How many use another LCO for their own lawn?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by GPDesign1, Jul 5, 2006.

  1. GPDesign1

    GPDesign1 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 428

    Took off yesterday for the 4th and spent it working on MY OWN lawn for a change. Been so busy with Better Outdoor this year, that I've been using an LCO to maintain my property. But, with all the rain we've had in the last couple weeks, my guy let it get completely out of control. Got tired of my yard looking like an HOA project, so I decided to just do it myself. Good opportunity to get some quality saddle time with a Quick 36 Samurai and there's nothing quite like getting on "the other side of the table" for a while to clear up one's perspective.

    As I was mowing, trimming and blowing I was thinking about all the issues you guys face in your business. What makes one guy successful and the next guy fail? Thinking about what I liked about my LCO (current and past) and what I wish they did differently. Started wondering to myself, how many landscapers hire a landscaper to do their yard? It's a great learning experience to see how somebody else does it... and see if it meets your expectations.

    I read all the stuff on here about lowballers and price cutters and I'm sure they're an issue for some types of properties (rental houses, listed real-estate, HOA, etc.). But I have to believe that most middle-class residential homeowners who use a landscaper, first and foremost, want their yard to look pretty after it's finished. What it costs is a factor to be sure, but it's not the most important thing. They want their yard to look well cared for. I can tell ya for a fact, I'd buy more services from my LCO if he'd just take the time to talk to me once in a while about what I want my yard to look like. After all, it's my yard and I'm the one paying for the service. I'm not here for his convenience.

    Just a thought, and maybe it's a dumb one, I don't know... but I can't think of a better way to find out what the experience is like from the customer's perspective. than to hire an LCO of your own. Mow one more lawn per week and then hire someone to do yours.

  2. JB1

    JB1 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,904

    I really hope your kidding.
  3. NewbieNC

    NewbieNC LawnSite Member
    Messages: 67

    Gary...I had heard you guys have something NEW around the corner. Any hints?????????
  4. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Messages: 4,899

    Yeah I hire someone to cut my lawn--there called employees

    DAVEY PROS LawnSite Member
    Messages: 66

    Gary -

    That's a awesome idea! Actually my brother and I have thought about it before but there may be a problem. What if the LCO you hire knows you are a LCO yourself. He may suspect that you are hiring him so you can see how he works and manages then use that to beat him out of business. If indeed he is this clever he may say no to your yard.

    -About a year ago we wanted to hire this other company in our neighborhood called Total Landscape and Design. I'm sure if we asked them they would have turned us down because they were aware that we wanted to steal some of their accounts. So, instead of going through the trouble of that we did something else. Everytime they pulled into our neighborhood and passed our house to get to their accounts, my brother and I would throw on our work polos and hats and take a notepad and go down the street to where they were working. We'd literally stand on the other curb from their accounts and watch them work. We'd take notes on what they did differently and everything. Best of all they couldn't do anything because we weren't doing anything to interfere - we were causing no harm. If they asked what we wanted, we'd say "nothing" and continue watching. It was quite funny hahahaha. It worked to becuase we were able to steal a few accounts that summer. I think they were pissed off - but the guy running Total Landscape was French so we didn't care.

    That's businezz for ya-
  6. OMG

    OMG LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 275

    Technically I guess I do.

    I handle the residential lawn of a competitor and he handles mine.

    We both hated doing our own, kept putting them off and doing subpar work (limited edging/trimming). So, we decided to put each other on our respective routes----but no money changes hands.
  7. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    That's the only way I can see, and understand this practice.

    Yeah no doubt right? Makes me suspect he's taking advantage of someone new in the business by getting something for nothing, which might explain the condition of the lawn. If this is the case, I find this practice to be rude and vulgar and it's bad enough the customers do this but I have zero appreciation for business owners doing it as they really should know better... If that is the case.
  8. SamTheLawnMan

    SamTheLawnMan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 219

    I take pride in my own yard.....In fact I have gotten 6 new accounts this year just by people in my neighborhood seeing my yard. (Great advertisement)
  9. DBL

    DBL LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,219

    there you go its probably cheaper to pay your guys (or yourself) to cut your own lawn then to pay someone else and on your own lawn if you mess up whos gonna get on your case...your wife. but what im saying is its the only lawn that you dont have to go all out on not that you dont want it to look nice but you know what i mean
  10. crawdad

    crawdad LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,938

    So, every time they went past your parent's house, to work, you and your brother weren't out working? You had to change into your work clothes, and take notes, to learn how to mow lawns? No wonder you had to steal accounts.
    How old were you then, was this when you first started the "businezz" at the age of 10 or was it more recently?

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