PDA

View Full Version : Lawn Installation.. Too High?


Slcareco
11-15-2004, 10:21 AM
I have a job to install sod for 3000 sqft lawn and tell me if my pricings wrong:

$0.43/sq ft = 1290 (I get it for .30 so 900) - 900 = $390 (profit)
+$75.00 tiller rental
+$50.00 roller rental
+$15.00 pH test

= $1430.00-$390.00(profit) = $1040.00 (in reality what there paying)

Am I too high too low? Should I charge just .43 for the whole job and let it include the rental fees and stuff? Let me know Thanks!

jerryrwm
11-15-2004, 11:07 AM
Not sure about the cost of the sod, but in your price there is no mention of labor to install this sod. Your $390.00 profit suddenly becomes something else and you aren't making any money. Also, is the rental cost of the tiller and roller what you are paying? You might consider charging for pick-up and return of the equipment also.

Might look at this project again.

Jerry

Slcareco
11-15-2004, 11:14 AM
well it seems people include the labor with doubling the price of the sod, now idk if my total is a lil too high or what? how would i go about charging for labor and adding that in? on top of the $1430 add and hourly rate? which should be what? And yes thats what i would pay and they deliver the equipment as well

impactlandscaping
11-15-2004, 03:20 PM
I have a job to install sod for 3000 sqft lawn and tell me if my pricings wrong:

$0.43/sq ft = 1290 (I get it for .30 so 900) - 900 = $390 (profit)
+$75.00 tiller rental
+$50.00 roller rental
+$15.00 pH test

= $1430.00-$390.00(profit) = $1040.00 (in reality what there paying)

Am I too high too low? Should I charge just .43 for the whole job and let it include the rental fees and stuff? Let me know Thanks!

I wouldn't want to rototill 3000sqft of lawn..I would skip the tiller and roller rental , and spend a little more and get a Bobcat MT52 or DitchWitch SK 500 and 4' Harley Rake. Around here the 125.00 for your equipment listed will get you a rental of either with a bucket for 125.00..Harley Rake is 110.00 extra per day.Guess you may need that roller after all to roll out the sod. The machine would come in handy moving the sod around as well. I don't do sod(HYDROSEEDING), so I am not too familiar with pricing, but your re-sell seems low, especially with no labor listed( at least 3/4-1 day for 2 men). You aren't going to need any extra topsoil?? What about fertilizer? I always include a follow up visit in my pricing as well, usually in a week to ten days after the install.

lawnkid
11-15-2004, 04:48 PM
$390 isn't enough profit margin for me. That's only 27% profit which is low to me. I try to make between 40-50% on all of my jobs. than again I am unaware of your costs. I would look over it again. I also agree with impact landscaping because once you're done laying the sod and rolling it, you have to fill in the cracks between each piece and then fertilize. Are you also taking into play the transportation costs of sod. Do you have to pick it up or is it delievered. I would shoot for installing it for $1 a sq. ft. That is what I install it for.

jbell113
11-15-2004, 04:54 PM
I figure double the cost per pallet to install and any rental equipment will be extra

tonygreek
11-15-2004, 05:36 PM
first, take your $390 "profit" (wrong term to use, btw) and divide it by the number of hours you think it will take you to go start to finish, including equipment transit times. after you've picked yourself up off the floor, figure out the per foot installation labor rate you would like.

if you need an idea of what the market rate is, call your local turf farms and see what they charge per foot installed, including soil prep. that should be no problem to get over the phone.

tony

Lawn-Scapes
11-15-2004, 05:48 PM
Too low.. I would ask around $2500.00 for that size job. No tilling.. just bring in necessary topsoil and lay sod.

lawncat
11-15-2004, 06:26 PM
For this kind of work, most professionals already have basic tools like tillers and rollers, and in a way it's not the clients fault that you do not own these basic tools and have to rent them.

Prep the area as if you were going to seed it! If pricing with the client is touchy, don't talk about topsoil and tilling and so forth! A pulverizer on a small tractor would do this prep fairly quick unless there peculiar site problems.

Up N here, most landscapers aim for $6.00 per sq yard, delivered and installed. Our costs are 1.50 to 1.85 per yard.
Charge for additional crew time if there is a lot of prep to do, but if the rough grade is right you should have no problem.

