How Much Does It Cost to Clean Up Leaves?

Average range: $200 - $400
Average Cost
(Vacuum and mulching leaves on a 10,000 sq.ft. property for garden or compost)

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How Much Does It Cost to Clean Up Leaves?

Average range: $200 - $400
Average Cost
(Vacuum and mulching leaves on a 10,000 sq.ft. property for garden or compost)

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Reviewed by Irene Pomares. Written by

As the season’s name implies, when fall comes around trees begin to drop their leaves all over your yard. As a homeowner, you will want to get them cleaned up right away. Leaves create a blanket in your yard that can cause many issues if not removed. As winter and snow come around, leaf clean up can get much harder. Fall is the best time for leaf removal and, depending on the amount of leaves in your yard, you may require more than a one-time leaf clean-up service.

The national average leaf clean-up cost is between $200 and $400. Most people pay around $300 to get a fall leaf clean up with a vacuum and mulching leaves for garden or compost for a 10,000 square foot property. At the low end of the spectrum, you will pay around $75 for blowing, collection, and bagging of leaves for city removal. At the high end, you may pay up to $500 for blowing, removal, and disposal of leaves.

Leaf Clean-up Cost

Leaf Removal Cost
National average cost$300
Average range$200-$400
Minimum cost$75
Maximum cost$500

Leaf Clean-up Cost by Project Range

Blowing, collection, and bagging for city removal
Average Cost
Vacuum and mulching leaves on a 10,000 sq.ft. property for garden or compost
Blowing, removal, and disposal

Leaf Removal Cost per Acre

Typically, leaf removal costs anywhere between $400 and $1,000 per acre, depending on the exact size of your lot. The most common cost of leaf removing is between $100 and $250 since most homes are built on a ¼ acre lot. Keep in mind that the exact costs of disposing of the leaves from your yard will depend on how many leaves there are and the method you use to remove them. The most common cost ranges are presented in the table below:

Leaf Removal Cost per Acre

Leaf Removal Cost per Acre

SizeCost (Materials and Labor)
⅙ acre$75-$175
⅕ acre$80-$200
¼ acre$100-$250
½ acre$200-$500
¾ acre$300-$750
1 acre$400-$1,000

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Leaf Removal Cost by Type of Cleaning

There are three main types of leaf removal cleaning methods, all with different costs: blowing ($10-30 per hour), raking ($10-30 per hour), and vacuuming ($15-45 per hour). Most companies charge a minimum fee of $75 and an additional $5-$10 per bag for removal. It can be a beautiful scenic view to watch the leaves change color and fall, however, it becomes a project when they need to be removed for your yard. Leaves should be removed promptly, however, before they make their way into your gutters, start to rot and produce a foul smell, or damage your lawn. Luckily, with the right tools the job is quite easy for any professional. The most popular methods are highlighted below with their respective costs.

Leaf Removal Cost by Type of Cleaning

Leaf Removal Cost by Type of Cleaning

Type of CleaningCost (Materials and Labor)
Blowing$10-30/hour or $5-$10/bag
Raking$10-$30/hour or $5-$10/bag
Vacuuming$15-$45/hour or $5-$10/bag

Leaf Blowing Service Cost

Leaf blowing is a popular method used for removing leaves from a yard and costs $10-30 per hour or $5-$10 per bag. A leaf blower is a tool that pushes air out of a nozzle to move debris and is great for driveways, gutters, and larger yards. They are powered by electric or gasoline motors and are typically self-contained carried units or backpack-style units with a handheld wand. Leaf blowing is less time-consuming than raking, however, carrying the blower around can get heavy. A leaf blower is not efficient at directing wet leaves and can scatter them around instead. A rake is still needed to put the leaves in a consolidated pile after blowing for easy bagging or composting.

Leaf Raking Prices

Raking is the oldest and most traditional method for collecting leaves and costs an average of $10-$30 per hour or $5-$10 per bag. The yard worker will use a heavy-duty fan rake to collect the leaves into multiple piles throughout the yard for easy pickup into bags. Fan rakes are beneficial in collecting leaves without causing harm to the lawn, as well as picking up wet leaves. If you have a big yard, raking may not be the best method of removing leaves as it can be time-consuming and tedious.

Leaf Vacuum Price

Leaf vacuuming is the most effective and easiest way of removing leaves and costs an average of $15-$45 per hour or $5-$10 per bag. A leaf vacuum has a similar appearance to a leaf blower, but instead of blowing the leaves it sucks them up and collects them in an attached bag. This method is an efficient way of removing leaves from the lawn without having to blow them or rake them up. The only downfall is that the bag can get heavy and require frequent emptying.

Leaf Cleanup Cost

The cost for leaf cleanup varies greatly between location, companies, and size of the property, with most professional landscapers charging between $10 and $30 per hour with approximately half of the final cost being made up of labor charges. If your yard is smaller than 500 sq.ft. then some companies may have a minimum flat charge for leaf removal. The minimum charge is usually around $150-$200.

