res- quantity/quality/speed

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by the scaper, May 25, 2003.

  1. the scaper

    the scaper LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 690

    these question's are mainly for res-solo's one helper max. a:how many lawns do you usually do in one day? b:what is your best key advice on getting the most lawns done (correctly) in the least amount of time? (mow/edge/blow). thanks
     
  2. Bob's Lawn

    Bob's Lawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 23

    You will get a lot of ideas here on this. Doing a search will help also.

    A: This is difficult. How big/complicated are the lawns? If they are close together and small, you can get a bunch done in a day. Maybe 10-15. I have a day with my toughest lawns bunched together. I get 7 done in a long day (one is a long drive and they pay BIG for it)

    B: There are LCO's here who can answer this better than I, but here are my thoughts:

    #1 Make your route as tight as possible. The less time behind the windshield, the more time making money.

    #2 Make as few trips around your properties as possible. I make a quick trip around with the blower in my hand to look for obstacles (none of my clients have kids, but I do have 2 auto parts stores and they have trash everywhere. I carry a bag (not blower) for the first trip around at these.

    For some properties I carry my trimmer while driving the wb to the top of the driveway. I trim first, so when I am done I drop the trimmer and start mowing. When I get done mowing I carry trimmer back to the trailer while driving the wb.

    Trimming first is a big debate here. I know my properties really well and know where I can mow and where I can't.

    If I need to edge I do it after mowing.

    I blow last and walk the property looking for anything that is not right. If there is any debris on the driveway or sidewalks when you get out of the truck, you may have to blow first. Which is why I carry the blower for the first walk through. After awhile you figure out which need this and which don't.

    Carry water with you if you can. It saves time if you don't have to go back to the truck for it.

    #3 Always bring your lunch. It saves time and money.

    These are some ideas, there will be a lot better ones. Tell us what you figure out works best for you.

    Bob
     
  3. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,028

    What is the goal? To make money. Assuming you are pricing right and not trying to imitate True Green/Chem Lawn, I'd say Bob gave some good tips.
    There are always ways to get faster but that starts with you. Time all of your actions from the time you hitch until you take the trailer off. It takes xx minutes to get from home to job 1. It takes xx minutes to cut job 1, xx minutes to trim, xx minutes to edge, xx minutes to blow, xx minutes to load up and drive to job 2. Then all over again. Do that all year because your times will change as the summer moves on. (less trimming, less growth) You will have a great start to see where you can improve.

    The other thing is that these times are for the equipment that you are in posession of. Once you get a handle on how much time it takes, demo a larger mower for a round or two. If you are using a 36 get a 52 or 60. Your lawns have to dictate the size of a mower but you would be surprised where a 52 + fits. Then time it again.
    My first year (basically a lawn tractor and homeowner tools) netted me 12 jobs that took about 16 hours to do. After about a year and a half of that I had a Walker (not the fastest in the flats but very quick for the properties I cut) and by year 2 i had doubled the customer base in that same amount of time. Now I have 25 customers with a total of 4X the square footage of my first year and we (wife and I) get them done in 12 hours. On top of that the $$ intake has also risen 4X.

    Bottom line, biggest fastest COMMERCIAL equipment for the majority of your application. Price in the right range. Know your times.
    This is a great topic and there are many more tips which I leave to others. Good Luck.
     
  4. I can service twelve $40 class lawns a day fairly easily. Up to fifteen of that size a day if things get tight. As long as a trailer isn’t overloaded, and you have a strong truck, you can travel all over town when needed. But drive time will bite you if you don’t plan your route.

    In addition to the other advice: When you get enough money together, get rid of your belt-drives. Don’t go to bed until EVERYTHING is prepped for the next day. Start as early as your customers will allow. Carry whatever fuel your body needs in your vehicle, to avoid convenience stores. Keep Saturday’s schedule clear for catch-up and Sundays for maintenance. Stay current with your maintenance so you can work Saturday and Sunday when you have to, without abusing your equipment. When delays start getting bumped into the next week, you’re in trouble. Things go wrong, so you need tools for light repairs, extra trimmer spools loaded with line, spare air-filters, belts, blades, a fix-a-flat kit, etc.
     
  5. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Posts: 10,178

    plan routes, do the speed limit, since each property is unique, u will adjust to a "routine" on each property after a few trips. we do 12-15 $30 lawns, in 5.5 hrs. me and one helper
     
  6. the scaper

    the scaper LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 690

    thanks guys, i'm doing about the same as most of you, 10-12 $40-$60 class yards with a helper and usually about 6-7 by myself before i'm tired. i was just checking to see where i stand on regulars in a day, and looking for time saving tips that i might be missing. also i wanted to give some of those guys that say they're doing 60-90 yards a day by themselves an opportunity to explain how they do it :D i do have all the good equipment and i guess we would all agree to that being the best key advice. one little time tip i might have to offer that i didnt see posted is knowing the customers schedule and doing their property when they're not at home(when possible) , that way i dont have to deal with them or their car in my way. thanks again- keep the ideas coming :cool:
     

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