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Giving competition referrals...


LawnSite Senior Member
South, FL
I have been giving a competitor referrals for tree work as I don't do trees. I also give referrals to a woman for weeding. I am as busy as I want to be doing lawn and hedge/shrub work. As of this moment I don't get squat for sending business to them. Should I be getting at least some fee for helping them find these jobs? They amount to hundreds of dollars in just the last week alone. It's my advertising dollars and my current customers that are providing this work that I don't choose to do to these sources. I am running a business and am not sure where the Mr. nice guy stops and the bottom line should take precedence. I'm beginning to feel like there should be something in this for me for referring the business. Comments appreciated.


LawnSite Platinum Member
I wouldn't ask them for a fee. But, I would ask them to send lawn business your way.


LawnSite Bronze Member
Usually these deals work best when there is reciprocation.

Being that you can't take on any more work, it's time to request 5-10% of the action or some other value added: Tree work around your house, cut-rate brush-chipping etc.


LawnSite Senior Member
That's what I was thinking: sub-contract it.

If I understand it correctly, you take bids for the tree and weeding work from them, on behalf of your customers, than you propose the work to be done to your customer with a % fee increase, say 10% above the quote.




LawnSite Silver Member
Central CT
What TGC says is what I do, but I get the quote, mark it up 10 but the "sub" is the one who bills and they in turn give me my 10%, otherwise it becomes an insurance nightmare. Maybe your insurance co treats subs differently than mine. My rates would be considerably higher, and I would have to keep ACORD forms on file and updated for every sub.


LawnSite Senior Member
Sub-contracting is the way to go. Tell them you'll kick the biz their way and that you need 10%. Either off their end or added to their price . Subing is no big deal . Keep track as if any other expense , you bill the customer and at the end of the year send the sub a 1099 form . Check at the IRS (don'y be afraid) they have the forms or your accoutant can do it.

A mow only biz can be a full sevice biz easy enough but you have to know that the sub can and will do good work.


LawnSite Addict
southeast pa
that's the way it should be, you should ask him to knock some off the price and ask if he would give you a price on how much it is really worth and then submit the price. If this tree man isn't willing enough to work with you then find one that is. If you can't find any one then turn it down, and tell them you don't know anyone too reliable at the moment. It's hard to believe that this person isn't willing to atleast throw you a bone for the work, hmmmmmmmm.

Beest Wishes.


LawnSite Silver Member
bassman--as you are not really giving "full service" to some of your customers, you do them a favor by referring the rest of their needs to those that will do the job.

if your "subs" don't find your new proposed working arrangement acceptable, and therefore don't provide the service to your cuatomers that you don't either...then I wonder if your customers will replace "you" with a full service operator.

just a thought. good luck.