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  • FIRST POST
    • Nathaniel Essex
    • By Nathaniel Essex 18th May 17, 4:30 PM
    • 30Posts
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    Nathaniel Essex
    Cost of a gardener
    • #1
    • 18th May 17, 4:30 PM
    Cost of a gardener 18th May 17 at 4:30 PM
    Hi all,

    I have a small-to-medium sized garden and have admittedly not taken care of it as much I have could have. It's not in a terrible state but want it to look pretty. One of the things I want someone to do aside from the general maintenance is to remove a number of shrubs on the outer permiter and cut back some hedges that have grown over a small conservatory at the back of the garden.

    How do they typically charge? One of my friends gardener charges an hourly rate but would them be the same if shrubs need to be removed?
Page 1
    • traineepensioner
    • By traineepensioner 18th May 17, 5:11 PM
    • 231 Posts
    • 120 Thanks
    traineepensioner
    • #2
    • 18th May 17, 5:11 PM
    • #2
    • 18th May 17, 5:11 PM
    You'll probably have to pay a "one off" charge to have the garden tidied and then a regular charge for ongoing maintenance.
    We pay our gardener £15 per fortnightly visit during the season. He mows & tidies the lawn and trims the hedges on alternate visits (small garden).
    No longer trainee
    Retired in 2012 (54)
    State pension due 2024 (66)
    • trailingspouse
    • By trailingspouse 18th May 17, 5:48 PM
    • 2,114 Posts
    • 2,988 Thanks
    trailingspouse
    • #3
    • 18th May 17, 5:48 PM
    • #3
    • 18th May 17, 5:48 PM
    You really need to just call them and ask - some might do it on an hourly rate, others might give you a price for the job.
    • Nile
    • By Nile 18th May 17, 6:58 PM
    • 14,178 Posts
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    Nile
    • #4
    • 18th May 17, 6:58 PM
    • #4
    • 18th May 17, 6:58 PM
    Hi, we move threads if we think they’ll get more help elsewhere (please read the forum rule) so this post/thread has been moved to another board. If you have any questions about this policy please email forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com.

    I’ve moved your thread from the ‘In my home’ board to the ‘Greenfingered’ board, where it is better suited.

    Regards

    Nile
    Hi, I'm the Board Guide on the In my home (includes DIY) and the I wanna buy-it or do-it boards which means I'm a volunteer to help the boards run smoothly and I can move and merge posts there. However, do remember that Board Guides don't read every post. If you spot an inappropriate or illegal post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com. It is not part of my role to deal with reportable posts. Any views are mine and are not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com.

    10 Dec 2007 - Led Zeppelin - I was there. I wear my 50 (gold/red/white) blood donations pin badge with pride. Give blood, save a life.
    • redmalc
    • By redmalc 18th May 17, 7:18 PM
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    redmalc
    • #5
    • 18th May 17, 7:18 PM
    • #5
    • 18th May 17, 7:18 PM
    We have had the same guy for the last thirty years,he comes every 14 days cuts the lawns and keeps the plants tidy and hedges cut.
    We do all of the planting and he costs us £13 per hour
    • Nathaniel Essex
    • By Nathaniel Essex 25th May 17, 12:47 AM
    • 30 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    Nathaniel Essex
    • #6
    • 25th May 17, 12:47 AM
    • #6
    • 25th May 17, 12:47 AM
    Thanks for the replies all. The reason I created the thread is someone quoted me £250 to mow the lawn (which has overgrown a bit), remove shrubs/flower beds, weeds an cut back hedges. Again, haven't got a big garden and wanted to know whether the guy was taking the !!!! or if this was normal for a spring tidy up.
    • KxMx
    • By KxMx 25th May 17, 4:05 PM
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    KxMx
    • #7
    • 25th May 17, 4:05 PM
    • #7
    • 25th May 17, 4:05 PM
    Sounds like they didn't want the job, and overpriced accordingly.

