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chipper44
04-21-2011, 10:36 PM
Hello everyone,

I just have a quick question about how to present a potential bid to a customer. Do I just give them the overall cost of the job or do i list each material and labor out with the price.

scagrider22
04-21-2011, 11:05 PM
I price out every aspect of the job separately but I do not show the labor cost. Also always present the quote in person so you can explain the job and the prices to the customer. If you send the quote through US Mail or email you will greatly reduce the odds of selling the job.

PatriotLandscape
04-21-2011, 11:09 PM
It's a package deal I don't get into the cost of materials. If they want a patio it's 6,000 not 350 for base 3400 in pavers yadda yadda.

Always present in person if it's an option.

The proposal (not a bid) should detail EVERYTHING you are going to do.
Posted via Mobile Device

chipper44
04-21-2011, 11:13 PM
That makes sense. Yes i will present the bid in person. Thankyou for your responses.

Regards,
Erik

DVS Hardscaper
04-21-2011, 11:16 PM
First of all what are you bidding???????? Are you at an auction? If you're in the residential sector of this industry - YOU'RE SUBMITTING A PROPOSAL, not a "BID".

I never show or divuldge material costs.

When you buy a skid steer does John Deere break down the costs of all the parts comprising the machine?

Also, not all contractors pay the same price for materials.

I may buy Deviousa pavers at $3.56 / SF and 'Patios by Pat' may be paying $3.80 / SF for the Deviousa pavers. You never know when another local competitor has had a friend call you for pricing.

I've e-mailed proposals.

I've met in person.

I've mailed proposals.

I've left proposals on windshields of cars at Walmart parking lot.

I can't say any of those methods is better than the other. Everyone shops prices these days. If you're the 1st to turn around and submit the proposal, and you meet with them - you're not walking away with a signed contract and deposit. The customer WILL wait for the other prices to come in.




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chipper44
04-22-2011, 12:45 AM
I know it does sound weird saying bid now that i think of it. I think i just picked that up from my old boss. He would always say he had to "bid" a job out. So it just carried over

JoeyDipetro
04-22-2011, 01:01 AM
Hey Guys, what is the difference between a bid and a proposal?

DVS Hardscaper
04-22-2011, 01:18 AM
My own scientific definitions:

Bid - to submit a price for services to be performed with the hopes of being the lowest price, as jobs that are put out for bid are awarded to the lowest bidder.


Proposal - perform the work as specified for the amount stated under the terms stated, with the intent of creating a lasting relationship with a satisified client while earning a modest profit.

You're proposing to do X for X.

I received a few 'Dear John Letters' this week in my e-mail. One guy said "thank you for your BID, however we went with another contractor....."

LOL - when I read the e-mail all I cared about was that he said "BID"!! It took all I had to not reply "look you freakin dimwit, I DON'T bid work...."



,

JoeyDipetro
04-22-2011, 01:39 AM
Couldn't I provide a proposal to do "x for x", be the lowest price and still be awarded the job?

Just the same, coldn't I provide a "bid", not be the lowest price and be awarded the project?

DVS Hardscaper
04-22-2011, 07:43 AM
yes a proposal can be accepted if it's the lowest.

"Bid" is an ugly term that doesn't belong for respected companys that dew quality residential work and that know how to make profit. Auctions have bids. Commercial work is bid.

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FLCthes4:11-12
04-22-2011, 09:35 AM
Bid work to me is when the client sets forth exact specifications for contractors to provide a price for. Ususally with the lowest winning the job.

A proposal is when the contractor sets specifications in order get the results that the customer wants.
A homeowner could want a wall, patio and irrigation but each contractor will probably hae there own different installation methods that will influence the cost. Then in this position it is up to the customer to be educated to which one provides the best method at the lowest price.

vtscaper
04-25-2011, 11:56 PM
First of all what are you bidding???????? Are you at an auction? If you're in the residential sector of this industry - YOU'RE SUBMITTING A PROPOSAL, not a "BID".

I never show or divuldge material costs.

When you buy a skid steer does John Deere break down the costs of all the parts comprising the machine?

Also, not all contractors pay the same price for materials.

I may buy Deviousa pavers at $3.56 / SF and 'Patios by Pat' may be paying $3.80 / SF for the Deviousa pavers. You never know when another local competitor has had a friend call you for pricing.

I've e-mailed proposals.

I've met in person.

I've mailed proposals.

I've left proposals on windshields of cars at Walmart parking lot.

I can't say any of those methods is better than the other. Everyone shops prices these days. If you're the 1st to turn around and submit the proposal, and you meet with them - you're not walking away with a signed contract and deposit. The customer WILL wait for the other prices to come in.




,


have to disagree with you here dvs. i am a firm believer in quick turn around with the proposal, meet with the clients, make your mark with a twinkle in your eye and walk away with a deposit. i know this works for us, not all the time obviously but it surely increases the sell on the spot rate. most of the time its a scheduling thing. if people know they are going to get quality and the price is close then the next most important item is getting on the schedule- just knowing the project is dialed and its on the books. so if i show up w my proposal and jo landscape hasnt even made it to the first appointment with them - schedule comes up and folks realize they could be waiting all summer by the time the get those other quotes, compare and make their decision...

Meezer
04-26-2011, 01:09 AM
have to disagree with you here dvs. i am a firm believer in quick turn around with the proposal, meet with the clients, make your mark with a twinkle in your eye and walk away with a deposit. i know this works for us, not all the time obviously but it surely increases the sell on the spot rate.


Yes, getting back quickly to the potential clients is important to us, however, I have to agree with DVS. Just about everyone is shopping prices these days. That's why during our screening process of potential clients we let them know if they are looking for the cheapest priced contractor, we're not that :nono:

DVS Hardscaper
04-26-2011, 06:22 AM
in most cases I get back to people in 24-48 hrs. That's pretty darn quick!

I wouldn't say folks are looking for the cheapest, but I do think they are being careful with obtaining prices.

Alotta this has to do with the demographics in your area. I seldom have success with selling to people under 48 years in age, in this area, most of them do not have the funds. Sometimes I feel like I should just start asking them how old they are and if they're under 48 - I should turn them down!


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STL Ponds and Waterfalls
04-26-2011, 10:50 AM
Alotta this has to do with the demographics in your area. I seldom have success with selling to people under 48 years in age, in this area, most of them do not have the funds. Sometimes I feel like I should just start asking them how old they are and if they're under 48 - I should turn them down!


,

I feel the same way in my area. Although I have been seeing a younger crowd coming my way from my FB page, but sales are still on the older customers side at this time.

DVS Hardscaper
04-26-2011, 07:47 PM
And for Chris d'S- Stone work is a whole different world than pavers and legos.

Your stonework is a work of it's own. A craft that not just anybody can do. Therefore you have less competition, thus the people you're pricing jobs for know you're the man. This is how it was for me 15 years ago when there were only 3 contractors in the area working with pavers. Whereas now, with pavers and legos, everyone with a mower calls theirselves hardscapers.

Same goes for our demolition work. I have little competition. My sales closure rate dwarfs my hardscapes sales closure rates.


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bigviclbi
04-26-2011, 07:56 PM
I email almost all of my estimates unless its a very large project. I can get them the numbers quickly, then if my price is in their budget I'll meet them for more specifics. No way could I meet everybody I give estimates to.

SDLandscapes VT
04-26-2011, 10:23 PM
DVS---careful--you don't play in the game here. Chris is fantastic at the stonework, but the pond water is very muddy with competition some fantastic and some....well

I do flatwork only. Leave the walls to Chris