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green-pa
03-13-2008, 11:32 PM
I have a mowing customer from last year that is wanting a big job on his one acre prop. Mainly just around his house. He has probably over 1,000 sq foot of beds surrounding his house filled with lava rock and other small rocks. he says he wants them all removed and some leveling dirt and mulch put in instead. Also wants a few med sized ever greens cut down and removed. I know how to price the mulch install and plant removal as I've had experience there. But as far as removing all that stone???? I really have no clue. It could take 40 hours or 80. I know it's going to be a tough and back breaking work to shuvel all that heavy rock and then wheel barell it out of there. ( I know I mispelled barell). Should I just give a flat estimate for all but the rock removal and tell him since I'm not sure how long it will take, that I must give an hourly rate? Is there a way to do a proper estimate on removing this rock?

S L C
03-13-2008, 11:55 PM
you mispelled shovel too... sorry! :rolleyes:

anyways... I have removed rock by shovel b4 and it sux!! Give him an hourly rate of $45 and if he doesn't like it, throw him a real high figure of 3 g's or tell him to hire some illegal's... :clapping::dancing::clapping::clapping:

YoungGun
03-14-2008, 12:00 AM
I Usually give them one for the whole job
or a starting figure plus a lower hour wage metally they feel like it less!
and a huge part is moving them like hauling away so break down the price i have had costomers who will pay for me to take um out but just put them under the deck or the woods instead of charge 500 to haul away

green-pa
03-14-2008, 01:32 AM
They have like power wheel barrows right? Or some kind of mini-truck to use to transport small amounts of rocks, mulch, ect by hand? I know it is going to suck using a shovel. But I'm hoping with a heavy duty one with a point, it will cut in between the lava rock so it can be transported. Then I'm wondering if I'm going to have to do that again to put it in my truck. I don't have a dump style truck or trailer. If I have to rent one of those, this is going to get really expensive. There is a woods behind his house, but I may have to get the permission of the man behind him who owns more acreage I'm hoping.

green-pa
03-14-2008, 01:37 AM
you mispelled shovel too... sorry! :rolleyes:

anyways... I have removed rock by shovel b4 and it sux!! Give him an hourly rate of $45 and if he doesn't like it, throw him a real high figure of 3 g's or tell him to hire some illegal's... :clapping::dancing::clapping::clapping:

Yeah, I was thinking that is what I'd really want. He pays me the equiv. of about $35/hr to cut and trim ( last year). That job is MUCH easier than shuveling heavy debrit for hours on end.

Can u think of a way to get it in the truck though after it's in the wheel barrel? My trailer has a ramp, but no real sides, I'd have to lay a strong tarp down or something, and then, how would I get it out of my trailer to dump it?

I see a lot of potential for $ in this job that could get me through the next few weeks so I could quit my night job that's paying the bills ( but only paying like $14/hr), so I really want to get it done. But am I in over my head?

Will I need a dump truck?

Maybe I could rent a dump trailer?

I've got a lot of ideas floating but not sure how to get rid of these rocks with my regular truck and trailer.

topsites
03-14-2008, 01:42 AM
How do you figure on netting more than what your night job pays you?

'Only' 14 / hr, what the hell is wrong with you people? :laugh:

But that's all right, we'll just keep on going until our money becomes worthless.
Then, when a thousand dollars isn't worth what a dollar buys today, then the
cold hard truth just might smack some folks square enough in the face that maybe,
just maybe there's change for the better.

Not that I'm holding my breath, but maybe that's what we need.

green-pa
03-14-2008, 01:45 AM
How do you figure on netting more than what your night job pays you?]

'Only' 14 / hr, what the hell is wrong with you people? :laugh:

But that's all right, we'll just keep on going until our money becomes worthless.

I always net more than that in this biz. I keep my expenses low and my profits high. I feel sorry for anyone in this that doesn't.

green-pa
03-14-2008, 01:47 AM
And $14 hr isn't much compared to many people I know. My mom's bf made like $120/hr ( or $250k/yr) in his insurance business. My dad worked on the railroad and made $30/hr+ working overtime. RN's I know make $35-40/hr or more. I have like 18,000 in debt. So yeah, $14/hr isn't so good 2 me anymore.

goodgreen
03-14-2008, 06:26 AM
I did the same type of rock removal last year and was sorry I took the job. Just used my regular hourly rate. But I did not realize how deep the rock went and it took me days to finish. Also gave the guy a cap on hours and went over that by about 3 hours. Earned quite a bit but it was the worst job I've ever taken on. Also rained for 2 days and had to do it in the wet - ever see wet lava rock?

