PDA

View Full Version : 1st big sod installation


alpine692003
07-21-2004, 03:22 AM
Wow, I just got back from a client's house and boy, was this customer's house nice..

I'm about to install sod in the front and rear of the customer's house, I'm going to post pictures of the new grass that I'm giong to be putting in. The lawn right now is full of weeds, moss, there were 3 big trees that covered the entire area and no sun was being shone @ the lawn..

its like 5,000 sq feet of sod for front and back, I'm just guessing but I'll post exact measurements and pictures..

I'm not sure if prep work is needed or if I need to bring in topsoil?
If so, how much topsoil do i need to install the sod at? 1", 2", 3" of topsoil is necessary? or can I just use the existing soil?


:confused: :confused:

PMLAWN
07-21-2004, 05:49 AM
What are you asking? Are you asking if you should just put sod on the weeds? Are you asking if you cover the weeds with top soil and than cover with sod? Are you asking if you should kill off the weeds first? Are you asking how long the sod will last before it is weeds and moss because there is no sun? Or are you asking if you need a tree service to come in and open up the area so sun can get to the grass and make it grow? Or are you asking if you should make mulch beds under the trees and make the yard look good?
The homeowner has a "boy, was this customers house nice" home and he makes a call to a professional landscape company to come and make his landscape as nice as his house. He is going to spend good money for this and wants good value in return.
I think we need to ask one more question --Is this what he is going to get??
I may be way off base here but I think you are spreading yourself thin on the work you are doing. In the last week you have bid some tricky jobs and than come here to find out how to do them. You are building a business and part of that is building a reputation, Making a few mistakes now can hurt for years. Stick with what you know and grow slow. Baby steps. Be good at lawn maintenance, than do hedge trimming(less than 12 feet). Play with grass on your property and see what works in your area and in sun /under trees. Read READ READ! But go slow. Make profit. Build a great referral base. Do not create a bunch of people who doubt your ability.
And by the way I speak from experience, I blew one over 2 years ago that still haunts me.

Evergreenpros
07-21-2004, 06:24 AM
There's many books available on this subject that could cover it much more indepth than here on a message board. This is mainly for ideas, suggestions, etc Remember, when you operate as a "professional" you're legally bound to know what you're doing whether you do or not.

moneyman
07-21-2004, 06:38 AM
I have to agree with pmlawn,

HAve knowledge then go decide what you can do.
If you get some bad advice you could be owing this guy some new sod..
I would go talk to a sod company and ask how to install it..

alpine692003
07-22-2004, 01:59 AM
Well, those tricky jobs you speak of I did complete in the specified hours.

the 25ft high 2 circular cedars, I had to get the tops and round it off.. I did that job in 40mins ... $100 done she was very happy..

I just came back from the sod and measured everything.

4,000 sq feet of sod.
- removal of existing sod with sod cutter
- add new topsoil
- rake even, level
- put starter fertilizer
- put sod down
- lawn roll and water

Mat Req-
sod cutter
topsoil
starter fert
lawn roller

It looks like a 2-3day job?

I have to call and find out how the materials would cost me!

alpine692003
07-22-2004, 02:00 AM
Well, those tricky jobs you speak of I did complete in the specified hours.

the 25ft high 2 circular cedars, I had to get the tops and round it off.. I did that job in 40mins ... $100 done she was very happy..

I just came back from the sod and measured everything.

4,000 sq feet of sod.
- removal of existing sod with sod cutter
- add new topsoil
- rake even, level
- put starter fertilizer
- put sod down
- lawn roll and water

Mat Req-
sod cutter
topsoil
starter fert
lawn roller

It looks like a 2-3day job?

I have to call and find out how the materials would cost me because this sod is so huge!

I've done a sod job on a smaller scale, ie) 600 sq feet... so I have an idea of how it will turn out.

PMLAWN
07-22-2004, 03:47 AM
I was not trying to be nasty.Just trying to help and by the questions you asked it seemed that you may be getting in too deep. I am glad it is working out for you. From you second post it seems like you know what you need to do. Sorry that I answered a question that you were not asking.

mike48114
07-22-2004, 09:48 AM
weeds have to go. Grading must take place. Preping must take place. Topsoil usally not needed with sod as long as it will be irrigated. Lay the sod.

PS. No grass (even sod) grows perfect in severy shady conditions. Might want to put a disclamer in your bid.

Good Luck!

alpine692003
07-22-2004, 12:17 PM
Thanks guys, its okay PM LAWN maybe its because of my wording thats why you guys think Im not capable or going into deep.

I will post pictures, that will describe things much better.

Well, the reason why she is replacing the entire area is because she has about 10 cedar trees that were like 30ft high and it blocked out the sun.

