spring clean up

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by woodie08, Apr 4, 2008.

  1. woodie08

    woodie08 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 53

    this is my first year and I bid on two clean up jobs residental. one was 1/4 acer. didn't have fall clean up. with leaves every where & vines around her house with leaves in it. I just guessed how long it would take and told her $150.00 for clean up. and she said yes with out debate.. so I wonder if I could of gotten more. the other bid i put in was $140.00 clean up not as many leaves but wanted lawn maint. service.. I'm a one man crew just figuring around 20.00 hr. I think these are good estamets what ya think?right now its been very wet in cleveland. I've seen some commerial accounts getting clean up & mulch but thats it. really the my question is whats the fastest way to clean up all those wet leaves? I'm thinking wait for it to dry a little but that will likely be in a couple weeks. If those leafs are somewhat dry will the lawnmower suck them up or is there enother option?
  2. TNT LawnCare Inc.

    TNT LawnCare Inc. LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,157

    I think $ 20.00 an hour is to low. More like $45-55 a man hour for leaves . Leaves can be very deceiving. A 1/4 acre lot with lots of leaves and in the vines will pile up Quickly. I am Asuming you have a truck ! and a powerful backpack blower. You probably dont have a leaf loader,so the best solo operator method i think would be to tarp the leaves. Get a tarp somewhere around 9X13 blow all the leaves you can to the tarp then rake them on the tarp,drag them to the truck and then heho,pull them up on the truck and dump them,repeat process till done. Tarp the truck bed of leaves and get rid of the leaves at the dump.
  3. columbiaplower

    columbiaplower LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 462

    I have a number of quarter acre properties i do fall clean ups for and wouldnt touch them for under $250. I just did a 1/2 clean up which we did in the fall and it was $300 for the touch up. Leaves can take a while especially if you have to haul them away. $50 an hour is a good number to shoot for.
  4. Frue

    Frue LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,472

    20 is a little low. You have to figure your gas at half gallon every hour you are blowing. Lets say 3 hours of blowing at 3.00 a gallon not counting what you took to drive there, then drive home, then dump. That all comes out of that 20 dollar an hour.

    I started out at that rate also but gas was only 1.49 at that time. Tryto get the job done quicker then the bid and charge the same.
    Good Luck bud

    CLARK LAWN LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,526

    frue sent you a pm
  6. Whitey4

    Whitey4 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,448

    Woodie... I generally don't act like the grammar police, but dude.... paragraphs, please. Acre is spelt acre, not acer. Please use caps, it's easier to read. It's estimates....commercial... leaves, not leafs.... another, not enother.

    Being literate and well spoken will help you a lot in this business. I know this is just a message board, but frankly, with better use of the language, you will get more responses. I hope you are more accurate with your use of language in your advertising and customer communications, like invoices. Use the spell checker here. If you have a weakness in writing, that is an available tool that would help you.

    If that first account was ONLY for a cleanup.... and had no fall cleanup done, you went in too low. I will ask a customer like that do you want a $150 cleanup, or a $250 dollar cleanup? (I don't do one time cleanups unless I think I have a good shot at weekly work). For $150, no leaves on the lawn, none you can see under the shrubs. For another hundred, I will get ALL the leaves, including the ones you can't see. I will make the property spotless.

    That is how I would handle it.... for an account that offers NO chance at weekly work, it's $300 for my best effort. As a solo, it will take me 5 hours. That's only 60 dollars an hour. That is still cheap. Yes, you quoted it too low. Even worse if they wanted the leaves bagged, and worse if they wanted them carted off.

    I just don't do one time shots unless I think I can make them regulars.

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