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Negotiating Price In Lawn Care

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by jeeperscrow, Jun 8, 2014.

  1. jeeperscrow

    jeeperscrow LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 288

    I don't agree at all. You are only charging too much if the customer isn't willing to pay it. If the customer is willing to pay the price, and you do good work, and everyone is happy...then that simply sounds like a good deal for everyone involved.
  2. jeeperscrow

    jeeperscrow LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 288

    And also...once I set an estimate ($360 in your case) and the customer agrees to it then it doesn't matter how long it takes, that is the price. Same is true if I underestimate (which I have many times) and I don't then go try to talk the customer into giving me more money for the job. You simply make up for it somewhere else. Which is what all businesses do.

    To give an estimate and then go inform the customer you estimated too high and give him/her back money to me is absurd considering how often we don't get extra money when we underestimate.
  3. Dr. Cornwallis

    Dr. Cornwallis LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 847

    I used to wiggle around on price, however, I'm at the point now where the price is the price. I've found that the first price is give is usually spot on, and when I wiggle around five or ten bucks a month on maintenance things start getting slippery. On 50 accounts five bucks here, ten bucks there, fifteen bucks here, it all adds up to several hundred dollars of lost revenue. I'm consistently between ten and thirty bucks higher per month on service than the "other guy" so, as was pointed out by another poster, I let them know that they were unhappy with the other guy and that's why I'm here. Twenty dollars off a $100 a month yard is a 20% discount! That's a lot of money! That's basically the gas for the property for the month.
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  4. 32vld

    32vld LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,984

    Put 'em up, put 'em up.

    So I went to look at the original estimate. It was for $385. Job took me 4 hours = $96.25 an hour.

    $96.25 - $60 = $36.50 over my target rate. That is why I charged her $240

    Being greedy can back fire. That customer an was very happy with the quality of the work, I kept my word and was able to honor my word that if I could lower the price.

    Doing the right thing by her/customer just got me a referral that landed me a $555 dollar clean up from a friend of her's.
  5. Jcl4slc

    Jcl4slc LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 259

    There is no way I would set up a payment plan. No way. When the job is done, I want to be paid .
  6. socalkol

    socalkol LawnSite Member
    Posts: 63

    We commonly have people try to negotiate price is our business... I mean all we do is "spray houses with water". We won't negotiate a single dollar unless they are booking a package deal of multiple services with us billing out over 500$... And even then the wiggle room is tiny. letting customers know prices are negotiable is giving away self respect and opening pandoras box. If you want to offer them a discount do it on your accord... not on the fact that they asked/haggled for it.
  7. Nj shade

    Nj shade LawnSite Member
    from Nj
    Posts: 245

    I personally do consider landscaping a skilled trade as would most landscapers. If you are full time and don't consider it a skilled trade then assuming not doing a lot of plantings or something. Cutting grass has some skill to it, not saying skilled trade by any means. All the other costs are just that, COSTS of doing business and are relative in any business field.
  8. jeeperscrow

    jeeperscrow LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 288

    You are correct. We don't currently offer a lot of plantings. I also agree that cutting grass has a certain level of skill to it if you're going to do it right. At the same time I would say you can do lawn care work with less training than a lot of other skilled trades such as building houses, electric work, plumbing, etc.
  9. jeeperscrow

    jeeperscrow LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 288

    Which also explains why those other skilled trades can charge more. You can't find a high school kid down the street to handle the plumbing in your house, but you can always find one willing to cut your lawn. Now whether that kid does a good job cutting your lawn is a whole other story.
  10. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,670

    are you sure you can't find a high school kid to do plumbing with the same level of expertise as he can mow?

    Plumbing isn't as hard as people think..

    Just like mowing, he can do it, no one said it would be high quality

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