Mowing contracts

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by sms8921, Jul 1, 2012.

  1. cpllawncare

    cpllawncare LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,659

    Just curious, I know about the varibles and all but how much would you say your avg customer pays for your full service? I really want to drop all our mow and go folks! To be able to survive off of 20 customers would be virtually impossible for me. Unless they were paying like 5-6 hundred a month which is an extremely hard sell.
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2012
  2. JContracting

    JContracting LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,878

    ^ anywhere from $215-250 right now. That's spread out over 7 or 8 payments though. I only have a couple full service right now but as I said I want at least 20 more full service clients by the end of May. At an avg price of $230 each, that's $4600/month. Less expenses I'd say $3000 net roughly. That's only maintenance work. On top of that Ill have several thousand per month in installs that vary from patios, retaining walls, complete reconstructions to small installs of mulch, edging, & shrubs. Right now at this point in my life where I'm going to graduate college in the spring and am saving for an enclosed trailer, (going to sell my walk behinds most likely, or one of them and keep the other as a back up) to buy a floating deck hydro wb & walker ghs for clean ups and then a dump truck w/ leaf box & then a leaf loader also as well as save for a house. It may be a high goal but I certainly think it is possible. I'm still running my numbers & developing my plan as we speak, im extremely busy with school & clean ups but ill be done with clean ups by Tuesday and I'll have some time to think about the what & how it'll be done. I do have a few decent sized installs lined up for spring. That amt would in maint income would work for my life right now with my bills & expenses. However I never will settle for what I have and where I'm at , I will always want my business to consistently grow. Btw, I am primarily a solo op as of right now. My goal is to have one person (most likely one of my younger brothers' friends) working for me full time next season.
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  3. Lazer Cut

    Lazer Cut LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 906

    so you mulch, trim shrubs, weed pull etc. for a monthly set fee all year long...


    i like that idea... so you take say small resi

    30 cuts at for easy numbers lets say $40 a cut
    mulch at $70 a yard needs 7 yards so $490
    trimming bushes bed maintenance $360 a year

    so $2050 so $171 roughly a month for 12 months correct??
     
  4. JContracting

    JContracting LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,878

    Depends on where you live. Most people (imo) arent going to want to pay for landscape maint services during the winter. That's why I do 6-7 month contracts for maintenance. I don't have any snow clients on a landscape maint program but I will next year. For the future, every client that wants maintenance services I will push strong to get them on a full service plan. We do irri start ups with maint & adjustment & replacement if needed. Irri winterization, 5 fert/weed control apps (I did 4 last yr but will be increasing that this year to 5), weekly mowing, spot spraying non selective herbicide in the beds, shrub trimming 2x yr. Spring clean up & dethatch, & a fall clean up. The fall clean up is done weekly or biweekly so the clean up process is easier. We only do 22-24 cuts in MN.

    Btw, raise your mulch price! The lowest I go is $80/yard installed. No fabric either! It doesn't do anything for stopping weed growth.
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  5. Lazer Cut

    Lazer Cut LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 906


    Haha I was just throwing numbers out, but ok I like that. I don't really want to be full service and do their furt n squirt too. I stay away from that and don't plan on getting licensed anytime soon but I guess I could offer straight fert n squirt to a lot more people broaden my work... Hmm interesting I like that.

    Give a discount is they were to pay in full? And how did you set it up if they pay on the 1st it 15th of that service month? That sounds very good not waiting an extra half a month for money
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  6. cpllawncare

    cpllawncare LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,659

    If you don't want to do fert and squirt I would still offer it just find someone to sub it to, that's what I do, WoW! we couldn't get $80/yard for mulch installs around here, even $60-65/yard is high and that's where we are.
     
  7. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 7,961

    We are pretty much a full service company as we have to be to do commercial work. Mulch for $80.00 per yard is pretty standard, need to go up on it as I often install cedar.
     
  8. JContracting

    JContracting LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,878

    Sub it out if you dont want to do it. In order to have a strong & loyal client base, you have to close all opportunity for them to find another contractor to do something that you should be doing.
    I'd prefer them to not to pay for the entire yr up front. Most of my clients are good with paying on time. But invoices go out on the 30th, 31st, or 1st. Due by 15th or service stops and client still billed the same amt regardless of how many less cuts they received.
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  9. djagusch

    djagusch LawnSite Platinum Member
    from MN
    Posts: 4,225

    Start billing june's services june 1st and be due the 15th or 20th. All my contracts are set up like that (over 250 townhomes, biz, and such). They get the first 15 days of service without money out and you get the last 15 days paid ahead. Really helps cash flow in spring and you catch dead beats before your have 15 to 20 days of service. I'm close to your area and know many guys lined up this way.
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  10. JContracting

    JContracting LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,878

    Oh, I forgot to mention that. My full service clients are all on prorated payments. It may not be fun in spring or summer when the grass grows like crazy and you have to spray for weeds in the beds, broadleaf spraying, shrub trimming, a weekly mow, all in one week but it certainly pays off when you get paid in Nov and will only be go to the property twice, maybe 3 times for the remaining clean ups.
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    Last edited: Nov 23, 2012

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