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AlleganyLawnCare
10-22-2008, 10:07 PM
I was invited to bid on several state contracts for next year. I was wondering if there is a way to legally find out what the previous years were bidded out for. This way it will help give me a ballpark idea of what to bid. I want to do it legally, for I do not wish to get myself or anyone else ihnto trouble. Does anyone know if previous successful bids are published for public viewing?

Yerkz
10-22-2008, 10:19 PM
All state awarded contracts are open for public viewing. You should be able to find it on the State of Maryland website with a liitle bit of searching.

djagusch
10-22-2008, 10:46 PM
Just don't bid it based on the last winning bid. That's a good way to loose money. The best way to go about it is to figure it on your own. Then compare it to the winning bid. Usually when you go through the process that way, you'll learn that it's not worth getting because there is very little profit.

If you get the numbers first you'll trick yourself into thinking you can do things faster then what you really can.

meets1
10-22-2008, 11:17 PM
State bid is usually low bid. So don't base your numbers off of someone else's mistake! Figure it out yourself, submit your bid and be happy with the bid and be happy if you win the bid and go out for a steak dinner with wife if you lose the bid!!

Toy2
10-22-2008, 11:36 PM
Lowest bid gets it, here in Texas one LCO bid $12.00 an acre to mow ROW....he got it, now the guy is loaded.....he almost gets every bid, and he does suck at it....so lowest it is!!!

JKOOPERS
10-23-2008, 04:32 AM
i dont care to see anyones bid because you and i both know no matter what you will base your price off that bid instead of actually bidding what you really wanted to.

bohiaa
10-23-2008, 09:42 AM
Lowest doesn't always get it. I do a ton of state bids.

here in Texas it cost 70.00 to register to become a vendor. they post what was paid last year. and they have an est. cost. I useually bid at or slightly above the est. cost.

However. Before you do business with the state. Be DAMNED sure you know what your doing. as you can see from other post. a lot of people simply have an ideal of how it works.... Well MY friend, Gusee what? there wrong....

download the packett and it should take you about a week or two to read AND UNDERSTAND it....

there's a ton of money out there to make from the state, But dont break the rules or you can and will BE baned from EVER working for them again...

I just cashed a 167,000.00 check last week....

Best of luck to you

AlleganyLawnCare
10-23-2008, 10:25 AM
Thanks everybody for the help. I have a father-in-law that works for the state highway. That is why I want to make sure I do everything legal. He has told me about the amount of money that you can make. It is quite a bit. I have to pay $15 for the packet. I should get it by this weekend.

I plan on doing the research and numbers myself, but I did want a ballpark idea of what I am looking at. More for a basis, than an actual number. I will let everyone know how it goes. I have a pre-bid meeting on the 3rd.

Tharrell
10-23-2008, 10:27 AM
I've had NC state contracts. You should be able to find out the current price.
If you hope to ever win one, you'll need it. Sometimes work is just work, enough to pay the help. If you get into the system, you'll figure out what's profitable and what pays the help. What I mean is, you could be underbid by a dollar, how would that make you feel?
I've seen bids that close.
Don't think you'll upsell! It's pretty black and white. Do follow the rules spelled out in the contracts as said before.
Also, consider municipal work (cities). There's a ton of work out there. Tony

meets1
10-23-2008, 10:28 AM
bohiaa:

what work you doing for the state? Road work or what?

There is another crew in my area that does mostly state work as well but he is always low bid. Travels the entire state of IOWA and his guys are hardly ever home but for weekends. They do alot of road way mowing. They seed road ways and new construction, sometimes they even use the plan to see the mediums. Now and then we see them around here with 20 brush cutters and there chopping through drainage areas for days on end.

bohiaa
10-23-2008, 10:34 AM
Get it as soon as possable..... Not sure in your state, But here in Texas we dont have meetings and such. But attend all of them. the more you learn the more you will earn.

REad it from cover to cover. we have the point system here. the more work you do the more points you will recive, and vice versa on uncompleted work and if you DONT meet your deadline, and such, we have to follow THE state rules concerning work, as in when what time and such. if it's a state holiday WE CANT WORK.

the more points you gain the better youe chanches of getting the larger contracts and it really doesnt matter on the price. " as others have stated" the low bid doesn't always get the bid...in fact. very seldom does the lowest bid get the contract.

and your right there is a ton of money being paid out by the state. we average around 5 to 700,000.00 per year from the state.
we have one contract that pays 265,000.00 it's a 356 day mowing job. I have a guy that lives in that area he mowes every day, and I pay him through the mail. he just calls me when he needs something, other than that I never see him.
Best of luck to you, and if I can help you in any dont hesitate to IM me.

bohiaa
10-23-2008, 10:38 AM
bohiaa:

what work you doing for the state? Road work or what?

There is another crew in my area that does mostly state work as well but he is always low bid. Travels the entire state of IOWA and his guys are hardly ever home but for weekends. They do alot of road way mowing. They seed road ways and new construction, sometimes they even use the plan to see the mediums. Now and then we see them around here with 20 brush cutters and there chopping through drainage areas for days on end.