Cutting 4eva 21
03-14-2008, 07:49 AM
You could use one of those load handlers to get the rock out of the truck and dump it where ever?? Or just include a rental dump trailer in the price? don't be scared to make ur money on this job!!! check with local shops too see if anyone rents out those electric wheel barrows. good luck man!!!

B_gerrits
03-14-2008, 03:01 PM
I have a mowing customer from last year that is wanting a big job on his one acre prop. Mainly just around his house. He has probably over 1,000 sq foot of beds surrounding his house filled with lava rock and other small rocks. he says he wants them all removed and some leveling dirt and mulch put in instead. Also wants a few med sized ever greens cut down and removed. I know how to price the mulch install and plant removal as I've had experience there. But as far as removing all that stone???? I really have no clue. It could take 40 hours or 80. I know it's going to be a tough and back breaking work to shuvel all that heavy rock and then wheel barell it out of there. ( I know I mispelled barell). Should I just give a flat estimate for all but the rock removal and tell him since I'm not sure how long it will take, that I must give an hourly rate? Is there a way to do a proper estimate on removing this rock?

The first thing I would do is find out how many yards of rock you are talking about. Length width and depth a yard calculator will tell you how many yards of rock you are dealing with. Keep in mind if you don't have a dump you will be doubling the yardage because you will be shoveling it in and out of the truck. once you know how many yards you are dealing with you can plan what tools to remove it with. Keep in mind that a yard of rock weighs 2200 lbs also a yard of rock is about 6 to 8 wheel barrels depending on the size of the wheel barrel.The next thing you have to know for sure is where the rock is going to go. Do not just dump this rock in the woods because if the owner of that property catches you you will be in deep s**t!

gandk06
03-14-2008, 03:19 PM
If you have ever tried to rake and shovel lava rock, it SUCKS. It has to be the worst type of decorative rock to remove. Don't under bid this one. It will be a bigger pain than you think. Bid high. If he takes it great. If not, let someone else have the fun.

VO Landscape Design
03-14-2008, 03:30 PM
I did this for my brother last year from all the way around his house, 3' x 360' with a shovel and wheelbarrow. Yes it s**cks. Hard picky labor. He had landscape fabric under it but it was old a ripped as I pulled it so it wasn't any help at all. Thought I could just pull it into piles to make it easier to scoop up,NOT!! Only had to go under his deck with it but still had to push the piles under it with a rake and shovel. Get what ever you need to do the job. I worked with what I had, mistake. Next time I will get the right tools for the job. Make it as easy as possible.
VO

green-pa
03-14-2008, 11:52 PM
You could use one of those load handlers to get the rock out of the truck and dump it where ever?? Or just include a rental dump trailer in the price? don't be scared to make ur money on this job!!! check with local shops too see if anyone rents out those electric wheel barrows. good luck man!!!


Thanks Cutting 4eva! I was just thinking about renting a dump trailer as u said. I'm thinking it may take 5-10 loads though, unless I could put like 2,000-5,000 lbs in each load. Will my ram pull that much? I'm pretty sure it can handle a couple thousand but probably no more. For all I know maybe only a thou :( It's just a standard 8cyl 1500.

I was also considering just removing all the rocks from his beds and then putting them in a few big piles somewhere on his drive or just by the side of it so that a dump truck or company could dispose of it. But then I could be losing a lot of profit going that way. But it could save me many trips to the dump or rock place when one big truck and shuvel could collect it all in one trip. Maybe they'd charge him $200-300?

I've gotta make some calls and find out what the heck I'm going to do with all these rocks once I get them. If I have to go all the way to the city dump, that's like an hour round trip at least and I'd have probably 5-10 of those. I'd charge at least $50/hr for that to cover gas and stuff, so it may cost him from me like $250-500 just for the disposal part.

