New to the biz

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by TJ Fed, Jul 2, 2008.

  1. TJ Fed

    TJ Fed LawnSite Member
    from Indiana
    Posts: 4

    Ok well im 15 years old I get my license in 2 months I have a 1998 chevy blazer, a 2007 Scag Tiger Cub 48" deck and a 6x14 trailer and in a few weeks in going to be buying a echo weed eater straight shaft. Im new to the whole lawncare business but im deffinatley not new to mowing lawns since I live on 25 acres. My question is I live in Indiana what should my pricing be for mowing Thanks TJ
     
  2. Sweet Tater

    Sweet Tater LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,123

    some are going to tell you $1 a min, others I have heard $2. You should have a minimum charge, mine based on my expenses is $35. You are going to have to figure out what your costs are to make a minimum and go from there. Every market is different and what I can charge in Mississippi you may not get away with, and what ssome one in Florida charges I'd get run out of town for charging.
    I mow mostly 1 acre and up and charge an average of 55 an acre unless there is alot of line trimming. Theres not many paved driveways around here so no edging.
    Hope maybe this will give you some idea to start.
     
  3. Lawnut101

    Lawnut101 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,254

    Figure out how much your mower, labor and gas costs you to operate per hour, and go from there. For mowing smaller residentials I have a minimum of $30 and try to get around $1 per minute. I get more or less than that, but that's in my area. I'm sure some guys from your area can chime in and give some advice. For large lawns more than an acre, I charge a minimum of $50 for an acre up to around $75 or so, if there is a lot of trimming. And then for each acre after that, the price goes down a little bit per acre.
     
  4. TJ Fed

    TJ Fed LawnSite Member
    from Indiana
    Posts: 4

    Thanks for the help guys i think im going to do like a 25 dollar minimun and 30 to 45 an acre how do you guys go about being paid by the week by the month any help helps
     
  5. mowerbrad

    mowerbrad LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,273

    I think that 30-45 for an acre is way too cheap. I understand that your costs will be a little less than some of the other LCO's in your area but you will hardly be making much money. I think that 45 should be your absolute minimum on an acre property. I get usually $40 for less than half of an acre.

    There are many ways to go about billing. There is the contract way which has the customer sign at the beginning and can have different methods of payment plans. Or you can just bill at the end of the month, keep track of when you mow/work at the property and then put that on the bill, then at the end of the month just send out the bill. My least favorite way of billing is after each service. After each service just takes too much time and if the customer isn't at the property then you don't get paid. The only time that I collect the money at the same time as the service is for one time accounts.
     
  6. TJ Fed

    TJ Fed LawnSite Member
    from Indiana
    Posts: 4

    Well since this will be the first time im going to be doing this thats the reason im trying to only get 30-45 and acre im asumming that its the minimum plus the amount of land so say 1 acre i charge 45 to mow it plus a 25 min right or wrong so 70 for that yard or only 45 do you think that the equipment that I have so far would be good to start with or should I look for some other things
     
  7. bakerc8

    bakerc8 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 214

    equipment is fine but the charge should be a bit higher depending on your area
     
  8. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Male
    Posts: 7,714

    I dont thinl you should evn dream of going into business for yourself without working for someone else (preferably a few someone elses first for at least a couple of years. No idea how to estimate no job expereince on how long a job will take or the relative difficulties of one job over another.
    This goes for any business not just lawn mowing, cutting daddys grass is not professional lawn mowing and it doesnt count for expereince.

    I grew up on a farm, we had acres and acres to mow took us days.

    I worked for 3 years for someone else before I did my own thing, then went to go work for someone else when I got back from the army for another, two years to get reaccquainted with the market and pricing before going on my own again.

    At 15, id say your not ready yet, you have alot of seminars to attend, reading to do etc.

    Intent on doing it now?
    Buy a book on amazon.com its titled "Seven Super Simple Secrets to Entrepenurial Success" by Marty Grunder.
    Marty Started his own business at your age in landscaping as well, He becae quite famous for suiting Walmart at the age of 15 for not paying something like a $55 invoice.
    Definately do some reading before you get into it.
     
  9. forrpets

    forrpets LawnSite Member
    Posts: 31

    Have you decided or does anyone else know if it is $1/minute per man. If you have 3 guys working on the lawn and we are there for 1/2 hour would it be $30 or $90? This client has a yard that is very uneaven, several ditches to be weedeated, dog feces in yard to be picked up, etcc.
     
  10. Marvelous Gardens

    Marvelous Gardens LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    I think the book is called "The 9 Super Simple Steps to Entrepreneurial Success"
     

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