We started with parks, Road side and city, we now have a state school, and were after the local state college.
when we started I didn't want to pour a ton of money into the project. so I bid on propteries local, and using the equiptment I already have. now were doing roadside mowing, I bought a Ford tractor,

True you can travel all over the state, this is Just NOT what I wanted, However " read my earlyer post" I do have an employee and a tractor that I never see. and if a person wanted to they can sub out the work. this fall into a entirely new PITA....

Best of luck

bohiaa
10-23-2008, 10:46 AM
woops one other issue. in Texas anyway we have to post an "earnest money" type of account to be paid to the state, the larger the contract the larger the post. it's a garentee that you will fulfill your contract.

it's NOT unuseuall for me to have at any given point 25 to 30,000.00 paid to the state. you get that money back when the job is completed and INSPECTED. and NO you cant do a crappy job.

AlleganyLawnCare
10-23-2008, 03:57 PM
Okay. I found out the exact agency I needed to work through to get the plans mailed to me, and ALSO found out all of the previous contract bids (losers and winners and how much each submitted). It was very illuminating. It is amazing how much the state pays just for litter pick up ($$$). I have another county I am submitting to as well, histroically its bids are 3 times as big as my county. I am very familiar with the other county (lived there for 10 years), so I will do my research on that one as well. There is no-pre-bid meeting for it though. Both bids close on the same date. So i will let everyone know how it goes. Either way I win or lose, it will be a very BIG learning experience. Of course, hopefully a positive (a very big) experience.

Bohiaa, thanks for the encouragement (thanks everybody also). I am sure I will be taking you up on your invite to ask more. I truely appreciate it.

howierd3866
10-23-2008, 06:44 PM
I agree with Bohiaa..I too do alots of state...county... and city contracts. Be sure to look also at the last years work because something could have been added or left off so dont just look at the price.. Had a county contract for 12 years new company comes along and didnt even read all the bid infor just add $499.00 to my last year's price quess what he has to do over 47 more miles than the old contract. Like they say go to every meeting and site visit they have learning is a big part.most state contract have a bid bond and a performance bond they are hard to get.Make sure you look the job over a few times each time might see something diff. Just because they say the budject is so much dont go my that base it on what you think..What type of mowing is it large tractor mowing or small mowing..Also think what equipment you need and what you have to buy sometimes leasing it is better just to get you going.. good luck we are here for you

howierd3866
10-23-2008, 06:51 PM
I've had NC state contracts. You should be able to find out the current price.
If you hope to ever win one, you'll need it. Sometimes work is just work, enough to pay the help. If you get into the system, you'll figure out what's profitable and what pays the help. What I mean is, you could be underbid by a dollar, how would that make you feel?
I've seen bids that close.
Don't think you'll upsell! It's pretty black and white. Do follow the rules spelled out in the contracts as said before.
Also, consider municipal work (cities). There's a ton of work out there. Tony

Lost a bid last year for $376,000 to the pervis. bidder by $1.00 even..it was all new prices didn't have a clue what he was biding also it was for 20 parks and each of us had different price was not base on acres but by the job each of us look at it diff.. he couldnt sit for a few days because he now know I'm biting his a$$:waving:

meets1
10-23-2008, 09:11 PM
I have been looking into IOWA website. horrific to find info. Is there one way or another to get, obtain, learn research for this stuff?

I have done work for the state in the past but it was always published in local papers. Just had to pick up a there info and maybe walk, ride, sight see the area and then X date it was due.

AlleganyLawnCare
11-27-2008, 03:27 PM
Well, I submitted my bid. The contract was for 14 areas for 2 years. The cloing date was Nov 20th. I haven't heard anything as of yet, and I watch the states' listed awarded contracts website like 10 times a day for any news. Other state agencies have listed their posted awards up to date, but the state highway is either slow posting theirs, or I don't know what. Normally, how long does it take for you to hear anything (whether it be good or bad) about the contract?

howierd3866
11-27-2008, 04:15 PM
sometime its not just number they have to look at..some are also score on points such as work history ..presentation...equipment and so on..so it sometimes take longer to upload..another thing on some bid you can give them a self address stamp envelope with your bid where they will mail back the totals...

AlleganyLawnCare
11-27-2008, 05:00 PM
On this bid, you didn't have to list equipment or anything. Just sign a lot of papers about Living Wage laws, minority business participation, and so on. You basically just filled in your bid amount and that was it.

Toy2
11-27-2008, 05:56 PM
The contractors I have dealt with here are the lowest of the low, one got a tree trimming job on State ROW, she got it because she was a woman.....all she had to do was trim trees, chip the debris into the ROW.....she hired three guys, they burned up the chainsaws running straight gas on the first day.....it was the funniest thing I ever saw.....needless to say I shut her project down because she was endangering the public......she lost out big time.....anyway TxDot has alot of info on the website about contract work....Goodwill also does alot around here, trash pickup, lawn service, etc.....good luck...

meets1
11-27-2008, 09:38 PM
If you get the contract - make sure you show up on time for accepting the work. I lost a contract this fall due to not showing when I said I would. My excuss - being self employed and guys to handle things - my kids were sick, wife was working, so I picked my children up from daycare and missed the afternoon walk thru with the client. Went there the next morning when they opened and asked if they had time to to a walk thru - guy said sorry man - not on time yesterday when I said I would of been there translate into my workmanship and therefore called the next guy on the list.