View Full Version : install 10 6ft white pine...your estimate please?

09-08-2002, 07:46 AM
Guy calls me to install 10 6foot white pines in his yard. Says he heard I do very good work. Heres the bad part...one of the larger, more reputable (at least until now) LCO's in this area gave him a price of $400 to install...yes I said only $400. I was so ticked off I called them because I actually sub to them when I have a job thats too big for me to handle. THey always charge a good professional rate. So the foreman there tells me they are so hurting for work because nobody and he underscored NOBODY wants any new plantings because of the drought restrictions and the heat. Says he has to do something to keep his year around employees on the payroll. TOld him I know its tough right now getting any installs but even as a small operator, I would skip this job at $400. My bare bones bottom line price would be at least $600. Some details...customer already has the trees, no warranty will be given, customer supplies all materials (soil, peat, stakes etc), trees to be placed is a wind break pattern on one side of a flat yard. Am I out to lunch on my estimate? What ballpark price would you ask?? thanks much...ps..I hope this is not a sign of things to come that even legititimate operators are getting forced into lowballing like a scrub.

09-08-2002, 08:51 AM
I guess he is willing to take a loss so his guys will keep working.

If he makes this a regular practise he won't have to worry about keeping guys busy ... he won't have a business.

As far as a fair quote ... probably around $100 per tree with the customer supplying all.

09-08-2002, 03:17 PM
$2,760 for 10 six foot White Pines installed. That't trees, ammendments, and labor.

09-08-2002, 05:12 PM
(10) 6'-7' White Pines = $1900.00 installed w/ a (1) year guarantee.

How you or that "huge co." can do the job for $400, and $600 is beyond me... GOOD LUCK

09-08-2002, 05:50 PM
We would supply and install them for $2500, now is a good time to move them they have stopped growing and move very well now.

09-08-2002, 06:43 PM

Lets see where this goes....

I'm a one man show....with my equipment, I could go plant 10 trees in about 1/2 day by myself.....think that is pretty much on track.

If they are supplying all the materials, not a single penny out my pocket for materials, then I would turn out a $400 profit in a half day......

To me, that's not too bad....of course I would like more, but at $400 (well, 400 for a easy 'get home early' saturday) a day I meet my expectations.

Sounds like a good 'quickee' job to fill in a empty saturday with for me.........but that's me. And not for nothing, but doesn't anyone remember what the majority of working people make......I mean, $400 dollars is more than most employees take home in a week.....I can take it home in a half of day on a job like this.....I'm very happy......and still can get home in time to watch the end of a penn state game!

Oh ya, I'm assuming this is a cash job...........


09-08-2002, 08:15 PM
This question was for install only ... around 3,000 if we supplyed and installed.


I am assuming these would be caliper trees .... You cannot dig holes plant, water, stake, tie and cleanup 10 of these yourself in half a day.

09-08-2002, 08:43 PM

Equipment is key to my operation.

Show up with a mini-x and mini-skidsteer.

mark and Dig holes with mini-x. - 1 hour

Move trees, place trees in holes with mini-skidsteer. 1/2 hour

Cut burlap and cages. -1/2 hour

backfill dirt, shovel dirt around trees using machine and shovel - 1 hour

stake.......wouldn't bother with 6 ft pines

water, cleanup ......1 hour...being this is a 'in and out' job I would tell the client to water them probably

total time - 4 hours, though in all likely hood total time is 6 hours with drive time, talking to client, etc.

Maybe not a half day, but a 'easy' 3/4 day....

At least that's the way I see it. I agree, 600 would be nice, but 400 is not rediculous to me....now, if I had employees, and a bigger operation with more operation costs, no, I don't think 400 would be good.......however, for the sakes of this argument and whether or not 400 is a 'scrub' price, I don't think so....I think it is a matter of whether or not your company is able to do the job for 400, which many aren't.


09-09-2002, 06:48 AM
thanks guys...I wasn't happy with $600...as suggested I'll bump it up to $100 per tree and kiss this job goodbye...but the other 'legit' operator doing it for $400 is just plain absurd...ohwell let him have it....

09-09-2002, 06:49 AM
another question...as mentioned, I dont think these need staked given their size and type of trees...am I wrong? thanks

scott's turf
09-09-2002, 11:06 AM
Steveair, how do you pay for all that nice equipment with such a low price. What do you net for this job? If you were using a shovel and wheelbarrow I would still want to average around $50/hr min to do this.