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Aeration prices for LARGER lawns 3/4 to 2+acres?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by TLS, Aug 20, 2003.

  1. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,943

    I've waded through quite a few posts on prices per 1000 sq/ft. And came up with $7 to $15 per 1000 sq/ft. Thats a BIG gap!

    I have quite a few LARGE lawns that I'm going to start to target, but before I do, I wan't a solid pricing structure.

    Here's an example:

    Lot size 47,000 sq/ft minus house and driveway (rounds out to an acre). I charge $55/cut and it takes me about 45 minutes to sometimes an hour depending on how crazy I get with trimming. What should I charge for Aeration?

    @ $7 per = $304
    @ $10 per = $435
    @ $12 per = $522
    @ $15 per = $652

    The $7/K sounds about reasonable as it could take an hour to do. But the higher amounts just jack it WAY up there in price. No way a homeowner is going to pay $650 for me to punch holes in his dirt!

    Anyone out there with pricing experience on larger properties?

  2. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,501

    At $10 per k Tommy, you will make money. That's what I charge on those size props. And you're right...you don't want to hand them a bill for punching holes that's equal to the GNP of some 3rd world countries.

    DUSTYCEDAR LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Messages: 5,132

    i would charge min to stop 150 and go up from there terrain etc.
  4. @ $5 per 1000 you will make money. Lawns that size don't pay premuim prices. $5-$10 is addiquit, the first 15m more than likely pays for the equipment.

    At $5M you still making $200 an hour, and recouping all costs and banking on the profit, while not putting a big dent in their budget. This will also allow for upsells such as seed and fert.

    Lawns well over an acre I charge $5.50M I put a tow behind on and can ddouble areate most of the ones I have in about 45 min.
  5. Phishook

    Phishook LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,143

    Talk about a money maker.

    What about screening the pluggs? Add an extra $1/1000 or what?
  6. work_it

    work_it LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 976

    Lawngodfather, you mentioned upselling. How much do you charge for seeding and fert.? Iwould have to sub out the fert. since I don't have my chem. liscence yet, but would like to know profit margin on subing it out.
  7. Soupy

    Soupy LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,125

    I would consider how bad the customer wants aeration first. If they know the benefits and really want it done. I would propose going with the $10/K price. You have the upper hand on these lawns compared to smaller ones. Even though they can rent a Aerator for around $35 for 4 hours. They are not going to want to go through all the work involved to do this size lawn.

    If you are trying to up-sell aeration to a leary customer then go ahead and offer the $7/k price.

    Most of my lawns are in the 8-15k size. I charge $12.50/K on these size lawns.

    Don't forget that Equipment cost money. Even though you won your Aerator, doesn't mean you should pass the savings on to your customer. Your next piece of Aeration equipment most likely will not be free. So charge as if you just spent $2500 or so for that new piece of equipment.

    Also, I bet it takes you longer then you think to Aerate these lawns. Are you planing on doing a second pass in the opposite direction or just one pass?

  8. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,943

    Thanks for the advice guys. I will be sending out notes on the customers invioces, and making up small flyers for non-billed customers.

    Although I did "win" the aerator, I have it set in my head that I have a $2500 piece of machinery and I will never waver from that thought. I'm actually thinking that I'm making payments on it!

    As for underestimating aeration time....I don't know yet. But the bigger and more open the lawn, the quicker it'll go. It's going to be the small areas that take the time.

    From my test area, I feel that a single pass "should" be enough on most lawns, as my test area almost looks like I rototilled! Cores everywhere! Great penetration.

    Do most guys "double pass" a lawn when aerating?
  9. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,501

    Yes, if it's an area that will be overseeded heavily too.

    BTW, best of luck with your new toy. Make lots of money with it. Smart thinking, it wasn't left under the Xmas tree, i.e., I'm gonna treat it like I'm making payment son it...very smart business thinking tommy.
  10. The lowest I go for up to 3 acres is $14 per 1000 sq ft includes aeration, seed and starter fert. For acreage over that we can talk on the price and rates applied.

    There are 3-4-5 up-sells to aeration; Seed, Stater fert., Fert, Lime, Loam, Soil amendments, etc.... Always mark these up to.

    For land that size it is not easy to sell this to them because of the price.

    I don't think you need a license for fert in your state, but check to make sure.

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