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  #1  
Old 09-26-2007, 04:26 AM
Fred Garvin Fred Garvin is offline
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Estimating leaf removal

This is my first year doing leaf work. I'm going to meet with a potential new customer today. I have already told him it will be $50 per hour. He is still willing to talk, so that is a good thing. However, I know he is still going to want some idea of how long it will take. Is it safe to say if you can mow an acre an hour you can do an acre of leaves in two hours? Am I being to optimistic? This job has I'm guessing about three acres and three houses on it. When I meet with him today I'll walk the property off with my gps to see for sure how many acres it is.

I'll be using a 52 inch ztr with a 16 cubic ft colletor.

Thanks for your input.
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  #2  
Old 09-26-2007, 07:56 AM
brinlee lawn brinlee lawn is offline
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whatever you estimate double it. nothing like a good rain to spoil your profit.
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  #3  
Old 09-26-2007, 09:33 AM
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zim bob the landscaper zim bob the landscaper is offline
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also are you removing all the leaves? do you have a leaf box and loader?
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  #4  
Old 09-26-2007, 04:35 PM
Fred Garvin Fred Garvin is offline
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box

I have a 16ft. trailer with rolling box on it. The box is 8ft long and 4ft high. Only the front 4ft of the box has a floor. It is my own little invention. I have yet to try it, it may not work. If it don't I have a back up plan. I have a place to dump the leaves for free and it is on my way home.

I met with the property owner today. I can tell he is wanting some kind of estimate other than $50 per hour. I walked it off with the gps. There is 1.43 acres. Several HUGE oak trees. I'm thinking about bidding it $380. (I know I shouldn't't be giving a bid on leaves ) That is 7 hours for me at $50 per hour and hiring someone to do all the blowing and raking for two hours at $15 per hour.

Am I anywhere close?
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  #5  
Old 09-26-2007, 04:58 PM
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All_Toro_4ME All_Toro_4ME is offline
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Free Bump as I'm interested in this thread as well. I'll be tackling the leaves for the first time this fall also.
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  #6  
Old 09-26-2007, 05:12 PM
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EagleLandscape EagleLandscape is offline
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i never give an estimate for leaves that havent fallen. made that mistake once, wont do it again.
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  #7  
Old 09-26-2007, 05:22 PM
Fred Garvin Fred Garvin is offline
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more info

He has it done once at the end of the season.
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  #8  
Old 09-26-2007, 05:57 PM
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lifetree lifetree is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jwingfield2k View Post
i never give an estimate for leaves that havent fallen. made that mistake once, wont do it again.
Excellent point for warning !!
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  #9  
Old 09-26-2007, 09:08 PM
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gene gls gene gls is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fred Garvin View Post
I have a 16ft. trailer with rolling box on it. The box is 8ft long and 4ft high. Only the front 4ft of the box has a floor. It is my own little invention. I have yet to try it, it may not work. If it don't I have a back up plan. I have a place to dump the leaves for free and it is on my way home.

I met with the property owner today. I can tell he is wanting some kind of estimate other than $50 per hour. I walked it off with the gps. There is 1.43 acres. Several HUGE oak trees. I'm thinking about bidding it $380. (I know I shouldn't't be giving a bid on leaves ) That is 7 hours for me at $50 per hour and hiring someone to do all the blowing and raking for two hours at $15 per hour.

Am I anywhere close?
Your price is in the ball park. Did you consider how many leaves will blow onto that property from the surounding area when the high winds kick in? As you work your areas on a weekly basis, keep in mind of how and where the strong winds blow all the junk durning the year. It makes it easier for you at pricing fall cleanups in the future. I price all my regular customers fall cleanups in March when I send out the new contracts. The properties that I know will get strong wind will get a higher quote for fall cleanup. Its easier to drop the price some if you end up with an easy job.
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  #10  
Old 09-27-2007, 11:20 AM
Fred Garvin Fred Garvin is offline
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Didn't get it

I called this morning and bid the job at $380. I told him if it took less time than I thought I would adjust the price accordingly. He said he couldn't afford it. He acted like I was not even close to the price he has been paying. Here is the good part. He has been using one of the bigger LCOs in the area. They usually spend the afternoon on his property running two mowers and sometimes a third man running a leaf loader. Is this company working for free?

I feel pretty confident in the price I gave. It also feels nice to know that I won't be wearing out me and my equipment on a big job for peanuts.
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