A professional contractor can be hired to clean up your leaves. Leaf clean up can be a difficult, time-consuming job to complete by yourself. The larger the property, the longer it will take and the more wear and tear on your equipment. By hiring a professional, they can complete the project in a shorter period of time and dispose of the leaves for you.

The professional will start with an assessment of the property including the number of trees, difficulty of the terrain, and size of the yard, before quoting the project. You can expect to pay a higher price for a larger yard or one that is bumpy or unleveled because it will be more difficult to use the equipment in certain parts of the yard.

Fall Leaf Removal Cost

You can expect to pay $200-$500 for a fall yard cleanup. If you don’t take care of the leaves right when they come off the trees, then they can start to rot in your yard and clog up your gutters. Fall is one of the busiest times of the year for professional cleanup companies, so you may find that the prices are double as much as you would pay compared to other seasons.

Gardener blowing fall leaves in the backyard to remove them

Leaf Pickup Cost

Professional leaf pick up can be done for a fee of approximately $30-$50. The leaf company will pick up and dispose of your leaves. A professional landscaper can haul the leaves away, leave them for city pick up, or mulch them for your yard. Another option available in some places is leaving the bagged leaves at the curb for pickup as part of regular garbage service on yard waste day. Having your leaves disposed of for you can leave you with a lot less work and stress involved in the job.

Leaves Mulching

Mulching leaves is a great method of disposing of leaves by helping to reduce a pile to about one-tenth of its size. Unshredded leaves are sucked up or placed into a mulching unit where they are chopped into tiny pieces. Most times, a professional has equipment that allows for picking up and mulching the leaves at the same time, which is a quick method and great for larger jobs. For smaller yards, leaves can be mulched using a lawnmower and attachment, but they will still have to be picked up after mulching using another tool. Shredded leaves are great to use for compost or lawn fertilizer. Some companies offer mulching services at an additional cost to your project. The average cost for mulching is $100-$500 and depends on the size of the property.

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Leaves Composting

Compost is organic matter that has been allowed to decompose. Home-made compost starts as a variety of kitchen scraps including egg shells, banana peels, apple cores, and other kitchen castoffs (though dairy, meat, and poultry byproducts should be left out). Instead of throwing them in the garbage or disposal, these items can be added back into the environment and, with the help of plenty of earthworms and microscopic organisms, create great, nutrient-filled food for your soil. Dead mulched leaves are a great base for compost due to the nitrogen formed during the breakdown of the leaves. These nutrients can help to create thick, green grass for the next season. Professional companies can help to mulch the leaves for you, and if you keep them for composting, you won’t have to pay any removal fees.

Mulching Leaves vs Bagging

Mulching and bagging are two methods for removing leaves from your lawn. Mulching is the process of grinding the leaves using a mulching unit where they are shredded into one-tenth of their original size. The mulch then is used for compost or lawn fertilizer. Bagging is the process of putting leaves into bags for removal. They can then be disposed of by the leaf removal company or by your city/town through yard waste pickup. There are pros and cons to both types of removal.

Mulching can be less labor-intensive compared with bagging because it uses a mower that returns the chopped leaves into the lawn. Mulching can be a great source of nutrients for the soil without harming the lawn. One disadvantage of mulching is that if you mow dried leaves, you should wear protection from the debris. Mulching wet leaves can also be tough on the mower and sometimes still produces larger leaf pieces. Mulching may not work depending on the type of trees, such as pine, as the needles decompose too slowly and will suffocate the lawn.

Bagging leaves can leave your lawn looking neat and uncluttered and it can be good exercise to do so. Most cities/towns will pick up the bags of leaves and take them to make compost. The cons of bagging leaves include that it can be a tiring, tedious task, and the leaf blower can be quite noisy and annoy your neighbors. You must have enough bags to fill with leaves and be able to move them to the curb or disposal site. While most cities/towns allow for curbside pickup, there are some that do not and then you will have to make other arrangements.

Leaf removal specialist taking out leaves in a bag

Why Clean up Leaves?

There are many reasons why your leaves should be cleaned up other than giving your yard a tidy look and attractive curb appeal. Leaves that aren’t removed or mulched create a blanket across your yard that won’t simply decompose into the soil without any work. They will eventually cause damage to your yard by destroying your grass. The longer the leaves are left, the more likely they’ll rot. In addition to destroying grass, rotting leaves can also suffocate and cause disease in tree roots and other plants.

Leaves are also known to collect in other places such as your roof, gutters, and driveway. If you do not have gutter guards, the leaves are likely to pile up and collect in your gutters causing them to clog. This can lead to severe water backups if not cleaned. Paying attention to the need to remove leaves as they fall in the yard can help you remember to take care of your gutters, too. Wet leaves can also be problematic by collecting in corners and keeping moisture against your home. They can even cause moss to grow on the roof and other places outside the home.

