Does this sound right?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by HOOKMEUPRED, Oct 26, 2002.


    HOOKMEUPRED LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    I have been reading alot of the past threads for the last week. I used the search feature like alot of people suggested, which was very good advice.
    Now my question is this. It seems to me that there is an advantage to setting your price on the higher end of the scale and waiting to get that work and not setteling for lower rates. Is this right?
    Now as for my situation, I have a full time job that pays good. I don't have supervisors on site. I have free time at work to do what ever I want (usually detail my car or play on my computer or work out) which I will use for daily maint., paperwork, fueling equip. and other LC operations. So in essence I will be getting paid by my employer to run my LC business. With this set up I don't feel I have to rush to get a lot of customers.
    Before anybody gets worked up about my work ethics. Everything I do is known by my supervisor and accepted.

    HOOKMEUPRED LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    The reason I asked because I can look at it two ways.
    With me doing alot of the detail stuff at work and getting paid for that time already it seems that I could charge less and still have a higher per hour profit on the day.
    Or wait and only get the work that will pay me more and not under price some other guy who is not in my great situation.
    What do you think?
  3. greenman

    greenman LawnSite Addict
    Messages: 1,405

    Thats right. By settling for lower rates it drives down everyones profit because we all have to settle with the lower rates. Other guy=6lawns@$20each=$120 or You/Me=3lawns@$40each=$120 and sit back and watch the other guy for 2hours.

    These kind of prices(customers) dont just fall out of the sky and arent easy to find,BUT there are plenty of these out there for everyone.
  4. Green Pastures

    Green Pastures LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,457

    Dont be a scrub. Pay your insurance and your taxes and your licensing, and then tell me you can mow a lawn for $20.

    You're in Tampa, I've been there, if you work for any less than $45 an hour in that town you're not making the money you can. Plus you will hurt the guy who is licensed, pays taxes on his income and is insured. That mentality hurts this industry.


    HOOKMEUPRED LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    I will not be a scrub. I am going to run a part time business (20-30hrs)in a full time manner (tax,insurance,cpa,etc.). I am just trying get opinions as to my approach. Either way I feel my profit margins will be good, I hope.
    But what do I know,I haven't cut one piece of grass yet. That's why I have come to a room full of profesionals and ask for your wisdom.:rolleyes:
  6. Randy Scott

    Randy Scott LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,915

    Then I suggest doing what it takes to run the business accurately and not based off the financial assistance from another job or income. That will earn you the respect and admiration of others here.

    Regardless of the lack of proper etiquette by your supervisor, ( I'm assuming he doesn't own the company ?) therefore he and you are screwing the actual owners by you being allowed to waste the companies time on personal work or business. Put yourself in their situation and see how it feels. I don't know the whole situation (you can explain more if you desire) but NO business owner, that is remotely sane, is going to knowingly pay you to screw off or perform duties for your own personal endeavor. Sorry, it's not happening. So just keep it in mind for your own situation someday when you may have employees. What goes around comes around. Not trying to be a jerk here but it seems a little unethical to me. If I'm out of line, then I'm sorry.
  7. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,876

    Ditto on what Scott, Green Pastures, said.
  8. Floridalandcare

    Floridalandcare LawnSite Senior Member
    from Tampa
    Messages: 314

    I say go for it , If you like to low-ball our area like that ,then I like to take your accounts when you cannott cut it anymore.I know you llive right around the corner from me and probaly TRY to operate in the New Tampa Area,Dont even try to start low -ballin our area . I told you a while back I would lead you in the right direction if you wanted to meet , I guess you met with some one else.Tampa is full of scrubs and full of real deal LCOs ,I say be a Scrub I want the accounts. Like I said dont be a low ballerTampa sucks because of people with your mentality.

    HOOKMEUPRED LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    FLC, I am not going to low ball anybody. I was speaking about the difference of being above the average and patient or average and get more work sooner. I am in a different situation than most and it will benefit me as to my bottom line, NOT taking away from yours. As far as customers in certain areas, I will not be able to take customers who are HAPPY with thier current provider. Price and or quality can make that determination for them. As for contacting you,I sent you an e-mail THANKING you for your offer and to let you know what my schedual was so we could hook up soon. I thought then that everything was cool and we'd hook-up. I still hope that now. I was asking a question on preferences not how to screw somebody. I was taking into account that other people are not in my situation and I didn't want to screw 'em for that. Sorry 4 misunderstanding.
  10. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,087

    I don't think this guy is "looking" to be a scrub. I think maybe he's a little conserned on how to get accounts. Maybe he's thinking he could take advantage of is situation and charge just a little less to get some accounts.

    But I think he generally has the right idea to take advantage of his situation to get accounts and get paid what everyone else does.


    IMHO and I'll quote myself for you..."I think you'd be a fool not to work this to your advantage this way." You can use your situation to wait out for good high paying accounts and make more for your time. Heck who in their right mind don't want to work less and make more?

    Now for the scrub thing, their are scrubs in all business. All of them drive the prices down where ever they may be. This is just life and the wide world of competition. Heck, think of what you'd have to pay for a quality mower if their weren't scrub companies out here selling cheap junk. They keep the market down. This is not good for the good companies either. Nor is it good for the sucker consumer who falls for the bargain price and gets what he pays for.

    The bottom line is I educate my client when I sign them. I tell them flat out to their face, "one day some fly by night operation is going to come by and offer you a cheaper price. Then I try to help them understand that I charge what I do because it's what I have to have to "stay" in business. Anyone charging less than I do WILL NOT be able to stay in business.

    I find this helps the consumer to realize what it costs to have a reliable service and that anything less = an unreliable sorce that may even have to be replaced mid-season.

    I also make it very clear to them that if they dump me for a cheaper price I will not be back when the el'cheapo guy goes belly up and they realize they need me back.

    I've still lost a few to lowballers anyways. But every single one has called me back to see if I would consider cutting for them again. I tell them "remember what I told you way back? I told you this would happen and I told you I wouldn't come back... I need reliable customers just like you need a reliable lawn service and I hope you can become a reliable customer for another reliable service.

    Sometimes this is hard to live by. But "I" have to have principals. I know if i take them back, chances are they'll learn nothing and will dump me for the next "bargain" they can get. But if I don't they probably will learn something from it and make someone else a good customer.

    I feel doing this way is better for the industry and I don't feel I've lost anything in doing it. They would probably never make a good reliable customer for me anyways and I'm helping my fellow cutters out in sending them what might make a good loyal customer for them.

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