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Job for old couple down the street from my

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by boxoffire, Nov 1, 2004.

  1. boxoffire

    boxoffire LawnSite Member
    Messages: 169

    house on Saturday, wanted me to mow yard and clean up leaves. When I said seperate charge for leaf cleanup and hauling away, they said (he did) leave them in large piles toward this area so I can burn them. Ok, I make 3 piles and 1 is in middle of yard and others close to where they specified to me. Yard was clean, just 3 big piles. So I charge $50. Mowing took about 30 minutes and I was blowing leaves with my redmax eb800 series for about and hour and a half. Raked a little too when piles got too big. (Need a bigger blower I know). I figured $50 was fair and they didn't say anything, but did want me to help burn them. I said sorry I don't do that. Offered to haul them off again for like $5 a bag and they said get back with us soon. So next day is Sunday and I didn't get up with them and don't usually work Sunday. So she calls my house Monday before I can contact them just after lunch and yells at my mom that I was supposed to come back and finish, my yard looks terrible, yada yada yada. Nothing loud to my mom, but she could tell not exactly happy with me.

    So I slide by there after cutting my bro's lawn today at about 6 pm. She's like all over me that she only pays her regular guy $40 a week to come by and mow and keep yard spotless all through the year. Apparently he as disappeared on her after being very regular for last 4 years. They are a little concerned since they have called him many times and no reply as of last 3 weeks. That's why they asked me to cut since I saw all their leaves in the yard and 2 beside them all cleaned up, I thought what the hey, I'll throw my flyer for fall cleanup in their driveway and sure enough she called the next day. I went and met them and talked with them for about an hour in their home and they said I could be a backup if their regular guy doesn't come back soon and maybe perm. They are very old and probably won't even live there more than a year longer. Anyway, told them I'd go back down there in the morning and get their leaves up, but she's like you should do it for nothing and all this crap and he's telling her to calm down. I mean I just met them and now the "JEKYL" side is showing in her. So what should I charge them to get those leaves bagged up and taken away. He said I should mulch them up with mower first since I'm charging by the bag so that will take up less bags. I said I'd be glad to do it that way.

    But I'm just concerned that she ain't gonna want to pay me $5 a bag (which I'm guessing will come out to be around $50 total at least + $10 dumping fee making total of $60. I figure it'll take me a couple of hours. I think that would be fair enough. Should I make her/him sign a work order with estimate on it before starting the work? Hell, even if I was the one getting $40 a week all year, I think leaf cleanup may be a little more. Funny thing when I was sitting on my mower in their front yard finishing up, lady across the street came over and met them briefly and then spoke with me when leaving. She said, don't let them fool you they have got plenty of money. When I dropped back buy there to quote them for the leaf cleanup tonite, man was saying sonny, we are old and we can't afford to pay that kind of money for just cleaning up leaves. He said at $5 a bag you probably will need 50 bags. I said no sir it won't take that many, maybe 20-25 tops. He said and that equals $100 approx and that's too much.

    Think I'm done now, and probably with them as well after tomorrow.

    Thanks for letting me ramble. First bellering customer I've had. Guess they are old and a little ill.

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