View Full Version : need help with this estimate

02-01-2001, 02:40 AM
hi all, gave an estimate today on a full service contract, and really need your opinions on what u would charge. the setting is upper middle class residential smack in the middle of my service area. thought i gave a better than fair price but the guy flipped when he heard it, he insists he wants me cus hes a referel and heard i do a nice job, but can i come down on the price. here it is: 28 cuts, weedwacking around pool, ans along both sides of fence surrounding the whole property, i am solo, and with a 36, whole deal takes me about 35 min, also bag and dispose clippings. one trim job, takes about and hour and a half, spring cleanup and disposal, takes about an hour, and not much disposal, fert program, about 3500 sq. ft. 2 preemergence, 2 weed control, 5 fert apps, one grub and one lime. fall cleanup, take about 2 hrs, and fill my 8 ft bed after being ground up, oh yea, and also edge walkways every other visit. id love to hear what u guys would charge for the season, and maybe print it and show him, thanks a million, bob

02-01-2001, 03:13 AM
yes kirby, i did post it twice, didnt think the first one went through, thanks

02-01-2001, 03:59 AM
Where is your location ?

It would help if you updated your profile.

02-01-2001, 04:39 AM
Depending on where you are located and what type of grass involved, edging every other week my not be doing you any favors. Easier to maintain if you stay on top of the edging.

Is the entire lawn 3500 sq ft?

What is the size of the entire lawn?

Will it take 1.5 hrs everytime you trim or just spring cleanup?

How many trees (make a difference on leaf job $$)?

Cost of disposal?

02-01-2001, 06:29 AM
Hold the fort! One question is why come DOWN in price are you going to do less work for less $$$ or the same job for less money. Need more info

02-01-2001, 08:02 AM

Maybe try pricing just the mowing and tell him it will save him money if he requests the other services as needed, or at your prompting when you see they need to be done. I'dfigure the mowing price slightly higher in case this guy decides he doesn't want any "add ons." That way, it is still worth your while.

The guy will likely find that more satisfactory (because of the psychological value of that lower price) and you will be able to get paid for what work you do rather than doing more for less.

If his lawn looks to have been neglected, my suggestion is probably worthless and you'd be best to find another customer if his lawn looks bad in an upscale neighborhood<b> and</b> he is unwilling to pay for you to keep it up to the standards of the neighborhood.

I'm not sure about your location, but where I am at we mow from April 1 - October 31. We have about 28 weeks possible to mow. Irrigated accounts are figured at 28 cuts. Non irrigated are figured anywhere from 22-28 depending on customer requirements and a couple of personal factors. (How badly do I want the account, my perception of direct competition for the bid,etc.)

However, I always give a monthly price based on at least 7 months of service. Once you get the knack for monthly pricing, you will never want your whole client base to go back to per cut pricing, I'll guarantee you. I do some per cut, some seven mont and some yearly. This seaon I am using three year contracts for most of my work.

Never let it be said I am a man of few words! I hope I said something you find valuable. :D

02-01-2001, 09:56 AM
i am located in central nj. i am not saying i will come down on my price, just want some input. as far as the edging of walkways, i have found this is best to do every other week, every week causes browning of the edge. the front yard is a strait cut, and the back has some obsticals(small island, swimming pool, deck). the trimming of bushes will be once a season at about an hour and a half with about 5 or 6 large barrels of disposal, the spring cleanup about the same, and i told u the rest. the lawn is not in completly horrible shape, just discolored with alot of weeds.the fert will be about 3000-3500sq ft. i know its hard to estimate without looking, but based on this would u guys please give me a few estimates. the reason i ask is cus he showed me his contract with his last guy(who he said he was very unhappy with) and i thought the price was very low. thanks

02-01-2001, 02:00 PM

02-01-2001, 02:23 PM
Mowing: $88 monthly/$616 season
Shearing: $110
Spring Clean-Up: $125
Fert./WC/IC (5 apps): $147.50
G-C: $40
Lime: $30
Fall Clean-Up: $187.50

double e
02-01-2001, 03:53 PM
One thing that makes me feel good is when a person wants something done cheaper, I get tell them I can't come down and if they change their mind give me a call. 20% call back.

It makes me feel good I didn't lower my price for someone.
I want to make what I am worth- which is reasonable.

when I first started I did lower my prices, but needed the work. Now that I am busy, I'm not going to do a yard for nothing.(And hate pulling up to it every week to cut it)

02-02-2001, 01:40 AM
thanks for the response guys, but id really like more estimates. ok homer, the other guy gave it awat at $1040 for the whole season, and i see y he didnt see it fit to show up like he should have. i estimated it at $1300 for the season, and thought i was kinda low, but really wanted the job. he asked me to come down on price, said i would try, by eliminating some of the service, not lower the prices, i didnt call him back, he left a message for me today. thanks guys

02-02-2001, 02:04 AM
$135 per month, 12 months.

02-02-2001, 02:14 AM
$1,675 for the year.
added xtra for bagging.

$1,535 if I could mulch and not bag.

1st impressions
02-02-2001, 09:16 AM
Are the 2 pre-m apps separate or part of the 5 fertilization
program? If not, then why not?

1) 28 cuts at $28per= $784

2) 5 apps of fertilizer= $150

3) 2 separate apps of weed control= $60

4) grub control= $40

5) lime= $35

6) spring clean-up= $60

7) bush trimming= $60

8) fall clean-up= $100

TOTAL: $1289

02-02-2001, 12:13 PM
wow, a couple of u guys come up a little lower than me, two preemergence r part of the 5 step":#1 pre+fert, #2 weed+fert#3pre+fert, #4 weed+fert, #5fert, then grub, and fall lime. thanx for the pricing guys, i just knew that nobody was gonna go as low as "the last guy", which was $1040. well, i got a call from him this morning saying that he wants me to go ahead with it, glad i didnt give in. thanks for the input, ant further comments r appreciated. BOB

Strawbridge Lawn
02-02-2001, 01:45 PM
Bobby, 3,500 square feet is a pretty small area so material/labor cost for all fert/herb/insec treatments will be minimal. Not sure you need to apply all those treatments so I rec a soil test. My minimum charge for
that type of service is 100.00 p/mo but the properties contain approx 5-12 K sq feet of yard. I would consider between 90-100 p/month p 12 months.

02-02-2001, 01:58 PM
Just a rule of thumb I use: If the last contractor could not do a satisfactory job at his price, neither can I. A slight increase in price is in order. I think this really breaks a good customer of the habit of looking for a better price. Once they see you are doing an excellent job, they figure they got what they paid for. It reinforces that others that give lower bids likely won't cut the mustard.

If we make their lives easier, they will look elsewhere when budget cuts must be made. That applies to commercial and residential customers. Even res customers get to enjoying the added time they have when they don't have to work in the yard to have it looking top notch. Unless they have a financial catastropy, you should have some job security 90% of the time.

Bobby-I'm glad everything worked out for you on that! I think you would have been unhappy doing that job for the same price as the last guy. If nothing else it is a psychological boost to know you are making more than the last guy. Even if it is $5 more, you are being rewarded for a quality job. Everyone wants to feel appreciated and there is nothing like a few bucks extra to show that appreciation. :)

[Edited by Greenman2ooo on 02-02-2001 at 01:08 PM]