All ideas are welcome guys if u have any.

green-pa
03-14-2008, 11:56 PM
The first thing I would do is find out how many yards of rock you are talking about. Length width and depth a yard calculator will tell you how many yards of rock you are dealing with. Keep in mind if you don't have a dump you will be doubling the yardage because you will be shoveling it in and out of the truck. once you know how many yards you are dealing with you can plan what tools to remove it with. Keep in mind that a yard of rock weighs 2200 lbs also a yard of rock is about 6 to 8 wheel barrels depending on the size of the wheel barrel.The next thing you have to know for sure is where the rock is going to go. Do not just dump this rock in the woods because if the owner of that property catches you you will be in deep s**t!

So a cubic yard is like a cube measuring 3ft on each side right? I'm hoping it's not too deep. But I'm set to meet with him like sunday or something. I will do like u said and take measurments so that I can maybe make a better choice on wether to give him a total estimate or just charge by the hour.


Do u know if there is any rock/stone companies that may take these rocks and re-use them or something, perhaps I could have them collect them or take them from me?

Coopster81
03-15-2008, 12:26 AM
Sounds like fun!!!!! Bid high.......And fine some immagrants who can do the backbreaking work ,and save yours

LawnNeedz
03-15-2008, 12:27 AM
I would try to rent a mini skid and try to scoop out what I could. Even if you can't scoop it at least you will not be making a hundred trips with a wheel barrel. Then you could just dump it on the trailer and then use it to unload at the dump site. Good luck and bid high!

DuraCutter
03-15-2008, 12:39 AM
I would try to rent a mini skid and try to scoop out what I could. Even if you can't scoop it at least you will not be making a hundred trips with a wheel barrel. Then you could just dump it on the trailer and then use it to unload at the dump site. Good luck and bid high!

A skid is the "only" way. We did a rock bed removal last year, twice the size you mentioned, maybe 3 times. It was all by the hour, with each man being charged out $70/hr and the bobcat at $95/hr. It cost them 20 grand including 3 large concrete bins. Shoveling rock has to be the hardest thing on the back. Even the 20 year olds were crying at how tough it was.

DON'T UNDERBID THIS!!! unless you like torture and giving your time away for free..:laugh:

:)

green-pa
03-15-2008, 04:34 AM
A skid is the "only" way. We did a rock bed removal last year, twice the size you mentioned, maybe 3 times. It was all by the hour, with each man being charged out $70/hr and the bobcat at $95/hr. It cost them 20 grand including 3 large concrete bins. Shoveling rock has to be the hardest thing on the back. Even the 20 year olds were crying at how tough it was.

DON'T UNDERBID THIS!!! unless you like torture and giving your time away for free..:laugh:

:)

I'm hoping it's only 3-4 inches deep at the most of rock. There are many plants and things in the beds too which actually will limit the amount of rock and probably make using a bobcat impractical. Except the bobcat would be really nice for loading and unloading into the truck/trailer. Damn, it's $95/hr for one of those things!? Wouldn't it be a lot cheaper for me to just rent a tilt/dump trailer?

green-pa
03-15-2008, 04:37 AM
I would try to rent a mini skid and try to scoop out what I could. Even if you can't scoop it at least you will not be making a hundred trips with a wheel barrel. Then you could just dump it on the trailer and then use it to unload at the dump site. Good luck and bid high!

The only SKID I know is the kind u use a forklift on to stack boxes or other products on. Wouldn't a power wheel barrow be a lot cheaper?

I forgot to mention that I have a 30 inch JD rider that I could tow a cart with. I could fill the cart up and then transport to the trailer or make a pile to use a bobcat on later.

Dunn's
03-15-2008, 09:39 AM
And $14 hr isn't much compared to many people I know. My mom's bf made like $120/hr ( or $250k/yr) in his insurance business. My dad worked on the railroad and made $30/hr+ working overtime. RN's I know make $35-40/hr or more. I have like 18,000 in debt. So yeah, $14/hr isn't so good 2 me anymore.

14 an hour is more then you make at $35.00 an hour running a business.

DuraCutter
03-15-2008, 11:46 PM
14 an hour is more then you make at $35.00 an hour running a business.

So true. Most new guys forget the real costs of running the business. We found that all our guys have to be charged out at $75/hr this year to make good coin. And that's not working at breakneck speeds to stretch the work a bit to recoup lots of overhead. It works for us. :)

green-pa
03-16-2008, 01:02 AM
14 an hour is more then you make at $35.00 an hour running a business.