If your prep is finished and the sod farm has room to move the skids for you-figure on 1 1/2 m/hours per skid. 3000 feet = 333 yds=5 1/2 skids==almost 9 manhours. 45 hr labor x 9 = 270.00 + (example) 3 m hrs prep = 135 + 270=420.00 labor costs + (up here sod cost) 333x1.75=582.75 = 1002.75 direct costs plus your fixed overhead (trucks, etc)

333 X 6.00=1,998 less fixed costs of 1,002.75= gross profit of around 995.!

Of course, add in a lot more if the client wants more work or materials.

Not bad for a small yard!

treedoc1
11-15-2004, 06:36 PM
$6.00 a yard simple installation here in Northern VA

Rototilling would be an extra prep charge as would the cleanup from the builders debris

Slcareco
11-15-2004, 07:00 PM
Thanks to all who offered info and help thanks!

bobbygedd
11-15-2004, 07:00 PM
why are you tilling? why are you tilling? why are you tilling?

Slcareco
11-15-2004, 07:18 PM
Becuase the grounds hard, uneven and wouldnt it be better for the new sod to have a nice loose base of soil?

trying 2b organic
11-15-2004, 07:23 PM
Is the consensus that it would be cheaper for him to kill existing lawn with Roundup, dump 2 inches of new premium topsoil, then lay the sod on top?

IF he doesnt own a bobcat with a rake. Is this techniuqe and option for him. If not, why not?

I agree with not tilling a lawn, you will price yourself out of the job with all that labour.

bobbygedd
11-15-2004, 07:24 PM
look, do want you want. i am absolutely amazed at the people here and the way they prep an area. everyone loves to rototil. i think it's a waste of time and very uneccesary. i repeat what i've said in the past: i DO NOT rototill when putting down sod. I DO NOT put down lime or fert. I DO NOT use topsoil, unless the present soil has a problem. I HAVE NEVER lost even one piece of sod, ever. the price for your job $4500.

Slcareco
11-15-2004, 07:27 PM
$4500?

Break your price down for me thanks DETAILS!

trying 2b organic
11-15-2004, 07:28 PM
bobby can u tell us what u do if someone has an existing lawn gone to crap and wants a new kick butt lawn instantly? ty

i.e. sod job where crappy lawn presently exists, can it be done without heavy equpment.

Lawn-Scapes
11-15-2004, 07:31 PM
look, do want you want. i am absolutely amazed at the people here and the way they prep an area. everyone loves to rototil. i think it's a waste of time and very uneccesary. i repeat what i've said in the past: i DO NOT rototill when putting down sod. I DO NOT put down lime or fert. I DO NOT use topsoil, unless the present soil has a problem. I HAVE NEVER lost even one piece of sod, ever. the price for your job $4500.

You're out of your mind! $4500 for just throwing 3000sf of sod down? How many sod jobs do you do per year?

Slcareco
11-15-2004, 07:35 PM
hahah thats what im saying mrs i dont rototill GO TO THE GYM and maybe it wont be extra work for yah tuff guy

bobbygedd
11-15-2004, 07:37 PM
roundup exsisting lawn. use thatcher to remove dead grass (one week later). minor grading with rake. prep + disposal= $750 . sod installed @ $1.25 per sq ft. my purchase price=16cents per sq ft.

paponte
11-15-2004, 07:57 PM
$390.00 profit for laying 5 pallets of sod? Are you out of your mind? I get at least $1.00 sqft for sod delivered and installed. That is with minimal prep. If you plan on tilling the whole yard (why I don't know) that would be all additional. If you are going to ask me how much sod we do a year next, we average over 20K sqft per season. :)

dvmcmrhp52
11-15-2004, 08:01 PM
$4500.00.
Only in NJ.
The rest of the world has a bit more reality attached to it..........................

bobbygedd
11-15-2004, 08:10 PM
yea, u huh, when you're only dating your sister, you don't need more than minimum wage

alpine692003
11-15-2004, 08:30 PM
Yah...

apply roundup, then go out and rent a power rake to rake up the dead grass ...

I use to rent a sod cutter and then dispose of it, costed too much $$$

bobbygedd
11-15-2004, 08:31 PM
is that the way they do it in japan

Ryan Lightning
11-15-2004, 08:41 PM
Ever see what happens when a guy trenchs sprinklers though a lawn, and doest rototil the rest?
There's really nice green strips where he trenched, because the sod will do alot better if you rototil. Ive seen lawns 6 months latter and the lawn still hasnt caught up to the areas that got trenched.

