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why not

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by V.H. lass, Sep 22, 2001.

  1. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,028


    How would you enforce this standardized minimum?

    The whole principal of Freedom is based on an open market. You know that you do not get "standard" work from all aspects of this business.

    Why would you want to standardize a pricing structure? How would you promote your business? What incentive do you have to do better or what enforcement would you use if a company didn't live up to a standard?

    I may be misreading your opinion but I do respect it? Please tell me more.

    BTW Thanks Guys for the support!!
  2. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,810

    I don't know?

    This is true. You have sub-standard, standard and above. I think I do above standard work and try to get the best dollars I can for my work... but when you have 'XYZ Lawn Service' doing standard or maybe substandard work and charging considerably less than you are - 1) it keeps you from getting max. dollars from your client (potetial client) or 2) his customer comes over to get a quote from me and says "I'm only paying this much... thanks anyway".

    You'ld promote your business on quality work. The incentive will be that quality work usually results in lots of referrals. Enforcement... Oh I don't know... get a couple of fellow LCOs and take 'em behind the shed ;)

    Thank you for the respect. I wasn't disrespecting your opinion I was just using it to base my thoughts.

    Here's the more you ask for...

    I think maybe my immediate market here is ruined. When I walk up to a potential client ($500-$750k home) on 2 acres and quote them $100-$120 and they say "I'll get back to you" or "I'm paying $75-$90... can you do it for that?".

    Frustration... This is the reasoning behind my comments.
  3. kutnkru

    kutnkru LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,662

    I dont think that its about standardizing a pricing structure but educating other contractors as to what the market will bear so that they are not losing money by cutting $45 accounts for $18/cut.

    I would promote my business by continueing to do business as I do now. The quality of LCOs will not change just as when we drive thru neighborhoods now you can tell who does not do it all, and who puts forth that extra effort to keep their name recognized.

    Company growth.

    This is something that would be dealt with by the clientele. If we could not meet/exceed their needs they would surely find another who could. Comapnies who couldnt meet the muster, would eventually work themselves out of the market.

    Just my .02
  4. cantoo

    cantoo LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,910

    TSG, how long does it take you to cut that 2 acre property? Some guys here are saying up to 5 acres per hour with their machines, maybe $75-$90 is enough? Of course I don't believe everything I read though.
  5. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,810

    They would certainly be out quicker if there was more of standard pricing... but because there isn't, people will tolerate substandard work.
  6. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,810


    It costs you more money for bigger and faster mowers... doesn't it?

    Did you miss my point...

    I think pricing should be based on size (with a minimum) not time...
  7. HOMER

    HOMER LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,183

    Buy a real fast mower, work real fast, do excellent work, charge as much as you can...........................leave happy.

    If you feel good when you leave then you did well, if you feel like you screwed yourself like many of us have and will do again then you learn from it and move on. DO NOT LOWBALL JUST TO GET THE JOB, everyone suffers when you do that. Start high and negotiate if you need to, if they don't want to pay your price then let somebody else do it.

    Unless you charge everything by the hour your going to have to make your money by being efficient.

    Everybody gave you good info, it's a trial and error business that takes time to learn.
  8. kris

    kris LawnSite Bronze Member
    from nowhere
    Messages: 1,578

  9. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,028

    We went from why nobody gives pricing info to having a discussion on how to standardize pricing and I have to say I'm part responsible so lets continue.

    I hope that nobody gets the wrong idea of my pricing so let me tell you that I am high for my area and I have lost plenty of jobs to lowballers. I just lost a huge spraying bid to a lowballer. I refuse to lower my price to get a job.

    Did I ever do this? Yes I did, when I first started out I had a very basic idea of what to charge and I did figure my costs, overhead ect. but I wanted to work and took some jobs that I found were not profitable. I had no resource like Lawnsite and I really had no experience in the field. In retrospect my costs were not that great because I started out with homeowner grade equipment for lack of funds and an uncertainty of potential market conditions. When my business expanded because of the quality of my work I borrowed money and became commercial!
    I did regret taking those low payers but I learned the hard way and thats why I like coming here. Hopefully some new LCO will read this and learn. If we can educate then we can all make money.

    TSG, I completely understand how you feel with a market saturated by lowballers and I am on your side. I do my part in my market to take jobs at MY price and I don't want customers that are looking for the lowest price. My best customers are my core weekly accounts that I have had for many years. I have washed some of them out (the low payers) and now the good remain. I sell many add-ons to them at my price and there is no bickering because they know the work is high quality and the results always reflect that.

    In response to that they have been quite gracious and have given me many good referrals that has increased my growth, so you see it is a great upward spiral for me.

    I personally have learned that I can take what I have and charge a premium price for it as long as I consistently deliver a service that is deserving of this price.

    I will end here and refer you to a thread from Ray Kirby back in 2000. I made a copy of this and use it. There is plenty of discussion about this very topic. It is extremely relevant and I think we can learn from it. Good Luck.

  10. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,810

    Mow Ed,

    Actually we did stay on topic:

    Thanks for the feedback.


    You have a used 60" Z, a used pick-up and so on... I have a brand new 60" Z and a brand new pick-up. We both walk up to a job (worth $50) to give an estimate. We both can get it done in the same amount of time and same quality work. Should you charge less money ($10-15) on that account because you are the thrifty shopper?

    In this business your income should be based on productivity and quality of work... not how little can you spend and how low can you bid.

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