The InvoiceSherpa Blog

How to Charge for Landscaping Services

Maybe you’re just starting your landscaping business and need help figuring out how to price landscaping jobs. Or, perhaps you’re going back to the drawing board after realizing you’ve been going about it all wrong. 

Either way, we’re here to help you figure out how to charge for landscaping services in this guide. From calculating costs to understanding different pricing models, adding a markup, and streamlining the invoicing process, you’ll feel confident in how to bill lawn care customers or any other landscaping service.

You’ll also discover how InvoiceSherpa’s AR automation software facilitates faster payments and greater efficiency in the billing process. It saves you time and stress while creating a better experience for your customers, too. Get paid quicker with our billing automation software today! 

How to Charge for Landscaping Services

The last thing you want is to spend an entire day working hard on a client’s property only to realize you underbid the project and didn’t make any profit after factoring in your costs. 

Unfortunately, this is a common challenge for landscapers - you’re great at landscaping, maybe not so specialized in financial management though. That’s what we’re here for, though. 

We’ll walk you through accurately pricing your landscaping jobs below, starting with the importance of gathering an accurate project scope.

Evaluating the Project Scope

The first step in any landscaping project is to visit the site and conduct an initial inspection. This allows you to understand the client's needs and expectations.

It gives you an opportunity to assess the site conditions, including the soil quality, existing vegetation, and any potential obstacles or unique features that might impact the project.

After the initial consultation, create a detailed project plan outlining the project phases, specific tasks, and deliverables. Breaking the project down in this manner helps a more accurate estimate of the time and resources required for each stage.

This will also help you build a detailed invoice with clear descriptions of each task so your client isn’t playing the guessing game about what they’re paying for. It helps avoid misunderstandings and ensures that both parties are on the same page.

Calculating Costs: Overhead, Materials, Labor, and More

The more your business grows, the more complicated your costs become. Here’s a brief overview of all the different costs you should account for before bidding a job:

Add up all these costs and you’ll arrive at a total cost for the project. From there, it’s as simple as applying your markup and delivering the quote to the customer. But first, let’s provide a brief overview of different landscaping pricing models.

Understanding Different Pricing Methods

There are a number of ways you can charge for landscaping services, but the most common are hourly or flat-rate project-based. Each has its pros and cons, and chances are, you’ll use both at different times. 

Flat rate pricing involves charging a single fixed price for the entire project. This is often used for smaller projects with clearly defined scopes. 

The main advantage is that clients know exactly what they will pay upfront, which can make budgeting easier for them. However, it’s important to ensure that your flat rate covers all costs and includes a margin for profit. 

On the other hand, hourly pricing is commonly used for projects where the time required might be harder to calculate. This method involves charging clients based on the actual hours worked. It provides flexibility and ensures that you are compensated for all the time spent on the project. 

The challenge is to set a competitive hourly rate that reflects your expertise and market conditions. You’ll also need to make sure clients are well aware that what you’re quoting them for the job is an estimate that could be subject to change.

Include Your Markup

The markup you apply to your services is typically expressed as a percentage of the total costs. There’s no right or wrong answer as to how much you should mark up your services.

That being said, a 20-30% markup is common. Still, you should consider factors such as market rates, your level of expertise, and the value you provide to clients. If it’s a repeat business or a large project, you may be willing to skew your markup lower.

For example, if you estimate your costs for a given job will fall around $250, you could charge $312.5 if using a 25% markup - that gives you roughly $60 in profit.

Give a Quote

Your quotes should be as detailed as possible. Include a breakdown of all your costs, including materials, labor, and overhead. Provide a clear description of the scope of work and the project timeline. 

Including terms and conditions, such as payment schedules and policies for changes or cancellations, helps in managing client expectations. This is also a good place to jot down your invoice late fee wording (read about the maximum invoice late fees by state for more information).

