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Weather conditions and appointments

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by walleymo, Feb 27, 2007.

  1. walleymo

    walleymo LawnSite Member
    Posts: 1

    Hey all. This is my first post.
    I'm planning my grass cutting business and I'm trying to think of the ins and outs of running it.

    My question is: How do you handle rainy days and such when you have scheduled appointments? Say it rained Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. How would you make up all those days? Wouldn't things get backed up pretty quick?

    Thanks,
    Jon
     
  2. Albery's Lawn & Tractor

    Albery's Lawn & Tractor LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,675

    You work from sun up til sun down to make up that time. If your not willing to put in these long hours then your in the wrong line of work.
     
  3. abuckeye

    abuckeye LawnSite Member
    Posts: 93

    I second that! All you can do is cut until you are caught up.
     
  4. Mow2nd-2

    Mow2nd-2 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 178

    you have to work till you get caught up or say it rains you mon-wed you could just start thrusday on thrusday lawns and catch the rest the following week some customers will understand some won't
     
  5. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,654

    You are free to follow any recommendations here that suit you, some guys swear by cutting in the rain, others do things different...

    Me, I don't cut in the rain.
    To me, the cut off point is when the roads are wet, I am done.
    What I do is keep an eye on the forecast, and get as caught up as I can before the rain, then bust out what's left afterwards.
    Once the sun comes out, as soon as the roads are halfway dry, I usually start to head back out.
    I know it sounds funny, but I can't see wet grass nearly as good as a wet road.

    Either way it hurts some, cutting in the rain blows but then so does having to work extra hard before and after.

    I guess it boils down to which method you find works best for you...
    As for the pita factor that's not too bad, one realizes we have to deal with it, once you get used to it it's really no big deal.
     
  6. TXNSLighting

    TXNSLighting LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 6,462

    Yeh you really need to find out what works best. i would defiantely follow the weather, and lets say its goin to rain on wednesday, then try to get some of wednesdays yards done tuesday...you get the idea. but if it rains and catches you off guard, just get out there when you can. and you WILL have some customers that dont understand why you cant mow in a bad thunderstorm...its pretty funny...
     
  7. Ed Ryder

    Ed Ryder LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 541

    Some guys cut in the rain. I'm too fussy for that. Sometimes I just wait in the truck and wait for it to pass. Some lawns I can cut when they are wet and it looks fine. Thicker lawns can be a mess. Sometimes I make an adjustment and focus on weak growth lawns while the thicker lawns dry. Or I may weedwack everything first instead of mowing the lawns in the hopes that the grass will dry.

    I don't guarantee cut times for anybody. My customers all know that I'm fussy and I don't cut in the rain, and that delays are going to happen from time to time. For the nut jobs that couldn't comprehend that, I got rid of them a long time ago.

    The most important thing about rain storms is to stop all work immediately at the first indication of lightning (thunder or flashes). Of course, everybody thinks *it won't happen to me; I won't get struck by lightning.* Well, it almost happened to me. I was 50 feet away from a lightning strike while blowing. Wood exploded instantly and violently off the tree right in front of my eyes. I've got a souvenir from that incident leaning up against my wall a few feet away from me. It's the piece of wood that came closest to hitting me. It went BANG! And it was like a bomb going off with wood flying all over. A very violent explosion. Up until then I enjoyed lightning very much. It was fascinating to me. Now I'm nervous around it and a bit scared. You won't find me cutting any grass any more when there is lightning around! First sound of thunder and I am done!
     
  8. HOOLIE

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,981

    This is just one of the reasons why it's so much better to charge a flat monthly rate instead of charging by the cut. You can't contol the weather, and typically there's one if not two weeks each season where it justs rains...and rains... then the next week you're stuck with a mess and still charging the same as for a normal cut. I would have to think most guys out mowing in a steady rain are charging per cut...why else would you be out there? Just chasing down mowing revenue.
     
  9. supercuts

    supercuts LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,784

    one of the advantage to ztr is how fast they are. if it rains 3 days you "cut corners" if needed to catch up. skimp on trimming, or if there is a shaded area that doenst grow much skip it that week. also, you can learn to cut so your not blowing clippings in the driveway so you dont need to blow it off, or you can run a ztr up and down the driveway (reverse works best) to blow it off saving lots of time. i dont like to but will mow in the rain if nessasary. alot of large companies (300+ account size) mow in the rain all the time here. people always ask if its bad for the grass. its really not as long as your not leaving clumps
     
  10. bigmudder77

    bigmudder77 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 297

    I would mow as much as i could before it rains and get the rest after it rains some i have even mowed at 10 at night for some one that worked 3rd shift.(not good for people that are sleeping make sure its ok first) cant see to well and the ground gets wet, but thats when i mow my lawn. At night cause i am to busy during the day.
     

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