How far do you travel for commercial lawns?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Ramairfreak98ss, Feb 19, 2008.

  1. Ramairfreak98ss

    Ramairfreak98ss LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,210

    I know some LCOs will go 20+ miles in other states. 20 miles in NJ is FAR, period lol.

    A company i found out had won a bid on a 55+ housing complex in my home town area for the 2008 season. I belive my price to be very competitive to gain their business. I dont know if they chose the other company because of a lower price or some other reason, it could or could not be price related but...

    I service this area primarily for my business, its right across from a ton of residentials that i do. The bid was awarded to a company that is 41 miles north of here in Jersey, its on the border of central/north jersey for any who are from around here. Its ride, in a car would be an hour minimum on a "good" day with no traffic. I know the route in detail though from their area because i used to have one of my cars modified at a shop up there, and it used to take me over an hour to go just 24 miles of this 41mile route that this other LCO has to travel.

    Assuming they do drive in peak rush hour times morning/and afternoon to go to and from the job site, theyre looking at nearly a two hour drive EACH way. How can a company afford to send a crew of 4-5 guys, 4~hrs of driving pulling a trailer and another 6-7 on site during the whole day to complete the job each week? If this bid was lost due to pricing, I'm seriously going to be stumped as to how it was lower than my own, already being in that area and having literally no more driving time than any of my other properties that are close. The last company for 2007 service was also from my home town, a larger company that does a lot of apartment/house complexes.

    Are any of your companies starting to travel huge distances to service lawns and maintenance? Its not only the 41 miles as much as the nearly 2hrs of driving time.

    GSPHUNTER LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 311

    20 miles isn't bad and for a job like you're talking about I'd probably drive 40 miles. 2 hours is pretty crazy though. That's alot of payroll for windshield time.
  3. Weekes

    Weekes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 107

    Wish I had kept. Just recently deleted a link to a guy in Wyoming that had his successful mowing business commuting about an area of 300 - 400 miles.

    If you can bid and cover expenses that is all that matters.
  4. Scagguy

    Scagguy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,522

    I drive about 35 miles to the farthest property. It was part of a deal that including 8 other properties, so it makes sense for me. Had that property been by itself, no way would I consider it.
  5. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,366

    We had a guy work for us for a couple weeks that had been workng one of the big companies. They would travel about 80 miles for an account and stayed overnite in a hotel..
  6. brownsallseasonlandscape

    brownsallseasonlandscape LawnSite Member
    Messages: 240

    We have the villiage idiot here he travels from Indianapolis, IN to South Bend, IN which is on lake michigan. He comes home and heads back out to do more work in Evansville, IN which is on the Ohio River. I'm not talking high paying jobs I'm talking about CVS Pharmacy's.
  7. kleankutslawn

    kleankutslawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,185

    some of the bigger companies can afford 2 do it
  8. Dynamic

    Dynamic LawnSite Member
    Messages: 147

    We are not a big company at all (1 truck, 2 zero turns, 3 guys) and we do an area of 160Kilometers with a utility company cutting all there offices and substations. We cut offices 3 times per month and substations 2 a month. We do very well at it, to the point I have been hunting and (ice)fishing steady since October 15. The worst part is not paying the guys while they sit, its just all the driving and the wear and tear on the truck.
  9. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    It all depends how much work it is, how many hours you guys spend there. Likely it would be totally stupid to drive 50 or 100 miles one way for an hour's worth of work, but if I can spend 3-4 hours in one spot then 20 miles sounds more than feasible.

    In short, the total amount of work per visit has to absorb the cost of the miles driven.
    I know, stupid answer if you don't know, but hard to explain otherwise.
  10. RickR1818

    RickR1818 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 342

    Man Browns,

    I hate going from Fishers to Avon! I cant imagine what u said.

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