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Garden Tilling prices?

Discussion in 'Tractors' started by o-so-n-so, Mar 19, 2003.

  1. o-so-n-so

    o-so-n-so LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Alabama
    Posts: 1,218

    Hey fellows,
    Here's my deal. Bought new tractor and tiller. I now offer tilling garden spots in my area.
    I want to offer a fair price, not a cheap price. I want to justify the purchase of this tractor and this is about 1/16 of the way I plan to do that.
    Give me some feed back on price as per area. thanks

    Tractor is a John Deere 4510 39hp with a JD660 5' tiller.

    First add went in the local paper today, and people are already calling. Not many people do that in this area.

  2. iowapride

    iowapride LawnSite Member
    from Iowa
    Posts: 59

    I have a John Deere 4100 and 450 tiller. I charge a minumum of $15. Range is from $15-$50.
  3. Remsen1

    Remsen1 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,020

  4. Remsen1

    Remsen1 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,020

    With a big rig like that I would charge a minimum of $75. $75 for up to 60 linear feet. Then somewhere around $.80- $1.10 per linear ft. Soil condition prior to arrival would play a big factor in determining the price.

    Reduce the minimum if they make arrangements with other neighbors to do all of them at the same time.

    We've considered adding this service, but the equipment is expensive! Customers should appreciate the expense.
  5. crawdad

    crawdad LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,939

    Make a minimum charge, and an hourly rate. I rototilled when I was in Mass. in the 80's, and used to hear, "The other guy used to charge 15 dollars." I would reply that he must have gone out of business, from not charging enough to fix his machine. Rototilling is hard on a machine, and should be charged accordingly.
    See how much the local rental places charge for a back-breaking walk-behind, half-day rental. See if you can do it for around the same price. Sell it as such. "For the same money, you can bust yer @ss, or you can sit there and watch me till it." It worked for me. I don't till any more, as it is the season to be picking up lawns, and there are a lot of people with full sized farm tractors here in East Tennessee, that can out-do my Gravely rider tractor with a three foot tiller.
  6. hosejockey2002

    hosejockey2002 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,195

    Iowapride, how can you afford a $15 minimum??:dizzy: I have a fairly small tractor and I charge $40 an hour with a $100 minimum charge. License, bond and insurance cost too much to charge less. Most legit guys won't even mow a small lawn for $15.

    RJS Compact Tractor Services
  7. iowapride

    iowapride LawnSite Member
    from Iowa
    Posts: 59

    I live in a small town of 1600. Most of mine are within driving distance(on tractor) within each other. In this small town if I charge a minimum of $40 dolllars they are going to have a huge problem with it more less $100 for a 20 by 20 garden.
  8. grassdaddy

    grassdaddy LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 565

    Was discussing this with dad a couple weeks ago.He bought a new farmall 140 in 1960 or so turned gardens for 3 or 4 dollars a piece.I think they about starved before he became buildning contractor.;)
  9. leadarrows

    leadarrows LawnSite Senior Member
    from N/A
    Posts: 925

    I plowed my first garden for pay in 1964. I charged $20.00 back then.I never have worried too much about the size. Most gardens I have done over the years just are not big enough to worry about that. The time it takes you to get there, unload, etc. is what you really need to get payed for. Thats why I would agree that getting neighbors at the same time would effect my minimum. Last year it was $60.00. I think $75.00 sounds about right.
  10. Gordon

    Gordon LawnSite Member
    Posts: 33

    Tilling like bushhogging or other tractor services are going to vary quite a bit around the country. Bottom line is what the market is going to bear. Now if that number is too low to make a decent profit then you might want to look elsewhere for your profit numbers.

    When I'm tilling I don't charge by the hour. Always charge by the job. I've invested alot of money in equipment so when I get it out of the barn I"m going to make money with it or it's going to stay parked. By the job price doesn't corner you to a set number of profit per hour.

    Another thing that I try to do is to lump gardens in my schedule. That way less travel time means more profit. I've only been tilling gardens for a few years and it's turned out to be a pretty good money maker so far. Just hope it stays that way.


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