How Much Should You Charge for Lawn Mowing?

Starting a lawn mowing business can be a great way to earn some extra cash or even build a full-time income. But before you start cutting lawns, you need to figure out how much to charge. This article will help you determine a fair price for your services, taking into account factors like your location, equipment costs, and the size and complexity of the job. We’ll also delve into strategies for attracting customers and growing your lawn mowing business.

Quick Answer: There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to how much you should charge for lawn mowing. Factors like your location, the size of the lawn, and the complexity of the job all play a role. However, a good starting point is to charge between $25-$50 per hour for basic mowing services.

Understanding Your Costs

Before you can set your prices, you need to understand the costs associated with running a lawn mowing business. This includes:

1. Equipment Costs

  • Mower: The type of mower you choose will significantly impact your costs. A basic push mower is relatively inexpensive, while a riding mower or robotic mower will be more expensive.
  • Trimmers: You’ll need a trimmer for edging and cleaning up around obstacles.
  • Other Equipment: Other necessary equipment may include a blower, a rake, and a wheelbarrow.

2. Operational Costs

  • Fuel: The cost of gasoline will vary depending on the size of your mower and your fuel efficiency.
  • Maintenance: You’ll need to budget for regular maintenance, repairs, and replacement parts.
  • Insurance: Liability insurance is essential for protecting yourself against potential accidents.
  • Marketing and Advertising: You’ll need to spend money on marketing and advertising to attract customers.

3. Your Time

Your time is valuable, and you need to factor that into your pricing. Consider the time it takes to travel to and from each job, mow the lawn, and handle any other tasks involved.

Calculating Your Hourly Rate

Once you’ve considered all of your costs, you can start calculating your hourly rate. Here’s a simple formula:

Hourly Rate = (Total Costs + Desired Profit) / Number of Hours Worked

For example, let’s say your total costs for a month are $500, and you want to make a profit of $1,000. If you work 100 hours in a month, your hourly rate would be:

Hourly Rate = ($500 + $1,000) / 100 = $15 per hour

Important Note: This is just a starting point. You may need to adjust your hourly rate based on the market in your area and the complexity of the jobs you are taking on.

Pricing by Square Footage

Another common method for pricing lawn mowing services is by square footage. To determine the square footage of a lawn, you can use a measuring tape or an online tool. Once you know the square footage, you can apply a per-square-foot rate.

Factors to Consider When Pricing by Square Footage

  • Complexity: Lawns with obstacles, hills, or intricate landscaping will require more time and effort, so you may want to charge a higher rate per square foot.
  • Maintenance Level: Lawns that require more frequent mowing, fertilization, or other services may warrant a higher rate.

Determining Your Base Rate

A base rate is a starting point for your pricing. It should be calculated based on the minimum amount you need to charge to cover your costs and earn a reasonable profit.

Factors to Consider When Setting Your Base Rate

  • Location: Prices for lawn mowing services can vary widely depending on the location. In areas with high living costs, you can typically charge more.
  • Competition: Research your competitors’ pricing and adjust your base rate accordingly.
  • Demand: If there’s high demand for lawn mowing services in your area, you can potentially charge a higher rate.

Additional Services

In addition to basic lawn mowing, you can also offer additional services to increase your revenue and differentiate yourself from the competition. These services might include:

  • Edging: This involves trimming the edges of the lawn for a clean and defined look.
  • Weeding: Removing weeds can enhance the appearance of a lawn.
  • Fertilization: Applying fertilizer can help lawns grow healthy and lush.
  • Aeration: This process involves making small holes in the soil to improve drainage and airflow.
  • Leaf Removal: Fall is a busy season for leaf removal services.

Tips for Attracting Customers

Once you’ve determined your pricing, you need to attract customers. Here are some tips:

  • Build a Strong Online Presence: Create a website or social media profiles to showcase your services and reach potential clients.
  • Offer Discounts: Consider offering discounts to new customers or for multiple services.
  • Provide Excellent Customer Service: Go above and beyond to satisfy your customers and build trust.
  • Get Referrals: Ask satisfied customers to recommend you to friends and neighbors.
  • Network: Attend local events and network with other businesses in your area.

Growing Your Business

Once you have a steady stream of customers, you can focus on growing your business. Here are some strategies:

  • Invest in Equipment: Upgrade to more efficient or specialized equipment as your business grows.
  • Expand Your Services: Offer new services to cater to a wider range of customer needs.
  • Hire Staff: As your workload increases, you may need to hire additional staff to keep up with demand.
  • Build a Reputation: Provide exceptional customer service and build a positive reputation in your community.


Determining the right price for your lawn mowing services requires careful consideration of your costs, market conditions, and your target audience. By following the tips outlined in this article, you can set competitive pricing, attract customers, and grow your business. Remember, finding the right balance between price and value will be key to your success.


How do I calculate my hourly rate?

Start by figuring out your expenses. These include costs like fuel, equipment maintenance, insurance, and any other business expenses. Next, factor in your desired profit margin. This is the amount you want to earn per hour after covering your expenses. Add your desired profit to your expenses to arrive at your hourly rate. For example, if your expenses are $20 per hour and you want a $15 profit margin, your hourly rate would be $35.

What are some factors that can affect my pricing?

Several factors can affect your pricing. The size of the lawn, the complexity of the terrain, and the frequency of mowing are all important considerations. You may also need to adjust your prices based on the local market. Research what other lawn care professionals in your area charge to get a sense of the competitive landscape.

How can I determine my starting rate?

A good starting point is to charge $30-$50 per hour for basic lawn mowing services. However, you can adjust your rate based on the factors mentioned above. For example, if you’re mowing a large lawn with complex terrain, you can charge a higher rate.

Is it better to charge by the hour or by the job?

Both options have advantages and disadvantages. Charging by the hour can be beneficial if you have a lot of experience and can efficiently complete the job. However, if you’re new to the business or are unsure how long it will take, charging by the job may be a better option.

How often should I increase my prices?

It’s a good idea to review your pricing annually and consider adjusting your rates based on inflation, changes in your business expenses, and the demand for your services. You don’t want to undercharge yourself, but it’s also important to remain competitive.

How can I make myself stand out from the competition?

Offer additional services beyond basic lawn mowing. This could include edging, trimming, fertilizing, or weed control. You can also build a strong online presence by creating a website or using social media. Finally, excellent customer service can make a big difference.

What if I don’t know how to use a lawnmower?

If you’re not comfortable operating a lawnmower, you can always hire someone to do it for you. Many lawn care companies offer a variety of services, including mowing. You can also try taking a class or getting certified in lawn care.

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