Like us on facebook
WARNING!

Do not hire a lawn service provider until you read the FREE report: Tips For Choosing A Lawn Service. Simply fill in your name and email address, submit and I will email you the free report. It will save you a lot of time, money and headaches.

I hate spam as much as you do. I will never share or sell your email information. Please check your inbox for a message from Ben Whitehouse in a few minutes.

Google+

Entries in lawn maintenance (21)

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! 

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!  

Friday
Mar022012

Spring has arrived 2012

Welcome to the first electronic edition of In Bloom! Personally, I like the idea of the paper newsletter, but I'd rather cut costs and keep prices low as we prepare for gas increases this year. This will be a very important form of communication so please take a few minutes to read and click through the links (all of the articles will appear on the Whitehouse Lawns website). And of course, let me know what you think of the new In Bloom and how to make it better.

We will be starting the regular maintenance visits in March as we start to warm up and the turf enters its growing season. The grass usually does not need to be cut every week in March so we will be focusing on cleaning up the main beds of your landscape, picking up any leftover leaves, picking up gumballs (I hate em!), and any leftover debris from the winter storms. Let me know if you have any other items you want taken care of.

First off, running a regular schedule is always a challenge as we go through spring. Life is a heckuvalot easier for everyone when we can come on the same day every week. Unfortunately, it almost never works out that way in March and April. 1 day of rain will throw us off but is pretty easy to make up during the week. 2 days or more of rain can create some challenges. If we have not made it to your house on your regular day and have had frequent rain, we will usually get there on the next day (this might be Saturday if you’re a Friday visit). We will try to give you a call or email to let you know your status if it will be more than 2 days. We will settle in to your regular mowing day of the week as soon as possible. 

We are also very conscious of damaging the turf when working in wet weather. There may be times when we need to skip areas that are really wet, or use smaller equipment if time allows. I’d rather be overly cautious than damage turf at the beginning of the season.

 

Monday
Dec122011

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

This year I’m a little late in getting the lights up on the house. The schedule has been crazy this year with the leaves coming down fast and early, and at least a day or 2 of wet weather just about every week.  Looking back, I’m proud of the work we’ve done so far this year (I know we have more to do...), and especially proud of how Octavio, Jose, Hugo and Laris have developed as professionals and teammates.

I am especially thankful this time of year for the relationships I have with you, my clients, because its much more than just business. The business provides very well for me and my family, but I cherish the interactions I have with all of you and I’m very lucky to be associated with a fantastic group. This is just my long-winded way of saying Thank You for being a customer. I wish nothing but happy times for you and your family this holiday season. I frequently express my gratitude because I believe that the more you give thanks, the more you will have to give thanks for.

The next 3 months of Winter and early Spring are THE BEST TIMES TO PLANT. Let me know if you have any landscape projects you want completed so we can start the planning process now. Also, since the leaves have finished up early, it’s a great time to pine needle and mulch your beds. Long-leaf pine needles never look more fresh and red than they do right now. If you want everything looking perfect for the holiday coming up, please let me know right away so I can schedule your pine needles and mulch.   

From the operations department: we will continue through December (and January if necessary) cleaning up leaves to keep your property neat through the holidays. Right now we have the weeks of 12/5 and 12/17 (weather permitting) scheduled to go through the regular maintenance routes which include at least one cut on the grass this month. Please note: with the holiday schedule, rain, and leaf volume; the frequency of visits will slow down this month and we may not be there on a regular day of the week. Please let me know of any special dates if you have anything planned.    

Have a happy and safe holiday season!

Ben

 

Saturday
Jun252011

June in Charlotte

I hope everyone had a great Memorial day and is enjoying the great weather. 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 couple 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 the recent weather of heat, humidity, and thunderstorms has brought on ideal conditions for Brown Patch to thrive and we usually start seeing the lesions on the grass blades during the first week of June. It looks like 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. Page 2 of this newsletter has pictures of this lawn disease and everything you need to know about Brown Patch Fungus and what we can do to minimize its damage.

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