mostly by the month. Less complaints never miss a cut therefore more profitable and easier to manage. Also I dont consider it a per month price its a yearly price $810 for a typical lawn for the year. At $25 it would be $750 for the year, but I like 810 a year. This also is only 90 bucks per month.
One reason for having less problems with monthly is that people don't get as confused about whether they have missed June(for example). When you are chasing individual mowing payments eventually people get confused and you spend a lot of time sorting things out. This assumes that most people don't pay on time, which is usually the case.
I charge by the cut. I've looked into a flat price per month, but from the response I've gotten, I think it's an idea better left alone, in this area (central Indiana). I have some customers that we cut every three days in the spring and in the fall, about half of mine got cut twice last week. Also I'm strictly a mowing contractor, so for me it's better off to just bill per cut at the end of the month. This is what works for me.
when you go with per cut, people try to say you didn't cut, or you skipped me, or I want you to skip me or some other kind of crap. When they pay a flat rate, then you never hear them saying please skip me and rarely hear them complain when you do if the grass isn't growing.
It also has to do with your ability to sell. Sell the fact that it allows for easy budgeting, that you don't charge more in spring and less in winter so they will never have a $200 bill for spring surge, despite knowing that is what should be paid. The easier months balance out the more difficult ones and makes everyones cash flow easier.
I rarely even have to go into it. Just tell them as part of the contract review, I charge monthly paid in advance. $120 for cutting your yard so you will be writing 12 equal payments. then I cover the mow schedule and that it is about 42 mow weekly in season and EOW in slow season.
Well i guess every area is different. I am in Florida. I estimate 36 cuts a year for the average customer. But I have other things I cut hedges (big ones) about 4 to 8 times a year, palms, light tree trimming, fertilzation, weed and feed, small landscape jobs.
Would it be good to set a monthly price based on 36 cuts then bill forthe extras. Or I had an idea to make a package deal with everything included.