Wish me luck!

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by HOMER, Jun 28, 2001.

  1. HOMER

    HOMER LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,183

    In a continuing effort to streamline my micro-mini operation (ha ha ) I sent out letters today to 3 of my commercial properties telling them about my substantial increase..........beginning July 1. I'm sure they will not want to pay the extra $150.00 per month that I am requesting and that is somewhat the point. Rather than dump them I intend to give them the opportunity to either pay the price I am now asking or find someone else.

    The "luck" I was referring too is replacing the $545.00 a month I know I'm about to lose. These properties are some I have had since 98 and bid too low. Takes us a lot of time to complete each one and our little 2 person crew can't handle the size anymore. The mowing is a piece of cake, the trimming is the killer.

    I sent another letter to a seasonal commercial prop today as well. I asked for an additional $25.00 per cut to make it an even $100.00 or else I would have to bow out and let somebody else do this one too. I'm sure he'll bow me right on out cause he's so tight he squeaks.........but this is another one I thought I wanted.......till I did it. It grew........and grew........and grew some more. 2.5 hrs later I'm done.........all for a whopping $75.00!!!!!!!!! I did it to myself though. Not so much the size of the property but the Zoysia grass that is a bear to cut and make look like I want it to.

    Lesson here is think before you bid. Don't pay for the mistakes year after year, correct them as soon as you can.

    Bright spot is I asked one of my best customers for an increase and she said just let her know! I will be adding services to 2 commercial prop's that they own and plan on re-working the financial arrangement. Thats going to take a hunk out of the $545.00 deficit but times are tight, need all I can get right now.

    Measure twice........cut once. Take your time on the way to the top, think smart and bid smarter!
     
  2. Toroguy

    Toroguy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,075

    Wise words HOMER,
    Good luck, as many have mentioned before, it always seems like when a customer is dropped, a new one is around the corner.
     
  3. John DiMartino

    John DiMartino LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,555

    Good luck Homer,I always come out on top when I trim the bad accounts.
     
  4. Eric ELM

    Eric ELM Husband, Father, Friend, Angel
    Posts: 4,831

    Homer, best of luck on this. I hope you find so many good accounts that you have to get me to come down there this winter to help you. :)

    I'll forget this plowing thing, I'd rather mow. :D
     
  5. cantoo

    cantoo LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,910

    Homer, on some of these kinds of properties I find it is better to cut it once then give them a price. I have been stung before on these ones, they look good then you start cutting and it never seems to end. Then the next time you go there you try to drive faster cut corners etc until you finally hate cutting the property. I would rather cut the property for "free" and then know how much I need to charge than to guess low and try to raise it later. last year we told a few people who called us that we would be too expensive for the type of property they have and gave them some numbers to call of cheaper guys.
     
  6. joshua

    joshua LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,226

    homer , good luck to you, you'll get more jobs to replace those others if they do decide not to pay what you deserve. don't sweat it, you do good work and people notice that, and that alone will get you more work. also great advice on the bidding.
     
  7. Columbia Turf

    Columbia Turf LawnSite Member
    Posts: 99

    HOMER, Good luck on the change. I to have weathered similar situations. Couple years ago, "lost" or "got rid of" a very substantial account. Prices were way to old, the next year had the best year ever. now everybody is happy,,,,,,almost.
     
  8. 65hoss

    65hoss LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,360

    Sounds like good business decisions. Good luck Homer!:blob3:
     
  9. KD'sLawns

    KD'sLawns LawnSite Member
    Posts: 160

    Best of Luck Homer. I know that they can be a pain in the back and I agree with your method. Who knows they may decide that they like your work enough to keep you around.
     
  10. I hear what you're saying, I hate raising rates too. But it's kind of scary to have four up in the air at one time. I'd have raised 'em one at a time and waited for an answer from the first one before going to the next one. I know it seems like you'd just be dragging out the agony of raising rates, but I know with me, that my attitude changes with each "taker" or "refusal".
    Dave
     

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