How to get commercial accounts

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by sweetland, Dec 26, 2011.

  1. guitarman2420

    guitarman2420 LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Midlothian, VA
    Messages: 617

    Just as making investments in your 401k, you should always diversify. You should not have all of your business in one basket, whether it's residential or commercial. My mix is @ 65% commercial, 35% residential (revenue); and 70%/30% residential/commercial (profit). Why do the commercial work when the profits are better in residential? Because I generate much more revenue, with fewer people on the commercial side. I place my experienced, quality guys on the residential properties and my less experienced newbies on the commercial side. During the past 3 years, when other people were going out of business because the residential (especially projects) business fell hard, I was still generating business and growing on the commercial side. When the economy turns around and the high $ projects become more plentiful, I'll probably go back to a more 50/50 split.
  2. Lux Lawn

    Lux Lawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,267

    Seems like property managers can be tough to get in with. I usually send out letters in mid winter to try and drum up work.
  3. Fine Gardens Landscaping

    Fine Gardens Landscaping LawnSite Member
    Messages: 137

    A while back I was thinking it would be good to get more commercial work as well.

    I recently bid an HOA and an apartment complex where I was able to find out what the other bids were.

    Seems like the other bids were too competitive. I ended up shrugging my shoulders and putting in my normal bid -10%. That bid still ended up being 20 - 30% higher then there cheapest bid.

    I realized I only bid two accounts so far but I'm pretty sure it's not worth it for me to pursue HOA's or Apartments. I'm going to stick to residential, retail, and small businesses for now. Maybe business parks in the future, not sure what that markets like either?
  4. sweetland

    sweetland LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,441

    When it comes to shopping plazas that are managed by huge out of state companies like Inland. How do you reach the right person cause I get someone different each time
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  5. GreenGuysLC

    GreenGuysLC LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 366

    Bottom Line is contact and ADVERTISE. I maintain Office Depot, Rite Aids, Zaxbys, Ryans, Residence Inn, and a few other Commercial Facilities. I have Gotten them all through different means. Some called for a bid as they were unhappy with current providers. Some found me in the Phone Directories, and Some were next door to our work and noticed how well we preformed. Making contacts on a rainy day doesnt hurt.
  6. sweetland

    sweetland LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,441

    Any info on how to get in touch with out of state property management companies like InLand? Also when you call who do you ask for? Property manager?
  7. GreenGuysLC

    GreenGuysLC LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 366

    Store managers are gonna know who to call for maintenance issues. Most likely larger stores are dealing with a facility maintenance group. They are hard to find. You need to start by either googling for commercial facility maintenance for "named" store or go talk to some store managers. Be prepared though. It isn't as easy as go cut and drop a bill. I have to log into a server and report services. Then obtain verif numbers which have to match the invoice. Some work requires a manager to sign off and payment is usually 60 to 90 days.
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  8. ndols2

    ndols2 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 88

    agreed, I wanted to get into apartments this season. so some good old door knocking, and phone calls. I am bidding 8 complexes for 1 company as we speak. talk to managers and listen to there concerns. see how you can get into there good graces

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