How are my prices?

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by DeepGreenLawn, Sep 1, 2008.

  1. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,372

    OK, now these are synthetic prices so please, hold your comments, I am comparing these to other synthetic prices.

    I gave two estimates today, two decent sized yards and they both are currently using TGLC.

    Yard 1:

    Fescue, front and back, weeds galore! I couldn't believe it when I saw it. The front was in REALLY bad shape, the back was OK but still nothing great to be having a lawn service for some time. I measured it out to 10800sq ft. I gave the price of $75/treatment. They said they had been paying $50ish to TG and over the phone said their lawn was roughly a little more than 5k. I don't know if that is what TG measured it at or what, but I actually measured it myself, no guessing.

    Yard 2:

    NICE zoysia lawn in front, OK fescue in back. Had a lot of button weed, some nutsedge and a little clover. The zoysia was really nice and thick but the button weed was still coming through and the nutsedge was also coming in on the edges. First of all... what can I get to take these guys out? They seem to be pretty resistant to most chems.

    I measured this out to 33750 sq ft. Big boy here... I priced $190 and felt I was on the cheap side, they said TGCL was charging about $150ish. Any thoughts?

    I rarely get yards the size of the second one and the first I am currently treating a few that size, not many, and that is what I helped base my prices on.

    Any thoughts or suggestions would be nice... I hope I am not way over charging...

  2. phasthound

    phasthound LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,163


    I always tell prospects that I will not be the cheapest! Then I ask if they are happy with the results they are getting at the price they are paying.

    Do not try to compete with TG on price or results. Your prices should be higher and your results should be better.
  3. growingdeeprootsorganicly

    growingdeeprootsorganicly LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 766


    it's a apple to oranges thing, are we talking chems applyed by tg compared to you applying chems or organic's? if your doing a organic program with bagged organic fert your sf price will cost you more, what about weed control? chems or hand pulling? or both? weak blanket apps? or are you going to take the time and spot spray?
    hand pulling, i say good luck with that if your only doing monthly apps for them and not on the lawn weekly, to much growth can happen in 4-6weeks to stay on top of them.
    if you feed organically and still only use chem's for weeds? is that a organic lawn?

    you can't compete with tg, in the sense of cheap price and sh@ty service," at lest i hope you can't!" i herd they mostly just use N and sometimes micros most of the time anyway to save money, explain that to a customer, what do they want? results or a cheaper price?
    if they want cheaper price compared to better quality then pass on them!

    if you can deliver the goods?, word will spread and you can name you price

    it's tough sometime's when your biz is new and you need the time to sort though the gauntlet of different customers needs,expectations,budgets. just always want to deliver the best care possible and it cost more to do that, just like anything else in life you get what you pay for!! it should be no different for your customers
  4. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,372

    my thoughts exactly, this is a synthetic app, I offer both... just for this reason, my organic prices are higher than my synthetic so I offer both, I use synthetic properly though... as in I don't pour on the N all the time, I try to apply according to the situation, and use the right chem at the right time. Not everyone is going to go for the organic idea, I still have to make money some how. One day, sooner than later is the plan, I will apply organics and just say its an app, not call it one or the other, and then I will hopefully be the cheaper one and still provide a better service.

    That is what I am thinking with the whole "you get what you pay for" ideal. Apparently they are getting what they are paying for. If they want to keep the same price and the same quality of service, go for it. Not my problem. How many people live in the Atlanta area again? Million or so, maybe a couple? There are plenty more customers out there, I guess I just got two more out of the way so I can move on to the next. One thing I did win on though... at first I would always want to, and a lot of times would, lower my price to get the customer... I wanted to this time, but nope, the price is the price... you get what you pay for is my theory, if I am too high, find someone else to do it cheaper and you MIGHT get a lowballer who does good work... but there are way to few people out there spraying and not knowing what they are doing or caring.

    I am having more and more people telling me their lawns have never looked so good... thats all I need to hear...

    My prices didn't budge :D
  5. NattyLawn

    NattyLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,643

    It sounds like you're doing this right. If people want to price shop explain up front that you're not TGCL and explain what they're paying for. You're not some salesman out for the first and last time on the property, as you do apps as well.

    Bottom line, you know your costs and you set the margin for what you want to make. You can't lose money for the sake of a new customer. Trust me, been there done that.

    To take out nutsedge, you're going to have to go the chemical route. Try Sedgehammer.
  6. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,372

    what about this button weed stuff?
  7. phasthound

    phasthound LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,163

    If you are using the chemical approach, you should be asking your Extention Agent these questions.
  8. treegal1

    treegal1 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,911

    its synthetic there is no art there, just add a mark up to the cost and add labor rate into that, if needed additional mark up???? simple math.
  9. growingdeeprootsorganicly

    growingdeeprootsorganicly LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 766

    dame nut sedge, we have yellow thanks to you southern guys letting it spread here,JK :nono:please keep that purple sedge where it belongs too. none here yet?

    i find it easily is pulled if you stay on top of new growth and are on the lawns weekly, really dense patches are another story, i'v picked up a lawn this summer that has it sooo bad on one side that it nearly covers 99.99% of one side about 2300sf worth. whole left side of the property, the other side, drive way separating the yard, is really nice, little Crab grass but really clean besides that, that dame left side ive never saw such a dense stand of y sedge before,

    i know if i do nothing about it this year next summer ill be dealing with it even more established once summer comes.
    looks kind of nice once cut though, it's so freaking thick and dense that spraying is out of the question right now, not sure how i want to handle it, maybe spray it soon and then renovate(topdress seed) immediately after some kill sets in? or if they want to pay i can rip the lawn out and start over, they want to ultimately transition to complete organic care and still have a yard that is just as good as the neighbors, this house is a million dollar house neighborhood in ocean city nj . or should i wait till next year and seed again and get the lawn thick as possible and try to manage it as it slowly emerges? any idea's
  10. dtally

    dtally LawnSite Member
    Male, from Rock Hill, SC
    Messages: 82

    I agree that this is low. How many treatments are you doing? Are you including disease management? Do you include core aeration?

    When I discuss lawn care with my customers, I do not give them a choice. If I can't not TAKE CARE completely,(organic treatments, disease management and core aeration) I don't want the project. The only up charge is for over seeding.

    Plus I bill monthly, auto draft so I don't chase money (started this just recently.)

    If that $75 is a monthly quote, then you are close. Really should be closer to $87.00 a month. That works out to about $104.00 per visit (if you treat 10 times.) This does not include mowing!

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