View Full Version : Estimating
01-21-2004, 10:44 PM
Hi...newbie here. Been in the business since August, so new that, also. I deal with commercial properties and landed in a rather large one to begin with - guess that's how I got my start. To get to the point: I'm doing pretty good on the business end and the maintenance end, but am blind on the estimating part. Basically, I've gone to a property and figured how long it would take a 2 man crew to do it and charged $25 per man hour i.e. 2 men @ 1 hour = $50. How off am I? I'm okay on figuring the time right, but just confused with the pricing. A little help would be wonderful. Thanks.
01-21-2004, 11:08 PM
I apologize...just realized that this should be in the "Just Starting Out" forum...I don't know how to move it over there, but if a moderator would move it, I would appreciate it. Thanks.
01-21-2004, 11:10 PM
Only you can decide this for yourself. You'll have to get an understanding of all of your costs (fixed + variable). To me, it sounds way to low. But, IMHO if you're paying your laborer minimum wage and your fuel is $.32/gal, and insurance costs are under $500/year, etc.... then I guess you're doing alright.
Now if you listen to some people here, they CLAIM to charge as much as $100/manhour for clean-up work. These must be the guys who have clients w/ mucho dinero and no common sense (not to mention the LCO's must have no scruples)!
DFW Area Landscaper
01-21-2004, 11:27 PM
$25 per man hour probably isn't enough.
Figure an employee runs you 8 to 12 per hour..use the high end as worst case...add another 7% for ss taxes, 10% for workmans' comp insurance, up to 8% for unemployment insurance...you're at $15 per hour...now add another 10% to allow your employees to work an average of 10 hours of overtime each week...$16.50 per hour. You've still got non-productive time, such as equipment maintenance, drive time, training, etc.
Then, you've got to pay your other costs, such as billing and postage, bad debt expense, telephone, general liability insurance, commercial auto insurance, fuel, telephone, advertising, storage, uniforms, truck lettering, depreciation, two part carbonless contracts, licensing...the list goes on and on. If $25/man/hr is enough, it's gotta be the absolute lowest you can do this and still make any money.
I generally gross about $32 per man hour, including drive time and a 20 minute lunch. A tad bit higher if I throw out the lunch break. Hoping to get that average a lot close to $40 per man hour in 2004.
DFW Area Landscaper
01-21-2004, 11:29 PM
$60.00 per man hour is my min. no matter what chore we are doing
01-22-2004, 07:48 AM
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