winter work in florida

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by contourbs, Dec 3, 2004.

  1. contourbs

    contourbs LawnSite Member
    Messages: 185

    what do you guys do in winter, im having customers drop like flys because they feel like there getting ripped off for paying the same monthly payment as when i was there everyweek. what do i do to keep my customers. the bahia grass isnt growing anymore.
  2. KINGjosh

    KINGjosh LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 531

    i cut st augustine and it slows down a little, but nobody drops me when i dont come as often.
  3. mowerman90

    mowerman90 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,491

    You need to REALLY concentrate on getting rid of Bahia customers. Your equipment will last longer with less maintenance and so will you. Or, apply winter rye grass so you'll have something that isn't brown and dusty during the cooler months. I've been a solo oper for going on 16 years here in Central Fl and have always had all of my customers on yearly contracts mowing weekly Apr thru Oct and Bi-weekly Nov thru Mar. That's right, I come every other week in the winter whether it needs it or not. I may not cut more than 1/4 in of grass some weeks in the winter but my customer has the perception that he's getting his moneys worth because the lawn always looks better after I leave than before I come. When I sign them up and have them sign the contract, I explain to them that my service is similar to their budget plan natural gas bill for their hot water back up north. Pay one amount all year long, not high in the summer and low in the winter. It works for me and I haven't had more than 5 people over the last 15 years drop me in the winter.
  4. out4now

    out4now LawnSite Bronze Member
    from AZ
    Messages: 1,796

    Guys in AZ use rye for something to tide them over to spring. Don't have experience with Bihia grass so don't know if you could do that or not. Mostly Bermuda here.
  5. DennisF

    DennisF LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 1,381

    Get rid of the Bahia lawns and concentrate on St.Augustine. You can't make any money cutting Bahia as far as I'm concerned.
  6. contourbs

    contourbs LawnSite Member
    Messages: 185

    i wish i could i hate the bahia grass, but all the new homes come with cheap bahia grass. and most of my yards are rental homes
  7. Del9175

    Del9175 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 352

    Get a pressure cleaner. Easy money in my opinion.
  8. HOMER

    HOMER LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,183

    Well.................if you have them on a flat monthly price and it's pro rated over a 12 month period your really getting screwed when they bail on you come winter. Your winter money makes up for the money you were losing every month in the summer. You need to explain to these snow birds that your not getting anything that you haven't already worked invested back in the summer months.........your return is now through spring. payup
  9. Precision

    Precision LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,995

    get better clients. only scrub customers are like that. I have 30ish clients and only one bailed like that. I explained up front. I can charge you equal payments or you can pay WAY more in the summer and LESS in the winter. Example $100 monthly or $150 Monthly in spring and summer, $100 in Fall and $70 in winter.

    Offer trimming and weed work, then you are doing something in the winter at their house. And like everyone else has said focus on St Augustine.


    Go to a 8-9 month contract for Bahia people. Same price as your 12 month just prorated over 9 months.

    Or offer 2 plans
    Plan 1 12 month at $100 monthly $1200 with a one month non refundable deposit incase of winter scumbag syndrome

    Plan 2 8 Months at $115 and 4 months at $60 (with EOW cutting) $1160
  10. Fantasy Lawns

    Fantasy Lawns LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,912

    That's the ticket .... I like the 8-9 month pay schedule that's like 34 cuts .... so if it's say $30 per cut it's $132 per month .... than charge per cut for any winter cuts

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