    This is a known practice amongst tradesmen, told to me by more than one gardener/handyman.

    I pay £12.50 per hour for mine and he is one of the cheaper ones.
    • mysterymurdoch
    • By mysterymurdoch 26th May 17, 6:46 AM
    • 136 Posts
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    mysterymurdoch
    • #8
    • 26th May 17, 6:46 AM
    • #8
    • 26th May 17, 6:46 AM
    You'll get a variety of prices. I'm fully booked till December and have a min charged of £25 per visit up to 30mins.

    I work beside people charging £12/hr. If they can survive on that good for them! Trying to get a reliable gardener at this time of year could be very tricky; I've turned down customers every day since March.
    • ManofLeisure
    • By ManofLeisure 26th May 17, 1:28 PM
    • 391 Posts
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    ManofLeisure
    • #9
    • 26th May 17, 1:28 PM
    • #9
    • 26th May 17, 1:28 PM
    You'll get a variety of prices. I'm fully booked till December and have a min charged of £25 per visit up to 30mins.
    Originally posted by mysterymurdoch
    That sounds steep to me . I'm in Surrey and our gardener charges £12 hr - does a great job too.
    • JEN22
    • By JEN22 26th May 17, 3:06 PM
    • 311 Posts
    • 52 Thanks
    JEN22
    £15 per hour here in Lancashire
    • springdreams
    • By springdreams 26th May 17, 6:28 PM
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    springdreams
    Also £15 per hour here in Romford.

    I think the differences in rates might depend on the type of gardener you want. Someone who does landscaping, advises on the types of plants that would suit your garden etc. probably charges at the higher end. However, someone who leaves the planning, selection of plants etc. to you and only does the manual labour is likely to charge less per hour.

    My garden needed a spring clean and my gardener split the work over 6 weekends doing 2 hours a weekend initially, then he switched to 2 hours every fortnight.
    Smiles are as perfect a gift as hugs...
    ..one size fits all... and nobody minds if you give it back.
    Originally posted by squeaky
    ☆.。.:*・° Housework is so much easier without the clutter ☆.。.:*・°
    SPC No. 518
    • elsien
    • By elsien 26th May 17, 6:31 PM
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    elsien
    The cost may also be affected by just how much greenery there is to get rid of. The person I occasionally use has to pay to get rid of green waste, so it works out a bit cheaper (if slightly more trouble) if he cuts it down and I get shut of it at the local tip.
    All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

    Pedant alert - it's could have, not could of.
    • mysterymurdoch
    • By mysterymurdoch 26th May 17, 10:39 PM
    • 136 Posts
    • 104 Thanks
    mysterymurdoch
    How many other trades charge by the hour and stay on site for x hours? Decorators...plumbers...joiners...they all work to completion of a task, not an arbitrary time. If any customers start asking me how long I'll be there and cost per hour I double check my diary and tell them I am too busy to fit them in.

    I'd suggest you get quotes based on a set price. You get a better job done, the tradespwrson makes a proper living and you've no need to twitch your curtains to see if the gardener is on the phone or blethering to the neighbour.
    • springdreams
    • By springdreams 27th May 17, 7:22 PM
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    springdreams
    How many other trades charge by the hour and stay on site for x hours? Decorators...plumbers...joiners...they all work to completion of a task, not an arbitrary time. If any customers start asking me how long I'll be there and cost per hour I double check my diary and tell them I am too busy to fit them in.

    I'd suggest you get quotes based on a set price. You get a better job done, the tradespwrson makes a proper living and you've no need to twitch your curtains to see if the gardener is on the phone or blethering to the neighbour.
    Originally posted by mysterymurdoch
    Glad I'm not looking to employ you then ...

