6 things your lawn care company doesn't want you to know!
Here are a few lawn care industry secrets that hopefully help you make a more informed choice on the companies that help, not the ones that hype.
Buyer Beware! Just because a lawn care company has professional sales people, does not mean they have “professional” employees actually doing the job!
-A sales person might be able to tell you they can guarantee your lawn will be thicker, greener, lush and weed free. It isn’t necessarily true. If your lawn has been neglected or improperly fertilized, sure, but if your lawn is fully established, and already healthy, short of really spending the money to modify the soil, most companies can’t make drastic improvements in the lawn. If someone gives you this line, ask them how and the answer better not be, because we use the best products on the market. Providing a solid service is more important than just pushing you to buy a product
SUGGESTION –Find a well-rounded, horticulturally strong lawn company that happens to sell well, not a strong sales based company that happens to do lawn care. You want a company concerned about quality, not quantity
Did they call you, or did you call them?
-Unfortunately, most calls from lawn care companies are sales calls. Once you become a client that doesn’t typically stop. More than 1/2 of a typical lawn care company’s money comes from additional sales to their existing clients. You probably will not be left a message and high pressure sales tactics are normally utilized.
SUGGESTION – Ask how many phone calls throughout the year with high pressure sales tactics you can expect to receive. It is important for us to reach out to people to inform about services that are time sensitive, that we offer, but there is a fine line between calling to provide a solid service through education and calling to strictly SELL YOU MORE!
The best price isn’t always the best service
- The lawn care company willing to drop their price, drastically below the competitions, is more than likely misleading you on the amount or type of product being used. It is very easy to add a minimal amount of cheap product into a tank and tell you its good stuff. A little Nitrogen can make a weak lawn look strong. We call it “Lawns On Steroids”. This yields uncontrolled spurts of growth and you take a lawn off of a program like this and within a season you will have a lawn full of weeds. Cheap products are normally masked with a warranty to return to your lawn, if the product doesn’t do the job.
SOLUTION – Ask to know details about the interworking of a lawn care program. Ask for product names or nutrient ratios of a fertilizer. Slow release vs. fast release fertilizer.
- Ask for a face to face visit with one of the production staff. Make sure the people responsible for the specific applications are knowledgeable about their products and not just there to brainlessly apply a product
- A balanced lawn care program needs to be just that, balanced. It needs to include a variation of fertilizers with organic variations being at the forefront. Organic material will add sustainability to the soil, providing microorganisms with a food source. Microorganisms will naturally feed the plant when the synthetic product is spent.
SOLUTION –If a company says they use organic products, ask how many applications are organic and about the source of the organic products. Be weary of a company whose main source of organics comes strictly from biosolids that contain heavy metals.
Still getting charged for Grub Control?
-OK, so this is a huge cash cow for lawn care companies. Big chemical companies had proprietary, patented products to control grubs and the price was high for these products. Once the patent expired on these products, it opened the door for generic products to hit the market and the price came way down. The lawn care companies did not adjust even though the material was less. They just started selling the product with a “warranty” to justify the ridiculously high up charge. Chances are, they are telling you they are applying the product when they really are not or they will combine the grub control application with one of your regularly scheduled programs, essentially charging you more than double for one application.
SUGGESTION –Many companies will under charge on your regularly scheduled applications, winning your business over a respectable companies, only to rake you over the coals when it comes time to sell you specialty applications, like grub control.
The “Ole” FREE Lime Application
-Currently a 40 lb bag of palletized lime can be bought from a big box store for around $5, making it one of the cheapest products to apply to a lawn. Only makes sense it might be given away for free, right? Cost of product aside, the amount of product it actually takes to help your lawn is considerable, not to mention your lawn might not even need lime. This tactic can be used ast a ploy to make you feel like you are getting more for your money, when in fact you are just buying a hype.
SOLUTION – If someone tries to sell you with lime, ask them “how do you know my lawn needs lime?” Only a soil test to check the ph of your lawn would tell if you need lime or not. Adding lime could actually make it worse. Do not let anyone try and modify the ph in your lawn without checking the ph, first!
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