Presenting the quote to the client is an opportunity to discuss the project in detail. Explain the costs and how they relate to the scope of work. Be prepared to answer any questions and address concerns. 

Effective communication builds trust and helps in securing the project. This is where you can put your salesman hat on to show the customer what value they’re getting. 

You may even consider adding more markup to your quote knowing that you're willing to knock an additional 5-10% off the price if the client gives you pushback after presenting the quote.

Streamlining the Invoicing Process

Once you’ve performed the job it’s time to get paid! Traditionally, landscapers will leave behind a bill that can be paid over the phone or via check. But in this day and age, it’s worth investing in the best AR automation software.

Wait, what is AR automation software? It’s a way to streamline the invoicing process and get paid faster, reduce human error, and eliminate friction for your customers. We have a detailed guide explaining the benefits of accounts receivable automation.

It’s great because you can simply email or text your clients an invoice so they can pay at their leisure. With a quality landscape invoicing software, this can be automated too, so you just create the invoice and the software handles the rest - including sending out an overdue payment reminder email if necessary!

Once your client pays, the software reconciles accounts receivable into your bookkeeping system without you having to lift a finger. This offers unparalleled financial clarity, helping you with forecasting accounts receivable and budgeting as necessary.

How Much Do Landscapers Charge Per Hour Typically?

We’ll introduce you to the best automated invoice processing software for landscapers in just a moment, but first, let’s get to one of the most common questions we are asked surrounding how to charge for landscaping services: How much do landscapers charge per hour on average?

Factors Influencing Pricing

There’s no one size fits all answer to how much you should charge hourly for your landscaping services. Here are just a few of the moving pieces you should account for:

Average Landscaping Cost Per Hour

So, how much do landscapers charge per hour? 

The average landscaping cost per hour can be anywhere from $25 and $40 per hour for entry-level workers doing basic lawn care or garden ambiance tasks.

On the other hand, high-level landscapers performing complex projects and landscape designers creating a detailed design plan can charge as much as $100 or more per hour.

Think about where you fall on this scale and apply our advice on how to price landscaping jobs. 

Charging for Landscape Services Becomes a Seamless Process With InvoiceSherpa

Before we wrap up our guide on how to charge for landscaping services, we want to remind you that InvoiceSherpa can streamline your billing processes to help you get paid faster, reduce errors, and create a better experience for your customers.

Our software automates the entire process, from generating invoices to sending reminders, collecting payments, and reconciling in your bookkeeping software.

The customer portal feature allows your clients to view all their outstanding invoices and make payments conveniently, enhancing transparency and client satisfaction. Better yet, your customers can set up recurring payments for things like routine lawn care or landscaping maintenance.

It’s also highly affordable at as little as $49 per month, saving you greatly on accounts receivable management services or accounts receivable outsourcing. You get to keep your finger on the pulse of your financial health this way, too.

Our software integrates seamlessly with major accounting systems, from Quickbooks to Xero, ensuring that all payment transactions are automatically reconciled. It’s also incredibly easy to set up and use. But don’t just take our word for it - a 14-day free trial is just a few clicks away!

Parting Thoughts on How to Price Landscaping Jobs

There you have it - everything you need to know about how to charge for landscaping services. From evaluating the project scope, calculating costs accurately, understanding various pricing methods, and applying your markup, we hope this guide has left you with a clear understanding of how to charge landscaping work.

Looking for more landscape accounting tips and tricks? Learn about calculating accounts receivable, demand for payment letter, unbilled receivables, uncollectible accounts receivable, how to send an invoice to collections, the importance of cash flow management, how cash flow problems usually start, and more in our blog.

Otherwise, now that you know how to price landscaping jobs and how to automate accounts receivable, it’s time to streamline your invoicing process to spend less time managing finances and more time growing your business.

Get started with InvoiceSherpa today and experience the benefits of automated invoicing and improved cash flow management. You won’t regret it!

Posted on June 5, 2024

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