After successful launches in Tampa, St. Petersburg and Fort Myers, Greenpal co-founder Gene Cabellero brought “the Uber of landscaping” to Sarasota last week. The service allows homeowners to find lawn service through a cellphone application.
The Greenpal app allows homeowners to create a posting for work they need to have done. The posting alerts landscapers throughout the area, who then put in a bid to do the work.
“Vendors bid on the property based on the Google Aerial view, the square-footage of the property and the work that needs to be done,” Cabellero said. “Then all of that goes over to the homeowner to review. The homeowner can see ratings, reviews and price then chose who’d they’d like to work with.”
Cabellero said Greenpal has made finding and completing landscape work much more convenient. He said the system works better than traditional landscaping services because communication between the buyer and vendor is simplified.
Vendors must be pre-approved to accept work on Greenpal. Vendors must be at least 18 years old and provide photos of commercial-grade landscaping equipment. Homeowners do not pay for services until they see and are happy with the work done.
“In addition to the pre-screening requirements, homeowners provide the social proof as well,” Cabellero said. “Homeowners have the opportunity to rate and write a review of the service that was provided.”
Greenpal has been made available as a free iPhone and Android app. There is also a Sarasota-specific website for scheduling landscaping service, which ranges from simple grass-cutting to fence installation.
Cabellero said the consumer market has changed not just in landscaping but in many areas. He said he gathered inspiration from other companies who have turned to an electronic method for delivering services.
“People have become used to pushing a button and something comes to them. Amazon can deliver things in a matter of hours,” Cabellero said. “They don’t want to call anybody. They don’t want to contact a professional just to get a voicemail.”
Cabellero, who is from Tennessee, worked in landscaping for many years before he took a job with Dell computers after college. He said he wanted to intertwine his love for landscaping and technology, which soon became Greenpal.
Greenpal began as a service in Nashville and has expanded to multiple cities across the United States. There are now more than 1 million users signed up to use Greenpal services.
“Basically anything can be done outside of the home using this service. We’ve had fences put up and gutters replaced,” Cabellero said. “Homeowners don’t have to enter their credit card information until after the work is done and they are happy with it. It’s very similar to making a hotel reservation.”