One Shot Aeration Jobs?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by gkell88, Jan 1, 2003.

  1. gkell88

    gkell88 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 55

    Hey folks,

    We've been kicking around the idea of offering one time aeration this season. We have always restricted these types of services to our regular customers, because I've never been quite sure how to bid it.
    I can't run around giving free estimates to everyone who might call in for the aeration, and wait and see if they agree with my measurements and my pricing.

    I would like your opinions on how to market this effeciently,

    Thanks, and Happy New Year to all,

  2. brucec32

    brucec32 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,403

    That's why I decided against one-time aerations to non-customers. I couldn't figure out how to find time to run around giving all the quotes w/o having to hire temp workers to do the work, which could get messy. (My uncle's huge estate sized lawn was aerated this fall for free by one such crew who got the address wrong! They also broke some sprinkler heads. Ouch.)

    I bought a book on doing this though, "turn hard soil into hard cash" or something like that. He claims you can do it and make lots of money. But I prefer less customer contact time and more dollar earning work time, and having customer contact 2 or 3 times (initial call, bid visit, call back to request service) to make $60 or so doesn't appeal to me. I prefer to keep it simple. But I guess it is possible if you like juggling schedules and setting up jobs more than doing the work.
  3. Acorn

    Acorn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 110

    you could give them a per square foot price (maybe $1 per sq. ft.)over the phone with a minimum price of maybe $50 (depending on market) That way you don't have to go do the estimate. Just do the work and measure after the job is done and hand them the bill and keep your hand out for a check. One visit.

    One visit would be ideal and probably wouldn't happen every time but it may be worth a try
  4. xpnd

    xpnd LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 378

    Access your county tax assesor data base on real proprty via the internet. Do a look up with the address. The gross lot size along with the house footprint should be there. The easiest way is to simply develop an adjusted price for gross KSFT. No fuss no muss but you may take it in the shorts on a steep grade where you would want to add a PITA charge. We have an LCO that does this for all his work. Funny, you mainly see his crews on lawns with steep grades. For the life of me I just cant begin to figure out why. Stupidity; definition of: Consistently making the same mistake and always expecting a different and better result than before.
  5. Barkleymut

    Barkleymut LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,117

    I did the whole running around to give bids then answering 10 questions then finally getting the job. Worked out well my first 2 years in biz when I wasn't totally booked. I don't have the time anymore, but several people call me every year to just aerate, seed, and fert. That is great money when you don't have to do anything but go and do the work.
  6. Tony Harrell

    Tony Harrell LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 739

    I'd say, keep records if you do decide to do this. They would probably want it every year and could also be a contact/reference for more work.
  7. lbmd1

    lbmd1 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 462

    You would have to do what Acorn suggested. Set up per sq ft pricing and go from there. And like xpnd said, you'll have to eat the pita factor of hills and curves. We purchased a new Plugr aerator this fall and did a flyer insert in our local paper( at the tune of $870) for a one day insert to about 12k people advertsing aerations and our organic lawn care apps. We put the price of $99 aeration special! ( for lawns up to 5000 sq ft) Then under all the aerating benefit info, we then listed a $10 for every additional 1000 sq ft in addition to the $99 5000 sq ft base price. It worked out well. 80% of the calls either roughly knew their sq footage, or just said come over and do it and send the bill. Only had to go out on the remaining 20% which was no biggie. So you will have to develop what you need as your base price and additional fees according to your area of the country of what othe LCO's charge. I have found that it's quite variable across the country. Our $99 base price of 5000sq ft is considered high for most, but average for here, therefore it really wasn't a "special" price)


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