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Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by surfisher211, Sep 9, 2005.

  1. surfisher211

    surfisher211 LawnSite Member
    from Jersey
    Posts: 141

    how do most of u guys charge ? say on a per head basis ? any feed back is appriciated
  2. keepcuttin

    keepcuttin LawnSite Member
    Posts: 62

    In my are 100-115 a head, granted there are some variables
  3. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 47,650

    A lot of guys charge by zone, figuring on a certain number of heads per zone. I prefer to figure an estimate based on number of heads, with additions for controller and plumbing, and annoyances like sidewalks and tree roots.
  4. Broker

    Broker LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 382

    Usually when I tallk to a owner that might ask how much do you charge per zone. That usually tells me that they might be fixed on two things, price and number of zones other companies are telling them they should need. I tell them that we price out on heads since it is a tangible thing and them explain to the owner that zones are are somewhat like a grid system people use to divide the heads by pressure and flow rates. I used to price out by zones but since changing to heads I have been happier, actually I price out per rotor then price a per zone on sprays plus any abnormal or extra work. The biggest mistake I made in the past was not taking the time to figure in overhead in my pricing. At the end of the year you could find me scratching my head wondering why I had so much money flowing through my account, the key there is flowing THROUGH and not staying in. Best of luck.
  5. surfisher211

    surfisher211 LawnSite Member
    from Jersey
    Posts: 141

    :waving: thanks for the advice it is very appriciated
  6. turfman59

    turfman59 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 801

    materials,+ labor + profit + overhead recapture= quote, its that simple

    if anyone is basing price on price per zone, or price per head, there lax way of bidding is either costing them profit or projects.... why would you even think for a minute that the amount of heads,or zones places any kind of bearing on the total project quote. Just my expierence in a very competitive diverse market
  7. BSME

    BSME LawnSite Senior Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 829

    totally agree... I dont bid by zone or head either... but most of the time I take fifteen minutes in the truck using a little bit of a formula mixed with other factors like.... whether it's a dirt job or established lawn, how many roots, driveway bores?....

    if you tell the homeowner you'll get back to them it could be costing you jobs as well because I have often gotten jobs on the spot even though they were waiting for other estimates because I handed them a bid right away...

    which is what bidding by zone or head does for you... it lets u give them a bid right away... but I agree... no two yards are the same... labor is a huge expense so you need to also factor in how difficult it will be
  8. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 47,650

    Uhhh, because it does? Heads, that is, more than zones. One head carries with it the pipe, fittings, and labor to install it, for which you would want a minimum price. Is there a reason you will take less? Supplement a per-head-charge with as many relevant supplements as you'd like, including one for each zone in the system. And the controller. And the supply plumbing. And so on.
  9. jerryrwm

    jerryrwm LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,274

    Perhaps you would care to share how you arrive at the materials figure in your quote. And the labor figure is calculated how? Overhead is a variable based on your business so that part is obviously pro-rated per job or per day or some other formula. Profit is the amount of markup you decide on when setting up your company.

    So the last two figures are variables that only your company needs to know.

    But if you don't know how many heads, or valves and the various components that go along with them, or you don't know the amont of labor (which is based on the complexity of the job) then how in the hell can you give a price?

    Some people have taken many years to come up with a formula based on their own company experience and history, that will allow them to count the number of heads on a particular project, add site specific variables such as bores, hills, hardscape, trees, etc., and then using that multipler come up with a price. If I say that it is $100.00 per head, you can bet that my materials, labor, overhead, and profit have been carefully figured into it.

    And my so called 'lax way of bidding' doesn't cost me profit. It does prevent me from being the low priced bidder. And if that means it is costing me projects then I'll stay home, 'cause I can sit on the porch and whittle and break even.
  10. turfman59

    turfman59 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 801

    I guess you have taken offense,, not intended.
    I dont leave the proposed sprinkler install, until a quote is given. As stated by another contractor I dont leave until the quote is in their hand. My work sheets are a little different in regards that every part is calculated at cost. And I do mean every fitting,clamp, rotor, spray, nozzle, ect ect. that is materials, Labor comes from expeirence in knowing how many hours it will take based on true site conditions, and labor is definately a variable because it is set based on true hours worked times employees wages which is different in every company. Bidding by heads or zones, is a quick way to get an estimate of what it might cost, but a closer analysis is required to hand a quote to someone and get the job. My success rate of proposals to projects that have been contracted is the highest its ever been this year, since I dropped the bid by head or zone method, that the amateurs are using in my market. It takes a little more time but so does driving to the site to give a quote, which cost's me at least 75.00 each time. My success rate this year on landing the job is about 75%. I can live with that.

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