A lawn care customer cut my pay because I worked fast.

Can you imagine a mowing customer agreeing to pay you $x amount of dollars to mow their property and then when you actually mow it, they feel you mowed it too fast and refuse to pay you the price they agreed upon? I know you feel like this couldn’t happen, but it did to a member of the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum. He shares with us his story and how he handled the situation.

One lawn care business owner wrote “I met up with a new mowing customer the other day and she told me that she wanted a full service weekly mowing package. Her lawn is 2,200 sq ft and she has 13 planter beds in the front of her house that will require line trimming, edging, weed puling and hedging. She needs the sidewalk and driveway edged on a bi-weekly basis. The back yard is full of lush grass and she wants it cut at 3″ weekly. Previously she had a guy doing the yard for 4 years for $20.00 per service and it took him 1.5 hours. He used a push mower and a lawn tractor.

Looking at the property I know I can use my ZTR and mow this lawn in 30 min flat with 2 guys.

After some quick mental calculations, I told her I would charge $160.00 per month. After my first mowing, she comes out and says to me ‘I thought it would have taken you a lot longer than that. So as quick as you got it done I’d say the job you did is worth $10 and that’s all your gonna get!

Now, I told her I could do the entire job in 30 minutes and I guess she did not believe me. When she gave me that $10 I just kinda chuckled a little bit. It made me feel so damn bad that I wouldn’t even take the money from her.

To be honest I thought I sold myself to her. She did not even flinch when she heard the price. I run into low ballers all the time here in my area and yes I was worried that I may lose this bid because of the price she was paying before. I just don’t think she believed I could do the same job as the other guy in only a half hour. She just did not feel that she got the time she was paying for. Speed can be your friend in this business but sometimes it can be your enemy.”

A second lawn care business owner responded “I had a retired guy who used to mow part time in the area I mow. He did jobs for very little money. Basically money to go out and eat with.

When he passed away some of his customers wanted the same prices and some know they got a great deal for these past years. My wife gave them our price and when they balked, I felt they would all eventually come around, but mowing a yard, trimming and blowing for little profit is pointless.

My wife helps me with all of our price estimating and bids for potential customers and she is flat out honest when she tells them that my husband is not gonna open the trailer door and pull out the blower for no less than $30.00 per cut. When you only wanna pay $20.00 you will find someone who does a crappy $20.00 job and likely will not have the insurance to repair or replace anything if something happens to their property.

There are jobs that aren’t worth doing and in your situation, if a customer agrees to one price and then pays you less, move on to someone else that will appreciate the services you offer.”

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.ā€¯

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

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