Minimum charge?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by spitfire3416, Oct 3, 2013.

  1. M&SLawnCare

    M&SLawnCare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 306

    For the original poster, don't think of it as "how much for this size yard". You shouldn't ever price based on the property size. Think of it more along the lines of your selling time, not a service. Your selling your time to drive to her property, use whatever equipment you need to get the job done (which means factoring in the cost of running that equipment for said amount of time), then drive back or to the next property. Figure out all of your costs to operate including labor, figure out what profit margin you want, then divide that buy the hours your working. That's your hourly rate. When you bid determine how long a job will take you including travel time and times that by your hourly rate. That's your price. Minimum or "how much for 1/4 acre do you charge" is all irrelevant for the most part.

    Example: I have one property that's less than 1/4 an acre and I charge 50. I have another property that's about one acre and I charge 60. You look at that and it doesn't seem to make sense. Fact is though the 1.5 acre is more profitable as they take about the same amount of time to do. Had I bid by the size of the properties, I'd have never gotten the larger account and I'd basically be paying the lady to let me mow her grass at the smaller one.

    That said, my minimum is 30 unless its a neighbor or special circumstance (again because with travel, load, and unload time, that's where I want to be for any size property) :clapping:
  2. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,139

    Usually, way I do things when a customer calls me for some tiny small $2 job:

    1. Do it for free.
    2. Look around to find more work until I can justify charging $30.
    3. If it's a regular customer, take care of it during a scheduled visit.

    Because I'm telling you, it costs me $10 to drive up.
  3. ryan41

    ryan41 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 326

    $35.00 is the lowest i will mow any lawn. I don't care how small it is. not worth it to drive to job & unload trailer for less than that if you ask me. I do mainly 1 acre + lawns. 1 acre i normally get $50.00- $65.00 per cut depending on how much trimming. Most cases it takes us 40-45 min.
  4. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,139

    Would you work for 5 dollars?

    If the answer is no, you have a minimum.
  5. yardguy plus

    yardguy plus LawnSite Member
    Messages: 36

    seriously you figure a price based on the income of the client?

    I agree the other stuff, size, degree of difficulty, time spent but I don't care what you make. I charge the same. my prices are the same for EVERYONE from the mcdonalds worker at the drive thru to the heart doctor at the hospital.

    my opinion and it's just my opinion it's bad business and morally wrong to charge someone more just because they make more.

    goes along with this idea obama has to tax the rich more. if that's the case I would guess a lot would have the same idea I would have. I'm not gonna become rich if I'm gonna have to pay more taxes.

    when giving a price I look at time required, what equipment has to be used (21 incher vs ztr) and difficulty of the job. that's it. doesn't matter how rich or poor you that's where the price comes from. I'm not gonna charge a guy who works at wendys $32 a week and charge the microsoft president more for the same situation just because he works more. the only way they get charged more is if more work is required. likewise I do the same quality work for everyone as well. those 2 types of client would get the same quality from me.
  6. clydebusa

    clydebusa Inactive
    Messages: 1,660

    Have a $7 and another is $15. Both are at locations where I am already stopped and they take 3 minutes and 6 minutes.

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