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  #21  
Old 11-21-2013, 08:19 PM
AWJ Services AWJ Services is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YellowDogSVC View Post
Do you have a handle on operating costs for your mulcher (teeth, hoses, etc.) to figure into the total operating costs? Took me awhile to get an idea of how long teeth last and now I can plan for that in my day price (or hour price if you look at it like that). I sat down and tried to figure out everything from fuel to teeth to tires, to hoses and then put my haul truck into the mix, too. While it's not exactly what KSSS posted from the article, it encompasses everything I could think of within my daily operating cost. If you are getting good life out of your teeth or blades, then it will help you put more away from each job. One set of teeth for me is about 2500 to 3k depending on the setup.
I am in the same boat as you where in figuring operating costs. I relied on the mulcher manufacturer for guidiance but ultimatley I will have too figure it out for myself.


I purchased an extra set of teeth when I bought the head so I have them. The teeth can be turned 4 times during ther life. The oem says about 300 hours out of teeth but I am over 100 and have not turned them yet. A set of teeth are about 1000.00.
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  #22  
Old 11-22-2013, 11:30 AM
jmacd jmacd is offline
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If your work entails one piece of equipment than maybe by the hour can work.

For us we are using everything from dump truck, skid steer, dozer, excavator, roller, attachments, hand tools ect. so I try to use a daily rate for the whole company and all of the assets available including labor. Then add in material. IMHO
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  #23  
Old 11-22-2013, 12:43 PM
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ksss ksss is offline
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Originally Posted by Construct'O View Post
Just 5 bucks difference in the SS and the CTL.Management must be getting better with age.Are you sure you have the right cost per hour right on the CTL????

I forgot it's not a Cat right,still can't be right it got those evil tracks right!!!!

Well I am figuring $5.00 for wear and tear on the CTL. The wheeled and CTL were about the same purchase price, and the CTL uses less fuel than the big wheeled machine. Hopefully the CTL does not exceed my budget, so far I think I am ok, 600 hours and tracks and undercarriage look real good. I charge a mobilization fee, amount depends on where we are working.
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  #24  
Old 11-22-2013, 01:56 PM
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stuvecorp stuvecorp is offline
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Shane, do you think it(comfort) would be better if your 465 was a S3 machine?

I hate it but everyone always wants an hourly number and the 440 w/VTS is too productive to go hourly. I do like to get $90-100 for it in my mind. I end up a lot of times using an 'allowance' on jobs for hauling it in having it on the job. The scary thing is only putting 75 hours on the 440 this season.
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  #25  
Old 11-22-2013, 02:47 PM
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YellowDogSVC YellowDogSVC is online now
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I get a lot of calls asking what my hourly charge is.
I put in 9.5 hours yesterday, including hauling, for $900 running a tree shear and a grapple but just had a day price out of an overall estimate for entire job. I cleared and stacked A LOT of trees. For whatever reason, I always hate billing folks for that kind of money for just a day's work clearing because it's easy work for me when I've got the energy. When I look back at what was accomplished and compare that to other contractor's work (I'm going back to chip and mulch so all piles are clean and organized) I feel a little better. It just seems like a lot of money but not when you see the breakdowns of ownership costs everyone is listing.

I guess if I was the customer, organization and a clean job adds value to the service but sometimes when I'm writing the statement I feel like I have to explain why this work is so expensive. My customer asked me how much my machine runs... He couldn't believe how much a machine that can mulch costs.
It's expensive to be in business if you follow the "rules" and take care of your equipment so I guess I'm talking to myself when I say "don't feel bad for charging what you do".
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  #26  
Old 11-22-2013, 04:24 PM
jmacd jmacd is offline
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yellowdog,
Never feel bad charging what you feel is necessary price to make a profit. The market will determine if your pricing is to high anyways.

