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View Full Version : Client wants to set my hourly rate.


echeandia
04-19-2007, 06:30 PM
I met with a prospect the other day. It is a commercial property. They told me they want the weeds cleared out of their planting beds and biweekly maintenance. The weeds are pretty bad so I figure I will till everything and use a hoe and pick up the weeds during the biweekly visits. I prepare a proposal that says I'll do the tilling for $350 and the maintenance for $65 per visit.

I go back to the prospect to drop off the proposal and the owner says to the office manager "How long did it take so-and-so do clean up the weeds last year?" The manager says "About an hour." So, the owner doesn't think she should pay $65 an hour for someone to do weed removal. The owner starts to ask me if I would lower my price but I break in and tell her, "Think about it and let me know when you want me to do the work." I don't expect to hear back from her. I love how she wanted to determine how much I make an hour.

ChadsLawn
04-19-2007, 06:33 PM
You did good.. Stick to your prices..

Itzkcatz
04-19-2007, 07:53 PM
People need to realize that do this for aliving,

QualityLawnCare4u
04-19-2007, 10:30 PM
Run away from this one real fast, will cause you nothing but problems. Some folks just don't get it and I tired long ago trying to explain we ain't some bum with a rake, hoe and push mower in the trunk of a 77 station wagon. They just don't have a clue what it cost to do this and it ain't none of their biz what we make an hour or how we figure it. When they ask me how long it will take after giving a price I tell them I figure by the job not the hour. Take it or leave it.

xpnd
04-19-2007, 11:44 PM
It is a commercial property.

This is typical of commercial sites. Their budget is determined in 4qtr of the previous year for the coming year. If you bid is lower than that line item you get the job. If your bid is higher than the line item, you may be given the privelege to work the job at their budget numbers or they just continue to go down the phone book until they find some one hungry enough to take the job on their terms.

Some commercial site reverse bid their job. They will call a group of services in for a prelim. At the prelim they will actually show how much is budgetted for the year. It is up to you to figure how much below the budget you are willing to do it for. The company that is willing to bleed the most gets the job.

It's nothing personal, it's just how business is done on true commercial sites. We have trained them that way.


Ethical; no way. Legal, no question about it.

Mr. Vern
04-20-2007, 12:05 AM
This is typical of commercial sites. Their budget is determined in 4qtr of the previous year for the coming year. If you bid is lower than that line item you get the job. If your bid is higher than the line item, you may be given the privelege to work the job at their budget numbers or they just continue to go down the phone book until they find some one hungry enough to take the job on their terms.

Some commercial site reverse bid their job. They will call a group of services in for a prelim. At the prelim they will actually show how much is budgetted for the year. It is up to you to figure how much below the budget you are willing to do it for. The company that is willing to bleed the most gets the job.

It's nothing personal, it's just how business is done on true commercial sites. We have trained them that way.


Ethical; no way. Legal, no question about it.

What is unethical about it?

ED'S LAWNCARE
04-20-2007, 06:32 AM
I did a large mulch job for my dentist a couple of years ago (70) yards. When I gave him the bid he asked me how much of that was in materials and how long it would take in labor. I returned with a question how much material was in that $900 crown you gave me last month that only took 1.5 hrs. Enough said he cut the check.

bohiaa
04-20-2007, 07:41 AM
show me your Ballance sheet and I'll show you mine

JJLandscapes
04-20-2007, 08:29 AM
I met with a prospect the other day. It is a commercial property. They told me they want the weeds cleared out of their planting beds and biweekly maintenance. The weeds are pretty bad so I figure I will till everything and use a hoe and pick up the weeds during the biweekly visits. I prepare a proposal that says I'll do the tilling for $350 and the maintenance for $65 per visit.

I go back to the prospect to drop off the proposal and the owner says to the office manager "How long did it take so-and-so do clean up the weeds last year?" The manager says "About an hour." So, the owner doesn't think she should pay $65 an hour for someone to do weed removal. The owner starts to ask me if I would lower my price but I break in and tell her, "Think about it and let me know when you want me to do the work." I don't expect to hear back from her. I love how she wanted to determine how much I make an hour.


Just like you are running a business so is she. I doubt in there budget they have a $65 an hour budget for weed removal. Its just weeds nothing fancy they will find someone to do it for half the price if not cheaper... or they will pay a custodian $10 an hour to go put weed killer down

You try your hardest to keep your costs down as do the businesses we do work for so keep that in mind

ed2hess
04-20-2007, 05:59 PM
Commericial properties have a pretty good idea on what things cost unlike homeowners. Cleaning up a bed and putting down pre-m would have taken care of that bed for 6 months. Flowers at commericial properties is something we never make money on just an annoying thing to keep the money rolling in from the other stuff. But if the flowers look bad they generally will fire you.

CA CLT
04-21-2007, 02:16 AM
I've been out on two, 1 acre full service bids this week. One for $550 per month, the other for $700. The first guy acted like he was cool with the price, but I saw him swallow a lump. He has never called back. The second lady said "wow! I'm paying half that now" and then she answered her own question by saying "I'm getting what I'm paying for aren't I". This one had over 200 linear feet of 12-15 foot tall Texas Wax Leaf Privet and Photinia hedges. She may still call back, but I'm having doubts.

I can get $120 per month out of the smaller residences that take me 30 minutes per week. That is $60 per hour, andnobody gripes about the price. Why go work on a ladder with a hedge trimmer, spray more chemicals, use more fertilizer for any less than the $45 per hour I quoted these folks? It does'nt compute. I thought my bids were reasonable, and I would have liked to get the jobs. It is as if these people with the larger properties want to set their own prices too.......... except they are prices from the 1980's still! The outfits that meet their target price don't do the job as promised. They can't they'd go broke! Yet, after getting bids from someone who will meet their service expectations, they probably decide they'll just live with half baked work from their current guy because "at least he's cheap". I'm staying focused on the smaller, newer properties as they pay better for my time.

sheshovel
04-21-2007, 03:48 AM
Yeah, well if you till those beds you will need 65.00 for bed maint cuz you will quadruple the amount of weeds there are now.