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USAProLawnCare
03-19-2012, 04:42 PM
Alright guys/gals,

It is my turn to ask for assistance. I am fairly new to the business, but got two opportunities to walk 2 apartment complexes today so I can submit a bid in the next couple of days. I need some help with bidding just for the maintenance aspect of it.. I have an idea but dont want to mess it up for myself. This is what I've got:

1st one: Approx 18k sq. ft. of grass, broken up into about 5 smaller sections and 3 large sections, all needing to be edged.

Also approx. 2000 ln. ft. worth of hedging needed.

Most beds are natural (Im in the mountains) but some need mulch, which I can figure out myself.

2nd one: only about 4500 sq ft of grass, no edging.

About 500 ln. ft of hedging/bush trimming

Lots of beds... thats my technical term, lots.. but they are also bare natural landscape that will need weeding sometimes.

I know this may be a vague report, but if I can get an idea I'd appreciate it.

***KEEP THIS IN MIND*** --- I am a one man show with a walk behind, so the larger property will take a while in mowing.

Thanks ahead of time!

Mahoney3223
03-19-2012, 05:01 PM
Figure out your costs. Not trying to be a jerk but everyone's are different. I can't give you an answer. Figure you costs!!!!

USAProLawnCare
03-19-2012, 06:48 PM
Honestly my costs are pretty small. I really can't have a super good idea because I haven't done enough big jobs to guess.. But really, what is there? Gas for the mower, trimmer, hedger.. Line for the trimmer, costs me $5 a yard to dump clippings at the dump... I'm thinking time.. About 25-30% of it is hilly so I will have to take the trimmer to some of that... I'm thinking 2.5-3hrs for mowing, maybe an hour or so for edging.. but its the hedging that gets me..

USAProLawnCare
03-19-2012, 09:31 PM
Ok, please be nice. Remember, I'm fairly new to the business... This is what I have figured:

It will take me approx 5 hours to trim, edge, mow and blow, including all the common areas and the parking lot.

I will do this 44 weeks out of the year (because of the slow down in winter). At $40/hr, I figured about 8800/yr for that.

Then, I will probably only have to hedge/trim bushes tri-weekly... They are mostly Junipers and some other bushes that may grow a little more quickly, but this is an average. I figured about 6 hours to trim/hedge and clean up.. Multiply that by 17 (remember tri weekly) and I have 102 hours, at $40/hr, that is $4080/yr.

Totaling to about $12880 a year, broken down evenly my bid is going to be approx $1073/mo.

This figure is again for maintenance only.. mulch will be extra.


PLEASE DONT BE HARSH!!!

USAProLawnCare
03-20-2012, 10:18 AM
Come on I need some help please! I see a lot of guys posting overhead shots so I'll try that too... The broad yellow is just the property line. The skinny yellow is the perimeter of the area that needs mowing, and the blue lines and circles are approx the area of hedging. There is a little more here and there but I need a good idea..

RedSox4Life
03-20-2012, 05:26 PM
Honestly my costs are pretty small. I really can't have a super good idea because I haven't done enough big jobs to guess.. But really, what is there? Gas for the mower, trimmer, hedger.. Line for the trimmer, costs me $5 a yard to dump clippings at the dump... I'm thinking time.. About 25-30% of it is hilly so I will have to take the trimmer to some of that... I'm thinking 2.5-3hrs for mowing, maybe an hour or so for edging.. but its the hedging that gets me..

Do you have insurance?
Did you have to buy a truck, mower, trailer etc to be able to do the job?
Do you have a phone that you were called on about the job?
Do you wear ear plugs while at work? Safety glasses? Print up some company shirts?

These are all costs.

USAProLawnCare
03-20-2012, 05:34 PM
K I get the point.. Thanks.

Duekster
03-20-2012, 08:03 PM
I am not a fan of Apartments to begin with. I would search them as best as I can to see who owns them and if they will pay.

Then you can look at your cost.

JDGlandscape
04-22-2012, 08:07 PM
How did it end up turning out with this job? I feel the price you quoted may have been a little low compared to New England.

USAProLawnCare
04-22-2012, 09:09 PM
Yeah I quoted a little low on purpose... But no I never heard back from them...

Champion-Lawn
04-23-2012, 12:07 AM
Looks like something you could put a 2 man crew on and knock it out pretty easy. Depending on the size mowers you have, ie; production, the frequency you will visit this property throughout the year, and your actual overhead it seems like the price you posted along with the specs you gave for a mow, blow, and go service would be a bit high (everyones numbers are different). Something that you may want to consider with that many trees is the leaf clean up in the fall / winter, this could add significant cost to you.

And I agree with Duekster, not all apartment owners are created equally some are horrible at paying on time if at all. Do your homework.

Roger
04-23-2012, 09:00 AM
Looks like something you could put a 2 man crew on and knock it out pretty easy. ....

The OP said he is a one-man show. How quickly another setup could do the job is irrelevant.

Why is this a "bidding war?" A "war" requires two parties to be competing for the same item. I don't think another bidder was mentioned in the discussion. The question is only about what the OP should charge for doing the work, not how to beat another bidder for the work.

USAProLawnCare
04-23-2012, 09:12 AM
I titled it "bidding wars" just for fun... In reality, it is a bidding war, considering they already had a company maintaining the property; So I was trying to beat them.. I thought I had it in the bag, considering the couple of "larger" maintenance companies up here charge outrageous prices. One company in particular was charging 800/mo for a job that MIGHT take 1.5 hours a week..

THEGOLDPRO
04-23-2012, 09:14 AM
Yea the title was pretty mis-leading

Duekster
04-24-2012, 07:05 AM
Is this $800 month job the same one you posted?

:confused:

USAProLawnCare
04-26-2012, 09:50 AM
No no no of course not.. If it were, I wouldn't have bid 1k on it :)

This "$800 a month" job was only about 800sq ft of grass, and natural beds with no mulch or anything... The worst part about it is the leaves from the trees, but they are only on the backside of the apartments, and the apartment manager just wants them blown into the woods behind... So I dont know how these guys get $800 a month, especially considering everytime I drive by, the grass is overgrown and not edged nicely or anything...

Duekster
04-26-2012, 06:00 PM
No no no of course not.. If it were, I wouldn't have bid 1k on it :)

This "$800 a month" job was only about 800sq ft of grass, and natural beds with no mulch or anything... The worst part about it is the leaves from the trees, but they are only on the backside of the apartments, and the apartment manager just wants them blown into the woods behind... So I dont know how these guys get $800 a month, especially considering everytime I drive by, the grass is overgrown and not edged nicely or anything...

Maybe they have a profit share with the manager. :rolleyes:

gcbailey
04-26-2012, 06:21 PM
No no no of course not.. If it were, I wouldn't have bid 1k on it :)

This "$800 a month" job was only about 800sq ft of grass, and natural beds with no mulch or anything... The worst part about it is the leaves from the trees, but they are only on the backside of the apartments, and the apartment manager just wants them blown into the woods behind... So I dont know how these guys get $800 a month, especially considering everytime I drive by, the grass is overgrown and not edged nicely or anything...

A lot of "bigger" guys get jobs that pay that kind of money because they have the appearance and presence that can command that kind of money for a small job. You would be surprised at the companies that see the outfits who have spent a few thousand to trim out their trailers with advertising and such so they assume that they do the best work and are willing to pay for it.