How much to charge for aeration and how to?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by green-pa, Sep 29, 2007.

  1. green-pa

    green-pa LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 737

    I have a couple customers that would like their lawns aerated as well as overseeded. They are about 1/6-1/4 acre homes. How long will it take me on avg and what should I charge ( if I have to rent this machine at about $50/day)? I've heard one guy around here charges like $50 to aerate. But he owns his own machine. The only way I could charge that low is if I got at least 4-5 in one day or else I dont' think it would be worth it based on the expense of rental. I've heard this works very well for over seeding though and I could add hopefully another $30-50 at least for over-seeding right? I'm not sure what to charge. Also, how is the best way to aerate and overseed? I've read that in the morning is best cause the ground may be softer or if not, have em use a sprinkler before I come out.
  2. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,652

    I still lowball aeration, yes I admit it I still do it.

    40 bucks below a 1/4 acre, that's also my minimum, maybe 45 per 1/4, then it's roughly grass cut fee (+5 per 1/8th)... Uhm so let me see I charged 75 for 2/3 of a HILLY acre the other day... Half acre cut = 45 + (5 x 4) = 65 and add another 10 for the last hilly bit = 75... Or 5/8 = 70 as per the specials price list further below.

    But it depends on the complexity of the lot as well, that one above a good 1/8-1/4 of an acre was on such a hill I could only aerate going UP hill, then roll the machine back down, then back UP, one path at a time, very time consuming but it was a job well done. Could've half-azzed it for 50-60, but I'm all about doing it right anymore, guess I could've got 80 for it too, ehhhh whatever.

    There are my 2007 'specials' which aren't that much below normal:
    1/4 acre lot (~11k sq.feet): $40.00
    3/8 acre lot (~16k sq.feet): $50.00
    1/2 acre lot (~22k sq.feet): $60.00
    5/8 acre lot (~27k sq.feet): $70.00
    3/4 acre lot (~33k sq.feet): $80.00
    7/8 acre lot (~38k sq.feet): $90.00
    Full acre (43,560 sq.feet): $100.00

    And that's for a pretty normal lot, add 5 per 1/8 acre of obstacle courses.
    Now keep in mind if it's a full acre and only 1/4 is an obstacle course, only that part gets the surcharge so it'd be 110...
    etc, etc
  3. ExclusiveLawnCare

    ExclusiveLawnCare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 304

    Top site hahaha I like how make it it all easy and Price it out your way with your little Charts, Thanks man.
  4. green-pa

    green-pa LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 737

    Thanks Topsites! How long does it take u to aerate the avg 1/4 acre?
  5. fslm

    fslm LawnSite Member
    Messages: 52

    Go to the rental center, ask how much to rent a machine for the day. Add 10 dollars on per yard. 50 to rent + 10= 60 a yard(60x120). To the customer if they want to do it themselves, it will cost them 50 bucks, so they probably will pay you the extra 10 so they wont break their backs doing it. Sell it that way and you'll get it. and yes get more than one to do if you have to rent. offer a special 100 bucks for both.
  6. LushGreenLawn

    LushGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,120

    Holy Crap Topsites.

    I get around

    90 for 1/4 acre
    150 for half acre
    230 for 1/4 acre
    280 for full acre

    and according to our local truegreen and lawn doctor, I am lowballing.
  7. DAR57

    DAR57 LawnSite Member
    from NW Ohio
    Messages: 212

    Are you guys counting your area as the whole thing overall or do you subtract the house, drive, outbuildings etc?
  8. green-pa

    green-pa LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 737

    Heh, are these prices for aerating AND overseeding or just aerating? Also, do aeraters have overseeders built in or would I have to rent a seperate maching for this? Or could I just use a basic Scott's broadcast spreader or something to put down the seed?
  9. Ric3077

    Ric3077 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,113

    Yea he is way low...I get $15/1000sq ft with a $75 minimum. And I can't handle all the business I get at those rates...My 10,000 sq ft price is 50% more than his 1 acre price?! I don't know why people aerate for free? They are leaving money on the table.
  10. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,943

    This is more like the prices I hear and provide. Maybe a bit higher.

    It's not based on sq/ft, it's more about the time it will take. More intricate areas require a lot of detail work and time.

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