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Fall Cleaning Questions

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by nascar3888, Jul 4, 2005.

  1. nascar3888

    nascar3888 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    O.K. Guys, another new-be question. I got a real slow start this year due to not knowing what the heck I needed to do to get the ball rolling. I want to be sure I’m ready for fall clean up. I have no experience in fall clean up other then doing my own. In my neck of the woods leaves start falling the 2nd or 3rd week of October and are completely down by 1st week of November. Here are some questions I need answers to:
    1) When would you plan on starting these jobs?
    2) If you start before all the leaves are down, would you come back towards the end of this season to do a quickie? And if so, how would you charge for the 2nd visit?
    3) Speaking of charging, do you estimate the time it would take to do the work? And what would be a reasonable rate per hour? I’m in Michigan.
    4) When quoting these jobs, do you quote everything as one package or individually i.e. gutters, annuals removal, leaf gathering, leaf removal?
    5) Am I missing any thing in question 4?
    6) Last one, I will be doing these jobs with no more then 1 other guy, what would be my best plan of attack; Use blowers and tarps, get the vacuum system for my 60” Cub Tank ($2500), or both?
    Thanks guys, very cool of you to help out could-be competitors.
  2. RedWingsDet

    RedWingsDet LawnSite Gold Member
    from Detroit
    Messages: 3,556

    1.) When the leaves start falling
    2.) We do fall cleanups each week if need be
    3.) Charge PER tarp. You can do 6 big tarps in an hour, or even more if ya rush
    4.) Everything goes in the tarp price execpt the gutters
    5.) Just charge per tarp and you'll be making $300 an hour
    6.) Use rakes, blowers, and tarps. Screw the mowers, rakes and blowers + the tarps work fastest for us and bring in the most money.

    someones bill in october or november can easily be upwards of 500. we were doing 3 tarps last fall in 30min. Think about it, thats 120 for 30min, and figure of that 120, maybe 20 is overhead. and when you have 8 houses in a row, you do the math.

    In this business, I hate cutting grass, but I love doing fall cleanups and landscaping, the mowing part can suck a hot dog as far as im concerned, thus I only cut on fridays and landscape the other 5-6 days.

    hope this helped ya and good luck
  3. nascar3888

    nascar3888 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    Thanks Mark,
    I never considered charging by tarp, that answers a question I didn't ask; that being..how would you charge someone with lots o tree.
  4. RedWingsDet

    RedWingsDet LawnSite Gold Member
    from Detroit
    Messages: 3,556

    doesnt matter how many trees. get a 12ft tarp and charge $40-$50 a tarp. you'll make 200 an hour if you rush

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