Up until now, I have been busy with hard landscaping which has included the laying of paving slabs and installation of fence posts and panels, so it was a breath of fresh air to receive a random text one day, along with pictures, asking for a price to cut down some laurels, cut down a tree as well as remove the stumps and a small shed hidden behind. The text and images received were as followed:
“Hi there, I am in need of a gardener to remove some large laurels, a tree and a small shed at the back of my garden as I have a shed base being laid over the coming weeks. Please see the pictures below and let me know a price and availability please. Thank you!”
Before making a decision based on the pictures received, I asked the potential customer where he is based since this would play a part on the price, to which he confirmed that he was based in Barnet, about an hour away from us. Now this might not seem too bad for some gardeners, but most of our work is within a 30 minute radius, so I wasn’t actually too sure on how he managed to find us! I knew that 2 of us could have the work done in less than a day, but I needed to quote for a hole day or else it may not be worth coming out, especially with the behind the scenes waste removal which a lot of customers don’t see! The quote I gave looked like this:
“Dear customer and thank you for sending the images over. I am unsure how many hours the work will take, but to ensure that it is completed in a day, I will have 2 of us come to complete the work. The day rate per person for this line of work is £160, or £320 for the 2 of us.
Being a business and holding a waste carriers license, we are charged when taking waste to the commercial dump. For this job we will need to charge £150.00 for the waste removal. Alternatively, you can take the waste to your local dump free of charge.
If you would like the stumps removed, then we will need to hire a stump grinder at £100 for the day.
Total price for hole job
£470 – £570 (depending on stump removal)
After a couple of days, I received a message asking to go ahead with all work, to which I booked it in on the following weekend. The only worry that we had was if we had enough room to take all of the waste away in one go, especially living an hour away! We were using a Ford Transit short wheel base van, which had a stump grinder in the back already taking up room, as well as the tools needed for the job.
How did the job go?
Once there, we were greeted by the customers with a warm welcome and shown around the garden. We were offered cups of Tea & Coffee along with some biscuits before they had to shoot off to take their children to football practice.
The job itself couldn’t have gone better! The laurels came down with ease, the tree was smaller than it looked in the pictures and came down nicely as well as the shed being so rotten that we practically pushed it over. There were only a total of 4 stumps which were out in about 30 – 40 minutes. We started at 9AM and finished at 3PM despite being delayed by very talkative neighbours!
We always use large bundle bags (also known as ton bags) when removing waste to get as much in the van as possible. We cut everything up into smaller pieces, and shove as much as we can into the bags before throwing them in the van. It was fairly close, but we managed to fit everything in!
Upon saying bye, the customer said that he was very happy with the work, and despite leaving a little earlier than expected, gave myself and my business partner a £20 tip each which is always appreciated! Here is a picture of the finished job…
I write these posts to show those thinking of starting a gardening career of what it’s like running, or working for a gardening and landscaping company. So if you think these posts appeal to you, please don’t forget to like and subscribe, as well as comment with any questions that you may have! I still need to write about a job I done recently which I will be uploading over the coming days which didn’t go as well as the gardening job above, with a lovely but not so lovely customer! That will be an interesting read to say the least…