Known company but lowballer

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by Argentina Girl, Feb 1, 2012.

  1. Argentina Girl

    Argentina Girl LawnSite Member
    Messages: 2

    I wanted opinions about what to do with this company in my area that is known company but last year started offering ridiculous pricing for lawn mowing and other services, I mean these are 1996 prices about $20-$30 less than what we offer and I know we are competitive. Clients are calling and asking because they can't believe their eyes but I can't lower my prices. I know this guy must be doing something illegal to be able to do this but I don't want to loose my clientele.
  2. Landrus2

    Landrus2 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,899

    There is a saying cant beat them join them
  3. landscaper22

    landscaper22 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 829

    If they are a big company doing things the legal way, then I suspect they can't keep that up for long. We actually have one company, the largest company in this area, sort of doing the same thing. I wouldn't say they were at 1996 pricing. But they used to have crazy out of this world pricing. Then, they took a huge hit in probably 2008-2009 with the economy. Suddenly people were dropping them left and right,a nd they had employees with nothing to do. So, to regroup, they had to lower prices by a lot. Actually, I used to love bidding behind them, because I knew I could offer a high price and still be well under where they bid. Suddenly, I am actually bidding higher than them on some jobs. It did come back to bite them on one larger job. They were scared, so I heard they undercut their own price by so much on this particular account that the people took it as an insult. They were like...if you can do it for this price now, that means you have been basically screwing us over the years. So, they went with another company.
    Why do I say all that??? I have no idea. I just love to ramble, since I have been in business long enough to see a lot of things happen to learn from. I don't know if there is anything you can do. Just keeping doing your best and push for outstanding customer satisfaction and stay dependable. You will win in the end. I am telling you, there is nothing worse than biding too low on a job. Anyone with business sense will come to their senses sooner or later. Either that or they won't make it. It's basic economics.
  4. Argentina Girl

    Argentina Girl LawnSite Member
    Messages: 2

    I understand what you are saying. I know a few things about how he hasn't paid employees and not answering calls and so on. We have been hit hard over the past years and just want it to end. Was really excited last year because it was looking very good and then this guy comes along but anyways I think our longevity will win over his doubtful schematics.
  5. landscaper22

    landscaper22 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 829

    Yeah, I agree. How big of an operation are you running? Luckily, I am still small, but steadily growing. I have not been hit hard yet with the economy or any company stepping on my toes.
  6. grass-scapes

    grass-scapes LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,552

    Its going to be hard to tell if a competitor is doing anything illegal. unless you know for a fact that they aren't paying taxes (including payroll tax by paying under the table), not getting the proper licensure, etc. Even then, Its going to be hard to get anyone else to look too. Best bet is to probably just do what you have done in the past, do your best work, pay your taxes, and be a 100 percent legit company.

    There are a lot of factors to consider when comparing bids. Maybe his costs are less than yours.
  7. clydebusa

    clydebusa Inactive
    Messages: 1,660

    Here in Tulsa I wish we were at the 1996 prices. We are more like 1986 prices.
  8. FLC2000

    FLC2000 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,951


    My suggestion is worry about your own company and not what someone else is doing. Instead of talking about it on lawnsite spend that time doing something constructive like coming up with a marketing strategy.
  9. mezammit

    mezammit LawnSite Member
    Messages: 94

    Lowballing won't get these guys anywhere. Let the quality of your work do the talking. There is always a lowballer in every city and state. You look at there overall quality and work ethics and it shows in the price. Like FLC2000 said come up with some type of marketing strategy. Some of the smallest stuff you can do goes a long way at least in residential. Good luck this spring.

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