Maybe with some businesses but not mine.

green-pa
03-16-2008, 01:07 AM
So true. Most new guys forget the real costs of running the business. We found that all our guys have to be charged out at $75/hr this year to make good coin. And that's not working at breakneck speeds to stretch the work a bit to recoup lots of overhead. It works for us. :)

Will anyone just give me ideas if u have any and leave the misc talk on the side?

Weekes
03-16-2008, 01:13 AM
Here is the thing, I would walk away or give him a REALLY high bid. There is so much involved here that you could easily get in way over your head and that $14 an hour would look pretty good.

So far this you know --- the job will suck, you don't know for sure what equipment you might need, others that have done this have said they would not do again.

Its hard but I have learned to walk away from somethings until I understand it better. Is sucks giving up the money on this, but it could so screw you.

green-pa
03-16-2008, 07:00 AM
Here is the thing, I would walk away or give him a REALLY high bid. There is so much involved here that you could easily get in way over your head and that $14 an hour would look pretty good.

So far this you know --- the job will suck, you don't know for sure what equipment you might need, others that have done this have said they would not do again.

Its hard but I have learned to walk away from somethings until I understand it better. Is sucks giving up the money on this, but it could so screw you.

Well I was planning on quoting VERY high anyway, but I just want to see if there IS a way I can at least do most of the job. I'm thinking it won't suck too bad if the rocks are only 2-3 inches deep as long as I can find someplace to dump them or company to dump them for the customer. I can probably get some help on the side to get this done if need be too.

mike33087
03-16-2008, 07:14 AM
you are going to kill yourself on this job unless you rent a skid steer, just drive it up to the bed scoop what you can or shovel into bucket, and dump into a dump truck or trailer and your done. why would you want to shovel it into a wheel barrel and dump it then have to shovel it again into a trailer? you do that and you will be walking like a hobbit for the next 2 weeks.

def get a skid steer, dump truck or trailer, and a couple guys to help. $45 an hr per guy and $85 ( depends on rental fee or if u have ur own) and hour for the skid, then like $100 per load + dump fees

Dunn's
03-16-2008, 10:25 AM
Well I was planning on quoting VERY high anyway, but I just want to see if there IS a way I can at least do most of the job. I'm thinking it won't suck too bad if the rocks are only 2-3 inches deep as long as I can find someplace to dump them or company to dump them for the customer. I can probably get some help on the side to get this done if need be too.

We have all given you our advice, but as ussual on lawnsite you newbs know it all and we know nothing. Go do the job you need the beer and we are sure you are going to injure yourself so one less scrub for guys in your area to deal with.


You can not do this easily that is why no one else wants the job. We get calls for it all the time and they never want you to use any machinery, because it will tear up their lawn, they get the quote for without machinery and think we are nuts when in all reality they are the ones who are nuts.


Guys don't even bother answering this, it is just another one with the BIGW complex. Please help me I need reassurance and a pat on the back, while where at it could we hold your hand to.

Then when we won't tell you it's a great idea, we are all A#%$#holes.


DOn't even bother asking if you don't want to hear the truth.

tyler_mott85
03-16-2008, 12:51 PM
Guys don't even bother answering this, it is just another one with the BIGW complex. Please help me I need reassurance and a pat on the back, while where at it could we hold your hand to.

Then when we won't tell you it's a great idea, we are all A#%$#holes.


DOn't even bother asking if you don't want to hear the truth.

THAT was completely uncalled for.

Ignore these grumpy farts. There are tons of guys who make it big by doing this kind of work. Someone has to do it but apparently no one sees the money in it. Whatever you do, dont underbid just to get the work.

I've done many of these type of jobs myself and there is no easy way of doing it. A few hints i've picked up:

look for weed barrier. If its got the nice thick plastic type you're in HOG HEAVEN! Just grab a corner and start pulling. It will roll all that rock up into a big pile so youre pointed shovel will scoop nicely! If you decide to go with one of those small skidloaders that you just walk behind it wont matter what there is under the rock. As long as there is no sprinklers....

