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help!!!!!! with cleanup prices

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by ProCut_48, Feb 26, 2008.

  1. ProCut_48

    ProCut_48 LawnSite Member
    from michgan
    Messages: 145

    :help: what does every one chrage for cleanups? I was thinking of chrageing $60.00 an hr pretty much $1.00 a min. Is this right jw?
  2. Grits

    Grits LawnSite Silver Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 2,994

    Sounds good to me. Is that what you need to make?
    I shoot for $60 per hour. But I am doing one right now, with mulch, for $45 per hour. I don't make as much profit, but that's ok. THis is a mowing customer of mine and this winter has about killed me financially. It makes me some money, my helper some money and I make a profit, albeit smaller than normal. But I am still making money. But mainly, it gets me out working so when my wife calls and asks what I am doing, I don't have to lie to her. :)
  3. Whitey4

    Whitey4 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,448

    My cleanup prices for new customers are all over the place. If the place is clean, $50 tops. I've quoted $200. These are small properties, but I have to guess at how much time it will take and how much debris I have to cart off. One property I refused to quote. Two 40 foot+ white pines that weren't cleaned up after all winter. That's a rake job... no blower can clean that stuff up. just not worth the blisters and aggravation.
  4. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,937

    Why would you do any cleanup work, and charge, for a place that is clean?
  5. Landrus2

    Landrus2 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,006

    How many guys in your crew.:waving:
  6. Whitey4

    Whitey4 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,448

    Every house is going to need some cleanup. Leaves and debris behind the foundation plants, The first edging of the year, cultivating the winter weeds from the beds, things like that, and that is when I dethacth my zoysia lawn customers. There will always be some branches on the ground, and maybe a plastic bag or two in a tree to go retrieve.

    I'll do some light pruning and it's also a chance to start talking to customers about mulching. Some houses may need some repairs on bed border stones. There is always enough work to justify a trip.
  7. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,937

    Whitey, ... apparently some places are just cleaner than others. So $50 is a charge for those that are cleaner than the $200 properties, right?
  8. Whitey4

    Whitey4 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,448

    Sure.... I explain to customers that get the big estimates that their cleanup will be a lot cheaper next year, becasue I will do the fall cleanups.

    I do some things differently as basically a startup (I had some accounts last year, but most were the ones you don't want, call you when I need you types) I only carried over 8 of them, and have picked up 7 more. I promise 3 seperate fall cleanups, the last in December. Since I am a solo, this is actually easier for me, doing 3 instead of one huge cleanup.

    New accounts are getting a $50 off coupon for spring cleanups. So, with that I've offered 3 for free, and two more at $25. But, I'm getting a dethatching out of those accounts, they have Zoysia lawns. So, I will still bill over $100 for services in March.

    Mow and blow prices here are in the dirt, but people expect to pay for spring cleanups. I also got myself certified and registered with the state for pesticides, so all my accounts are full service types.... yearly billings of $1200 to over $2000. That doesn't include any installs I might get.

    I also offer free pH testing... went out and spent over $100 on a good meter. I can test their soil right in front of them... makes it easy to sell lime apps if needed. For me, the trick is in getting them to call from my door hangers. I close 90% of the accounts that call me. That's why I offer the cleanup discount, free testing, and 3 fall cleanups. I can make all of that up in ferts, weed and insect control, aeration, dethatching over seeding etc pretty easy. I'm only looking for 25 to 30 accounts. I have something else on the side going for me too.

    I walk right by unmaintained houses. I only put my hangers out on properties I want. All 2 to 4k of turf at most. Looking for the high end people that want their place to look like a Scotts commercial. A Jaguar or a Caddy SUV in the driveway usually means they will spend on the property, even if it is small.

    All of this is in my business plan, very targeted, tight route, full service, small properties. That's why I just ordered the Quick 32.... gates, small properties, no commercials at all. I think too many people buy equipment, and then figure out how to best use it. I go the other direction... I buy my equipment based on my customer profile. BTW, it also helps that I don't use large crews that have a language barrier.... just an observation based on customer comments. I need another 10 to 15.... and I'll be set.
  9. bigw

    bigw LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,540

    Believe me or not but i have been right at or about $75.00 an hr so far on my bidding for spring clean ups and i have not lost a single job over the price yet.
    I have been quoting the same rates regaurdless of bagging or not and its working just fine for me,once again i dont think you need a set hourly price for things like clean ups.
    I think if you quote a price and they agree its a good price! I would say the majority of my cleanups will take between 3-4 hrs tops and ive been around 300 for all of them and by the way out of the 17 or so accounts i have lined up i have around 7-8 spring clean ups.
    The thing i stress the most while signing up my weekly accounts is that their lawn should really have a spring clean up done before mowing season so i dont have to be chopping up branches with my mowers and they all just agree especially if they have alot of leaves laying around still.
  10. ProCut_48

    ProCut_48 LawnSite Member
    from michgan
    Messages: 145

    2 on a crew thats all i need.

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