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View Full Version : Need some help bidding on this hedge trimming job.


JustinPowell22
10-18-2007, 07:00 PM
Heres what I got...

I don't typically ask for help on bidding but these hedges are pretty damn tall. I have the equipment to tackle this job but am unsure as to how much to quote these folks. Take a look a these pics and let me know what you come up with. Thanks alot. keep in mind that the guy in the pic is standing at 5ft 10in.

Picture #1 is a total of 60ft length. they want 3ft taken off the top.
Picture #2 is a total of 86ft length. they want 2ft taken off the top.
Picture #3 is a total of 24ft length. they want it even across from the top of the smallest hedge.
Picture #4 is a total of 40ft length. they want 3ft taken off the top.

With 2 guys on the job I come up with about 8 hours of labor.

G.M.Landscaping
10-18-2007, 07:20 PM
I'd definitely bid high, because it not an easy job. Can't tell how wide those are from the pics and not seeing it in person. 8 hrs with 2 people should get it done like you said. Probably will take no more then 6 hrs. thou.
$800 minimum

I'm glad you posted this, as I'm curious what other's might think it's worth.

mattfromNY
10-18-2007, 09:00 PM
We just did a similar job. A couple of questions: Where will you dispose of debris? There will be LOTS of it! and do you have to trim both sides and the top? How wide/ thick are the hedges? Can you use standard trimmers or will you need extended trimmers? I would say it is ALL of 8 hours for the two of you, especially if you are working off ladders, moving the ladders and cleaning the clippings out of the other shrubs on the ground. We did a job recently, cut 3-5 feet off the top of one long hedge about 115' long, had to trim both sides and the top. Filled my 6x10 dump trailer 4 feet deep, twice! Our job took us 5 hours to complete, partly b/c we had to tarp all debris and drag to the front of the house to put in the trailer. I'd put an hourly man hour rate on it, then if you need to dispose of debris, add for that, too.
Hope it helps,
Matt.

capetan
10-18-2007, 09:03 PM
i always charge about $100 an hour for extreme hedges or small trees, and 2 people ....... factor in your dump and disposal too
+1 for $800 bid

J&T Kiev
10-18-2007, 09:18 PM
I do hedges on an hourly rate, by the man hour- With disposal fee for debris. I use an hourly rate that provides my desired level of "net profit" times x amount of hours to complete the job.

JustinPowell22
10-18-2007, 09:37 PM
We are thinking about using a small scaffolding at this point. We do have 2 extended trimmers that we will be using as needed. We do have to take all debris to the dump... We will be cutting the hedges on the tops and one side. They have to be atleast 5ft wide. There is no access to bring in a trailer therefore we will have to tarp it and drag to the front. It looks like $800 is an appropriate estimate but would like to hear what others think. Thanks to you all. :weightlifter: :cool2:

wski4fun
10-18-2007, 10:14 PM
I'm guessing 1200-1300. I think to make it look good there may be a considerable amount of hand pruning. If you are cutting a couple feet off, how woody are the tops? Can you do everything with the gas hedge trimmers? You can always charge less at the end of the job and look like a hero if it really takes you eight hrs. If you go over $800 worth of services it may be hard to ask for more. Tough to tell the specifics from the pictures. You also want to charge enough to cover all dump charges. It will also be a killer doing all that with extended trimmers. Atleast it would for me. Send in pics of the finished product.

willietd2
10-18-2007, 11:51 PM
ask the guy flipping you off in the last pic

Stillwater
10-18-2007, 11:59 PM
I can't see getting that done correctly in 8 hours No F-in way, I want over 2 grand, 2 experienced guys 1.5 to 2 days. Lots Lots Lots of lopper work. Bring a file to keep the loppers sharp.

Stillwater
10-19-2007, 12:01 AM
We are thinking about using a small scaffolding at this point. We do have 2 extended trimmers that we will be using as needed. We do have to take all debris to the dump... We will be cutting the hedges on the tops and one side. They have to be atleast 5ft wide. There is no access to bring in a trailer therefore we will have to tarp it and drag to the front. It looks like $800 is an appropriate estimate but would like to hear what others think. Thanks to you all. :weightlifter: :cool2:

a few 8 foot step ladders and some 2X8x12's will be fine for the stageing

JustinPowell22
10-19-2007, 12:48 AM
How am I supposed to tell someone to give me two thousand dollars to trim thier hedges. Granted they are now tree sized but good lord. I think you are right though. Maybe over 8 hours or one days work of intense trimming, cutting, pruning. This is quite a pickle. One guy is saying $800, one guy is saying over $2000. Can't we all just get along.

willietd2
10-19-2007, 01:46 AM
i asked for help yesterday on an aeration bid. the bid figure right would have been over two thousand bucks. i did not think the home owner would accept that number, so i figuered it at 1400 dollars also not thinking he would accept and he jumped on it. 1400 was the lowest i could go and walk away making money. put your trust in these guys they have played the game longer than i have and they dont want you to work for free............willie

Stillwater
10-19-2007, 02:19 AM
How am I supposed to tell someone to give me two thousand dollars to trim thier hedges. Granted they are now tree sized but good lord. I think you are right though. Maybe over 8 hours or one days work of intense trimming, cutting, pruning. This is quite a pickle. One guy is saying $800, one guy is saying over $2000. Can't we all just get along.