If you're looking at more than a cubic yard pile all that rock up at the end of the driveway until you're done then call a local trucking company. They can bring a dump truck down and you just sit there in a skid loader and load it up...saves your back and its not your hassle to find a place to put it. Of course....carefully calculate these expenses and pass them on under a line item of "Trucking and Dispersal" or something nifty.

Make sure you get a SIGNED contract for this one!

Good Luck... :weightlifter:

green-pa
03-16-2008, 03:59 PM
[QUOTE=Dunn's;2212040]We have all given you our advice, but as ussual on lawnsite you newbs know it all and we know nothing. Go do the job you need the beer and we are sure you are going to injure yourself so one less scrub for guys in your area to deal with.

Guys don't even bother answering this, it is just another one with the BIGW complex. QUOTE]


Wow, this really helps! Thank u soooo much! I see that u are in charge here on lawnsite. Well if u could, please see if the guys would't mind excusing my scrubby questions. How much do I owe u for your grand advice Dunn's?
;)

green-pa
03-16-2008, 04:07 PM
THAT was completely uncalled for.

Ignore these grumpy farts. There are tons of guys who make it big by doing this kind of work. Someone has to do it but apparently no one sees the money in it. Whatever you do, dont underbid just to get the work.

Good Luck... :weightlifter:

My thoughts exactly :laugh:

Thanks Tyler.
I appreciate some rays of sunshine from the few on this site that actually try to help with a bit of understanding.

I'm taking note of anything u guys say on here.

So a skid stear, is that like a fork lift or is it a shuvel type machine? And did u write that they are about $85/hr?

Another thing I was thinking of today is to rent one of those large metal trash bins that construction sites and repo people rent to put large amounts of debrit in them. But I'm not sure if u r allowed to put something as heavy as rock or dirt in them. I'm also not sure if any have a ramp or a way to go inside of it.

green-pa
03-16-2008, 04:15 PM
Oh, I see, I looked up Skid Steer and have a better idea of the machine u guys are talking about. This place shows $180/day. THat's a lot better than $85/hr. They charge a $35 drop off fee too.

tyler_mott85
03-16-2008, 06:13 PM
180 a day and 35 drop off fee sounds reasonable to me. I think we get them for about 200 a day around here. As for the roll offs you're talking about...call trash companies in your area and talk to them about the weight issue. The last company i worked at we loaded one up so much their truck broke trying to lift it up onto its frame. And it was just loaded with grass! Usually you pay a "per day"/ "per pick up" fee or you pay by the ton. So be careful with that, since rock can get really heavy quick.

Are there existing plants you'll need to scoop around? a big skid loader (stereotypically called a BobCat around here) may be too large and bulky for that. If you have a home depot near by with a rental department the ones down here have what is called a "powerhouse pro" Same concept as a big skid loader but you just walk behind it. You get a whole trailer with all kinds of attachments for a couple hundred a day. But, I dont know if it's big enough to dump into a big truck.

gandk06
03-16-2008, 06:31 PM
Oh, I see, I looked up Skid Steer and have a better idea of the machine u guys are talking about. This place shows $180/day. THat's a lot better than $85/hr. They charge a $35 drop off fee too.


If you don't know what a skid steer is I am guessing that you have never used one before. If I were you I would not use one for the first time on someone else's property. They take some time to learn and can do a lot of damage to the turf if you don't know what you are doing.
The damage repairs could cost you more than what you plan on making.

This may be one of those jobs you just might want to walk away from.

mverick
03-16-2008, 06:50 PM
You don't have the equipment or the know how to do this job.

So, if you want to. Grab a shovel and a wheel barrow.

But, the way to do this job is with a skidsteer, dump trailer, mini ex, concrete buggy. It can be cheaper if you own the equipment then if you don't.

Remove and re install plantings. Large plantings dig around. Yard will probably need new sod done. Haul out all rock and re do the edging and planting and rock. Lay sod where you tore up grass.

It is a BIG job. And if you don't know how to run this equipment this isn't the job for you. Learn on a smaller job.

I don't know how to bid it as I haven't seen the job.

Can you do it with a shovel and a wheel barrow? Yes. Will you have a bad back so your customer got a DEAL? Yes.