Smithers
11-15-2004, 09:00 PM
SLCARECO,

i would have to agree with paponte and bobbyged....

you are out of your mind for charging $390 over your cost for all day's (at least) of work.

I had to put down 400 sq. ft of sod and it wook me about 6 hrs with the prep time..
in detroit....it's about $1.5/sq. ft. you are in the country (seems like it), so there might be $1.25. and that includes everything....the prep, materials, equipment rental.

and dont even think about doing it alone...you will not be able to get out of bed the next day. your back will be killing you.

$390 profit for 3K yard.... :dizzy: :dizzy: :dizzy: :dizzy:

Smithers
11-15-2004, 09:01 PM
i have to say it again......

$390 profit for 3K yard......you are insane. what are you.....in highschool? you dont have any expenses?

hahahahahaha you are nuts.

Lawn-Scapes
11-15-2004, 10:32 PM
George.. I'm sorry but you have no business laughing or calling him nuts. He is here to learn.. as I'm sure you are too.

dvmcmrhp52
11-15-2004, 10:34 PM
George.. I'm sorry but you have no business laughing or calling him nuts. He is here to learn.. as I'm sure you are too.


I agree.
I don't hear anyone calling the Gedd nuts for pricing it at $4500....................

Lawn-Scapes
11-15-2004, 10:39 PM
Isn't saying.. "You're out of your mind" the same as nuts? :)

dvmcmrhp52
11-15-2004, 10:41 PM
Isn't saying.. "You're out of your mind" the same as nuts? :)




Uhh............I suppose...................... :drinkup:

impactlandscaping
11-15-2004, 10:50 PM
He's looking for some guidance and experience here...not to solicit insults..As I recall in an earlier thread, someone here REALLY under priced a leaf cleanup that many people thought was nuts, too..' nuff said? Cut the kid a little slack..

dvmcmrhp52
11-15-2004, 10:59 PM
He's looking for some guidance and experience here...not to solicit insults..As I recall in an earlier thread, someone here REALLY under priced a leaf cleanup that many people thought was nuts, too..' nuff said? Cut the kid a little slack..





Yup.
I am giving some thought to your PM of earlier...........
You're about 300 miles away................
I'll let you know............

Kelly's Landscaping
11-15-2004, 11:31 PM
I have a job to install sod for 3000 sqft lawn and tell me if my pricings wrong:

$0.43/sq ft = 1290 (I get it for .30 so 900) - 900 = $390 (profit)
+$75.00 tiller rental
+$50.00 roller rental
+$15.00 pH test

= $1430.00-$390.00(profit) = $1040.00 (in reality what there paying)

Am I too high too low? Should I charge just .43 for the whole job and let it include the rental fees and stuff? Let me know Thanks!


That price is insane I would go from your .13 a foot to .25 a foot for starters and I have found that to be to cheap on many of my jobs. Next prep work you listed rental prices do they run them selves I see no prep work included in that price. First your going to till it not my choice but fine how many hours will that take you. You will need to go over this many times so figure 4-5 hours. I know I would want to be paid for my time so tac on 40-50 an hour for tilling time. Next grading when your done its not going to be flat so you will need to rake it out this can take several hours to get right as well you guessed it 40-50 an hour for grading time. You will probaly have quite a load of rocks and roots and sod you need to dump is that free doesn't matter charge them any ways. Personaly I prefer to bring in top soil as it's easier to work with but to each their own. But this job should be 2500-3500 not 1400 you will lose your shirt with that price.

Smithers
11-16-2004, 08:24 AM
slcareco/all

I am sorry. i was out of line. I just looked at your profile and saw that you areo only 18, and that explains why you are bidding only $1040. You dont really have any other expenses like a house, car (maybe), lots of equipment, etc.

Anyway, sorry about me laughing, but i really hope that you will take my (out of line) and other's advice and price the job higher.

I was trying to point out that you will work all day or two (depending on how many helpers you have), and you will make only $300 or so. not knowing what might go wrong. You might realize that it is impossible to rototill the whole thing (if you do it), and might need to go rent something bigger. Your profit goes out the door.

Anyway, good luck and i hope you get the job and make a good chunk of money.

