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  #11  
Old 12-28-2001, 12:50 PM
Kent Lawns Kent Lawns is offline
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Re: Do all estimates have to be free?

Quote:
Originally posted by gkell88
we will provide a very detailed estimate. Full of valuable information.(we are an App. company

Have any of you ever tried something like this? What do you think? Is it possible to make it work?

I appreciate your input.
We offer this:

Option 1: Standard weed & feed program: free estimate based on sf.

Option 2: Lawn inspection: Includes visual inspection, soil probe, core sampling & lab analysis, interpretation of analysis, recomendations and prices.
Cost $55.00
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  #12  
Old 12-29-2001, 09:31 AM
kris kris is offline
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I'll do maintenance estimates for free.
Anyone interested in construction is referred to our design department. They charge a consultation fee ( hourly ) and have for the most part , set fees for drawings.

The odd time I will quote for free on small installs.eg...3 caliper trees .

The worst people I found(and never got any of the work) were ones looking for written quotes for their insurance companys because of damage.. one last year...house burnt down so shrubs etc were toast ...another...kid drove his car over the lady's lawn.. I charged them for the estimate.
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  #13  
Old 12-29-2001, 09:54 AM
Lanelle Lanelle is offline
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Quotes for insurance claims should not be free. You are providng a business service. Also, be careful when trying to place a value on a destroyed tree. There is a very involved 'science' in doing professional tree valuation that is outside the realm of most people's knowledge and experience. Also, the chances of getting the quoted work is very low. Most people want the highest estimates possible and then don't have any work done (pocketing the money) or go with a low-ball solution (pocketing most of the money).
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  #14  
Old 12-29-2001, 10:02 AM
kris kris is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lanelle
Also, be careful when trying to place a value on a destroyed tree. There is a very involved 'science' in doing professional tree valuation that is outside the realm of most people's knowledge and experience
Yes Lanelle and it is ouside the realm of my experience. What I did last year was told them that all I could do was offer a quote on the largest caliper tree that we could plant for them ... I know this wasn't the true value of this tree.
Can you share any insight on this process?
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  #15  
Old 12-30-2001, 01:42 AM
LAWNGODFATHER LAWNGODFATHER is offline
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Charging a fee for soft services will not only cut out the price shoppers , but also 95% of the non price shoppers.

Like Kent Lawns said:
Quote:
Lawn inspection: Includes visual inspection, soil probe, core sampling & lab analysis, interpretation of analysis, recomendations and prices. Cost $55.00
That would be acceptable.

But for hard services, an estamte or consultasion fee should be introduced. Nothing like spending 1/2 hour to 45 min. to price a job you know you wont get.

BTW I wont bid INS. claim jobs without having customer sign a contract before a bid is given. You would be surprised at how many will sign it. You are letting good money fly away without doing so.
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  #16  
Old 12-30-2001, 08:07 AM
kris kris is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by LAWNGODFATHER
BTW I wont bid INS. claim jobs without having customer sign a contract before a bid is given. You would be surprised at how many will sign it. You are letting good money fly away without doing so.
Im sorry LGF I don't quite understand what you are saying.
What exactly does this contract say?
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  #17  
Old 12-30-2001, 03:17 PM
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bob bob is offline
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In a related note, my friend was in need of a tenent for his rental house. He charged a $25 rental application fee. This keep out the rif-raf and window shoppers. I don't think in the Green Industry you would be able to practice this.
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  #18  
Old 12-30-2001, 03:47 PM
Lanelle Lanelle is offline
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I think part of the reason there is so much variance of opinion on this topic is the wide array of services that we are talking about here. Some are quoting lawn services and others are doing landscape designs---big difference in time investment on the part of the estimator. I will have to do some research about the training for tree valuation. Possibly ISA has info on this. I just know that when I listened to an expert explain the procedure, it was similar to having an appraisal done on a house. Lots of factors go into the final number.
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  #19  
Old 12-30-2001, 05:05 PM
kris kris is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lanelle
I will have to do some research about the training for tree valuation.
Lanelle ,

Please don't go to any trouble over this ... The Customer was satisfied with the way I did the estimate as was the insurance company. It is the first and only time I have run into this. Im sure you are right that many factors go into a tree valuation .. I betcha even sentimental value comes into this... you know... my daughter planted that tree when she was 4 years old.

I have wasted many a 1/2 hours giving maintenance quotes...I feel it is much differant than Landscaping and harder to demand a fee for it....Landscape side, for starters ....there is a 2 hour consultation fee min. For that they get a rough, not to scale sketch and shoot the breeze answering questions and giving suggestions.... If they want a drawing, they start around $600.00.

Lanelle, can you share how the design end works where you are?
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  #20  
Old 12-30-2001, 06:14 PM
LAWNGODFATHER LAWNGODFATHER is offline
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Kris, I know a roofer that based their entire biz on ins. claims. The customer signs a contract stating that the bidder is the contractor performing the job minus deductable.

So i thought the same when bidding ins. claims. That's how I do them. Customer signs a conract that when ins. co. pays claim that the work will be perfomed by us.

This way when a detailed bid is given to submit to ins. co. the money doesn't get "pocketed" and you didn't waiste your time bidding a job you knew you were not going to get. This is one sure fire way to weed out the "pocketers" on ins. claims.

As Lanelle said:
Quote:
Quotes for insurance claims should not be free. You are providng a business service.
I don't get very many, but it does garuntee that if I was to bid it, it gets done, and we do it.
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