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fees for setting up a new account

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by swing blade, Aug 27, 2002.

  1. swing blade

    swing blade LawnSite Member
    Posts: 123

    ok I heard a guy talking at lunch the other day that he charges his clients a fee, like 15 - 20 $, to set up the paperwork on their property and enter them into the computer. if they stay all season, then he does the last cut for free. Is this normal?????
  2. Are you concerned that it is deviant;)

    Sounds like just another way to get a deposit
  3. Guido

    Guido LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,085

    Its probobly not normal for most client bases. It may not fly with many of them. Its a good idea though IF.....IF.....IF you keep good records and keep a property map with notes, measurements, etc on file.

    I can't see charging that for adding someones name to a piece of scratch paper some companies call a route sheet though.

    If you explain to them that by keeping good records (like I said earlier with the map and all) could actually save them money and you time when it comes to estimating.

    I.E. Mulch........you'll already have the sq.ft. of mulched area in the yard.

    I.E. Fertilizer.....you'll have the total sq. ft. of turf handy

    Maybe records of how much you used last year, things you learned about the property to watch out for, etc, etc.

    It could work with higher end clients, but it might scare some other folks off. Be careful.
  4. dforbes

    dforbes LawnSite Member
    Posts: 195

    I dont' think it would work in this area. I would not pay $15 to $20 for someone to put my name in there computer. I would be leary of paying upfront for this. What if they don't do a good job. your just out the money.
  5. HBFOXJr

    HBFOXJr LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,712

    Possibly market it differently like 1st cut X$ and after that less. Then don't give a freebe either.
  6. Fantasy Lawns

    Fantasy Lawns LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,913

    No.... Never
  7. drobson

    drobson LawnSite Member
    Posts: 237

    I've never heard of anyone in my area working like that. Although it seems like a good concept to weed out the customers that have trouble parting with their money, but for a little guy like me, that probably would have lost half of my customers for me. People like the no money down approach, they don't want to pay anything until they see the product, and when your providing a service you can't show them the product until you've done the job for them.
  8. BigJim

    BigJim LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 382

    :eek: $20 bucks to push the enter new customer key,then type in their name.Wouldn't fly here.....
  9. GroundKprs

    GroundKprs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,969

    Wouldn't it be wiser to go after long term business? I mean years and years of grounds maintenance. Really would be a nuisance to fill the route every year. By charging this upfront, he is getting paid a little in advance in case the client drops him after a few cuts.

    15 years ago I decided I would not deal with shoppers anymore. I set an hourly list price, and set up discounts for different classes of service. The full service customers get a 15% discount off list, BUT in the first 2 years of service this is only a 10% discount. I invest time in learning a property, and the extra 5% pays for my extra time in learning it.

    One time service is list price; shouldn't someone wanting you to mow once or twice pay more than those who provide your income month after month? I actuslly set prices with the 15% discounted rate being the rate I want for my work. If I have the time to take one time things, I'm getting 18% more than the regular clients pay.

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