Thinking about leaf clean up in the fall

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by RPM Lawn Care, May 22, 2006.

  1. RPM Lawn Care

    RPM Lawn Care LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    Im thinking about getting into leaf clean up this fall to expand my current business. I am wondering what kind of equipment is used by those who offer this service. How much does the equipment cost? What equipment is the best? On average, what are guys charging for this service. I have two bobcat mowers 61" and 52". Thanks in advance for the advice.
  2. yankeesdood16

    yankeesdood16 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 72

    Just get a regular leaf blower. Thats what I use.
  3. Freddy_Kruger

    Freddy_Kruger LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,064

    IS fall clean up a big thing like spring clean up was?

    I made a killing this spring with power raking season so is there a heavy fall season for clean ups? is it worth advertising for? and is power raking a fall option?

    I have many questions...:*(
  4. hackitdown

    hackitdown LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,621

    About half my customers ask for clean-up. I tell them that leaves will smother their lawn.

    Anyway, I use a walk-behind blower, a backpack blower, and ZTR w/collection system, tarps and rakes. I bought a JRCO dethatcher, so I will try that as a rake this fall, not sure if it will offer much help. I do not offer to take away the leaves, since I am not equiped. I live in a fairly rural area, so most people have woods where I can blow the leaves.
  5. zim bob the landscaper

    zim bob the landscaper LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,706

    well i used to use a tractor with just a bag. one of my accounts took 9 hours!! man was that fun. this year i got a trac vac. i made a few ajustments but ill give u the link in my next post.
  6. br549oicu8

    br549oicu8 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,230

  7. zim bob the landscaper

    zim bob the landscaper LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,706

  8. RPM Lawn Care

    RPM Lawn Care LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    Hey guys, thanks for all the advice, I appreciate it. What are you guys charging for each trip out? The same as a trip out to mow or more? Thank you very much.
  9. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    In its simplest form, these two sentences best summarizes leaves: *Everybody* will call you for leaves ! People who will call you for absolutely nothing the entire rest of the year WILL call you for leaves.

    If you think people are clueless as to what we charge now, wait until leaf season because you ain't seen nothing yet. For this reason, I do leaves only for my regular customers who have been with me the entire year. I just finished saving my money for next winter, so if people are not willing to pay my rates, I could care less. I suggest you think of doing something similar, make sure you have a choice when it comes to doing leaves, is what I'm saying.

    As for what I use, in addition to the mowers which are useless in all but the lightest of leaf cover, I have a 10hp Billygoat pushblower - Thousand dollar machine moves 4-6 times the leaves the strongest backpack can blow.
    Cordura / Dernier Tarp + rake rule royally as well, after the blower piles them up.

    Labor rate / hour: $40 w/ the backpack, $60 w/ the pushblower, that's if I can put them in the woods or some place on their prop.
    Hauling: $175 / 6x12x2 trailer load minimum and up to 200 / load, most yards take at LEAST 1 full load, 2-3 is more like it, some as many as 4-6 but I usually don't get those jobs. One trailer load holds anywhere from 400 - 900 pounds of leaves, depending.
    Take it or leaf it.
  10. S3Scooter

    S3Scooter LawnSite Member
    Messages: 144

    Is that rate per man, or total? You really like that walk behind? I have a great back pack. do you think I should add one of those this year instead?

    Last year I bought the big billy goat loader for my truck, I am either buying a Dump bed, or a dump trailer this year to go with it. I might look in to one of those walk behinds, thanks.


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