Weekly leaf removal cost

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by LCME, Oct 26, 2004.

  1. LCME

    LCME LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 430

    I called one of my customers today. I explained that I have stopped weekly mowing's and will begin leaf removal in November. I asked, How do you want me to handle you leaf removal?. Customers said, keep going weekly and pick-up leaves and haul away until all have fallen. How much?. I said, I would continue weekly leaf service until all leaves have fallen for $35 weekly mowing plus $25 for weekly leaf removal. Then, once all leaves have fallen do a final complete leaf removal for $60 plus the extra time to remove from beds, under trees, bushes, etc. Am I too expensive? or just about right?.
     
  2. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,028

    What does the property look like? Are you in a forest or a field? Too many questions to tell you if you are right or not, plus I am not in your shoes. I know that I get 40 per man hour for ground work and that is 2 people working and 1 hour minimum. A one time removal is no less than 100 bucks and weeklys are billed at the hourly rate. The grass has just about stopped growing so my time spent is generally dealing with leaves.
    You have to know your costs to give yourself an idea of what you need to break even and then profit. It has alot to do with your machinery, help, properties ect. Remember that it is not an exact science and even veterens can be burned on fall cleans. Your machinery and your body take a beating with this stuff so make it worth your while. Most guys that are successful here bill the fall by time, not all but many. You have to figure these things out because you are the only one who knows the numbers and specs of your jobs.
     
  3. LCME

    LCME LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 430

    I'm in a field. There are two leaf trees. One in the front and back. But, the very back part of the yard is woods. All I have to do is use my bp and blow them back into the woods. I can mow the front and back lawn once with the catcher and fill one leaf bag full. Would you agree that $60 for 75 minutes from start to stop is reasonable?
     
  4. Mycannon

    Mycannon LawnSite Member
    Posts: 98

    Is that just you working for those 75 min.
     
  5. LCME

    LCME LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 430

    One and only. :p
     
  6. Mycannon

    Mycannon LawnSite Member
    Posts: 98

    Yeah thats a pretty good price around here.
     
  7. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,028

    60 bucks for 75 minutes using a backpack blower equals 48 dollars per hour. Not bad change. There is the fatigue factor of being beat by the elements but that is an objective cost.
    Are you able to use a Z or bigger WB to move those leaves towards the woods and chop alot of them up on the way? the less debris you have to chase the better. Not lookin to tell you how to do biz, just trying to give some ideas how to make it faster which will equal more money.
    Thats a decent hourly rate.
     
  8. LCME

    LCME LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 430

    Yes, I use a 48" wb. I could use the mower to discharge into the woods. Thanks for the tip.

    As I mow the front and middle back I discharge to the middle then run over the leaf pile a couple times then put the bagger on and pick them up. The bagger holds a lot more leaves that way.
     
  9. fga

    fga LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,449

    LCME,
    I do a similar rountine. I don't give a weekly price, i just factor in an estimate of the entire season, on top of the lawn service. But why stop your weekly service? I continue as usaul, charging for the routine weekly fee, then estimate for each house the extra time spent weekly doing the leaves. That way you still are getting your grass money, as well as extra for the leaves. then on my last bill of the season, when all the leaves are done and cleaned, i give them the final bill which consists of ...example:
    $150 monthly service
    $200 Leaf clean up for season

    $350 balence due

    its nice to be collectiung these amounts of money in january, late decmber.
     
  10. LCME

    LCME LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 430

    What I meant was for customers who want weekly leaf removal I will continue to mow weekly + leaf removal. But, for customers who do not want weekly leaf removal I stop mowing and wait until all leaves have fallen before I return. I guess I said that wrong in my first post here. Thanks, LCME
     

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