unique pricing question

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by stetsonh20, May 14, 2008.

  1. stetsonh20

    stetsonh20 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 6

    I have searched a little and found some good info, but I still wanted to get some up to date advice. I just landed an account with a housing developer that wants a "go to" guy for his needs. This is usually keeping the shoulders of the streets mowed, a few flower beds looking nice, and mowing some vacant house lawns. He told me to get started and send him a bill. I am very excited because this will help me grow my business to the next level. I want to make money with this company, but I dont want to get greedy because there is a huge potential for growth. I figured $60 per hour for mowing, trimming, and blowing. Any other jobs like mulch and flowers would be billed seperately. I say $60 per hour meaning man hour. Any advice?
  2. vos

    vos LawnSite Member
    Posts: 51

    hmmm exactly h ow big is this place? and also will he be wanting you to just keep up the flower beds? or spread new mulch or completely remulch the whole thing? and also 60 per hour is a nice price do you have employees? or do you work by yourself? and also how much is fuel? how much do you spend on your way there and back? you have to ask yourself these questions to completely cover any cost you see and any hidden cost such as machines breaking or simple regular wear and tear(since use and time running of course makes your machine wear down by ordinary standards) hope i helped and and wasnt to long winded. cheers!

  3. Patriot Services

    Patriot Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 12,960

    Anytime somebody says " just send me the bill" I stop them right there. Nobody that manages finances contracts a job verbally. You need to put every job in writing with the terms spelled out. Is this guy the one that holds the purse strings? I would hate to see you do a butt-load of work, hand him a bill and he goes into vapor lock and refuses to pay. Or worse the money people say we never contracted anything with you. Take it easy and do it right.:usflag::usflag::usflag:
    ericg likes this.
  4. vos

    vos LawnSite Member
    Posts: 51

    well said patriot services hes right take things slow and look at the situation with a sensible aspect. the first job i did(so far the only job ive done) i was loading my equipment and not until i got back did my dad say that i drove me new zero turn onto the trailer with a flat tire!!!(such a stupid move, turns out i sliced it badly on something) just make sure you look at all aspects of the job before, during and after.

  5. All Season Bill

    All Season Bill LawnSite Member
    Posts: 158

    Can you charge that much down there where you live? Sounds high to me.
  6. vos

    vos LawnSite Member
    Posts: 51

    hmmmm he still hasnt gotten on to tell us how big the place is if its decently large and requires quiet a bit of fuel as well as time i would give it 60 an hour but if not take it down to 45 an hour and really bidding on the job means LOOKING at the job and taking in certain expenses before even accepting it you dont want to take on a job with terrible debry in the grass that puts more stress on your machines then needs to be done
  7. stetsonh20

    stetsonh20 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 6

    Sorry for the delay...I looked at the properties with the owner yesterday. Mowing consists of the roadsides (winding private streets) and 1 unsold home's lawn. I estimate about 8-10 hours per cut. Very little trimming and next to no blowing. I am just starting out so it is just myself doing the work. The owner said that he wanted someone that he could call and tell to go mow xxxx lawn without having to check on it. The guy seems very reasonable and said that there is great potential for growth because of new developments. He told me to go ahead and cut it because it needs it and then figure the price. I believe he is legit. I guess that I could cut it for less that $60 per hour because it is about 5 miles from my house and I would be dropping the gate 1 time with no travel time between. Gas is about $3.75 around here. Would $50 per hour seem fair/ungreedy?

  8. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    Sounds like a lot of work.
  9. dougmartin2003

    dougmartin2003 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 337

    i still wouldnt do anything without a sign agreement
  10. Albery's Lawn & Tractor

    Albery's Lawn & Tractor LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,674

    your setting your self up to get screwed. He might seem "legit" now, but what about when you hand him a bill for $500-600 for a 1 time service. Your pricing is way off as your not too far from me. A company could send a crew of 3-4 out there and knock that job out in 2-3 hours, and it would cost half of what your going to charge. My opinion is $50 an hour is too much for a newbie to charge as you don't have the expierence as others do, so it will take you longer to do the job. Listen to what these guys are saying, make sure he knows what you are charging and have him sign a contract.

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