Leaf Removal Service Cost Factors

There are many different factors that help to determine the cost of leaf cleanup. Professionals look at all these factors when quoting for a project. One of the largest determinants for the cost associated with leaf clean up is the yard or property size. The larger your yard, the more you can expect to pay as it will take more time and power to remove all of the leaves. Most companies assign a specific number of people to the job and they will often charge per hour per person for their work. Another big cost factor is the number of trees and the number of leaves. The more trees you have, the more leaves that will fall onto the ground, and therefore the higher the cost.

The type of trees and condition of the leaves also play a role in the cost of the project. For the removal of wet leaves, you can expect to pay more as they are heavier and harder to clean up. Pine needles are harder to rake or move with a leaf blower and therefore can cost more compared to a standard maple leaf. Some trees may also drop things other than leaves such as seeds and acorns that can make it more difficult to get the job done.

Whether the job requires a leaf blower, rake, or vacuum will influence the cost of the project. The more advanced the equipment or the more workers needed can increase the overall price. Fall is the most common time of the year for leaf cleanup and therefore you can expect to pay twice as much as you would compared to summer or winter. Note that all of the prices in this guide do not reflect this fall surge pricing. Lastly, if you decide to opt into a leaf removal service that occurs two to three times a year, you might be eligible for a discount. The more often you receive a service, the easier it is for the company to maintain.

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Enhancement and Improvement Costs

Cleaning Leaves from Gutters

Gutters are important in keeping water away from your house. They can only do their job efficiently, however, if they are free of clogs from leaves and other debris. A professional will use a leaf blower with a special attachment to remove the leaves from the gutters. The average cost of gutter cleaning is between $150 and $225, with most homeowners spending around $188 for cleaning 150 linear feet of gutters.

Lawn Care Price

The average cost for lawn care is from $30-$80 per visit, with most homeowners spending around $45 per visit for a biweekly lawn care service. Keeping your lawn looking good is a tedious job and therefore many homeowners opt into hiring a lawn service company to do the work for them. Lawn service companies will come in each week or every other week to maintain the lawn and provide services including fertilizing, mowing, yard cleanup, and much more. Every lawn is different and the needs may vary depending on the size, season, and location.

Lawn Fertilization Cost

If you want to keep your yard healthy and increase regrowth for the following season then fertilizing your grass is a good option and can cost approximately $70. Fertilizer adds nutrients to your soil that make your grass grow green, thick, and luscious. Fertilization mainly occurs in the spring and summer, right before the main growing system, but some lawns may need additional treatment throughout the year. The cost to fertilize a lawn is dependent on the lawn size and fertilization type.

Cost to Seed Lawn

The average cost for lawn seeding is $700, which involves adding new grass to your lawn through the use of seeds. Seeds can be applied to thin areas of your yard to help fill it in or to new soil to grow a new lawn. This is an alternate option for adding grass to your yard such as sodding or other forms of fully mature grass. Lawn seeding can help to keep your grass looking healthy and green. There are many factors that will have an effect on the final cost including the method, the types of seed, the size of the lawn, and the prep work that may need to be done.

Additional Considerations and Costs

  • A permit is not required to remove leaves from your lawn.
  • Leaf removal can be a DIY project, but it can be a tedious job that requires a lot of strength and time. The larger your yard and the more trees, the more leaves, which can mean more physically demanding work. Using a rake can take a significant amount of time to get the job done, and of course bending and lifting the leaves into bags can be hard on the body. That is why hiring a professional lawn care company to do the job can be a wise choice.
  • As long as your yard is accessible, you will not have to be present when a company comes to your home to clean the leaves.
  • Many landscaping companies offer a variety of different services that vary from company to company. In most states, a landscaper will need a license to operate and should always carry their insurance on them. To obtain this license, they must work for a minimum of 3 years as an apprentice and pass a professional exam.
  • With the numerous companies on the market, it is a good idea to request references from other homeowners to determine what company may be the best for you.


  • How much should I charge for yard clean up?

The average cost for yard clean-up service is between $300-$700, with the average homeowner paying about $500.

  • What is the best way to remove leaves?

The best way to remove leaves is using a vacuum or a leaf blower. You can also use a lawn mower to mulch the leaves if there aren’t too many.

  • How much does fall leaf removal cost?

You can expect to pay from $200-$500 for a fall yard cleanup.

  • How do you remove leaves?

Leaves can be removed using a vacuum, leaf blower, a rake and bags, or lawn mower to mulch them.

  • Do you have to remove leaves off your lawn?

You should remove leaves off of your lawn in order to keep them from killing your grass. Cleaning up leaves makes it more difficult for fungus, disease, mold, and mildew to grow. Wet leaves are also a breeding ground for mosquitoes. Without them, you'll have less mosquitos.

Cost to clean up leaves varies greatly by region (and even by zip code). To get free estimates from local contractors, please indicate yours.

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Cost to clean up leaves varies greatly by region (and even by zip code). To get free estimates from local contractors, please indicate yours.

The information provided by our cost guides comes from a great variety of sources, including specialized publications and websites, cost studies, U.S. associations, reports from the U.S. government, contractors and subcontractors, material suppliers, material price services, and other vendor websites. For more information, read our Methodology and sources