Impact landscaping, you are right...I underbit severely on my first job, posted the thread and took as much critisism as it was provided along with the helpful advice. I learn from other people's criticism. I feel that that's the only way to get better in everything i do. However, i realize that other people are different and I should not have made fun of the guy.

Tom, I agree with you. I have a lot to learn from you and everyone on lawn site.

Again, i am sorry for being so rude and hope i did not offend anyone. :angel:

Slcareco
11-16-2004, 08:36 AM
I respect that and yes im only just started and im here to learn from those who have been doing it for so long thanks and and thanks lawnscape for stickin up for me!

Slcareco
11-16-2004, 08:55 AM
So overall everyones saying $1.00-$1.50 /sq ft ??? Which includes labor, material and all?

And this goes for anysize 1,000-2,000 sq ft - 40,000 sq ft + ??

Smithers
11-16-2004, 09:52 AM
Slcareco,

Just like with anything else, the bigger the property, the more you will reduce the price. I mean, if you charge $1.5 per sq. ft for a 3K job, you might want to charge $1.20 for a 10K sq. ft. job. If you get a 100K job, and have the equipment, you might charge $1.00 or a little less. Otherwise the customer will end up paying fortune.

And besides, the biggest expense in our business besides labor is the time it takes to get the equipment out there...once there, it makes a little difference if you are working on 1K yard or 1.5K sq. ft.

Just like the grocery stores....if you buy 1 item, it might be $3. but if you buy 2, it might be $5. That is the basic principle in accounting. Once the machinary starts to produce the end item, it is cheaper the more items are produced.

hope this helps.

Slcareco
11-16-2004, 11:44 AM
Yes and no, I mean the price boggles me if i was the guy on the other end wanting my yard to have sod installed and it was about 100,000 sqft and the landscaper gives me an estimate of $100,000 dollars? I'd tell to go f em self and just do it myself thats something landscape arcitects make maybe idk it doesnt add up, i might be wrong i mean i just started and im not informed with the whole pricing yet but idk thats alot hell id love to take on the job and go home with a nice profit but is that right?? $100,000??

Smithers
11-16-2004, 01:13 PM
i agree with you...that's a lot of money. and to me....i can't even understand how people can pay me $3,000 to plant 10 plants and a tree or even cut their grass for $20. but people are different. what is easy or hard for you might not be easy for others....

you have to tell them (and has always helped me get the job) that they can pay a fraction of the job if they seed it instead of sodding. But, they will not have a nice lush lawn the same afternoon. INstead, they will have to wait months for the grass to grow, and maybe 2-3 years to get a nice lush lawn.

I'd never sod, if it was up to me. I'd always seed....less cutting on their part and much, much cheaper.

But you will find that most people are impatient and dont want to wait for the grass to start growing. they want a lawn and they want it NOW. not tomorrow or the next day.

So, they pay money to get it. You can't break your back installing sod at a very cheap price, just to make them happy. Always remember....you will do a better job if you are paid correctly. Otherwise, you will think of that small $390 profit that you have been working 8 hours for and are not even done.

Many people dont have the time, energy or the know-how to install sod, and that's why they are paying the big bucks to get it.

Just remember....dress nicely, have a written contract, be honest and treat them like you want to be treated. And always....offer them an alternative. This really shows that you care what they are getting or you care for the job if you show interest and offer an alternative.

I will give you an example. I just gave an estimate for a leaf cleanup. The guy had a small gate - 36". i have a 44" mower. I offered him to call a few locals and get his gate enlarged. he thought it was a GREAT idea, although he had to pay another $350 on top of the $150 i was getting paid.

I am sure he will call me again next year becuase i showed i cared for HIS yard. people like the personal service.....not a conveyer/ meat market type of service that Tru Green does.

Lawn-Scapes
11-16-2004, 03:26 PM
Slcareco.. Call your local sod farm and ask them if they know what the going rate is for install.

Slcareco
11-16-2004, 05:03 PM
Petrentz thanks for the good information it helps alot! you by any chance have a yahoo ID or AIM sn? thats if your willing, your a great help! and as a beginner i have plenty of ques

dvmcmrhp52
11-16-2004, 06:13 PM
slcareco/all
.
Anyway, sorry about me laughing, but i really hope that you will take my (out of line) and other's advice and price the job higher.

