Mow Money: Here's How Much Lawn Care Services Cost
Lawn Care Services Costs at a Glance
- Lawn mowing: $30 per hour plus 1-4 cents per square foot
- Full lawn care: $100, average; $40-$450, range
Imagine this: It's the middle of July. The heat index is through the roof. Unfortunately, so is the height of your grass. You're inside sipping a cold iced tea, thinking about how much you're going to have to sweat to get your yard back in shape. It's right about now you might be wondering how much it would cost to hire a lawn service to do it for you.
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The total cost will vary based on what needs to be done. Having your lawn mowed will cost a lot less than full landscaping services, for example. Here’s a quick cost guide to get you started.
How Much Does It Cost to Mow a Lawn?
According to HowMuch.net, the average cost for mowing a lawn is a penny per square foot plus $30 per hour. If you have a 5,000-square-foot lawn and it takes someone about 2.5 hours to mow it, edge it and handle the clippings, you're looking at $125 for the service.
But that's just an average based on very basic lawn care services. Your cost could be higher or lower depending on a variety of factors.
Factors That Impact Lawn Service Cost
Professional lawn care typically involves much more than mowing your yard. According to Thumbtack, full lawn care services can cost anywhere from $40 to $450 per session. The national average is about $100.
The cost varies. Here are some things to consider:
1. Where You Live
If you live in an area with a high cost of living, chances are lawn care is going to be more expensive there, too. HowMuch.net also reports averages for different areas of the country. In Miami, Florida, or Seattle, Washington, expect to pay 2 cents per square foot plus the cost of labor. In Chicago, Illinois, it may cost up to 4 cents per square foot.
Another location-based factor is how far you live from the company's base of operations. If the team has to drive an hour to get to you, there may be an extra charge to account for that time.
2. Size of the Yard
The more yard you have, the more time it takes to care for it. That's likely to impact your lawn care service cost.
However, one thing that's important to note is that a smaller yard doesn't always mean you pay less. At some point, charging any less to mow a smaller yard means the company doesn't recoup the cost of driving the equipment out to your home and handling the job. Many lawn care companies have a minimum charge regardless of yard size.
3. Type of Yard and Landscape
The structure of your yard can also change the average cost of lawn service. A flat, wide-open yard with few obstacles can be mowed and cared for quickly. A yard with hills, trees, flower beds, structures and fence lines or other obstacles takes more time and care. It can't all be mowed with a fast-riding mower. A lawn care professional will typically consider all of these things when giving you a quote.
4. What Services You Want
All companies work with a different pricing structure. Some provide comprehensive packages that include landscaping and lawn care. Others charge a certain rate for mowing that's dependent on the size and type of lawn. Then, they offer other packages and add-on services for more advanced lawn care.
Here are some optional services that might drive up the cost of lawn care:
- Planting flowers or adding flower beds
- Adding sod or grass
- Removing trees or branches
- Pruning bushes or trees
- Adding or removing dirt
- Treating grass or lawns for growth or health
- Caring for trees or other plants on a regular basis
If you want to add some of these types of services, it might also limit which companies you can deal with. Depending on your location, someone may need to be licensed to provide some of these services. And even if that's not the case, not everyone who mows lawns is qualified to treat unhealthy trees or plan out flower beds for optimal curb appeal.
5. Type of Lawn Service Provider
Who you do business with can drastically drive up or down the price. If you're paying a teenager down the street to come out with their push mower, you're probably going to pay a lot less than if you contract a professional landscaping company.
6. Materials and Supplies
Whether you buy them yourself or have a lawn care professional handle it all, you still foot the bill for materials and supplies in one way or another. Materials and supplies are the specific items necessary for a landscaping job. For example, if you want to have someone re-sod your entire backyard or build raised flower beds around your deck, that's obviously going to cost more than just having your grass mowed.
If you're looking for this type of comprehensive lawn service, ask for a detailed quote. You want to see the cost of materials as well as the cost of labor to understand if you can get a better deal elsewhere or by doing some of the work yourself.
7. Maintenance Required
For example, if you have a lot of hedges that you want to be trimmed on a regular basis in addition to having your grass mowed, most lawn care pros aren't going to throw in all that labor completely for free. Typically, the more you ask for, the more it's going to cost.
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Why Pay Someone to Care for Your Lawn?
Why should you consider paying someone else to maintain your lawn?
Well, not everyone can physically handle lawn care duty. Whether you have limited mobility or are dealing with a health issue, paying someone else to mow the grass lets you have a healthy lawn without putting your own health at risk. Maybe it’s just too time-consuming to maintain a lawn. Depending on your lawn and what you want it to look like, it could take hours of work every week to get the job done on your own. A crew of lawn care pros can typically knock that work out in no time and buy back a lot of hours that you can spend doing something else you enjoy.
In the end, it might even cost you more to do it on your own. If you don't have a mower or the other necessary equipment, investing in new tools for DIY lawn care could cost you as much as paying for a year or more of professional service.
Being prepared for unexpected home repairs with a plan from HomeServe is important. When something goes wrong, costs can add up. Having a plan in place gives you peace of mind knowing that you can simply call our 24/7 repair hotline for covered breakdowns. See what plans are available in your area.