How to deal with low ballers.

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by kajunlawncare, Mar 12, 2014.

  1. wannaquitmydayjob

    wannaquitmydayjob LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    "If you want to stick around and defend the relative merits of lowballing, be my guest. You'll have a hard time convincing me that Walmart is of benefit to anything other than Walmart itself. ".... The lowballer is only trying to benefit himself, but I would have to disagree with "giving the industry" a bad name... I have found there are a lot of customers out there that are committed to their (NOT THEY'RE) Lawn service providers and the promise of saving a few bucks doesn't interest them in the of the points that have been made repeatedly is PROFESSIONALISM. Looking and performing the part makes elderly (like many of my customers) customers feel safer and more confident that they get what they pay for and don't have to look over their shoulder to see if someone is casing the house...
  2. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,099

    No one said it was a benefit.

    IT IS a business strategy and you can assign whatever incorrect definition you want to a term, it doesn't make it accurate.

    Not everyone who lowballs "doesn't know what they are doing".

    some of them know very well what they are doing, and are doing it deliberately.

    Walmart is a good example of that, and despite all the poo poo of how much they suck are is very viable and successful business.

    Brickman follows a very similar business model at least when it comes to pricing tactics, and Lowballs by text book definition, not lawn site definition, quite frequently.

    I have seen many other large, but regional companies follow suit.
    It is common practice for many to say "$25 to mow the lawn"
    oh? you wanted it TRIMMED too?
    My goodness that's $50!
    what you want to cancel?
    Well there is this cancellation fee here you see and yak yak bla bla.

    Ive seen it happen MANY times, in fact I've been taught it when working as an estimator/account manager for the bigger companies.

    I'm not saying it's beneficial, or good or the champion of all things landscape.

    I'm saying it can be a viable way of doing business, and not everyone who practices this method is a know nothing screwball who is in a desperate panic to get work, and I think in truth, there are just as many high priced guys on this site who don't really know what they are doing, as there are low priced guys.
    So pricing strategy alone is not a barometer for business knowledge or success.
  3. Bryan27

    Bryan27 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 152

    Well, here is the dictionary definition of the word "lowball":
    low·ball [loh-bawl] Show IPA



    Cards. a game of draw poker in which the player having the lowest-ranking hand wins the pot.

    verb (used with object)


    to deliberately estimate a lower price for (a service or merchandise) than one intends to charge: to lowball the cost of a move.


    to give a false estimate or bid for.

    verb (used without object)


    to engage in lowballing.



    engaged in or characteristic of lowballing: a lowball bid.

    So, by DEFINITION it is a deceptive business practice. I'll give you that deception can be a business strategy, but beyond that, there is nothing good or endearing about the practice of lowballing. Someone who's business strategy is to lowball, very well may know exactly what they are doing, we call those people con men or scammers around here.

    What do you call a person who's business is run with no insurance and pay no tax so they're able to charge half of what the legitimate businesses around them charge for the same work?
  4. BossPlowMaster

    BossPlowMaster LawnSite Member
    Messages: 122

    Most of you all are just ignorant a - holes who would rather insult each other and belittle each other than actually help the industry grow. How bout all of you that don't have any valuable input, get off the site and go get your hands dirty. I know why I joined lawnsite and that was to gain knowledge and pick some people's brains about different things.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  5. ReddensLawnCare

    ReddensLawnCare LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,651

    How was that post valuable input? Just don't read if you don't want to. I agree we bash on here, but a lot of guys have nothing to do outside or the dirty that you mentioned is frozen. So chill. It's all good
    Posted via Mobile Device
  6. Bryan27

    Bryan27 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 152

    Yeah, I thought we were all being pretty respectful of each other. Asking someone to further explain their views by challenging them is a sign of respect in my book, maybe some don't take it that way? :hammerhead:
  7. Twinlakes

    Twinlakes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 129

    The industry(in general) will grow/fail regardless of what's said here. It's the physical and economical actions that will dictate. Calling names, etc. Will do nothing more than invite the same type characters to the discussion.

    If it gets to "deep" for you; it might be time to click elsewhere. Otherwise, sit back and enjoy the energy expended at no gain.
    Thickskin will get you nothing, but somewhere in this biz.
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2014
  8. Snyder's Lawn Inc

    Snyder's Lawn Inc LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,530

    Sorry if I made you mad But I was wanting to know what a 17 year old know and have a 100k business
    Ground is mud here and grass is still brown and Snow is still in the forecast
    All I was doing To see if he can explain to me how man lawns he has or atleast his company name so Look him up.
    I wonder how he can joggle work and school to have 100k business
  9. whiffyspark

    whiffyspark LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,563

    100k is not that much. 40 yards a week plus mulch and landscaping jobs.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  10. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,099

    depends on how long the growing season is
    18-22 weeks here.

    Im not sure you can do 100k solo…. maybe with chemical.

    average yard here is 50-75…call it 62.
    40 yard is 2480 per week or 44k per season.

    do some clean ups etc, maybe another 8k.

    thats 52k…

    to do another 48k in chem, in 20 weeks is 2400 gross per week…with 40 properties that's $1200 per client…with an average of three applications that's 400 per app.
    not going to happen.

    now with a season that's 30 plus weeks long that could be a different story, but like the other guy was saying, how to get that all done and have school and be a kid too….

    Sounds like sauerkraut.

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