Well the other guy is only charging $65 a month...

Discussion in 'General Industry Discussions' started by lawnmaniac883, Jun 28, 2007.

  1. lawnmaniac883

    lawnmaniac883 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,613

    So I get a call yesterday, lady says that she needs a new lawn service because her existing guy has run over hoses, chewed up her christmas decorations, along with the extension cords supplying them power. To add to the list he has apparantly run into her house and pool enclosure a few times. So I drive by the place on my estimate run tonite and take a quick look from the truck then drive to my next estimate.

    I call the lady on the phone and quote her $100 a month get this big sigh on the other end. Right away I knew it was going to be a jee thats just too high situation but pursued it anyway. She says how oh she understands why my price is where it is but the current guy is only charging 65 a month no matter how many times he comes to cut it. BTW property is a corner lot. Well she says if he does something really bad then I will call you first dont worry. Said she must have been grandfathered into the price when she bought the house.

    Now to the point, I'm not the most expensive game in town by any means but I do good work and expect to be payed well for it. But 65 dollars a month, how do you even pay for the fuel, wear and tear on your equipment, truck and trailer for 65 a month. Good grief this is ridiculous.

    Right after that though I got another 100/month account added so it evened things out.

    Just thought I would share this experience lol anyone got stories like this to add?

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    I think everybody's got a few stories like that...

    Heck I'd run over the X-mas lights too...it's almost July...take 'em down already :laugh:
  3. fiveoboy01

    fiveoboy01 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,988

    Happens to me too.

    I quoted a gentleman 98 bucks + tax to aerate his property this fall. Just a tad under a quarter acre total lot size. He said that was fine. Then he contacts me a couple weeks later and wants a bed created around the perimiter of his house, and if I could mow one week that he was gone on vacation mid-july. I said no problem, that it would be 30.00 for the cut as long as he kept it cut up to that point.

    Now I picked up on the fact that he was cheap by the usual things cheapos say(house is going up for sale, don't want to spend a lot, will it be in the hundreds or thousands of dollars?) etc, etc.

    So rather than waste my time, I informed him that a rough estimate would be $3200 if he wanted mulch in the beds, and $3900 if he wanted stone.

    Of course, he declined. No problem. I asked him if he still wanted me to do the mowing and the aeration. Here's the cut and paste of his reply:

    I would like to get one mowing done anytime between July 20 and 23. Would you be able to do the aeration for $70. I could pay you $100 + taxes for both the jobs. The quote I am getting from true green, which I use for my lawn maintenance(fertilizer and weed control) is less than what you are quoting me for aeration. I looked in craigslist because I initially thought it would be expensive to get it done by True Green. Let me know if it works for you and we can go ahead with mowing and aeration.

    Now, this guy is a bonafide liar, or he's trying to work one company against another. If he can get Chemburn to do it for less, why is he even contacting me back?

    My reply?

    Sir, if you can find another company to perform the services at a lesser cost to you, then by all means do so. I am sorry but my prices are not negotiable. Please let me know how you would like to proceed.

    With the obligatory Thank you, my signature, blah blah blah.

    I'm not sure how he'll reply. He seemed like a very nice mild mannered man when I spoke with him in person.

    You guys aren't kidding when you say people from India(or indian descent) are bartering people and like to get a bargain.
  4. capetan

    capetan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 226

    honestly thats really the only thing that makes me furious, when i go to landscape or cut someones lawn, and there is junk all over the place, honestly i could careless if i accidentally ran over someones christmas lights..... stay away from customers like that you should be glad shes not your customer :)
  5. lawnspecialties

    lawnspecialties LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,524

    Honestly, there isn't a yard small enough to charge only $100/month.
  6. Vikings

    Vikings LawnSite Bronze Member
    from canada
    Messages: 1,657

    Yes there is.
  7. PHS

    PHS LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 724


    If it's a customer that you want, tell them that you want to earn their business (or some other sales B.S.) and ask to see the other companies estimate so that you can negotiate a deal. If they won't show you the other estimates they are just jerking around with you and you probably wouldn't want to work for them anyway.

    I used to work in the tree business and got some of my best customers that way. Read their estimate, throw in some stupid "free value-added service" , and close the deal. Most tight wad customers will fall for it because they think they got a screamin' deal.
  8. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    That's the same thing that happens when I try and get an oil change for 15 dollars, they change the oil but not the filter.
    Then they hound me the entire time over every little knick knack paddywhack is even slightly wrong with the car.
    That's if they get to it.
    Very frustrating, but amazing things happen when I pay $35 they do all that and even put air in a tire if it needs it, blam, it is done.

    So 100 bucks a month and I do it right, 65 a month and you keep that guy.

    Now I didn't say this, but it's quite possible even if such a customer says yes that it's not over.
    As in, it's always that thing, the penny pinching keeps getting the best of them :laugh:
    I got one right now, every time I'm not 100% watching my back tries to get something for nothing...
    Then they wonder why I don't show up to do whatever it was.
    So some days I don't even fool with those, you not like-a my price ok no problem thank you.
  9. Albery's Lawn & Tractor

    Albery's Lawn & Tractor LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,674

    Over a third of my customers are on a 3 cut per month @ $100 per month. These are quick and easy yards that take between 20-45 minutes. But of course, there are dozens of other LCO's here in town that will do it cheaper but they're the here today gone tomorrow type.
  10. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Nope, TruGreen's been around 28 years and provides nationwide service to 10.5 million homes and businesses a year. This corporation is owned by ServiceMaster, who's been around for over 55 years and is world wide. They own several leading brands, like TruGreen, Terminix, Merry Maids, and more.

    Meanwhile folks who look in Craig's may feel like they're pulling your leg, but they're price shoppers and that comes with Craig's list.
    Included, for free, like the advertising... Don't feel too bad, this was one of MY first lessons in you get what you pay for :laugh:

    But yea on the middle east descent.

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