn Service (my company), T&S Lawn & Landsape(they post here on a rare basis) and Johnson's Lawn Service. We are constantly giving one another help, customers and anything else that comes to mind. It has worked out very well for me and the others so far.
     
  9. Columbia Turf

    Columbia Turf LawnSite Member
    Posts: 99

    I think there are times you have to refer things to otherlco's. I have not taken on any new clients since beginning of the season. (unless it was to good to pass up) For some reason, this year I bet i get 6 calls a week for one time or new yards that people want mowed. You have to know your limitations. I know what Calvin is talking about, we also try each year to "weed"out the undesirable accounts. The reasons are not always the same, to far out, not enough $, slow pay, or just pain in the a##. We always seem to pick up better properties. A couple years ago, by mutual agreement, dropped a $40,000+ year account.....Best year we ever had!:eek:
     
  10. Eric ELM

    Eric ELM Husband, Father, Friend, Angel
    Posts: 4,831

    We have given a lot of lawns to our competition. Once you are doing all you can do, it's better to give them to someone you know, which helps them out.
     

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