Average Cost for Lawn Service
The average cost for lawn service will depend on what exactly you sign up for. A typical estimate will include prices for a weekly lawn cut, weeding beds, a spring cleanup, trimming hedges, a fall cleanup, and a chemical program. These items may be priced individually or lumped together as a monthly maintenance price. A discounted price is usually given when you sign up for several services or pay in advance.
Here is how I will evaluate your property:
Weekly Lawn Cut:
How quickly can the lawn be mowed? The cheapest prices are given to flat, open properties on the smaller size.
Any obstacles on the property? It takes longer to make stripes if there are trees, beds, and outdoor furniture all over the lawn. Also, backyards littered with toys take time to cleanup before mowing.
- If there is a gate, is it wide enough for a mower? Narrow gates require a smaller mower to squeeze through. Smaller mowers take longer to finish cutting.
- Proximity of your property to the company’s other customers or shop? Houses close together get cheaper prices, while scattered houses get higher prices.
- Avg Price of Lawn Cut – Ex: ½ acre $25-$45/cut. You also have to be aware that overhead for cutting grass includes not only labor, but gas for each piece of equipment, wear and tear on this expensive equipment, maintenance costs, insurance costs, etc. I have figured my overhead to be approximately $11.00 an hour.
- How many and how big? The more square footage beds have, the more it costs to maintain. You can eliminate the need to weed your beds by having them mulched in the beginning of the season. Alot of variables will dictate this. If you have to pull weeds by hand and there are several, this can be very time consuming.
- Avg Price to Weed Beds – Ex: High Ranch house with a 3’ perimeter of beds on 3 sides. $50-$150.00/month.
- Was there a Fall Cleanup? If not, or if the Fall Cleanup was not thorough, expect a high price. Otherwise, the price is based on what has accumulated over the winter: usually sticks and late dropping leaves.
- Are there a lot of beds? Edging of the beds is very labor intensive. More beds mean a higher price.
- Avg Price of Spring Cleanup – Ex: ½ acre, some trees $90.00-$125.00.
- How many shrubs, hedges, ornamental trees? The more extensive your landscape, the longer it takes and the more expensive.
- When last trimmed? If it has been years, it will take a longer time to reshape and cleanup all the clippings.
- Workers’ level of expertise? Experienced crews breeze through meticulous landscapes, while beginners will take longer for fear of ruining the aesthetics.
- Avg Price of Trimming – Ex: High Ranch house surrounded on 3 sides with shrubs and ornamental trees $75.00-$125.00.
- How many trees on your property? More trees equal more leaves to cleanup.
- How many trees on adjacent property? Expect your neighbor’s leaves to blow onto your property.
- Where to put leaves? Leaves are either brought curbside for the town to remove, blown into woods, or there may be an additional charge if the lawn service removes them. This can be very labor intensive. My first fall cleanup was approximately an acre; I predicted it would take me 3 hours, it took me 8 hours. (Lesson learned)
- Avg Price of Fall Cleanup – Ex: ½ acre, partial shade. $100.00-$250.00.
- Square footage of lawn? The price is based solely on this. Some save money by only having their front lawns treated. A chemical program involves 3 to 4 applications throughout the year and includes the chemicals/fertilizers used.
- Avg Price of Chemical Program – Ex: ½ acre lawn. $/$75.00-$125.00.
Final Thoughts on Prices…
The interesting thing about the average cost for lawn service is that it hasn’t gone up that much in the past twenty years. Lawn companies complain about this all the time.
How can this be possible?
Back in the 80’s, there weren’t many lawn service companies. It was usually the neighborhood kid cutting lawns with a 21” push mower. Fall cleanups were done with rakes. It would take hours to cut lawns and days for fall cleanups.
Today, the average cost for lawn service has been kept down for 2 major reasons:
- Modern commercial equipment makes fast work of what use to be back breaking labor.
- New lawn companies are started everyday thanks to a readily available workforce. Competition between the increasing number of lawn companies drives down prices. Homeowners have really benefited. Having a lawn service has become more affordable. I remember 30 years ago when I was a kid (that long ago..wow), I mowed lawns for $20.00 and $25.00. I purchased my first car, a 68 Ford Mustang with money I earned mowing lawns. But that same dollar is now worth half, if not less. My point is that the costs of lawn service has pretty much truly gone down and not kept up with the cost of inflation.