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minimum cutting fees, are they practical?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by bobbygedd, Feb 2, 2004.

  1. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Posts: 10,178

    last year i tried to maintain a $30 minimum. i did go lower when i got a call from a lady who had a 2k property, and two nighbors with the same size. i know it's important to maintain minimums, but is it always practical? let's just say you have 2 properties next to each other. they are $30 each. then the nieghbor down the street comes by, and hers is half the size. would you drop down to $20? it would be a shame to lose her cus you couldn't maintain the pre set $30 minimum. you wouldn't have to move the truck, load or unload, i think it would be well worth it. what are your policies on things like that?
  2. ElephantNest

    ElephantNest LawnSite Bronze Member
    from La.
    Posts: 1,878

    The only time I don't stick to my minimum is for situations like you described. The third yard in one area, for a smaller yard, definately a taker. Also, people who are great with referals. I had( she moved) a lady with a $30.00 yard, she got me two neighbors so I dropped her to $20.00. Then she got me two more, hmmmm, what to do now? I dropped her down to $15.00 I think it was, and all her neighbors paid $30.00. Still have 3 of the neighbors after she moved, lost one cause she was nuts.

    A minimum is a good policy, it just shouldn't be set in stone.
  3. DFW Area Landscaper

    DFW Area Landscaper LawnSite Silver Member
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 2,116

    Postage stamp sized lawns exist in all area. Have a pre-determined minimum for every area. The minimum might be lower where you have most of your customers and higher across town. But don't recommend guessing. That's no way to run a business in my opinion.

    DFW Area Landscaper
  4. germann

    germann LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 259

    The advantage of a small co. is flexibility. Have set prices and minimums so you can bid with confidence, but be flexible enough to know when to ajust. We mow about 15 lawns at $15 apice in a small neighborhood. Most other companys will not touch them, so we have a monopoly. We took a risk taking on the first one, but we had a pretty good idea the neighbors would follow. We really needed the business at the time. They are now some of our most profitable accounts.
  5. J Hisch

    J Hisch LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 952

    I agree with all here, if we have multiple properties in a single location it is often more profitable than comercial properties it just make good sense to price fairly. Once they find out they are paying the same as the next door neighbor when their lawn is half the size they just might find somone else.
  6. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Posts: 8,745

    I have to agree. When the properties are right by each other to where the lawns connect, or they are only a house down I do drop the price slightly.

    We had one in particular like that this year where we got the this one ladys for $30. Later in the season the next door neighbor wanted his so we did it for his for $30 and dropped hers down to $28. Heck if we weren't doing her property the neighbor would have never saw us.
  7. pjslawncare/landscap

    pjslawncare/landscap LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,410

    My minimum is flexable per circumstances. The only time I almost got screwed was two homes I did together at $25 ea. Then old lady three doors down asks if we can mow only behind her fence (she cuts her own lawn). Beeing a nice guy I say sure for $10 big ones. Well customer #1 has baby and decides they will cut own grass. Then customer#2 moves :eek:. I finished out that year helping old lady out. The next spring I was going to dump old lady when two of her neighbors sign up at $30 :D
  8. LawnPerfect

    LawnPerfect LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 318

    I just charge by time. I have a minimum charge but dont always stick to it either.
  9. gramps

    gramps LawnSite Member
    Posts: 241

    It would seem if there is a min. price,that's it. Or there is no min. price.:confused:
  10. LawnPerfect

    LawnPerfect LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 318

    good point gramps. lol

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