Pricing is more of an art than a science, takes a lot of experience to get a feel for what everything is worth and every situation is different.
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  #27  
Old 11-22-2013, 06:20 PM
AWJ Services AWJ Services is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YellowDogSVC View Post
I get a lot of calls asking what my hourly charge is.
I put in 9.5 hours yesterday, including hauling, for $900 running a tree shear and a grapple but just had a day price out of an overall estimate for entire job. I cleared and stacked A LOT of trees. For whatever reason, I always hate billing folks for that kind of money for just a day's work clearing because it's easy work for me when I've got the energy. When I look back at what was accomplished and compare that to other contractor's work (I'm going back to chip and mulch so all piles are clean and organized) I feel a little better. It just seems like a lot of money but not when you see the breakdowns of ownership costs everyone is listing.

I guess if I was the customer, organization and a clean job adds value to the service but sometimes when I'm writing the statement I feel like I have to explain why this work is so expensive. My customer asked me how much my machine runs... He couldn't believe how much a machine that can mulch costs.
It's expensive to be in business if you follow the "rules" and take care of your equipment so I guess I'm talking to myself when I say "don't feel bad for charging what you do".
I am the same way when I charge out jobs. I always think I am charging too much. LOL When you work for homeowners and property owners it makes you think this way. In my opinion if your a good steward of your customers money they will be good steward for your well being finacially.
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  #28  
Old 11-22-2013, 06:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmacd View Post
yellowdog,
Never feel bad charging what you feel is necessary price to make a profit. The market will determine if your pricing is to high anyways.

Pricing is more of an art than a science, takes a lot of experience to get a feel for what everything is worth and every situation is different.
Well said.

I have a saying " Pay me till it hurts just a little"
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  #29  
Old 11-22-2013, 07:01 PM
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YellowDogSVC YellowDogSVC is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmacd View Post
yellowdog,
Never feel bad charging what you feel is necessary price to make a profit. The market will determine if your pricing is to high anyways.

Pricing is more of an art than a science, takes a lot of experience to get a feel for what everything is worth and every situation is different.
I picked up a book called "thou shall prosper" by Rabbi Daniel Lapin that is about the Jewish business acumen and history of profit making and why it's not bad to be reimbursed for your time, efforts, and talents. It's a tough read but has a lot of good moral advice.
It's hard to make a living if you give away your time and talents or don't charge enough when your underlying costs are already approaching $75/hour before you leave the yard. Even for someone with the heart of a helper, your skills are worth something but you have to know where to start and that starts with knowing your costs.

It took me a long, long time to get a handle on costs. Some of it was guess work, some of it was the stark reality of the end of the year report and some of it was costs divided by time. As a small company with a lot of different services and several different types of machines, it can be a challenge to set prices. I hated accounting in college and utilize a good accountant for the hard stuff but he doesn't help me figure out what I need to charge. That takes practice and I'm still learning after almost 20 years.
What I settled on for the most part is tiered pricing. Having three tiers (general dirt work/clearing, high flow attachments, road work) is simpler to me than having prices for everything little thing I do. My customers don't always get to know what my pricing schedule is, though, because I do "by the job" work but it helps me figure out what I need to make on each of those bids and if there was a question, I can quickly show a discerning client how I arrived at the number.

Experience helps make me a little more accurate than I used to be but we all know that it's easy to under bid a large job or a difficult job. Having a handle on costs helps. You replace enough couplers and hoses and you can start to anticipate extra costs and you can build that into your cost of ownership and start to build your own price schedule. Like I said, it takes awhile to get it right and I still don't feel like I am making a good living when things are slow and repair bills are high.

For those young guys who are struggling to price work and still feed their families, take note on what we've been talking about here and know your costs of operating. A shiny new machine with a shiny new payment is the industry standard these days but that payment is only the tip of a very big iceberg and if you aren't careful, it will sink you... forgive my Titanic reference and long post!
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  #30  
Old 11-24-2013, 02:07 PM
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ksss ksss is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stuvecorp View Post
Shane, do you think it(comfort) would be better if your 465 was a S3 machine?

I hate it but everyone always wants an hourly number and the 440 w/VTS is too productive to go hourly. I do like to get $90-100 for it in my mind. I end up a lot of times using an 'allowance' on jobs for hauling it in having it on the job. The scary thing is only putting 75 hours on the 440 this season.
If I had a 465-S3 it would be a nonissue I believe.
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