Turned Down 3 Acre Mowing Job

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by echeandia, Apr 9, 2007.

  1. echeandia

    echeandia LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,131

    Got a call this morning from a guy who has a 3 acre lot. I have a 48" Exmark Turf Tracer with a Sulky. I told the guy on the phone that the job was too big for me. Would you have turned down this job?
  2. ncls

    ncls LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 442

    Depends if I had a full route or not. When I was starting out, I'd take anything.
  3. dcondon

    dcondon LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,246

    I sure would have gone and looked at it and if he liked your price why wold you turn it down:confused: Most people would be jumping on that!!!
  4. paul vroom

    paul vroom LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 260

    Live and learn. Next time check it out, you might be able to get away with subing the job out.
  5. lawnpro724

    lawnpro724 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,201

    Why would you turn it down, sure it might take you a while with a 48" walkbehind but if he agreed to your price in time you could have gotten another mower to get it done faster. You should have been able to get it done in about 2 hours depending on trimming.
  6. lpwhandyman

    lpwhandyman LawnSite Member
    Messages: 197

    A big job is only small jobs put together in one convenient place. For the right price, why not?
  7. GreenN'Clean

    GreenN'Clean LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,512

    I would have went and looked at it and made it worth my while to cut it...
  8. Horsepower Lawns

    Horsepower Lawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 213

    I did 3 acres with a 36in. It took some time, but I got it done.
  9. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    I can't say for sure, I turned down a 35 cubic yard mulch job this morning, but more so because the customer informed me on the phone that it was this much mulch needed to be spread (translation: they ordered the mulch from someone else then try and get some dumbazz Lco to spread it = customer trying to save a dollar = the mulch place didn't give them no discount = they expect I will, since nobody else has, and won't pay more).

    Either way, it would've took me 3-4 days, maybe more, I have a problem when it's not my mulch, there's no telling if it's really 35 cu.yds. or not, and then half the time a lot of the mulch has to go 100-200 feet distances one way away, not to mention I didn't estimate it so there's no telling how thick it needs to be spread and basically since it's their plan it puts me at their mercy, so it takes forever and regardless of what I charge, I get took.
    Meanwhile, it cuts me out of the delivery fee, and it may not be much, but that's the cake part of the job dangit. So what am I left with, $25 / cu.yd. to spread it is like pulling teeth, I'd really like to get paid per barrow load (so as to make sure I don't get took), but most of these cheapos are thinking $18 - $20 / cu.yd. so...

    And the same with 3 acres, if it's too much, it drags bad, the 48" is good for 1/4 acre to an acre, and you can just about start to feel the drag when you're dealing with one acre, of course anything beyond is pure drag lol.

    I'd do 3 acres for $130 with my 48 proline w/ velke, but it would take 140 - 150 minutes straight cutting... Then, spend another 30-45 minutes trimming, easy 3-4 hours, roughly 35-40 per hour but it is a constant pay, no truck time and all 1-stop shopping, it does actually add out to good money. Way I used to do it is cut it in sections, a 3 acre lot likely would be like 6-8 or 10 squares somekinda way put together, do one square at a time, it's mentally easier than tackling the entire ball of wax. You just split it up in your mind, and cut out squares or rectangles and work on those and eventually you get 1/2 way through and a little further and half a day later you're done lol. You know, two of these, one in the am and one in the pm = $260, two stops and no more, I could deal with it, kinda.

    I would've took it back when, and likely today also, but then grass cutting's my favorite of it all :)
    Maybe you should've took my mulch job and I did the 3 acres?
  10. David C.

    David C. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 246

    I took a 6 acre church ---- mowed every sq. inch with my Snapper 52" ZTR---it isn't much bigger than your 48"-------secret to it is---keep your machine runnin'----don't stop for nothin'---keep moving---don't goof off---don't stop unless you absolutely have to---as in---"I got ta go behind this buildin' and drain my bladder!!!!"----but even then---keep your machine idling----don't stop!!! You'll be through in a little while that way!!!

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