It was severe moss, weeds and everything because no sun.

So you dont think we need to get new topsoil? I've never encountered this situation, I've brought in topsoil before..

When do you not bring intopsoil? how can you tell?

alpine692003
07-23-2004, 01:36 AM
Anyways, its 9pm...

I just finished removing all the sod; 4,000 sq feet of sod phew..

2:30pm - 7pm. 3 men ..

all the sod is rolled up in a big pile, clean up is like 75% done.. the remaining 25% is due tmrw, then we hae to go to the disposal yard and cleanup and toss all this..

She wants the most expensive grade sod which is the prosport grade. $1300 for 445 sq yards.

$75 for sod cutter rental
$300 for 16 - 20yards of topsoil inc. delivery and tax
$150 - 200 for disposal fee
==== Materials, disposal fee = $1800

I was thinking of charging her $1500 - $2000 for this entire job, what do you guys think? I'll post some pictures tmrw when I'm @ the site..

olderthandirt
07-23-2004, 01:48 AM
Originally posted by alpine692003
Anyways, its 9pm...

I just finished removing all the sod; 4,000 sq feet of sod phew..

2:30pm - 7pm. 3 men ..

all the sod is rolled up in a big pile, clean up is like 75% done.. the remaining 25% is due tmrw, then we hae to go to the disposal yard and cleanup and toss all this..

She wants the most expensive grade sod which is the prosport grade. $1300 for 445 sq yards.

$75 for sod cutter rental
$300 for 16 - 20yards of topsoil inc. delivery and tax
$150 - 200 for disposal fee
==== Materials, disposal fee = $1800

I was thinking of charging her $1500 - $2000 for this entire job, what do you guys think? I'll post some pictures tmrw when I'm @ the site..

$1800 in material, and disposal fees, double that at a minumum and then add in extra for degree of difficulty. The customer does not know what there paying and you don't know what your charging and your 1/2 way finished? he!! of a way to run a business.

Mac

alpine692003
07-23-2004, 01:57 AM
well, its my mom's friend so she said give me the bill when you're done...

I've never done a sod job this big before, so I can charge her after I'm done.. it looks like 3 - 4 days of work and I was going to charge her 1500 - 2000?

Shadetree Ltd
07-23-2004, 02:37 AM
Alpine,

You said "Pro-Sport" I assume you are using Andersons? Unless the trees have been removed or drastically pruned the pro-sport is a waste of money. It is meant for very high traffic areas, you should look at the shade-sand, it is the same price. Even their select and standard are decent quality.

Scott

alpine692003
07-23-2004, 03:19 AM
Alrighty, I'll look at that!

I was just skimming through that Scott, I just realized that now..

I think I'll have to get another grade, is the shade/sand quality good? she wants lush dark green man!

What company should I go with shadetree? Anderson, westcoast, highland turffarms?

What grade as well?:confused: :confused: :confused:

Lawn Sharks
07-23-2004, 11:50 AM
I have never done a sod job and know nothing about it but why wouldn't you RoundUp the whole existing yard and just rototill it after it dies off? cutting sod and hauling it all away seems like added work.

I can also understand the enthusiasm to get the work but not having an estimate signed by the customer is not very good business practice. You show her a bill for 3k and she may faint. Probably thinks "he is the son of a friend, should be able to do it for less than 1k".

Lot of scary stuff in this post on how not to do a job. Halfway done, don't know what kind of grass you are going to use, customer has no idea what it will cost etc.

Not being critical but we are here to learn and help others. Hope it all works out in your favor.

alpine692003
07-23-2004, 12:29 PM
Like I explained, other customers I would charge and tell her how much..

This is the exception because she just said give me the final bill I dont' care how much it costs..

I said the materials already cost $1800, she said thats fine.

bobbygedd
07-23-2004, 03:46 PM
i'd get an absolute minimum of 5 grand for that job, if she looks good, dresses provocatively, and i'm in a good mood. more if not

alpine692003
07-23-2004, 03:59 PM
Yah.. alrighty..

all degree
07-23-2004, 05:26 PM
I have a feeling that you will be posting again when she passes out upon seeing the bill. People are always like WHAT!!! for that.

My dad's neighbor came out last night (PITA) and wanted me to put in a sprinkler system and sod and ask how much I thought it would be. I was busy cutting so I was like $5000. I could see by the look on his face he wasnt expecting that.

PLEASE be honest and let us know the outcome of the final bill and reaction. AND ALPINE never, no matter what, do a job where the customer has no idea of what the cost is. AND BTW you should have asked for at least $1750 up front to cover materials.

I wish I could be there to see this lady crap her pants...