Jaw Dropping Rates!!!

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by doitforjohnny, Aug 16, 2007.

  1. LushGreenLawn

    LushGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,120

    How old are you? I can tell from your posts that you are pretty young.

    If a 12 year old called me with a blocked caller ID saying he wanted to hire me to cut his dads lawn, I would know exactly what you were doing.
  2. doitforjohnny

    doitforjohnny LawnSite Member
    Messages: 70

    You are so smart LushGreenLawn!
    I'm 16 years old. That's why I sound so young!! What am I saying that is giving it away?
    Is it that I was in the Music Biz for 15 years? Hmmm. Let me know so I can talk and sound old. Maybe that will bring me more bizness, oh shoot I mean business.
    :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
  3. Zrock

    Zrock LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    Johnny, here where I live in VA, I charge 60 an acre, that is starting. Depending on how much there is to weed eat, it can go up from there. That is just a cut edge and blow off. I do have some customers that I charge less than that, they don't seem to care about "lines" ot anything. If that is the case I'll drop the gates for 40. Hope that helps.

  4. rakeck

    rakeck LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    Maybe we are not seeing the benefits of these guys who work for peanuts (beans & tortillas) .... if they will IN FACT mow a small lawn for $10 a cut, they sound like people I need to hire (sub contract) to cut my $40 per cut lawns while I stay home, play with the little woman, and do billing.

    Make these low ball rates work for you instead of against you.

    BTW their are a few LCO's in the Mckinney, TX area (N of Dallas) who advertise in the Yellow Pages "Most Lawns $25 per week" and "1 acre lots $40 week". Just with the gasoline cost factor alone, I do not see why/how these guys feel compelled to work so cheap.
  5. doitforjohnny

    doitforjohnny LawnSite Member
    Messages: 70

    Thanks Darren. Sounds like I need to move to VA. I appreciate help.

  6. doitforjohnny

    doitforjohnny LawnSite Member
    Messages: 70

    Hey rakeck,
    Smart idea, but they do crappy work and they are not very presentable. I wouldn't want them representing my company. These guys here and the ones there in McKinney must have basically no expenses except gas. Like you said even if it's just gas their profit is still very low.

    I wonder how they all came up with such a low price. Do you think that they wanted to just get all business from legit companies charging more?
    There is also some commercial places out here that are hiring these guys without insurance or licenses. They want the cheap price.

    Like you said I do think there are ways to use this and take advantage of it. I just don't know what yet. Maybe we can start a new thread brainstorming ideas.
  7. Big Bad Bob

    Big Bad Bob LawnSite Bronze Member
    from zone 5
    Messages: 1,074

    You say they do crappy work? Then don't let them be your competition.:nono: Go for the people who appreciate quality. Once you get a rep as being lowest price, you only get work from people who want crappy service at cheap prices. You say you know what you need to charge to stay in business then you should charge that. It may take a while to build a good clientele, but you will be glad you did. I will never lower my price to get a customer. A couple of low ballers, in my area, once asked me what I charge. When I replied that I don't even drop my gate for less than $30.00, one of them looked at me with a look of horror and asked , "What do you do if the customer says they'll only pay $20.00?" I said that I thank them for considering my company and walk away. He went into a panic and said, "How can you walk away from a customer like that? How do you survive?!!!":hammerhead: I told him I survive just fine. There are plenty of people out there who are sick of the low price, crappy work, "I'll show up when I feel like it." lco's. You just have to hunt them out and show them that your higher price is really a better value than theirs. Has worked for me for a few years. If your goal is to simply build a customer base of low payers, then you just go down to their price. If you want to build a company that will endure and support you and keep your customers happy for years to come, you have to do it slowly and with determination.payup
    Most customers who are looking for lowest price, rarely keep the same lco for more than 2 years. How you going to build an enduring business with people like that? For every customer I get, I reject 3 so it isn't easy at first.
  8. GreenT

    GreenT LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 42,962

    Excellent post Big Bad Bob, that's exactly my approach.

    You nailed it. 80% of my customers are coming to me from those LCOs and I'm easily 2-3 times higher.

    doitforjohnny, change the market place, offer something different. Just cutting grass at cutthroat prices is not going to get you anywhere.
  9. doitforjohnny

    doitforjohnny LawnSite Member
    Messages: 70

    Great Post!
    Your absoloutly right. Thanks for the great advice!
    May I ask how you advertise? Is it just referrals? Flyers?

    Thanks again,
  10. doitforjohnny

    doitforjohnny LawnSite Member
    Messages: 70

    Thanks GreenT :weightlifter:

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