Mulching Bid

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by fairwayCuts, Mar 28, 2005.

  1. fairwayCuts

    fairwayCuts LawnSite Member
    Posts: 161

    Well I started handing out my doorhangers last week and have had a couple calls, which is hopefully a good sign. Anyway, I had one cust who wanted some mulch laid down. Now did some landscaping and mulching last year, but was never real confident with my bidding. For this house I'm guessing it will take about 3yrds of mulch based on the garden dimensions and the depth of the new mulch(1-2"). The areas that need to be mulch are somewhat covered with shrubs and bushes so I'm planning on it being a little more labor intensive. It will be just myself spreading the mulch. I am able to get mulch at $19/yrd so I have $60 in materials. I estimated the labor at about 5hrs @ $22.5/hr. Total bid $189.50 Does this seam right. Or will it take longer, shorter?
  2. Lowe Mowing

    Lowe Mowing LawnSite Member
    Posts: 46

    I think you are a little low on the prices.
  3. Mo Green

    Mo Green LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,487

    I can get mulch for $16 per cubic yard. I add on $45 per yard labor cost. Also, add on any delivery charges(if applicable) and the time it takes to prep the areas to be mulched.

    How did you come to the 3 cubic yards figure?
  4. fairwayCuts

    fairwayCuts LawnSite Member
    Posts: 161

    As far as the 3 cubic yards.
    He has mulch basically around his whole house. So, I measured the rectangular areas out to about 475 sq ft. He also has a circular area which came out to about 75 sq ft. Total 550sq ft. I want to plan on 2" deep. I took 550 sq ft x .17 ft(or 2") = 93.5 cu ft. / 27 cu ft (or 1cu yrd) = 3.46 cu yrds.

    I think I should be ok with 3 yrds because I over estimated on some of the measurements. As far as determining how much mulch is needed. If you've got a better way pls share, because my way seems to have to many conversions and what not.

    From the sounds of it, I may be a little low on the bid. when you add $45/yrd are you using employees or is it just yourself?
  5. Mo Green

    Mo Green LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,487

    You need to measure how wide the bes are, too. For example: customer has a bed on the side of their house that is 30' long, and 6' wide. You multiply 30 x 6 x depth desired. Volume is measured by this formula:length x width x height.
    Normally 1 cubic yard will cover approximately 200 square feet at a depth of 1 1/2". A space that is 20' x 10' x 1 1/2" deep.

    Check out this link. Just insert the numbers, and it does the work for you.
  6. YardPro

    YardPro LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,563

    sounds too cheap

    the $22.50/hr makes me cringe.
    you should be getting at least $10.00 more than that.

    think of things this way.

    if you bill 1500 hrs per year ( you'll have some non billable time, and winter months)

    that's ONLY $33,750.00/year. and that's before fuel, taxes, truck payment, etc.

    you'l be lucky to keep $20K/year.
  7. fairwayCuts

    fairwayCuts LawnSite Member
    Posts: 161

    I have had another person tell me the same thing before, as far as the extra $10. Do you think I can charge 32.50/ hr with just myself working. Ususally if I have sombodey help me out( a buddy, cash under the table) I'll charge 32 0r 33 / hr. and pay him 9 or 10/hr. You may be right though, I just need to start bidding higher and see how my closing rates go.
  8. topdog

    topdog LawnSite Member
    from indiana
    Posts: 205

    if u don't mind me asking how come so low on the mulch depth? is that what the home owner wants, or how u prefer to lay mulch?

    just curious by the way
  9. fairwayCuts

    fairwayCuts LawnSite Member
    Posts: 161

    He already has mulch in all the areas. I'm just re-mulching it to lay some new cover.
  10. YardPro

    YardPro LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,563

    we will not work for less than $35.00 PER MAN per hour....for a man and a shovel.
    look at your numbers..

    $22.50 for yourself, $32.00 for you and a $10.00 helper.

    you are loosing money with your helper. you should be charging another FULL labor rate. You are paying the guy and not marking up that labor expense.

    if you have VERY low overhead ( sounds like you have no insurance, office, etc.) you can make a little money charging $25.00/hr per man for several men out working.
    But you should really be charging a lot more.

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