Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by cutbetterthanyou, Mar 16, 2007.

  1. cutbetterthanyou

    cutbetterthanyou LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,178

    I know it comes up alot about what people charge and knowing your cost. So i am trying to come up w/ my cost. My question is after I come up w/ my cost what do you try to make for yourself? And what do you try and make off of your employees? I know all of this varies on the person, area ,size of company, Etc. I just don't want to be lowballin plus and i don't want to be chargeing so much I don't get any work. just trying to see what some of you guys basic your rates on.
  2. pjslawncare/landscap

    pjslawncare/landscap LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,410

    Simply stated - as much as u can. Myself, I try making the bigger profit margins always. When u hone and streamline your operation, that margin will peak and the fruits will be your success.
  3. cutbetterthanyou

    cutbetterthanyou LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,178

    I am definatly trying to get as much as i can too. I am just trying to find that line of makeing desent money but still growing, and trying to make alot and being idle. I really want my bussness to grow but I don't want to cut myself short.
  4. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 7,961

    There is no rule of thumb.
    Look at production.
  5. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,087

    This is my roadmap also.

    The fact of the matter is you have to get out there and compete if you want to know what the going rate is for being a "competitive bidder" in your area. Win some and loose some.

    I myself am not interested in being a competitive bidder.
    I'm interested in being happy and making money.

    The going rates in my area are LOW. The majority being actually below cost. Lots of newbie churn. And basically if you want to be on the high end of the scale here, but still land quite a bit of work.... well you have to be willing to do about anything for $20-$35 a cut... when they want it cut... no contracts to sign... etc...

    All that is not my ball of wax. I've learned that in a lot of areas if you are ever going to make any real money at this business, not just a wage, you must work to position yourself to hedge against competition.
  6. cutbetterthanyou

    cutbetterthanyou LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,178

    Thanks for the input guys. I have a price that i already use but this is just on residential stuff and comm stuff that i get called for. I seem to get a fair share of what people call me for. My problem is this winter i have gotten this 'go out and get it' attitude, but everything i bid on i here nothing and no return calls .I figure i was just to high i don't really care.
    What i am faceing now is i have 3 contracts to bid on now that total = about 100k and i would really like to get them. I have figured my cost. Just say for example :
    truck 10hr
    mower 10 hr
    employees 13hr
    = 33hr in cost
    What should i add for myself, and if i cut out the employee and put myself in what should i try to get? I want to bid it low enough to get it i am not lookin to own the whole world and everything in it, but i don't want to loose my @$$ ethier
  7. lawnpro724

    lawnpro724 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,201

    The last issue of Lawn & landscape magazine covers this in good detail. I think you can read it on there website if you don't have a subsciption.
  8. cutbetterthanyou

    cutbetterthanyou LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,178

    Is the mag free it didn't see on there if it was, and wouldn't let me log on. I may just order a subscription.
  9. lawnpro724

    lawnpro724 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,201

    Yes its a free magazine to business owers and its one of the most informative magazines out there along with Pro. www.lawnandlandscape.com is where you can get your free subsciption. I would also suggest you get your free subscription to PRO magazine its a great magazine with lots of useful information. Turf magazine is ok but PRO and lawn & landscape have alot more useful information in them. You can get your subscription to PRO at www.yourtradepubs.com
  10. dhardin53

    dhardin53 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 710

    Everyone picks on todays farming operations. And i use them as a example and a good one to comparing LCO with. Reason is they have been getting the same $3 to $5 a bushel for there corn for over 60 years that I know of. LOC have to make there greatest advances for there increase in costs buy doing there work faster, smarter, and better every years. It may come to a surprise to some but the farmer dose not set the price they get for there product, the market dose. So dose much of the LCO industry, especially the commercial end for the most part, but it is very regional as well. So don't think a guy in small town USA is under payed at one price when the big city is consistently getting a lot more. This is so easily misunderstood here I'm sorry to say.

    But back to big farmers. Why do they send $100 grand for a tractor, or $400 grand for a combine. It is for them to get more done with less cost to the farmer. Hence the LCO that will go buy the biggest and fastest Z will find a way to may more money with this type of equipment. I know I'm going to upset a few buy saying this, but my point is. To make more you need to Do more. Todays farmer farms 2 or 3000 acers and is considered small to average. I was born a raised on 160 acers and was considered a average successfully farm in its time. Today the guy that farmers the home place will till and plant out farm in just over 16 hours if conditions are right. We use to work the ground for days and then take 3 or 4 day to plant it. So here is my example that I have lived. I am not making this up.

    (Now I have a idea of topless female operators but have not found a way to charge to pay for the fines I will have or how long the interview process will take, or just how long I'l say in business. LOL) Just kidding.

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