Again, i am sorry for being so rude and hope i did not offend anyone. :angel:




It takes a good man to humble himself.
You've earned some respect.

fga
11-16-2004, 06:29 PM
Too low.. I would ask around $2500.00 for that size job. No tilling.. just bring in necessary topsoil and lay sod.
i agree. scalp it low, add soil as top dressing, lay sod.

.43 a square foot installed? here we average $1.25 - $1.50 a square foot installed, and that in the middle of the general pricing range. i did a small curb earlier in the year, charged 3 a foot.for a job the size of what you're describing... i would do it for a dollar a foot, due to the amount. i get it for about .22, up to .30 a square foot.

$3000 total for sod with install
- $900 sod cost (.30 x 3000)
$2100 profit, not including any soil or fertilizer.

thinking about it, the farms in jersey will delivery it right to me for .11 if the order is 3000 or more... payup smaller then that, i have to go throuh the local nursey.

bobbygedd
11-16-2004, 06:33 PM
It takes a good man to humble himself.
You've earned some respect.
or it could be judged as a sign of weakness

dvmcmrhp52
11-16-2004, 06:42 PM
or it could be judged as a sign of weakness





To people of wisdom it is not, it is a sign of strength my friend.
Being able to accept and identify ones' falacies is the begining of wisdom.....................

bobbygedd
11-16-2004, 06:43 PM
well, at least i'm your friend, now, i can sleep tonight

Smithers
11-16-2004, 07:03 PM
I know that for most people it's a sign of weakness (just like Bobby thinks), but i have no problem admiting i made a mistake when i actually did. I believe that it shows that someone cares when he/she does. I respect all of you and would never jeopardize my computer friendship with any of you . I can most likely learn more from you than you can learn from me and that is really important to me.
questions/comments are always welcome.

daveyo
11-16-2004, 07:30 PM
In southern NJ I usually go with the fescue mix. 48% tttf, 28% chewing fescue some creeping fescue and about 9% perennial rye. that will cost me .15 a square. 3000 sq. that will cost $450 if delivered its extra, so calculate that, it'll be about $75-$100 for 3000sq. sod delivered approx.$525 not inc. tax. labor for 3000 sq. about 4hrs with 4-5 guys, calculate your labor. for me 40x4 = 160. lime, fert included if nec, no big deal for 3000. for us $2500 would do the job nicely. 2500-450 and 160 labor that would net $1890 minus the fert and lime I use if nec. Any prep work, rental of grader or top soil is all extra. if you think the soil needs ammending for any reason then add and grade. fyi using a tiller on 3000 is a ton of work, especially with existing weeds and grass.


O'Donnell L/S

YardPro
11-20-2004, 08:50 AM
Yes and no, I mean the price boggles me if i was the guy on the other end wanting my yard to have sod installed and it was about 100,000 sqft and the landscaper gives me an estimate of $100,000 dollars? I'd tell to go f em self and just do it myself thats something landscape arcitects make maybe idk it doesnt add up, i might be wrong i mean i just started and im not informed with the whole pricing yet but idk thats alot hell id love to take on the job and go home with a nice profit but is that right?? $100,000??


then after the third or fourth guy quoted the same price you'd realize that it's expensive, period

obviously you have never done large prep/sod jobs before
also as someone else noted, as the sq feet go up the price/sqft will drop

and also no wat you'd prep and sod a 2.5 acre area by yourself.

just the laying would take you
about a month
the prep would take 3-4 times as long

BayshoreLandscapingInc.
04-12-2005, 06:30 PM
Just to throw another one at you guys........ A new customer wishes to have approx 10,000 sq ft sodded, He will take care of all prep work, All I have to do produce the sod lay it and roll out, give me a ball park for this one, I have never bother with sod before, I have a hydro seeding preference

Smithers
04-12-2005, 07:25 PM
Just to throw another one at you guys........ A new customer wishes to have approx 10,000 sq ft sodded, He will take care of all prep work, All I have to do produce the sod lay it and roll out, give me a ball park for this one, I have never bother with sod before, I have a hydro seeding preference
my price would be about $1800.

depending on bad i wanted the job....i'd say at LEAST 4K. but if he will do everything...maybe a little less.

Lawn-Scapes
04-12-2005, 08:12 PM
$5000.00 - $6000.00

Precision
04-12-2005, 09:53 PM
$275 per pallet or 400 sq ft delivered and thrown. any soil amendments or prep is extra.
cost per pallet delivered is $95 plus (single) delivery fee of $20