A new app launched earlier this month in Western New York puts access to local lawn care professionals in homeowners’ hands.
The GreenPal app bills itself as “Uber for lawn care”. It’s available in 150 other markets and officially launched in the Buffalo area on July 3.
“Everything is kind of going toward the on-demand economy, and why not lawn care?” Gene Caballero, co-founder of GreenPal, said.
The app, which is free to download, allows homeowners to put in their requests for lawn work. A pool of pre-screened lawn care vendors in the area can then bid on the job, based on address, type of work, lawn size, and Google street and aerial view.
The homeowner can review the bids and prices and choose which vendor they want to work with.
After the work is completed, the vendor sends in a time-stamped photo of the work and gets paid.
“Homeowners looking for lawn care right now could call ten numbers and get ten voicemails- it’s just a very busy time of year,” Caballero said. “Our technology makes it very easy for vendors to bid on properties anywhere they are, and it makes it seamless for the homeowners.”
GreenPal also acts as an operating system for the vendors, handling demand creation, scheduling, route information, and payment processing.
Ronald Chrostwoski of R.C. Lawn Care is one of the local vendors available on the app.
“It’s really easy as a vendor to go to the app store and download it and fill out the application- how many requests you want per day, and then you start getting requests based on what you filled out,” Chrostwoski said.
He’s had his business for four years.
“It’s a very useful tool to grow your business, and for businesses that are just starting out,” Chrostwoski said.
Vendors who want to become part of the platform must submit photos of their professional-grade equipment and previous work and have references, a valid Social Security number and a valid bank account.
“I think most of the guys on our platform are professionals- we do have firemen, police officers and teachers who do it on the side,” Caballero said. “It’s basically for anyone who wants to make extra money or who wants to do lawn care as a career.”
GreenPal doesn’t do much advertising, instead relying on word-of-mouth from homeowners and vendors, Caballero said.
“How we gauge success is when we have a lot of vendors and homeowners sign up organically,” Caballero said.
GreenPal will also work with snow removal vendors this summer.