So just how much do you bid when you're starting out in your lawn care business? Now there are a lot of people who might give you conflicting advice on your bidding.
Some people will advise you to cut your price to make sure your competitors don't get a contract, while other people will tell you to assess the amount of work involved and base your lawn care bidding on that.
All in all I'd advise you to go with the latter method. The problem with the former method, undercutting your competition, is that the only way for the competition to hit back at you for using these methods of business is to undercut you in their lawn care bidding. And then you have to undercut him again, and so on, until both of you are barely making enough to make ends meet.
The only person who profits from this sort of bidding is, of course, your customers, who will suddenly find that they are getting their lawn care done at rates that are next to nothing.
Sample bids on commercial lawn care
So how should you go about charging? It's simple enough – don't go about looking at what others charge.
You see, there are probably one or two giant lawn care services in your immediate area – they will probably be charging a little less than what you can afford to. Don't try to compete with them – they can afford to charge less because they're moving a larger volume of work.
Instead, charge a fee that suits you, and can make a reasonable profit for you, and that is fair to the customer as well.
So what would be a 'reasonable fee'? Well, to an extent that depends upon you, upon what your costs and overheads are, but I'd say that $40 would be a good price for a basic mowing job for the standard domestic lawn, including trimming, edging and blowing, of course.
You should charge this basic minimum even if you happen to be charging a dollar or two more than the competition. Make up for it with service with a smile – or in other small ways.
Make sure that your customer is satisfied – remember, the customer really is king here. You'll find that if you go that extra few yards to satisfy your customer, that you customers will prefer you to the lawn care giants, who probably provide a much more impersonal level of service.
And you'll find that people tend to want to deal with someone they can relate to even if you charge a little more when doing your lawn care bidding, someone they can get to know as a friend, instead of some nameless stranger who comes to cut their lawn, and who will be replaced the next time by some other nameless stranger.
So a really good strategy would be to start out lawn care bids with $60 per hour for big jobs, and a $40 minimum price for smaller jobs than that. This is a good fee to start out with. If you find as you go along that you have more customers than you can handle, you can either increase the business or start replacing the present customer base with those who are willing to pay a little higher.