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Mobile Home Parks

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by radracer, Sep 10, 2005.

  1. radracer

    radracer LawnSite Member
    Posts: 53

    How do you guys go about pricing mobile home lots? Do you come off of your minimum price because they are smaller? I live in Zephyrhills Fl and there are thousands of mobile homes in parks. I got a call to give my first bid and the lady acted as if I was nuts with the price that I quoted. She said she was only paying $8.00 to get it serviced but she was unhappy with the people doing the work. I told her that she was getting a much better price than I could give and that she was getting what she payed for. Was my reply apropriate or do you guys give "special" prices for mobile homes in parks? Thank you in advance for your replies.

  2. QualityLawnCare4u

    QualityLawnCare4u LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,758

    Yeah, my special is I turn them down on the few request Ive had to bid. In my area not one professional LCO will touch them. Not only are you dealing with management but 100.s of clients as well. You will have LOTS of toys, hoses, unseen junk to move plus watching out for lots of kids and parked cars. Eight bucks!! In the 1990,s the lots in my impoverished area were going for 10- 20 apiece and were being done by lowballers and teens then. However, it is funny that in my area also you can get a single residentual yard cut for 15, go figure! One of the more decent parks was paying 20 a piece (my Mom lived in that one). Your area may be different but I would figure most trailer parks are about the same. For 8 bucks she needs to kiss the guy and massage him when he gets their to do a mobile home park. Mobile home parks and low end apt. complexes are 2 of the 3 things I now will turn down or not even waste my time going to look at.
  3. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    I have ONE mobile lot (and I mean it is one trailer, NOT the entire park) and it is a RARE exception to the 30-dollar minimum rule. With mobile lots unfortunately it isn't about meeting a fair price for the work, it's about having ENOUGH work to be worth my while as the minimum price exists specifically to prevent situations where people have a 20-foot strip of grass 3 feet wide and would like me to come out and cut it on a regular basis - The 10 seconds it takes to run the Wb over that strip is hardly worth dropping the gate, nevermind (un)loading and driving, and in the end I always felt somewhat like the driver of a Formula 1 on a go-kart track.
    But, the lady's cool and pays me 20 dollars each time I come out AND I got away with the first cut at 25 and it was supposed to be 25 EACH time but I felt so bad I lowered the price and then she was cool with it, too.
    For 8 dollars you got yourself a joker, no matter how you look at it. Since it's your 1st year, 15 dollars minimum for a trailer park lot, 10 dollars each in quantities greater than 4 AND if they're all ducks in a row, 7 dollars each in quantities greater than 10 AND ducks in a row.
  4. radracer

    radracer LawnSite Member
    Posts: 53

    Thanks for your help. I wasen't sure how to handle the situation.
  5. QualityLawnCare4u

    QualityLawnCare4u LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,758

    radracer, you may do good at it in your area, but thats been my experience here. This was one of the lessons some other well known LCO told me my first year in biz, no mobile home parks oir low income apt. complexes. Looked at one 2 weeks ago (did not know what it was till I got there) and it took me about 10 seconds to decide when I pulled in driveway and encountered thugs I did not want it. We have moblie home parks here the same way also.
  6. Tn Lawn Man

    Tn Lawn Man LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 479


    I understand the mobile home parks issue. I am very very picky about the parks I do, likely for the same reasons as you....too many bosses.

    But, I have had good luck with low income apartments. They seem to be simple cuts vs. a detailed manicure.

    What has been your experience?
  7. QualityLawnCare4u

    QualityLawnCare4u LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,758

    Tn Lawn, every single apt. complex I looked at had trash, beer bottles, dozens of "unemployed" thugs ganged up, kids playing everywhere, loads of toys and the smallest one I looked at was around 8 acres of very lumpy,hilly cars parked over the curb where you could not edge. Every LCO nightmare. However, if I ever get a chance for a good one, like where a lot or older retires live with strict regulations I would highly consider it. There is only one of those in my area, the rest are slum territory. I would have to put a pit bull or have someone guard my equipment the whole time I was there, not worth it to me.
  8. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    Ok I am not entirely disagreeing but SOME of my half-decent customers live in those kind of neighborhoods and you really have to take in the WHOLE picture before you decide. Now obviously if the yard is a wreck full of debris (I don't care if it's garbage or toys or sticks or whatever) and then they answer the door and you wonder if you'll get paid in drug money, I mean if you get a bad feeling then leave.
    There is also the odd situation when around April I get a call for an estimate to 'cut my grass' and that's all they tell me right, then I get out there and before I even get out of the car I can see ALL the leaves from fall have not been cleaned - And I keep right on driving.
    Also I had a call from someone telling me they wanted 2 cubic feet of mulch delivered and spread... You CAN tell some right off the bat, a 2cu.ft. amount of mulch involves a $3 BAG of mulch from Lowe's or Home Depot, so basically someone here wants an errand boy or something, dunno...
    You gotta watch it for sure, but the trailer park lots, if they're willing to pay me 20 dollars/lot (25 for starters thou, then I lower the price later if they're cool, see), then I guess I'm ok with it, thou it's really kinda bs but wth...
  9. bohiaa

    bohiaa LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,220

    I had one that was killing me, It was a PITA. I thought I could pick up more in that area but after 3 wks I learned that there was a kid who was out bidding me, "who lived there" most of those people didn't care about there lawn and it jsut didn't work out

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