How to bill customers for an annual mowing contract?

Say you have a bunch of weekly or even bi-weekly mowing customers and you want to get them to agree to an annual mowing contract. How do you go about pricing it? How do you charge them? Do you just add the annual mowing total up and divide by 12 months and bill them that price per month? Should you give any extras to get the customer to sign up with you? Let’s look at how the landscapers from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum do it and maybe you can utilize some of their ideas.

One lawn care business owner asked “how do you bill for a yearly contract? Do you figure up what your rate would be to mow a lawn then multiply that by the number of cuts you would do per season then divide that 12?

For example, what if I would mow a lawn for $60 a week and would mow that property 20 times over the cutting season. would you multiply $60 x 20 / 12 = $100 per month for 12 months? I am currently in drought conditions and have only cut 7 yards in the past 2 weeks. Now it has rained in the evenings for the past week and I should pick back up next week. This is my 1st season in the landscaping business and I have 20 mowing clients and would like to start moving them to a yearly contract next season.

This is a side job for me as of now but I would like to see it replace my current 9-5 job within the next 2 years. Any advice and direction would be helpful. I forgot to mention that most of my clients are bi weekly mowings.  I have tried to move them to weekly mowings but they won’t because they are cheap.”

A second lawn care business owner responded “here are a couple of points to consider. I would bill for 8 months instead of 12. To prevent some cheap mowing customers from stopping payments after your done mowing for the season.

I would add a few extra cuts. If biweekly is 20 mowings a year, charge them for 22 cuts and tell them that you come 3 times a month during heavy growth.

Then I would add a fall clean up to the price. If you mow in late October there will be very little to clean up. Dividing a $300 clean up over 8 months might make it more affordable to some that would put it off.”

A third shared “for me, what I did was figure out how much I needed to make it through the year. Then I divided that by 8 (months), then divided that by 4.3 (weeks per month) then by 30 (hours per week) That is my hourly rate.

I contract for 8 months, then add for 4 months, I charge .6 per month.

  • Example:
  • This yard is $20 bucks a mowing (weekly)
  • times 4.3
  • equals $86 dollars a month for 8 months
  • then $50 dollars a month for 4 months. (this is because there is less grass growth in the winter)

My customers think they are getting a real good deal, and love the fact that I charge less during the winter.

I live in Florida so there is no worry about snow removal. I do lawn cleanups as part of my winter service. With high speed lawn vacs, blowers etc this takes very little time. And as it is for lawn customers I charge less than if someone just called for the service.

That way I make all the money I have to make in the summer, then get some extra in the winter.”

Read more about Lawn Care Business Bidding Tips, Upsells, And Disasters To Avoid. Learn how to improve your bidding process with this lawn care business book and be prepared before hand by knowing what you should be looking out for before a problem occurs.”

If you need help estimating lawn care or snow plowing jobs, get these lawn care and snow plowing estimation calculators.

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