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Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Northernlawn, Jun 26, 2007.
How would you estimate a lawn mowing job,by square footage,time,or both?
Time in the end. I have calculated how fast I can trim and mow. I measure the yard in length and width measurements, figure the "area to mow" and "trim distance" from those measurements. Area=length x width. Trim distance=(length + width) X 2. (we trim everything) I also add trim length for tree's, play-sets, flower beds, that need trimming around (example. Trim around a tree add 5-10' trim length. I have a graph that tells me how much time/cost the mowing and trimming will take. I add those together and have my charge rate. Just decide how much an hour you want. Figure how fast you can trim and mow, and come up with the table. Oh, and average your drive/set up/strap down time and add that to the bid amount as well.
I know guys that just walk around the prop, know form experience how long it would take and bid. Other just bid on square feet. I came up with this so that anyone bidding for me can do it and get fairly accurate and fair bids. Hope this helps.
You can go both. I hear guys figure their hourly rate they need to make money and apply that when doing estimates. I have a measuring wheel and I charge by square 1000 ft. (I prefer this method)
When using the measuring wheel do you just measure the property borders or do you measure the house square footage and subtract that from the property square footage?
I go by what I charge an hour, so if I charge $40 an hour, and the lawn takes me 1/2 hour I'd charge $25 (extra $5 for gas)
I've been mowing for 6 years now, and I feel comfortable with taking a look at the yard and giving a price. When I first started, I underbid sometimes, but it was a learning experience. Now I usually come out very well with bidding for new customers. I want to at least make $35/hour, but most days I'm making double that or even triple by the end of some days. Good luck. You'll get the hang of it.