Bid in West Central Florida

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Sandspur, Feb 24, 2007.

  1. Sandspur

    Sandspur LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    My wife and I started a lawn business recently. We currently have a few customers, the lots are 120x80 with about 50 ft of driveway and typical trimming and edging, we are currently getting $30.00 per cut.
    We have the opportunity to bid on a 1 acre lot in a very nice area. The owners are willing to sign a contract. The driveway is 160 ft with aprox. 60 ft of sidewalk; the mowing is not difficult, only a few trees.
    We hope to get more customers in the same area and the lots run from 1-5 acres in this neighborhood.
    In the future, if we bid on a larger lot for the same type of work, do you charge the same per acre amount for a 5 acre lot versus a 1 acre lot?

    We do not want to underbid this job.
    Thanks for any help you can give.

  2. Albery's Lawn & Tractor

    Albery's Lawn & Tractor LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,674

    It should based on your time. We do $1 a min. per person. Most of ours range from $30-40 on a weekly schedule. If you can do it in 30 mins solo $30 is good. Just make sure you set some $$$ aside for uncle sam.
  3. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,206

    Most of the folks on here believe you make more money on smaller lots so why go up to large lots? Then you will need both little and big equipment which drives up overhead and lowers profit!
  4. Turf66

    Turf66 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 48

    This plan will work if you control cost, I am no expert so this is only my stupid opinion. Buy only what you need to make your business efficient, only buy equipment that is under warranty (3 years ) Equipment will eat you alive if you want to compete. Set a price and stay with it, suckers are born every day don't be one of them!!! Be good at what you do and the work will come to you. Advertising is another thing that you will have to toss around, budget this in every year and sell your self as the best thing going in your area. Target your area and don't run all over town for $30 bucks. I have heard of one method of 3up/3down with door hangers, box in customers to cut down on drive time. I have a $60 min. on yards that I cut. I make this known with every call. I have employees,Equipment,workers comp,advertising,Liability, rent, Blah blah blah. Point being, You are the only one that can determine where you want to be in 3 years, working or making $$ and there is a big difference. Running with minimum operating cost you will be around $5-$10 per hour operating cost depending on equipment and vehicle depreciation and so forth. The one thing you can count on is they both won't last for ever so provide for replacement after depreciation.(big boys sell equipment all the time, KNOW WHAT I MEAN!) Back to your question LOL, You can make money on both just don't sell yourself short just to be moving around. Like i said in earlier its only my stupid opinion!
  5. Sandspur

    Sandspur LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    Thanks everyone for your advice. The customers that I have are very close to my house. The new area I am speaking of is only 2 miles away but the homes in this area are 300k and up. If I charge $80 to $100 per one acre do you charge $500 for 5 acres or less. Say $100 for the first acre and $80 for the other 4. Do you expect to get the same for commerical property as residential if the work time and area are the same? Yes I do want to build a business. Very very greatful for your help.
  6. supercuts

    supercuts LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,785

    i really dont think your going to be able to charge 100/acre for a 5 acre lot. everyone is different, using one ztr i need to make $85/hr. i never go by square footage, i go by estimated time(and wealth of neigborhood/cars etc.) if i mow a 2acre lot that is flat and can be done with a ztr and take me 35-40mins, $60ish. if its a 5 acre lot that will take me 2 hrs, $170ish trimming is what kills you, i have a church with lots of sidewalks, if you trim around them all it might take you longer to trim than cut. take it all into concideration
  7. dave k

    dave k LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,178

    You can only get what the market will bear and what the competition would charge, ask around to local LCO's if you can, I'm glad to see your area is up on pricing, when I was in Deltona/Apopka area 15 years ago it was $15.00 for a 80x125 lot. What size mower deck do you have? Is the back yard Bahia or Floritam? If Bahia the sand will kill your deck, but with that price of home it should all be Floritam. Don't be greedy, get your foot in the door and if you have to raise your price the following year do it, but don't go so low you break even. Profit is everything.
  8. Fantasy Lawns

    Fantasy Lawns LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,913

    Not to be harsh ....but if you had a 5 acre lot would you pay someone $500 to cut it ....even with 1 acre @$100

    This ALL depends on your equip, local market & your business cost ..... fore the most on the east coast we cut bout $45 -55 fore 1 acre ....which is based on a monthly billing of $155-175 per month .... 42 cuts per

    5 acre lots in FL are HUGE ..... we have a couple on this side ...but a 5 acre lot is usually water-side .... the guy is pull 7 figure's per year n has a full time live in Gardner

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