Advice Please...

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by Stars & Stripes Landscaping, Aug 10, 2013.

  1. Stars & Stripes Landscaping

    Stars & Stripes Landscaping LawnSite Member
    from CT
    Posts: 246

    Alright so I'm not planning on starting my company up till next year (2014), I have a coworker who approached me who just purchased a flip house and is looking to see if I would be willing to level and top dress the back yard. This is the deal...

    I want the job, I want the experience and I want to money but the bottom line is, I have no idea how to quote the job, nor do I have the equipment so I am considering subbing (if that's the right word?) out ot my buddy... The way I want to put it to him is, we do it together he shows me the ropes on the job and we both make some money. What would be the best way to go about doing that? It's looking like it's going to be a 67 yard topsoil job.... Should I just quote it myself, rent the equip and go about it?
     
  2. 123hotdog

    123hotdog LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 481

    You are doing the right thing by asking questions on here. If I were you I would use this site, youtube , and google, as well as any other avenue you can think of to educate yourself. I have ventured into many things in this industry that I have never done before. Be prepared to loose money on something you do for the first time.
     
  3. Stars & Stripes Landscaping

    Stars & Stripes Landscaping LawnSite Member
    from CT
    Posts: 246

    I guess that's why I'm considering subbing it out to him, I just am unsure on the right steps to take to make sure I am maxing out my profit... I usually work for him at $15 an hour while mowing but if I'm getting this big of a job, I would expect more depending on the profit margin. The job is for a friend, so I think he would be understanding.
     
  4. Vecchio Lawn Care

    Vecchio Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 905

    Ask your buddy if you have him the job and he quoted and got it if he could pay you for a finders fed plus hourly wage. If you don't have experience with the type of work you are better off working for someone who does until you are comfortable doing it yourself. Also ask him if he can show you how he estimates that kind of job.
     
  5. Stars & Stripes Landscaping

    Stars & Stripes Landscaping LawnSite Member
    from CT
    Posts: 246

    Yeah, I contacted him - we chatted a bit about it and finally I asked him and he said he would have no problem working with me from quote to install on the job. My only concern is now the money...what do you charge for a finders fee? How do you determine what you should make from the job? I'm not trying to step on his toes, but I'm not trying to work for the same rate as mowing for a job this size.
     
  6. CowboysLawnCareDelaware

    CowboysLawnCareDelaware LawnSite Senior Member
    from DE
    Posts: 555

    6 to 7 or 67 yards?? I will drive up for that job, I charged $150 a yard for a 3 yard job last week. Made $115 an hour (3 hours), took the afternoon off.

    Michael
     
  7. Stars & Stripes Landscaping

    Stars & Stripes Landscaping LawnSite Member
    from CT
    Posts: 246

    Math was a little off, it's going to be around 40 cubic yards of topsoil and about 23 cubic yards of fill. Below is my latest issue...


    So I contacted my buddy who owns a landscaping business, he was all game to help me, walk me through the process and make some money out of the deal which I have no problem with. Well, the guy who wants the quote from me - also wants the quote from him. Not sure how to handle it, do I contact my other friend and see if he wants the same offer? I'm not trying to step on any toes, but I'm not trying to lose the job and ruin a friendship.
     
  8. CowboysLawnCareDelaware

    CowboysLawnCareDelaware LawnSite Senior Member
    from DE
    Posts: 555

    Double check your bid with your friend and make sure he is happy with the profit made for both of you guys. Then tell the friend with the house that you guys are working together.

    It could back-fire though and the friend that you were going to work with could underbid you and make a ton more profit.

    Mine as well find out who your friends are now.

    -Michael
     
  9. Stars & Stripes Landscaping

    Stars & Stripes Landscaping LawnSite Member
    from CT
    Posts: 246

    There is enough money in my bid to hire a operator and rent a skidsteer, I just don't know if I'm ready to dive in that hardcore, I was hoping to start slow - get my feet wet and go from there.
     
  10. etwman

    etwman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,454

    It's quite simple. Sub the job to a reputable contractor of your chosing. When you approach the sub you state that you are not permitted to quote directly to the client. If they do you will never use them again. Take their firm price, mark it up 20-25%, and monitor how they do the job, taking notes.

    Make sure they have proof of insurance, a good contract, and do it that way.

    That's how I would handle it. You are guaranteed to make money, not lose your shirt, and get an education for just watching how it is done.

    Then the next one, if you want to do it, you can dive in.

    That's the most simplistic, stress free way to do it.
     

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