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Cost of materials up front

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by venecular, Jul 22, 2004.

  1. venecular

    venecular LawnSite Member
    from Atlanta
    Posts: 122

    When doing a large landscaping job for a resident, should I ask for half of the cost up front or the total cost of materials before the job is started?
  2. brentsawyer

    brentsawyer LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 663

    Depends on the size of the job, also on your bank roll and how much you trust them. Usually I will get 1/3 of job total on $2K+ so that I have them essentially pay for the materials before I pick up the first thing. However, on small jobs less than a couple K, I'll roll the entire cost into a final invoice to help speed things along since alot of times those jobs are done in one day and meeting time is more valuable than a $500 check a day or two earlier than than a check <$2,000.

    I would never however tell them that they had to pay for the materials upfront, always a percentage of the job. On jobs >$10,000, it is in 1/3 installments specified in contract when second check is to be paid.
  3. venecular

    venecular LawnSite Member
    from Atlanta
    Posts: 122

    thanks for the advise. This job consist of just less than $2000 for materials and labor.

    LIBERTY LAWNCARE 2 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 84

    We get the total COST of the materials, 1/2 labor and the sales tax up front, with the rest due the day the job is completed.

    I also check the small claims records on-line & their property tax records first, before I extend any amount of credit.
  5. brentsawyer

    brentsawyer LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 663

    Liberty, good idea on small claims. I guess that the only people that I work for are referrals since I don't advertise and feel safe about materials. However, venecular, on that size job depending on your total price, I would definitely have a deposit equal to as close as materials as I could no matter who it was. If be 1/3 or 1/2 of total job cost.
  6. dvmcmrhp52

    dvmcmrhp52 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Pa.
    Posts: 4,205

    1/3 up front on larger jobs.
    Long term customers with good payment history usually get a break.
  7. BSDeality

    BSDeality LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,850

    i require 40-50% up front on landscape jobs over $1k.

    I like that installment plan, i may use it on a potential large project i have coming up.
  8. fcl01

    fcl01 LawnSite Member
    from OHIO
    Posts: 249

    I only ask for 10% upfront. I see it as a huge selling point. I know it might pizz my competition off but i tell customers that if a company needs more than 10%, they shouldn't even be considered. I tell clients that they should'nt have to bankroll their landscaper. Now if its a 6 figure job, its a different story.

    And as far as worrying about your money out, my contract says that once materials are bought by me for them that the job is started. And once the job is started, I got 'em by the ballz. They can fire me five minutes after i show up and they still have to pay.
  9. ElephantNest

    ElephantNest LawnSite Bronze Member
    from La.
    Posts: 1,878

    Bankroll their landscaper?? It's THEIR house, will be THEIR material, on THEIR porperty....lol...Hell yes, 50% up front, or I walk.
  10. kris

    kris LawnSite Bronze Member
    from nowhere
    Posts: 1,579

    Tell them and do what you like ..... I dont' agree with your statement.

    We are like another poster here...anything over around 2k it's one third down rest upon completion(as a general rule) Larger jobs there would be draws as the job progresses.

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