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Do they think we mow for our health?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by FIRESCOOBY, Jun 29, 2006.


    FIRESCOOBY LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    Was going through town to get lunch today and got a call about a quote. The guy said that he saw my magnets while I was driving down the road. He said he currently has his yard done by a local company. (This is the second call I've gotten in the last week from customers of that company with people not happy.)

    Anyway, went by at the end of the day and looked at it. Yard is at least 3/4 acre, bumping a full acre and 1/3 of it is steep as heck. Front is sodded Bermuda and the rear is very thin Fecue seed. The front was cut this week and was scalped BAD.

    Called him with my price. He said "Well, we're paying about 50% of that now" And paused for my response. I told him that I appreciate the opportunity for his business and that he is welcome to call me anytime he may need anything. He then asked if I was going to do anything about my price. I told him that if the current company is doing it for 50% of what I quoted, then he should probably stay with them and learn to live with the things he is unhappy with. He asked how could I charge what I quoted. I told him I do not advertise as the cheapest. I charge a fair price, do quality work, very reliable and I could provide references. He was fairly cordial when he hung up.

    Now...what I quoted was $65. The side (1/3 of the yard) is on a 30-40 degree angle. You can see where the current company has rutted the yard out by going the same direction with their mower. I figured I'd have to push mow this part. Two LARGE beds to edge. Standard trimming, etc.

    Am I doing something wrong? I currently have two accounts that I "let" the customer talk me down in price when I was first starting out and "hungry". Those jobs are no profit at all for me. I vowed after that I'd figure my price fairly and stick to it no matter what. I've developed a "If they don't like my price...move on". I don't mind losing a job due to price. My main focus is to NEVER lose a job due to quality of job done.
  2. mexiking

    mexiking LawnSite Senior Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 565

    nope you're right, never lower down your price.
  3. Charles

    Charles Moderator Staff Member
    Messages: 8,822

    Ya, the guy got the service he was paying for thats for sure. Stick with your prices. Some will pay and some won't....
  4. Branchland

    Branchland LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 354

    You did right. You set your prices at a fair rate to start with, no haggling, you're not a car saleman.
  5. OMG

    OMG LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 275

    Never forget- If you get every job you bid, your price is too low.

    ----Regardless of your appearance, salesmanship, etc.
  6. scagwildcat

    scagwildcat LawnSite Senior Member
    from nw. ct.
    Messages: 507

    the only time i lower my price is if i figured for more mowing, ( on lawns were you cant tell where the property lines are) then once i talk to the owner and know how far they want me to mow, i adjust the price.stick to your price, never lower it, people try this all the time to get a better deal even at time were they know you are giving them a deal.... plus if you do lower your price , it comes across as if you were trying to rip them off ...
  7. LawnGuy73

    LawnGuy73 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,946

    "Do they think we mow for our health"? Very simple....Yes, Yes they do.
  8. Lizard Lawn Care

    Lizard Lawn Care LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    obviously, your not too hungry anymore!:) :)
  9. jpp

    jpp LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,131

    Sounds like he may have been just doing a "price check" on isle 5.:waving: Sounds to me like he wants a cheap price with quality service and he just won't get it. These types go through lco's so fast they won't know who they had and who they hadn't had.
  10. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    That's golden rule there.

    I learned so long I get at least 1 out of every 10, my price is not too high and right there is awesome profit and to be truthful, I can only get what I want to get paid when I lose 9 out of every 10 calls.
    If I get 1/2 to say yes, that's borderline, right down to the wire (meaning if anything doesn't go exactly right, I lose money).
    Anything more than 1/2 is too low.

    It is hard to do this when you're new, here are some more tips:
    Keep working, and keep doing what you're doing, in my case I found you need to cut at least 1,000 yards before you're half decent, 2,000 yards cut makes you pretty good and once you get 3k under you, you are an expert cutter.
    So in my case I did a lot of work cheaper so I could get the experience, but how you go about it is entirely up to you, and certainly you do not need to come down in price because I also learned it is a long, hard road up from that.
    One way to increase profit is with experience you get better, so I sometimes lowball so as to challenge myself to find faster ways to get it done. In the end, if I can do what used to take me an hour in 50 minutes due to me pushing the issue, I now earn the same money in less time (and invisibly to the customer, mostly). But quality must get in there, too, so it's not easy.
    Another way is to lower your own cost, this also takes time by learning where to get the materials / parts that yield the most for the money, whether cheap is the answer is the same as your work, sometimes expensive is better, sometimes cheap is.

    Good luck!

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