do u include this in your mowing price?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by The Curious Porpoise, May 3, 2006.

  1. The Curious Porpoise

    The Curious Porpoise LawnSite Member
    Messages: 70

    there seems to be some descrepancy between me and some of my customers as to what should be included when i give them the price for lawn mowing. Do u guys include trimming all the grass and weeds that grow up thru the cracks in the sidewalks/driveways with the regular mowing price, or is that something else? i'm not sure what i should do w/ this, but my gut instinct is to consider that a separate service, because trimming all the cracks in the driveway/sidewalks can get time consuming doing it every week. This would mean i would need to jack up the price in order to maintain the same profit margin on each customer. What do u guys do?
  2. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    I went to Home Depot and bought:
    The 2.5 gallon black Deck and Patio Sprayer for, I dunno, 20 bucks? You can buy the lawn and garden sprayer but it's the same price and the lawn and garden sprayer only holds 2.0 gallons and it's really the same thing nozzles and all hehe

    Then, I bought 1 gallon of super concentrated round-up (it's the purple label) and (but read on) it costs 100 dollars but:
    - I mix the super round-up at a concentration of 1.25 ounces per gallon of water, so I get 100 gallons out of this one bottle of superconc (cauz 128 ounces / gallon) so it boils down to $1 / gallon in the end. It is still quite strong, thou it's the leanest mix that works so you don't waste this 100-dollar bottle, I get at least a full year out of it.

    You can get a smaller bottle of concentrate, but dollars / ounce the gallon of Super is the best value for the dollar, trust me please yes I did the math many times over, the superconcentrated gallon is the cheapest thou it costs the most upfront.

    So then I fill up the sprayer and as part of the service I always spray the cracks and the beds and oh yes the weeds, the weeds, lalala
    It's not bad, it only takes a few minutes extra once you get used to it, spring is by far the worst time of year for weeds, it gets easier later.
    To make sure you don't run out, I usually carry a 1-gallon bottle pre-mixed with me so if it runs low I can re-fill but also don't use too much in anyone's yard: If someone has a TON of weeds, just spray a fair bunch then you know you will spray more the next visit, don't waste too much time but do a good job and thank you.

    Bonus: Once sprayed it does take 1-2 weeks for the weeds to die so be aware of this, some customers will complain but you just tell them you did spray for that and you will spray again next time, but once they die they are dead and gone and you will not see weeds for at least a month, it is very nice.

    No fuel and no string, it is actually cheaper to use round-up and if it's not, then it's no worse in cost than weed-eating but I like it a lot and it looks pro and it works great!

    It also works great to spray a THIN line along fences and sometimes along the house so it creates a tiny border but make sure it's a thin line lol so then you don't gotta weed-eat that stuff for like a month :)
    Once you get over the initial sprays which take the longest, it actually saves time.
  3. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    If you really want to get stupid like me, I look around for the big nasty bottles of 38 ounce dishwashing detergent for like 2 dollars, such as Orange or Lemon made by Joy (I think Big Lots or Family Dollar has them). Then I add a small squirt of this to the sprayer (about an ounce or two is all you need), what this does is it acts as a surfactant, by softening the water it helps the stuff adhere to the surface of the plant better, hence increasing the effectiveness.

    The detergent can be hard to find at the right price, buying 25 ounce bottles for 2-3 dollars just isn't worth it so whenever I find some I usually buy 6-8 bottles of it. The stuff works really good for washing the lawnmower, too.

    Well, gotta make things interesting somehow.
  4. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,087

    What comes up in your crack AFTER I quote the price is your problem, not mine.
    I don't mow or string trim driveways and sidewalks.
    Nor will I take care of the unsightly problem for free.
    In fact, nothing you ask me to do for you is going to be free.
    My time does not come free and nothing I use on the jobsite came free to me.

    "IF" you decide to do this for free by trimming or spraying, you should make this decision on your own and then let the customer know what you did for them for free without their request or knowledge.

    But do it for free to settle a complaint :nono:
    Not a friggin chance :nono:

    Do this and they will nickel and dime you to death with little trivial stuff freebies from now on.
  5. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Messages: 10,178

    how long could it take, 45 seconds? maybe 1.5 minutes? if they are "incidental" weeds, i'll wack them then spray them. if they are a big problem, a small c/u fee will apply. all of these fees, should be incorporated into your spring clean up. now, not every yard gets a "spring clean up", but, the first mowing visit should be charge a bit higher because it will take longer
  6. Brendan Smith

    Brendan Smith LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,195

    I agree with bobby. i don't spray, next pesticide lic test is not till july, but i always weedeat the cracks. just lloks better when done and is built into my original estimate.
  7. PGA

    PGA LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 710

    It takes all of 30 extra seconds to run your trimmer over the cracks and make it look it nice.
  8. lawnboy dan

    lawnboy dan LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,716

    i spyay them with roundup. weedeating them with the trimmer will cost you extra time and LOTS of line. especially if you are one of the ones who insist that .80 line is the best line to use!i do not charge extra for spraying the cracks and your properties will present a more proffessional image without weeds growing in the cracks
  9. wski4fun

    wski4fun LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 323

    I will almost always do it for free. Whatever it takes to make the lawn look professionaly done, within reason of course. First, it is free advertising. Neighbors see a good job and customers will pass your name along. Second, once a customer trusts me they have me do jobs without asking for a price. I will give little things away all day long to keep them happy and charge them for an extra 1/2 hr on their fall cleanup. Everybody is happy.
  10. Ramairfreak98ss

    Ramairfreak98ss LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,210

    Ive never had someone complain, i guess its because the expensive homes dont have the weeds to begin with, but sometimes i trim these up, i mean as long as its a weekly lawn i cut, ill keep them somewhat under control, but i dont go around looking for every one to make their sidewalks look 100%. Weeds come up in patios too, they paid someone else 25k for the patio, im not cutting down all their problems thats not part of the lawn. If i had a customer complain about a bunch of weeds in their walks/driveways i probably wouldnt bow down and start cutting them anyway. I would tell them to do that if it was a lot, i would spray, if a smaller amount its another $5 per cut since it is taking up more of my time.

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