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How do you give a senior's discount without losing money?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by billc, Mar 24, 2004.

  1. billc

    billc LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    I'm just starting out, and a pastor at our church asked if we'd be willing to give a senior's discount. I've heard others on Lawnsite say they give such a discount but I wonder how to do so and avoid losing money or shady practice:

    Losing money - I figure I need to make about $33/hour to cover expenses, income, etc. I'll charge $35 to build in a little fudge factor. If I calculate I should charge Grandpa $35 before the discount, then take 10% off, I'm making $31.50 - under what I need. (I recognize if I do this work faster than estimated, I can actually make the $35 or more.)

    Shady practice - This means artificially raising the price before discounting it and ending up at my normal rate.

    How do you offer a senior discount? A percentage off? A couple free cuts during the season?

  2. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,137

    I don't give one. I get plenty of work without one. BUT, if you are really into it, it's not a bad way of getting new customers. Older people if they like you will give you good word of mouth to their friends. I am assuming part of that $33 is profit to you? If so, your profit now will take the hit. Taking a hit on your profit now might lead to higher volume later on. And you can always raise rates later on once you've got the volume you want, to get to that $33 rate.
  3. Trevors Lawn Care

    Trevors Lawn Care LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,180

    cant say i have ever had anyone ask about one, and wouldnt give one if they did. I would explain that my prices all reflect a senior discount to stay competitive enough to get jobs compared to some other guys.
  4. qualitylandscaping

    qualitylandscaping LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,581

    Shady practice - This means artificially raising the price before discounting it and ending up at my normal rate.

    What they don't know what hurt them.. Unless they are on a very tight budget (and I can tell), no senior discount for real, just implied..
  5. hole in one lco

    hole in one lco LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,793

    no discount the buckeye card means you have every thing pad off house ,and car.
  6. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Posts: 10,178

    it's almost impossible to work for seniors at all, without losing money.
  7. terracare

    terracare LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 353

    We don't usually do any work for seniors. There are exceptions, however

    We do condo complexes which attract older crowds, and we will also do work for the high income seniors. Most all other seniors expect us to work for next to nothing.

  8. sgtgm5

    sgtgm5 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 81

    I hate to say this, But seniors seem to be the worst of them all. I HAVE SOME THAT ARE GREAT BUT THE REST, fORGET ABOUT IT,. I really feel bad to say that but for me its been an up hill battle.
  9. Ray&Christine

    Ray&Christine LawnSite Member
    Posts: 181

    Around here the seniors have all the money so I don't give them a discount.
  10. A1 Grass

    A1 Grass LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 330

    Easy.... don't.

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