Municipal Bid, I'm still in shock.

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by EcoGreen Services, Mar 4, 2010.

  1. MarcSmith

    MarcSmith LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,157

    maybe the grass cutting/basic maint is a lost leader so to speak. get the basic mow blow and go @ cost, and then you get first crack at the "no bid stuff" tree work, flowers, planting, sod, ect....and make it up on the back end...

    @ 40bucks an hour that 207 hours...17 hours each week for 12 weeks... or 2 employees one day each week...

    even if he screws the pooch and bails on the contract after one year the city has saved 10K, and lowered the pricing down significantly for the following year.

    definitely low...but it would be interesting to see what kind of work they do..
  2. EcoGreen Services

    EcoGreen Services LawnSite Member
    Posts: 205

    I got the bidders list, There were 9 bidders, the next lowest bid was $17,800.

    They should, But they always go low bid. If the cuts aren't timed right then there are a lot of complaints from the baseball and soccer associations. A lot of this is due to the fact they only contract for 12 cuts.
  3. EcoGreen Services

    EcoGreen Services LawnSite Member
    Posts: 205

    That's the thing.
    The quote INCLUDES the Aeration, Flower Beds (and there's quite a few) Tree wrapping, (LOts) Cleaning up dog poop, Litter, EVERYTHING. There's no Extras to be had. I bid $18,200 so even without this bid I wouldn't of got it. I based my bid on the actual hours, operating and material cost over the last couple of years. I was lucky to have access to that info from my buddy who did it. Crazy way to price a job I know ;)

    When you have 8 bids ranging from $17,800 to $22,400 then one at less than half. That should have thrown up some red frags with the County. But it didn't .. Oh well.

    And if he bails after year one, He loses the $5000 performance bond.

    I just landed a $23,000 landscaping job. And have several more in the works. Looks like people are starting to loosen their wallets a bit this year.
  4. Chilehead

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

    It's everywhere. Commercial accounts are all about price. Government too. Cheapest guy wins. You can't operate a business this way and hope to make a profit.
  5. dougaustreim

    dougaustreim LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 488

    The city may very well know that it is not a good bid, but under most states laws, they have no choice but to a ccept the low bid unless they can come up with concrete evidence to disqualify a bid. They legally probably have to let him fail just to be able to disqualify him.
  6. Carolina Cuts

    Carolina Cuts LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,152

    Commercial Bidding = (translates to) Who will do the most amount of work for the least amount of money...
    No thanks.
  7. ringahding

    ringahding LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 612

    Well that should help our industry! Thank you LOW-BALLERS! !
  8. Darryl G

    Darryl G LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,063

    It seems that it's the norm these days to select the low bidder for contracts. I used to administer the bidding process for good sized engineering and construction projects relating to environmental cleanups. In my experience, you usually don't want the low bidder, especially if the bid is lower by a large margin. It typically means they do not understand the scope of work, will not provide satisfactory results, will not complete the project on time, or all of the above. As a matter of course, I would toss out both the high and low bids and select one in the middle.

    It's a sad statement that substandard workmanship is winning out over quality based on money alone. I think we all know that once a landscape is let to go to hell, the cost of restoring it is far more than it would have been to maintain it properly in the first place. The old adage of penny wise and pound foolish comes to mind.
  9. AintNoFun

    AintNoFun LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,807

    is the job prevailing rate?
  10. milsaps118

    milsaps118 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 559

    It goes both ways........

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