View Full Version : mulch estimate advice

05-04-2007, 01:09 PM
We have 910 sq ft of beds. 2 inches thick. 6 cubic ft of mulch to install. Plus 260ft of edging around the beds.

2 guys doing it by hand (using wheel barrals).

I am trying figure out what I charge per yard. Some say use the cost of mulch, plus overhead to get your "yd installed figure".

overhead=gas, wages, etc.

what about profit. does anyone tack on a % for profit.

I am really confused about how to come up with all of this information.
I basically don't make any money for myself if I do it per yard. I make more if I configure per hour rate.

05-04-2007, 01:10 PM
i mis typed the amount of yards needed. I meant 6 cubic yards, not feet needed.

05-04-2007, 01:21 PM
a market rate for the st. louis area is about $0.75/ft for a real nice edge, and $40-50/yd for the mulch.

That is double ground mulch, with some light bed prepping. Spray the weeds etc.

05-04-2007, 01:26 PM
can you break down the 40-50 yard figure. what does that consist of?

05-04-2007, 01:29 PM
a market rate for the st. louis area is about $0.75/ft for a real nice edge, and $40-50/yd for the mulch.

That is double ground mulch, with some light bed prepping. Spray the weeds etc.

WHAT?? $40-50/yd installed??? And $0.75/ft "for a real nice edge" You better be kidding. I would have no employees and I would be broke with those prices...

05-04-2007, 01:34 PM
I know this is probably wrong, but this is how i broke it down to get my estimate. I have yet to issue it yet, that's why I am asking for your advice.

Below is just an example:

Cost of Mulch=$200
Wages+ # of hours=$300


05-04-2007, 03:17 PM
How are you going to use 60.00 for gas? I think you may be over complicating your estimate process. Your Hourly Rate should factor in your hourly operating costs + profit. Each company must figure out their own individual operating costs depending on number of workers, pay, level of speed and experience those workers have, Etc.

05-04-2007, 03:47 PM
The 60.00 for Gas I assume you are delivering in a pickup truck and making at least 3-4 runs.

With that quantity I would go to Lowes and buy a big tarp and see if they can deliver you may have to get a minimum but should be right at it.

For the material (Mulch & Labor charge 70.00/yd) That gives you roughly 220 profit just for the mulch and labor to lay it out.

It you have to clean the beds charge 60.00/hour and that would include the two of you if you can afford that. Same thing with the bed edging, make an educated guess how long that will take and apply the hourly rate.

If you are digging these trenches by hand figure the additional time of getting rid of the old sod/dirt. As you can see the time here is going up quite quickly.

You may be better off checking into renting a powered edger at your local rental store. If you do this bill the cost in and add your hourly wage. I think you(your back) and the customer will come out better on this one.

The power edger does not goe quite as deep but pulverizes/powders the dirt so that you can just rake it into the beds. Oh yeah you probably know this but edge first.....

Excluding gas which should be part of your rate I came up with 420.00 for the mulching. 120 for the bed cleaning/weeding(2hrs) and 180.00 for the edgeing which could be a little high but close(720). The 620 you came up with is probably better but I don't know the market that well and if you were having to drive and make 3 trips to get the mulch stick with the high number I had.

05-04-2007, 07:57 PM
6 cubic yards: $420
260' edging: $260
Total: $680

Unless this is something very unusual, I could do that job by myself (including my bed edger) in half a day.