Help on a large estimate

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Mowin4Dollas, Apr 24, 2013.

  1. cdjones

    cdjones LawnSite Member
    Messages: 82

    The extra cost on the mulch which may seem high to you is due to bed conditions and may vary greatly so be honest with yourself ask yourself can i remove all weeds that are present, provide a nice clean border, pay for the mulch with a slight price raise, pay for gas, etc...etc....As you do more jobs you will understand what it costs you to operate so for now id suggest do a good job and try to account for all the time you will be there. Its not what you can do the job for its what you can profit from doing the job that keeps your head above water.
  2. wilsonsground

    wilsonsground LawnSite Member
    Messages: 115

    What's your mower size? 3.25 hours mowing and 45 min of wacking/blowing? So 4 hours total? Long time for one person, one property. 135 is low. I'd be about 200-235 per cut. For mulch I've got a set price of 105/yard installed with edging weeding pruning for property's kept up with. If things are way behind then price is more. Be a great account for 17 if you can price it right to make money on. Sometimes big lawns go faster than you may think if you're able to fly back n forth.
  3. MDLawn

    MDLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,284

    That mentality will get you no where. Yes you're young. You don't need to tell people your age. Sell your service, not your price... If you decide not to you will become the "cheap priced lawn guy who does good work". Good luck getting out of that name.

    People will gripe all the time. Some just say "Well I paid this amount in the past". They are either buying solely on price or trying to beat you up to get a low price. Sell your service, not your price... If they don't want to pay for service, just walk away. People will say "No". Either sell harder or get over it and move on to the next one. Oh yea, like others have said no one needs to know your hourly rate. You're not doing Time & Materials, you're quoting a price to get the job done. Quote a low price, because you think you can't quote more, and enjoy eating your shirt. Been there done that.

    What are you now? I know at 17 you can't legally do too much, but you can still do a lot to be legit.

    If you become the "Oh hey I use this guy and he's really cheap and does a great job" You're doomed to low prices. Doing great work at cheap prices leaves you in that troubled predicament.

    Never, ever, never do this, never. Becoming the bargaining lawn guy and that is what you will be known as, the bargain lawn guy. If you know why you charge what you do (cost to do business and profit) you do not need to bargain.

    Again people will tell you

    "You're too expensive"
    "I paid the last guys this"
    "I'll pay that if you can include this extra stuff"

    Fall for those and you're doomed. Don't take the word "No" personally, as many do. I did when I was starting out. Now I realize the phone will ring and another opportunity will present itself. I'd rather know that I couldn't do a business because I can't make money at it rather than do it cheaper just to be able to be in business.
  4. Mowin4Dollas

    Mowin4Dollas LawnSite Member
    Messages: 87

    MD Lawn, I appreciate your insight! That is gold and exactly what I have been looking for. Where I live there are tons of guys who "mow", and by that I mean have a mower and will cut your grass for 15 bucks. My goal is to grow my knowledge and skill to where I can transition to only high end properties. I want to be known for my quality and not my price. All these low ballers in the area kill me, but I guess I just shouldn't worry about those yards.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  5. MDLawn

    MDLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,284

    More than likely....
  6. grassmonkey0311

    grassmonkey0311 LawnSite Gold Member
    from MD/NC
    Messages: 3,045

    Don't worry about the lowballers. They weed themselves out.

    Keep charging YOUR prices and you'll do great!
  7. Mowin4Dollas

    Mowin4Dollas LawnSite Member
    Messages: 87

    Thanks for the encouragement!
    Posted via Mobile Device
  8. GVL LLC

    GVL LLC LawnSite Member
    Messages: 154

    these last few posts are right on. Dont worry about other companies or lowballers. Figure out what hourly rate you need to be profitable and use that to price jobs, but never tell the customer your hourly rate. Then if they say no move on to the next opportunity. Theres plenty of people that will gladly pay your rate for your service so dont worry.
  9. nashlawn01

    nashlawn01 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 463

    Don't worry about low ballets and the people who think we are getting rich so they run to lowes and buy a $1000 mower and try to cut your nuts. Just swoop in behind them in July/August when it's to hot for them or that mower craps out on em and they can't mow or they realize they don't have heart for lawn care. I pick up 85% of my lawns late summer
  10. Vecchio Lawn Care

    Vecchio Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 905

    i am 17 also and i charge at least 50-60 a hour. That lawn takes 4 hours ur estimating. I would be at least 180 a cut.

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