Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by tim, Jan 10, 2000.

  1. tim

    tim LawnSite Member
    Messages: 24

    i offer an aeration/turf management service.i work another job in which i work a week on then a week off. so, the aeration work fits my schedule better than a mowing service would. i have been doing this for several years. i would like to grow my aeration business to include sports turf and commercial accounts and perhaps go full time. each fall and spring i ask why am i not doing this full time then in winter i remember. i have good customers, most of whom are wealthy. how do i grow to make a living offering a specialty service and appeal to less wealthy clients without working cheap? i charge $12 per 1000sq/ft for aeration. i use kubota and ryan equipment so i do quality work. i would appreciate any advise.
  2. Eric ELM

    Eric ELM Husband, Father, Friend, Angel
    Messages: 4,830

    If your getting $12 a thousand square feet, I think you should be giving us the advice. I can see that for small lawns, but I do 2 acre lawns and that would be $1045 for a 2 acre lawn. My aerator would sit and rust before my customers would pay that much. On another post someone mentioned $12 per 1000 sq. ft. so I guess just figured it was a typo. How do you sell your service to build up that kind of value? I use a 42 inch 3 point hitch mounted Classen built core aerator, so I can do 2 acres in 1.5 hours. That's over $650 and hour at those prices. I would like to learn more about this. <p>----------<br>Eric@ELM<br>
  3. Lazer

    Lazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,446

    Hmmmm. Wiseguy, he probably also does a 3-6,000 sq. ft. lawn for the appropriate price of $40-70.00. <p>The price for aeration needs to have a flat fee ($20-25?) just to show up and then $4-10 per M depending on market. I doubt he does a 2 acre property for a $grand. <p>Anyway, Tim, to answer your question, I would solicit business from small mowing contractors and companies that don't do aeration on their own. Let them know it something you specialize in, something you're good at, something you'll service that same week for a good price.<p>I don't think aeration &quot;only&quot; is a huge market. Generally the same people that get aeration service are &quot;full-service&quot; accounts.
  4. Eric ELM

    Eric ELM Husband, Father, Friend, Angel
    Messages: 4,830

    I wasn't trying to be a wise guy. Like I said I could see that price for small lawns, but I don't know what size he is doing. Size wasn't specified. I feel Lazer is right, around here, either the full service lawn companys or the big fertilizer app companys aerate. There are a lot of lawn guys that don't aerate around here, so that would be a good place to check.<p>----------<br>Eric@ELM<br>
  5. SLSNursery

    SLSNursery LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 442

    We have done some aerating of home lawns, commercial sites, and athletic fields. It usually winds up being priced along with overseeding and/or fertilizing as a job - time and materials. In discussions with Landscapers throughout the fall, here in Connecticut, we could not come to a consensus on what to charge per square foot. From past experience at home lawns, we end up at about 45-55 per hour for the laborer and a Ryan Lawnaire V. This year we aerated some 2000 square foot spots, up to 4 or 5 acres at a clip with several machines working. All of the jobs were either contract or add ons with overseeding occurring at the same time. For our turf, the jobs occur from late August through October. With such a small window of time to work in, it would be tough to specialize in this service without offering something else like the fertilization or seeding.<p><p>----------<br>Phil Grande - Soundview Landscape Supply -<br>Ivy League Landscaping -
  6. thelawnguy

    thelawnguy LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,411

    In central CT the going rate is around $100 for 1/2 acre lot with house outbuilding gardens etc. Maybe 10,000 sq ft actual lawn to aerate. I was quoted $50 minimum price to me if I wanted my customers' lawns done.<p>Bill
  7. nlminc

    nlminc LawnSite Bronze Member
    from GA
    Messages: 1,671

    Some of the large service businesses in my area are charging 15 cents per square foot to aerate. This is in the southeastern MA area. Min. $80-$100 per lawn. I may jump into this again this comming season.<p>Chris<br>Norcott Landscape Management, Inc.<br>
  8. jeffclc

    jeffclc Guest
    Messages: 0

    We have a contractor in aour area that only does speciality work, anmely areation and stump grinding. He uses a Steiner for both. As far as I know that is all he does. He is a one man show. Looks like he is doing well, newer pickup, and a new Steiner this past season.<p>So, I guess it can be done, but I think that you may have to cover a broader market area, and also network with some lawn care and landscaping contractors that don't offer the service, and could sub it out to you.
  9. tim

    tim LawnSite Member
    Messages: 24

    Thanks to everyone for all of the help so far. To be honest, when I started out setting my prices for aeration, I had a hard time figuring out what was fair and typical.<br>The $12 per 1,000 sq. feet is for lawns 10,000 sq ft and less. The price begins to scale down drasticly on lawns over this. I do offer fertilization/weed control for most customers so the aeration is often included in the complete service. For aeration and fertilization, I charge $17 per 1,000 sq ft. and scale down for greater than 10,000 ft. I charge $32 per 1,000 for fall aeration/fertilizatiion/overseeding package. I'm spilling my beans here because I have found prices for these services to be rediculously varied. Frankly, I think if any of you are out there aerating for $40/hr and doing a good job, you're way too cheap. But again, Im all ears and open for advice.
  10. CGS

    CGS LawnSite Member
    Messages: 44

    To nlminc and Tim:<p>How much would you charge for small lawns i.e. 500 sq.ft. I charge $35 per 1000 sq.ft. so I get $17.50 for these type of small lawns in my route about $100 per day plus what I get from Yard Maintenance. I don't own an aerater so I rent it for a week (7 days) to get a discounted price of $30 per day.<p>My question is should I charge more... like .15 cents per sq.ft. to be worth it? I have a driver and a helper plus my trucks on the route.<p>Any info. is welcome.

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