Man I agree with you, you might not be able to demand 2 grand it depends on what your area will tolerate. you will see big differences on pricing because guys are giving input from all over the country each geographical and market area is different. some areas will demand more than other areas.
My personal opinion on your job is that it will take more than 8 hrs for 2 experienced guys. Hear is a example of a break down.

Hedge trimming 2 men 2 days 2 pole trimmers I am just using a labor rate figure of 47.50 per hr. this is a low rate for some areas and just off the top of my head. Plug in your labor rates and your machine rate and your disposal fee and you should be ok. I do not recommend a firm bid price or you can screw yourself totally. You should not have to worry about all the other expenses I asume your basic labor rate covers the basic overhead as it should.

32 man hrs@ 47.50 = 1,520
debris removed 200.00
2 pole trimmers@ 9.00 per hr. 12 hrs = 216.00
total bill should be around 1,936 useing these fake figures for an exhample

Smallaxe
10-19-2007, 03:48 AM
Loppers or power pole shears? 3 ft. is alot of wood. Sometime a power trimmer will take alot of it away but will a significant part require loppers? Add a couple of hours for that , if it's true, IMO.
If you need scaffolding it will take you a good part of the day. Since I have picked up a pole trimmer I was able to cut the time to a minimum of actual hacking. Your biggest labor cost is usually cleanup as you know.
I would bid your normal (for a more normal hedge) then increase labor 50%. Maybe 75%, if it really looks tough. Of course if there are loppers involved: 200%. Look close and figure how long it will take. This is almost enirely a labor job. Other than the use of your professional equipment and windshield time, labor, is your primary commitment.
I am revisiting one of my June pruning jobs with a chainsaw, this fall and those hedges are smaller than yours. Good luck.

Stillwater
10-19-2007, 04:16 AM
Loppers or power pole shears? 3 ft. is alot of wood. Sometime a power trimmer will take alot of it away but will a significant part require loppers? Add a couple of hours for that , if it's true, IMO.
If you need scaffolding it will take you a good part of the day. Since I have picked up a pole trimmer I was able to cut the time to a minimum of actual hacking. Your biggest labor cost is usually cleanup as you know.
I would bid your normal (for a more normal hedge) then increase labor 50%. Maybe 75%, if it really looks tough. Of course if there are loppers involved: 200%. Look close and figure how long it will take. This is almost enirely a labor job. Other than the use of your professional equipment and windshield time, labor, is your primary commitment.
I am revisiting one of my June pruning jobs with a chainsaw, this fall and those hedges are smaller than yours. Good luck.

unfortunately he has to consider this a restoritive pruning all the old growth needs to be lopped 1/2 to 1 foot below the final hight. I suppose you could skip that part but their will be consequences for doing that.

Roger
10-19-2007, 08:02 PM
I think smallaxe and eshskis have a valid point concerning the use of loppers. If you are taking three feet off, the size of the growth at that level may be too much for your extended reach trimmers. I reread your posts and I don't think you mention anything regarding the size of plant material at the cutting height. If you can't cut it with your extended reach trimmers, the effort will be significantly more to work with the loppers.

The suggestion about ladders and a plank is good one. I have found that scheme to work well in many instances. Being able to move along the plank gives one much more flexibility than working off a ladder. The setup takes time, but the trimming goes faster, and the quality of work improves because of the better access. Obviously, the more work that can be done from the ground, the better.

From my assessment, the eight man-hours seems too little, especially if the debris has to be hauled out on tarps to a trailer. I don't think you mentioned how far the debris had to be carried, but all this takes time away from trimming.

sancho_man_orlando
10-19-2007, 08:35 PM
I'd shoot for 10 hours... so that you have to and from the landfill as billable time.

If you need help on this let me know. I'm in the Rio Pinar area.

paulycorp
10-21-2007, 11:27 PM
good ideas at this forum, huh? i like pretty much all the advice given here. this is my first post! hooray for newbies!! i really find this site useful as a business tool and i appreciate it being here to refer to.

yo buddy, what up mr. middle finger guy? i'll do that job for $50.00.


hey, isn't sancho_man_orlando in the same neighborhood as this job???? i think so.
I'd shoot for 10 hours... so that you have to and from the landfill as billable time.

If you need help on this let me know. I'm in the Rio Pinar area.

anyways, talk to ya tomorrow. :hammerhead:

jrc lawncare
10-23-2007, 06:55 AM
I can't see getting that done correctly in 8 hours No F-in way, I want over 2 grand, 2 experienced guys 1.5 to 2 days. Lots Lots Lots of lopper work. Bring a file to keep the loppers sharp. I agree. I've done a lot of tall hedges, tall hedges require a serious amount of time. I would think at the minimum, 16-18 manhrs, no less. Easy to get screwed by a big job like that.

dapiccolawn
10-23-2007, 08:06 PM
I agree. I've done a lot of tall hedges, tall hedges require a serious amount of time. I would think at the minimum, 16-18 manhrs, no less. Easy to get screwed by a big job like that.

I am going to have to agree with everyone.. I would say 2 days due to the fact you will be using the loppers and pole chain saw trimmer if you have them. I did a job where I had to trim a row of Canadian hemlocks into a hedge which was about the same measurements you said and it took about

(3) 7.5 x x 4 x 12ft Stake body loads to the dump

About 40 hours labor time. (actual on site.)

I would charge 1400 or more if I had to do it over again. Then again if your overhead is different by all means, but don't cheat yourself.

I tried to go cheap since we were running low on work and only ended up keepin the guys busy and not making anything. :confused:

-Dave