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Mowing Production #'s for large lawns 20K +

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by BeautifulBlooms, Apr 13, 2008.

  1. BeautifulBlooms

    BeautifulBlooms LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 613

    Sorry for the repost I had the thread int he wrong forum

    I am having a hard time getting any of the large lawns I have been bidding on.

    I specifically am concerned my production #'s that I use for lawns 20K or smaller just dont work when the lawns are much bigger.

    I figure I can mow just about any property (within reason) that is 20K or less somewhere between 20-30 minutes. But say I have a 40K lawn with the second 20K part of the lawn pretty much just back and forth with minimal obstructions, minimal trimming, and minimal blowing I think my #'s just dont work. Can someone give me some guidance here.

    I have a 52" Ferris IS 1500 and my typical production for that mower are between 680 - 1100 Sq. Ft. per minute. SO I am using 1100 as my production # for the outer areas or more wide open areas, but I havent gotten any properties greater than about 24K. I think my price just ends up too high.

    Someone help em figure it out, because I would much rather be ont he larger properties than a bunch of the little ones!
  2. Flex-Deck

    Flex-Deck LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,845

    My formula is simple - $45-$55 minimum up to one acre(Depends on obstacles and difficulty) - Then $25-$35 per acre after that depending on obstacles and difficulty.

    Just landed a new approximately 50 acre account (11 separate areas) that I mowed solo Fri and Sat. I put 15 hrs on the tack, and bid it at $1500/mow, which is $30 per acre. Actually I was the high bidder, but only by $90/mow. Our reputation as to being able to handle this type of account was the deciding factor. We already have a similar 40 acre account (12 separate areas) we have been doing for 4 years.
  3. BeautifulBlooms

    BeautifulBlooms LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 613

    When you say per acre do you mean per acre of turf or per acre of property?

    I am getting between $40-$60 for lawns between 10K-20K of turf area. I use a $37 minimum but am glad I only have one of those.

    What size mower are you using too because that makes a big difference. I think if I charged $30 per acre Id be bankrupt. I am also trimming and blowing on these properties too but I am looking for simply production #'s not necessarily what you charge.

    How many sq. ft. can you mow in an hour with a 52" Zturn? I know it varies but give me a range
  4. Flex-Deck

    Flex-Deck LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,845

    Both - Most of my big ones are park type, so buildings are not factored in. I have one 26 acre propery that has a factory building and parking lots, and I bid it as a 22 acre mow. Some properties I have (example-3 acres total with obstacles and buildings) - I just bid it as 3 acres at the high end. It is faster to mow 3 open acres than 3 acres cluttered with buildings and trees.
  5. BeautifulBlooms

    BeautifulBlooms LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 613

    So disregarding what you make per hour and completely removing $ from my question, how long does it take you to mow that 22 acres of turf and what size mower are you using?
  6. Flex-Deck

    Flex-Deck LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,845

    It takes my wife and I 3 hrs 15 minutes. I have a JD 595 - mowing 9 1/2 ft. and she has a JD 495 mowing 7 1/2 ft.
  7. BeautifulBlooms

    BeautifulBlooms LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 613

    Ok that explains your pricing. I am using a 52" Zturn

    Obviously if I was doing a 22 acre property the 52" wouldnt be enough but for properties under 2 acres of turf it should be just fine.
  8. meets1

    meets1 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,855

    Acre prices vary greatly. In my little part of the world - I have lost bids on large area mowing cuz price was down to 10-12 / acre. There probably fairing fine - job isn't bad either but I wouldn't dicate py price solely on per acre.

    Flex Deck - need to see your mower pics? 595 mowing 9.5ft has to be something you set-up??
  9. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,373

    You're going to find out that your numbers will be blown out of the water anytime you start getting over 1 acre in size.

    Below that one acre, there's not enough wiggle room for the larger outfits to come in with large equipment, or multiple guys, so the price will stay fairly close to the same.

    Once you start getting into properties that are 1+ acres in turf, and even more so when you start talking 5+ acres in turf, there's guys like myself or Flex-Deck that are knocking out 8+ feet at a time.

    I've got a 60 hp Kubota pulling a 15' tri-deck mower. I can knock out a whole lot of turf a whole lot faster than you on your 52". I'm even talking about properties that are as small as 3 acres, such as parks and the like.
  10. BeautifulBlooms

    BeautifulBlooms LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 613

    I understand all this info. I am not looking to compete on the large area properties (5+acres) but would like to get some of these 1-2 acre of turf properties. Anyone with experience on production #s for this type of property?

    What I am guessing is that I can do the first 20K of turf on a property for about $50-70 and the extra 20K might be an additional $20 or so assuming that the trimming and blowing requirements are minimal for that additional 20K sq. ft.

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