$4- $5/gal for fuel...still doing those free estimates?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by nlminc, May 21, 2008.

  1. nlminc

    nlminc LawnSite Bronze Member
    from GA
    Messages: 1,671

    This has got to stop! Figure out how much it cost to just drive out to a property and back to the office never mind spending your time with a prospect.

    I had a lady email her addy and ask me to run over an drop a quote in the door for her! Sorry, if you can't take the time to meet with a prospective contractor face to face...you are a waste of my time.
  2. jrush

    jrush LawnSite Member
    Messages: 215

    Yup, same here, lady called and wanted some shrubs pruned. Only, maybe 3 out of all the ones she had. I said when is can we meet so you can show me exactly the ones you would like. She almost got upset! She said just take a look and let me know. Sorry lady, if you don't have 5-10 min than you are just wasting my time. Or, let's say I did it and she said not those, I meant the other ones! You either meet with me and my charming personality or f-off!:)
  3. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,370

    Do all estimates by email.....yard prices are not that much different and often they shop around.
  4. mattfromNY

    mattfromNY LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from Central NY
    Messages: 1,582

    I've been running estimates when I am in the neighborhood. If if is a distance to go, I tell the prospect that I will call when I'm on my way, and I'll only go when I have other work in the area. I am not looking for work, turning away as much as I am taking. But, every now and again I pick up a good job. This spring I grouped cleanups as many as I could that were close to each other, and I've let some of my lawn customers go b/c they werent close to others that I service. It sucks, I am constantly watching my gas gauge as much as I watch my employee to see that he isnt wasting time. I'm driving myself nuts!! Somethings gotta give with these gas prices. Just went over $4 today at the local stations.
  5. whoopassonthebluegrass

    whoopassonthebluegrass LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,305

    I had a lady call early in the season. Left mssg requesting non-weekly mowing (which I don't do) and left her address - waaaaay off the beaten path. So I delete it and let it go.

    Then a lady calls for a bid last week, says all the right things - so I tell her I'll come out. She starts giving me her address: SAME LADY!!!

    Needless to say, I haven't made time to drive out there...
  6. LawnBrother

    LawnBrother LawnSite Senior Member
    from SW Ohio
    Messages: 867

    I will always give free estimates for mowing, but I only give estimates in areas I already work in, so I'm there anyway.
  7. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Yes, yes, they're coming my way for free, they're coming my way for free :D
  8. Matts lawn care

    Matts lawn care LawnSite Senior Member
    from MD
    Messages: 829

    I am pre screening my messages. For lawns I am using maps.live.com and it's working out good, just tell them the price will be more if it is not maintained weekly or whatever. You can see a good amount of detail, fences, obstacles ect. If they are too far I delete.
  9. TomberLawn

    TomberLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,299

    I'm really working on route planning. Since I'm part time and out of school, I only mow about 2 days a week. Diesel has been over $4 for some time now, so I'm really watching my work schedule to make sure I have enough to do to make the trip worthwhile. I try to only go to town 1-2 days a week and plan out the stops so that I make the most of my time and fuel. Right turns are great. I heard last year that UPS reorganized their routes to only make right hand turns, so the trucks didn't idle at stop lights all day, and they saved millions of dollars. According to the UPS website, in 2007 they saved 30 million miles and 3 million gallons of fuel. By today's prices, that's almost $14 million.
  10. mngrassguy

    mngrassguy LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,167

    My county website has property tax info inc oblique aerial photos, property size, ect.

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