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Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by cgaengineer, Mar 10, 2008.

  1. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 15,777

    Since I am part time and just starting out please help me.

    Would you lower a price for a client who is also a friend of the family to get in her neighborhood. I quoted her a price today which I thought was on the low side and she balked.

    Front lawn is about 4-5000 sq ft Bermuda and rear lawn is about 8000 sq ft fescue. I told her at a minimum 1 cut per week for the bermuda and maybe 2 times per month on fescue to help her decision. I dont want to over or under price, but I dont want to lose the possible clients in the neighborhood either.
  2. tamadrummer

    tamadrummer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,102

    Personally I do not! Friend or not, business is just that. She is not going to remove any turf to make your work any easier or less costly on your time/equipment.

    If it is a friend, they should know that you are looking out for their best interest when you are on their property and they are getting what they have paid for each and every time you are their!

    So in short, stay your ground on price and also explain why you need to stay where you are. I had to do it just the other day with a friend and I may lose out but they are on a corner lot and have shrubs on all 4 sides of their house. They are higher than everyone else's quote and kind of got mad but if they don't like the price, they have a 21" walk behind and manual hedge shears and can keep on keeping on. I have been cutting for them while they traveled and it was wrapped up in the price of caring for their house while they were gone. They are now done traveling so we will see how it all works out.

    Good luck man, just make it clear that their decision will not effect your friendship with them.
  3. bill8379

    bill8379 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 778

    If it was all fairly wide open and flat and I could get your big 44" mower on it I would charge about $45-$55, if she balked I wouldn't do it no matter what the price and I sure wouldn't do half a yard. I have turned down two nieghbours, I just don't like working for people that I know.
  4. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 15,777

    Thanks fellows for replying. I was thinking myself it would be better to forget about this one then to under pay/under value myself.
  5. StBalor

    StBalor LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 798

    I hate when family or friends ask me to do their lawn. They automayically think you are gonna do it for free. usually when they ask i tell them i am way to busy at the moment and blow it off. I feel bad about it but at the same time i do not want argue with or have them look at me funny or give me the old song that we are freinds or something when i tell them a price.
  6. hackitdown

    hackitdown LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,611

    Here is what I do for friends. They need to understand the going rate for the work. I determine the highest and lowest price I would charge if it were a random customer...say $45 (to be competitive) to $55 (if it were a PITA) for their lawn. I then tell the friend that I would normally shoot for $55, but since they are a friend, I can do it for $45.

    I then ask for a concession from them to make it fair. Some token thing they need to do for me, or give me. It could be anything...like move the lawn furniture, move the car out of my way, get the kid's swings up out of the way, or...pay cash.
  7. All_Toro_4ME

    All_Toro_4ME LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,578

    I wouldn't bother with it myself. Friends/family even co-workers from your day job be sure to stay clear from. They automatically expect a discount, or even possibly free mowing because they know you.
  8. CreativeEdge

    CreativeEdge LawnSite Member
    Messages: 65

    I would recommend not giving a discount to anyone. If you do it for one person, then the neighbor they recommend you to will expect the same treatment. Also, if you sell yourself short, over time you may not pay enough attention to the property,and the overall image you are trying to portray to the neighborhood may suffer. You bid at your price and stick to your guns, do not let anyone (friends, family, clients) talk you down. You are in as much need to make money as they are trying to save money...your biggest 2 costs are gas and time.

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