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Entries in lawn care charlotte (4)

Thursday
Feb282013

Pricing for Lawn Care and Lawn Service in Charlotte NC

As we enter into early Spring here in Charlotte NC, a lot of homeowners are thinking about either hiring a lawn care provider for the first time or switching from their current lawn service. I first question I often get asked is how much??? And understandably so, because budget is so important to the household these days.

Here's a little insight into how I come up with my pricing for lawn care and lawn maintenance services. Number one, I know my overhead and direct costs to operate the business. Second, I know the time involved in completing the tasks we provide as part of our service. And finally, I know the profit margin I would like to have in order to operate a succesful business.

Pricing for lawn care treatments is easy- its solely based on the square footage of your turf area. Lawn maintenance can get a little more complicated- its based on the time needed to service the property in a way that will meet and exceed your expectations. Factors such as leaf volume, detail work required, gated areas that require small equipment, etc all effect pricing.

Our prices usually end up being right around industry average for quality, established lawn service companies.

Most of our customers are paying anywhere from $120 to $200 per month for lawn maintenance service; depending on the size of their property, leaf volume, and the level of service they are looking for. Its very important for us to price our services correctly; if we're too low we don't realize a profit and eventually the service suffers, too high and we lose business to a more reasonably priced competitor. 

The most common story I hear from a prospective client who is thinking about switching lawn services is that their current service provider started out great, then gradually were not responsive to requests and the property started to decline. If they happen to be surprised that we are higher priced, I have to point out that if their current company was pricing them correctly and making a profit they would probably be bending over backwards to satisfy them and exceed expectations- just like we do for our clients. 

So yes, you can always find it cheaper. But when you want a company that knows how to balance quality service at a fair price, give Whitehouse Lawns a try! 

Thursday
Nov152012

November News

October always flys by for me because we are so busy renovating lawns and trying to make sure they turn out as good as possible. This year we had a new stand-on aerator added to the equipment fleet and we were able to get much more done quicker, and it did a better job of pulling deep plugs. Now the warm weather is gone, the morning chill has arrived, leaves are falling, and we look forward to getting properties looking tip-top for the holidays.

This turned out to be a “just ok” Fall for lawn renovations. We really did not get enough good steady rains to really make the germination rates go up. We’ve been continuing to spot seed areas that need to fill in and hopefully have a couple more weeks of good weather to get that seed germinated. If you still have any areas that you are concerned with by mid-November, please let me know so we can come up with the right solution. Right now our biggest challenge is being careful with the new grass and not mowing when its too wet. Unless we have discussed areas that you are still trying to get to germinate, you should be back to a regular watering schedule of 2-3 days per week, one time per day, for a deeper  watering. By mid-late November you will be ready to shut down and winterize your irrigation system (see page 2).

Next up is leaf season! Our maintenance priority will begin to focus on leaf cleanup over the next few weeks, and this will go on through December and usually into January until all trees are clear. We will start by picking leaves up from turf areas on each maintenance visit, and then cleaning out beds where applicable once most of the leaves are down. As always, we will have every residential property cleaned up the week of Thanksgiving and looking as good as possible for the holidays so you can be proud of your landscape when you celebrate with friends and family. The only thing that throws a wrench in that plan is if we have rain during Thanksgiving week. Please let me know if you have any special events planned that you want a maintenance and leaf cleanup scheduled for.

I also want to take this opportunity to thank you for being a client of mine. I feel extremely lucky and blessed to be associated with you and I look forward to many years of beautiful landscapes and positive relationships.

Please let me know if there is any way I can improve my service for you.

Thanks and Happy Thanksgiving, Ben

 

 

Wednesday
May302012

Ready For Summer In Charlotte

I hope everyone had a great Memorial day and is enjoying the great weather. May was a very busy month for us between all the beautiful flower beds we installed, my brothers wedding, and just enjoying all the outdoor stuff going on around town. There are a couple of service items we are focusing on this month in addition to keeping up with cutting the grass.

We have started our shrub trimming schedule and will be getting to everyone who has requested shrub trimming over the next few weeks. If you would like your shrubs taken care of for a special occasion or a certain date please let me know, otherwise we will come by as you fall on the shrub trimming schedule this month.

The next item that will need special attention this month is treating lawns for Brown Patch Fungus. Its usually mid to late June when we see the first signs of fungus on the lawn, but it looks like it could start early this year with the mild weather. Heat, humidity, and thunderstorms will bring on ideal conditions for Brown Patch to thrive and we usually start seeing the lesions on the grass blades right after we get a batch of evening thunderstorms followed by a 90 degree day. Once again this could be a summer where Brown Patch could do some severe damage to lawns if not treated. Everyone on the Premium Lawn Care Program is getting a fungicide treatment at the end of May/first week of June.

Water management is very important this time of year for a few reasons. The lawn needs extra water as we get into the hot season, but over-watering is a big mistake because its expensive and will cause brown patch fungus– even with the fungicide treatments we do. Since most irrigation systems run at night or early morning, we usually don’t think about them and don’t catch issues until the damage is done. I highly suggest taking the time to audit your system every few weeks– turn on each zone and walk around checking each head or drip area. Are the heads rotating correctly? Are all areas getting covered properly with water and not watering into the street (a simple nozzle change could adjust the amount of water and distance for a sprinkler head)? Are there any noticeable leaks? Do any areas look stressed from lack of water? Doing an irrigation audit regularly can save you money on your water bill and save your plants and turf from stress. Please let me know if you find any irrigation issues you need addressed or if you want help with your irrigation audit.  

Thanks, Ben

 

Wednesday
Apr112012

Spring in Charlotte NC!

The weather does not get much better than what we've had so far this Spring, as evidenced by all the lush green grass that is growing like crazy. That said, the warm winter and the early spring weather we had could bring on a new set of lawn and landscape issues.

One theory that is building steam is that the warm winter (4th warmest winter on record!) will result in insect infestations greater than we have seen in the past. I talked about this with a buddy of mine at the NCSU Horticulture school and the experts think that insect levels will remain average, but we will see activity earlier in the season from fire ants, Japanese beetles, and other common insects we see in the landscape. So we will be on the lookout and ready to treat when needed.

It looks like weed control will be much more intense this year as well. We have gone through almost twice as much Round Up as we normally do this time of year, and I have already seen crabgrass breakthrough in full sun areas, as well as nutsedge.

We never know what Mother Nature has in store and how it will affect our landscapes. Forecasting and reacting to the changing weather patterns definitely keeps us on our toes and sometimes presents some big challenges for our industry. I've always put an emphasis on continued education for myself and my employees so we can provide the best service to our customers and stay ahead of the competition. 

I hope you can break through the pollen this Spring and enjoy your landscape. We have a big event coming up as my little girl turns 9 and runs in her first 5k race!