Variety and Options Help Sell Maintenance

Staffed with numerous landscape architects and designers, Grant & Power Landscaping in West Chicago, IL, also recognizes the need to offer professional maintenance services to assist its residential and commercial customers in protecting their landscape investment.

Half of Grant & Power's annual revenue comes from maintenance services—30% from snow and ice management, 20% from lawn and landscape maintenance. A variety of services are offered to both commercial and residential clientele:

Landscape & Bed Work

• Weeding and cultivation
• Spade edging of beds
• Lawn mowing (always included on commercial proposals, offered as an option/additional charge on residential proposals)
• Re-mulching of beds with “processed” hardwood shredded bark mulch
• Re-mulching of perennials with mushroom compost
• Pre-emergent weed control in planting beds

Professional Plant Material Care

• Seasonal pruning of shrubs and evergreens
• Ornamental tree pruning
• Tree staking and anchoring
• Rejuvenation and restoration pruning
• Slow-release fertilization of plants
• Proper perennial and groundcover care

Specialty Seasonal Services (additional cost)

• Spring and fall detailed cleanups
• Core aeration
• Slit seeding lawn renovation
• Design and planting of bulbs, annual and perennial beds
• Site inspections and monitoring by appointment
• Dormant pruning
• Deep root watering
• Patio maintenance
• Rototilling
• Snow removal
• Annual flower program

ADDITIONAL MAINTENANCE SERVICES

Every spring contracts are mailed to existing clients for pond startup or shutdown service and outdoor lighting maintenance. Follow-up calls are made if there's no response to the mailing.

FOCUS ON COMMERCIAL

On the maintenance side of the business, Grant & Power tends to focus on the commercial market due to the better margins that are often attainable. For all properties, a thorough site evaluation is conducted first. This includes:

• Measuring of all turf areas
• Measuring of all bed areas
• Identifying quantities of shrubs, trees, perennials, groundcover, etc.

While on-site measuring is typically preferred, Grant & Power sometimes uses Google Earth to measure properties, helping reduce travels costs, etc. Once the evaluation is complete, a bid is completed. Commercial maintenance services are billed monthly from April-October.

For snow and ice management, Google Earth is also used for measuring properties on occasion, detailing sidewalks, driveways, parking spots and lanes. Obstructions are also noted. Maps are created for every facility.

Grant & Power's snow contractors are either per-push or monthly. The company also offers a three-year contract for a fixed rate. Contracts can also be plow-only; salt and plow; or salt, sidewalk safe ice melt and plow. Shoveling is an additional charge.

Grant & Power sends email updates to clients informing them of when crews service their sites and which services have been provided.

THREE OPTIONS FOR RESIDENTIAL

Grant & Power's snow division focuses solely on the commercial market. And while the company's maintenance division also focuses on commercial, it does offer three types of programs for residential customers: a basic 5-Step Plan, Monthly Enhanced or Custom.

Residential maintenance accounts often lead to a variety of installation and enhancement work. Periodic site visits by the sales rep identify ways to improve the site. A 10-point evaluation of the present landscape conditions is completed. Then, a PowerPoint presentation is created with photos of new plantings or hardscaping elements that could be implemented. If the customer is interested, a proposal is generated, and the sales rep walks the site with the client to explain the possibilities.”

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