I used to be labor intensive. Now, I'm ALWAYS equipment intensive.

green-pa
03-16-2008, 07:04 PM
Can you do it with a shovel and a wheel barrow? Yes. Will you have a bad back so your customer got a DEAL? Yes.

I used to be labor intensive. Now, I'm ALWAYS equipment intensive.

U're right, I'm not sure it would be the best idea to use a skid steer when I've no experience. I'm thinking this might be too powerful a machine anyway at least when it comes to digging around shrubs, plants and trees in the beds. I could just use a shovel and wheel barrow so that I don't disrupt what's already there. Also, I've considered just how hard it could be as I've done lots of manual labor jobs before. I think what I'd do is either work on it only in 3-4 hour periods or less OR find a way to space it out better by having a helper and thus getting more breaks and also the whole job done in better time. I'm sorry I don't have more details on this but I sure appreciate u guys' input regardless!

I may take some pics and post them if the customer calls me out there.

green-pa
03-16-2008, 07:06 PM
If you don't know what a skid steer is I am guessing that you have never used one before. If I were you I would not use one for the first time on someone else's property. They take some time to learn and can do a lot of damage to the turf if you don't know what you are doing.
The damage repairs could cost you more than what you plan on making.

This may be one of those jobs you just might want to walk away from.

Yeah, u r probably right. Now that I think of it; I have experience using a forklift at a local lawn and Garden a few years back. But then, that isn't quite the same.

B_gerrits
03-16-2008, 11:16 PM
A cubic yard is 3x3x3 27sq feet however you have to take depth into consideration. The easiest way to figure it out is length, width, depth use http://www.geogrowersinc.com/volume.htm which will give a yard calculator. Here if you want a trucking company to haul the rock off they charge by the yard. A yard debries can or as some of you guys call them,roll aways would be a good choice. I have had cement removed with them but really you don't have a basis of cost until you know how much material you are dealing with. Trust me your half ton truck will only handel 2000lbs unless you want a broken axel and you better have good springs.

green-pa
03-16-2008, 11:28 PM
Trust me your half ton truck will only handel 2000lbs unless you want a broken axel and you better have good springs.

No I wouldn't want that. Thanks 4 the info. I probably will see if I can just get a co. to haul it away once I gather it. Either that or use a power wheel barrow to take to their woods with their approval of course.

I'm thinking it's not going to have much depth. I just hope the guy calls me back soon cause it could be my biggest job yet and I really need the $ at this point.

DuraCutter
03-17-2008, 12:21 AM
[QUOTE=Dunn's;2212040]We have all given you our advice, but as ussual on lawnsite you newbs know it all and we know nothing. Go do the job you need the beer and we are sure you are going to injure yourself so one less scrub for guys in your area to deal with.

Guys don't even bother answering this, it is just another one with the BIGW complex. QUOTE]


Wow, this really helps! Thank u soooo much! I see that u are in charge here on lawnsite. Well if u could, please see if the guys would't mind excusing my scrubby questions. How much do I owe u for your grand advice Dunn's?
;)

No, Dunn is right. We see this over and over again. The answers aren't good enough unless it's what the poster wants....


It's the same thing from my workers. They know more than me but they have trouble saving a dime from one day to the next. But according to them, they know how to run the business and do things better...:laugh:

By the way, when you post a new thread you'll notice it's not unusual to have guys like me talk about things associated to your question, not necessarily always staying true to the question... get used to it, it happens!!!

It's best not to get too critical with guys trying to help...

:)

B_gerrits
03-17-2008, 05:26 PM
It sounds like you really want this job and removing the rock would be a job that could make money but if the cost of removing the rock is to high I may have a trick that might work depending on the heigth of the borders verses material heigth. I have done this and it worked great for me. You can get thick weedbarrier and roll it over the rock and staple it down. Then put the mulch on top of the new weedbarrier. Could save you lots of time and money and may be the difference between getting a job or not.

gandk06
03-17-2008, 05:31 PM
I have done that way as well. Guess what? It works.

might want to try it as a option to give to the customer. They would save a ton of money and you would save your back.

mverick
03-17-2008, 05:32 PM
It sounds like you really want this job and removing the rock would be a job that could make money but if the cost of removing the rock is to high I may have a trick that might work depending on the heigth of the borders verses material heigth. I have done this and it worked great for me. You can get thick weedbarrier and roll it over the rock and staple it down. Then put the mulch on top of the new weedbarrier. Could save you lots of time and money and may be the difference between getting a job or not.


