Saturation To The Max!

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Charles, Mar 25, 2001.

  1. Charles

    Charles Moderator Staff Member
    Posts: 7,949

    Was out riding around yesterday and it was unbelievable the amount of lawn care people out there. We have has alot of layoffs lately and it seems they all went into cutting grass. From scrubs with compact cars pulling 8 foot trailors and home owner equipment to the big rigs with 2 to 4 mowers. All working overtime on a saturday on into the evening. Just from the few errands I had to run I saw at least 20 outfits either driving or mowing. It was kinda depressing, but i am sure alot will drop out. But some of the big rigs I saw last year and they made it through the drought. I have ads in the phone book and the paper and no calls so far and I can see why. When you market is saturated like this its going to make it hard to replace customers. I lost a good many through no fault of my own during the winter. Its impossible to go up on prices this year either with customers being hit on by the upstart competition. I have never lost business i have been servicing already to the competition. Lawn services have multiplied like rabbits in the past 10 years. Wonder what the situation will be like in 5 years if it keeps up like this. I am expanding the services I offer and am putting lees emphesis on the grass cutting end of it. Lo0ks like we are going the way of fla when it comes to grass cutting.
     
  2. eggy

    eggy LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 953

    Charles..I do belive you are doing the right thing, by adding different services other then mowing. My focus as of late has been commercial mowing and other landscape services. The number of "grass mowers" here is crazy. I am seeing prices go down in mowing year after year, however last year around August we picked up more new customers then in the first of the season. You are right many will drop out after they see it takes a lot to make anything .
     
  3. Freetime

    Freetime LawnSite Member
    Posts: 112

    Bark at them as they go by! Rrrr!
     
  4. Scape Sculptor

    Scape Sculptor LawnSite Member
    Posts: 147

    There is a Bumper Crop of them this year!!! I am trying to not let it get to me, but customers only care about price. Even after getting burned by lowballers , year after year. I am diverifying and keeping a first class professional image and sticking to my guns on price as much as I can. I am still charging less than what I should be getting.
     
  5. Fantasy Lawns

    Fantasy Lawns LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,913

    we're all lawn monkey's down here .....and it's a ZOO

    Providing as much professional & quality service is key ......being able to do it all in a reliable & consistent manner ... help's keep the "Flea's" away but they are everywhere .....educating the customer to things like insurance, licensing & worker with WC ...performing the work while they are NOT home allows them to COME home to a perfect lawn & not have alot of noise around during dinner time or weekends
     
  6. Nathan

    Nathan LawnSite Member
    Posts: 193

    I agree with everyone else that professionalism is the key. However, most of us that have been doing this for a while will agree that until now, forums like this were very rare. The only way you could access the knowledge of others in the industry was by joining a professional organization. To do this most require proof of contractors license. I beleive this is good because it does keep many of the scrubs from getting "insider information". I am not saying that this forum is bad for our industry, but many of you should realize how much information you give away to potential competitors that aren't playing on a level field.
     
  7. lawnboy11

    lawnboy11 Banned
    Posts: 181

    I agree with Nathan 100%. Too much info given away on this site, although I pesonally like it a lot, I don't want to teach any scrubs any tricks. Maybe someday there will be a site that requires proof of legitimacy first. I think teaching people to charge properly is great, but let them learn the rest from getting an education of some type.
     
  8. John DiMartino

    John DiMartino LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,555

    I wouldnt mind showing proof of insurance,and business registration to look here,I dont mind giving info at all,Im always willing to help a fellow LS memeber-but locally I have stopped giving younger guys my experience,and knowledge for free-they are always bugging me with questions-I stopped answering them,and told them-10 yrs from now-your lawns willl llook like mine too-you gotta live and learn.These same youn ones mow of literally 1/2 what the account is worth,have no insurance,no WC,and deal cash only-obviously.They would take my accounts in a minute-but they are to scared of me to do that-for now,and all my accounts are Commercial and require proof of insurance before the work can be started.
     
  9. skyphoto

    skyphoto LawnSite Member
    Posts: 221

    As far as the free info I dont think this makes a difference because you have had building contractor books forever and building forums on the net since the begining of the net and it has not caused a problem...and just like the mowing industry everyone and their dog is a construction worker when they lose their other job. I think alot of people just expect gravy on jobs and those are not every job you get....My grandparents along with their 3 children use to mow the city cemetery all summer just to pay for their summer vacation They all did this after work school etc and 1 day on the weekend...Now this was back in late 60's early 70's so they had no z turns and were happy to have the ability to take a family vacation. I think a few people have gotten a gravy job and just expect all to be this way...Now my grandfather is just amazed at all my equipment and thinks it is wonderful that I can support my family while doing something I like to do...He also said that 20 yrs ago mowing was almost always a second job for people and a lawncare company was nevr seen at least in his area that was the plains of Illinois. I just feel so lucky to be able to do the job I do and am more than happy to have the competition as they keep me in check and motivate me to work even harder...Scabs and lowballers will be here forever, I intend to be here too.

    Sorry for the long post.
    Peace!
     
  10. Nathan

    Nathan LawnSite Member
    Posts: 193

    Hey Eric, If enough of us felt the same would there be a way to "qualify" true legitimate business owners?
     

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