    My painter, cleaner, handyman and gardener all charge by the hour (as do a number of other trades and professional people), and I certainly don't need to curtain twitch to check that they are doing the work I am paying them to do! They all have a good work ethic, and I gladly refer them to friends, family and on my local FB page when anyone is looking for a painter, cleaner, handyman or gardener.
    Smiles are as perfect a gift as hugs...
    ..one size fits all... and nobody minds if you give it back.
    Originally posted by squeaky
    ☆.。.:*・° Housework is so much easier without the clutter ☆.。.:*・°
    SPC No. 518
    • mysterymurdoch
    • By mysterymurdoch 28th May 17, 7:32 PM
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    mysterymurdoch
    I'm equally as glad I've not picked you as a customer. Everyone benefits!
    • springdreams
    • By springdreams 28th May 17, 7:52 PM
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    springdreams
    I'm equally as glad I've not picked you as a customer. Everyone benefits!
    Originally posted by mysterymurdoch
    As the supplier of the services you don't get to pick me

    Anyone who wants to hide their hourly rates just rings alarm bells to me, especially since the business I'm in does charge for services by the hour, and the type of services you supply are frequently charged for by the hour.
    Last edited by springdreams; 28-05-2017 at 7:54 PM.
    Smiles are as perfect a gift as hugs...
    ..one size fits all... and nobody minds if you give it back.
    Originally posted by squeaky
    ☆.。.:*・° Housework is so much easier without the clutter ☆.。.:*・°
    SPC No. 518
    • mysterymurdoch
    • By mysterymurdoch 28th May 17, 8:09 PM
    • 136 Posts
    • 104 Thanks
    mysterymurdoch
    I turn down around 5-6 customers a week. I'll pick the odd one that I can tell will be low hassle and reliable and will replace any that are difficult. My services are in demand and I have had a number of customers for 8 years since I started. New enquiries come in 50% from word of mouth ad 50% onlookers or website hits.

    You evidently just don't realise what it's like to run a top end of the market business.
    • YORKSHIRELASS
    • By YORKSHIRELASS 28th May 17, 9:58 PM
    • 4,242 Posts
    • 34,222 Thanks
    YORKSHIRELASS
    My hubby does this for a living and charges £12.50 an hour for regular jobs, £15 for one off jobs and occasionally £17 if its a big/difficult garden clearance job. He makes a good living, has a waiting list and has many clients who he has worked for for over 10 years.

    He rarely charges a set price but will give you a fairly accurate estimate of how much time the job will take. If he charges a set price he has to be very specific about what he will and wont do which can be tricky.

    He has regular clients who might use him for 16 hours a month so there is limit on what he can charge, they couldnt afford to pay 16 x £25 a month for example, and regular jobs have a lot of benefits. Also his overheads are fairly low, other than running his van and paying for insurance the equipment he uses is fairly low cost and easy to maintain.

    I agree with the point about disposing of the green waste, makes a huge difference to the time taken and actually makes DH more likely to accept a one off job.

    As with all trades be a bit wary about someone who says they can start tomorrow, most good gardeners are in high demand around here, especially at this time of year.
    • ThemeOne
    • By ThemeOne 28th May 17, 10:40 PM
    • 1,049 Posts
    • 872 Thanks
    ThemeOne
    The gardener I used to have at my father's place charged £13 / hr and normally did 4 hours per week from spring to autumn to keep a big back garden and average front looking great. As far as I know that rate included anything garden related.
    • mysterymurdoch
    • By mysterymurdoch 29th May 17, 6:45 AM
    • 136 Posts
    • 104 Thanks
    mysterymurdoch
    Many people do gardening as a hobby or a lifestyle. If you're doing it as a business you need to make money, and if you've got a waiting list you need to start raising prices until you lose a customer or two! Basics of business.

    Yorkshire...no matter what you think, he's absolutely not making a good living on those prices. He's paying the bills and maybe able to afford the odd treat, but after paying to run the business he's going to be well under £10/hr. How much tax did he pay this year? That's an indication.
    Last edited by mysterymurdoch; 29-05-2017 at 6:58 AM.
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