This is not the way to do a quality job. This is the way to do a job and have them tell there friends and neighbors how you did a Half Butt job and charged a high price for it.

You have to do the work to get the pay rate.

You have to use the equipment to get the pay rate.

Paying you $100 an hour for labor doesn't cut it. They want to see a bobcat there for that. If It's you and a shovel you'll be hard pressed to get $20 and have a happy customer.

I get lots of referals for our services from Happy Customers. This would not make one happy.

gandk06
03-17-2008, 05:59 PM
No. I would have to say most people want the job done at a reasonable price and have it look good. I did this once before and there is no way you could tell the rock was still under it.

I would agree that you should remove the rock. But when most people see the estimate for that type of work they will learn to live with the ugly lava rock they already have.

mverick
03-17-2008, 06:13 PM
No. I would have to say most people want the job done at a reasonable price and have it look good. I did this once before and there is no way you could tell the rock was still under it.

I would agree that you should remove the rock. But when most people see the estimate for that type of work they will learn to live with the ugly lava rock they already have.



Wait till they get the price from the guy who comes in to redo the Mulch over the Rock job you did that was so cheap.

Then, they'll be upset. And, tell there friends about the shoddy job and bad advice you gave them.

If people can't afford to do a quality job. I let them do it therselves. Then they learn it's a lot of work.

Doing jobs this way makes you and your business ethic look bad.

Funny, how much was the house worth you did this job on? I find that a $300k home with a job like this is a riot. Since you want to do a $4000 job for $1000 for them cause they want it cheap. They have the money. Just have to let them know it's going to cost them. They'll come up with it.


And we NEVER put fabric under mulch. That's another amateur job.

B_gerrits
03-18-2008, 04:01 PM
This is not the way to do a quality job. This is the way to do a job and have them tell there friends and neighbors how you did a Half Butt job and charged a high price for it.

You have to do the work to get the pay rate.

You have to use the equipment to get the pay rate.

Paying you $100 an hour for labor doesn't cut it. They want to see a bobcat there for that. If It's you and a shovel you'll be hard pressed to get $20 and have a happy customer.

I get lots of referals for our services from Happy Customers. This would not make one happy.

Dude you totally misunderstood me. The customer and I decided that this was the most cost effective way to deal with her problem. The cost of removing the rock was to high. I didn't charge anywhere near 100 per hour. I presented this as a solution to the high cost of removing the rock, the end result was great. I still work for that customer and the install still looks great as for word of mouth the customer still tells all her friends how I was the only one to find this solution and how happy she is that I saved her a ton of money. I have found other cost saving Ideas that my customers were happy with like turning a huge stump that the cost of removing was more that the customer wanted to pay into a mound with flowers planted on top.

green-pa
03-18-2008, 04:49 PM
Some more interesting ideas; thanks guys! Customer still hasn't called me. I'll probably give it another week or so and then call him.

B_gerrits
03-18-2008, 05:13 PM
And we NEVER put fabric under mulch. That's another amateur job.

I don't know what material you are referring to when you say mulch. Things are done differently in different areas and go by different names. Mulch here is used to prevent erosion and in gardens to suppress weeds and help keep the ground moist. Mulch is not ornamental and most of the landscape supply yards don't even sell it,you would have to go to the dumps or an organic garden center to get it. Here we use ground or shredded bark or bark chips of various sizes and colors and if you didn't put down weedcloth you would be the amateur because it would be full of weeds in a week unless you want to put down pre emergence every 3 months. Ohh and by the way 300k wouldn't buy you a shack here. To you guys who don't use weedcloth what methods do you use to suppress weeds pls no smart azz replies like mverick who seems to know proper landscape tech for every area. Weedcloth is by far the #1 choice here but I am curious what you guys use in your areas.

gandk06
03-19-2008, 09:47 AM
That is what i was thinking about the weed barrier as well. I just figured I would not fire back by asking why not use a weed barrier. Same around here. If you don't use one the beds are full of weeds in about a month.
The only reason I could see for not using it is so that you could then continue to charge for bed maintenance each month. But wait, that would be an amateur thing to do.