• Online Events For Landscapers!
    With GIE+EXPO cancelled, virtual education and product launches are filling up the fall. Check out dates for Caterpillar, Exmark, NALP, and more. Click here to learn more.

Rate increase for fertilization clients?

Marine03112

LawnSite Silver Member
I was wondering how you all approach this for your lawn care application. Clients? I haven’t ever increased prices. With that said I have to now. Prices keep going up and I don’t have a choice. So do you send a letter at the beginning of the season? I was thinking this would be the best way to go. A week before the season begins in 2021. So how do you all do it? I know I will loose a few clients. No choice though. Fert chemicals and labor continues to rise. I plan to raise rates by six percent. Any of your thoughts and input would be greatly appreciated.
 

Mike NY

LawnSite Member
Location
NY.
I added a 3% for 2019, then a 5% for 2020. No loss in '19, Only lost a couple in '20. Covid maybe, Cheep customers maybe. Not sure. No major losses. '19 was due to COGS. '20 due to addition of surface feeding insects added to program. 2021, probably another 3-5% due to both COGS and another addition to program. Will be explained in a very short letter with contract. I don't want to price myself out is always a concern, maybe not change the program and have just an add on if customer wants to pay. My list is at almost 100% capacity, so take it or leave it, I don't care, business is business. I got to stay in business is how I price all new customers going forward. Lost 3-5 in '20, gained 14. I win!
 
OP
Marine03112

Marine03112

LawnSite Silver Member
I added a 3% for 2019, then a 5% for 2020. No loss in '19, Only lost a couple in '20. Covid maybe, Cheep customers maybe. Not sure. No major losses. '19 was due to COGS. '20 due to addition of surface feeding insects added to program. 2021, probably another 3-5% due to both COGS and another addition to program. Will be explained in a very short letter with contract. I don't want to price myself out is always a concern, maybe not change the program and have just an add on if customer wants to pay. My list is at almost 100% capacity, so take it or leave it, I don't care, business is business. I got to stay in business is how I price all new customers going forward. Lost 3-5 in '20, gained 14. I win!
My question to you Mike is how do you let them know about the increase?
 

BigJlittleC

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Chicago
How do you start back up? Do you normally just show up or do you send a back at it the spring letter?

I send a email or letter every spring so I address it then.
 

phasthound

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Mt. Laurel, NJ
There used to be an accounting program that would allow you to raise prices more on the lowest profitable third of your clients than your more profitable ones.
 

GREENITUP

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
SouthEast, VA.
That question (or the answer anyway) is tough. I've done it a few years ago by leaving a notice for next years increase with / attached to the final treatment of the current year (Winter app for me). I'm old school and leave each invoice in a pre-addressed envelope on the door after all treatments... it was in there on a different color paper. **BUT - are you planning on increasing your newest customers as well? like the ones you got this year? You should be updating your prices each year (or as needed) - so when you do an estimate this week, they won't get an almost immediate price jump the following season. Good luck.
 

RigglePLC

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Grand Rapids MI
This takes some careful thought. Maybe add some improvements, justifying the added expense. Try to keep your quality higher than your competition.
Better crabgrass control? (Or a higher rate.) ( Or higher rate only on sunny areas.)
Surface insect control?
Automatic check for grubs during round 3.
Grub control? (Half-price if ordered before February 25th?)
Better guarantee?
Free testing for acid soil (using an inexpensive pH meter).
Free simple soil test--(in your basement during January and February).
Half-price full soil tests--at premium lab--upon request.
Earth safe--no odor--low tox weed control?
 
Last edited:
OP
Marine03112

Marine03112

LawnSite Silver Member
How do you start back up? Do you normally just show up or do you send a back at it the spring letter?

I send a email or letter every spring so I address it then.
At the end of the season I make it known that I will return. Unless otherwise notified. I guess I am going to send a letter this year addressing this.
 
OP
Marine03112

Marine03112

LawnSite Silver Member
There used to be an accounting program that would allow you to raise prices more on the lowest profitable third of your clients than your more profitable ones.
Ya my buddy was a franchise of spring green many years ago. There software program did that for them. I am going to bite the bullet and mail a letter a week before apps start letting folks know. Or give them the option to prepay and avoid rate increase
 
Top