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Bidding 200+ Homes at once

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by OutdoorSpecialist, Apr 23, 2008.

  1. OutdoorSpecialist

    OutdoorSpecialist LawnSite Member
    Posts: 4

    So heres were I could use some help, I have the oppertunity to bid on several homes (repo's) 2-3 hundred for lawn care. Most of the homes are within a 50 mile radis or so from the shop, small city lots to 2 or 3 acre lots. I know that it will be a contract to maintain them for a year or so, but they will forever be loosing some homes and adding new ones but on average 2-3 hundred. These homes are not occupied by anyone so they dont have to look perfect but just representable for potential buyers. I have been trying to figure out how to even comprehend how to bid this many homes at once. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
  2. Chilehead

    Chilehead LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from Stockbridge, GA
    Posts: 1,899

    Get a paper map of the area. Get a list of all the houses' addresses. Place a little circle on the map where each property is located. Go bid by location. If the route density is tight, bid by the hour including drive time. That's what I'd do.
  3. Paulup

    Paulup LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 270

    Come up with a reasonable price for different sized lots and roll with it. Tack on whatever premium you think its worth to do the first mowing since they are undoubtedly overgrown by now, and stipulate that there will be a surcharge if you have to do more trimming then a typical house.

    Chances are someone looking to get a bid on something of this magnitude they want a rock bottom price, make sure its worth your time. 50 mile radius can mean 100 miles between the farthest accounts, that is a hell of a lot of driving tugging a 16' trailer full of lawn care equipment.
  4. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,028

    Wow, sounds like a great "potential" for you. No PITA customers bitc7in at you. Speed mowing with little detail work. Do you need help?:laugh: I'll load my trailer on the Badger and meet you in Ludington.
    You would have to look at the places to give yourself an idea of what you are up against. You don't need surprises like gates that your machine can't fit thru or the possibility of having to carry a .45 to protect yourself from the neighbors. I am pretty sure there aren't many repo's in the high rent district. I would say first off is to get a copy of the contract so you will know exactly what is expected. From there you can see if you can fill the need and if not would it be worth it to you to invest in order to fill the contract. Good Luck.
  5. Carolina Cuts

    Carolina Cuts LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,152

    looks like you'll be pretty busy Saturday and Sunday house hunting...
    Me personally, I'd drive to each and every one, price accordingly.
    Yes, they are goin' for ROCK BOTTOM price. Be smart, could be a good 'extra' money maker.
  6. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 17,002

    The only problen I see if those 200 houses becoma a major part of your business what do you do after you loose them? No one knowes it this housing slump is just starting or will soon be over. That would be my main concern.
  7. meets1

    meets1 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,775

    Go low to get the job. Yes, eventaully you will lose these accounts - maybe not all but there is always someone will to go lower to have the accounts or just get business. So now you lowball this place for the accounts or you wouldn't be asking about them here and then someone else comes in after a year or two and they smoke your price (lowballing) then you come back on here and say how could they mow for such a low price. Ah yes, the cycle continues!

    Best of luck though!
  8. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,201

    Figure out how you are going to get paid when they stiff you.
  9. Marek

    Marek LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,385

    Also plan on waiting for your money for some time. Also think of who you are dealing with, alot of these co. are going under too. So you have to add a crew and equipment, not a big deal as long as you price things right.
  10. Need a Little Trim

    Need a Little Trim LawnSite Member
    Posts: 137

    I have been approached by three seperate co. that do this. I hope u realize they more often than not only want bi weekly service. It is not a good idea!!!! just because it starts at two to three hundred doesn't mean it is true it can go higher or much lower. all depends on the market. If you do it don't use a standard contract of yours you will need to totally reword somethings and add other clauses to cyoa

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