Something wrong with mulch bid? =(.

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by syzer, Mar 24, 2001.

  1. syzer

    syzer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,266

    We just went and got one of our customers signed for this years lawn service. We charge them 35.00 for the lawn. They were extremely pleasant to deal with. They asked about rain, we tried to explain to them that the rain will make us take more time the next time we cut their grass. The husband didn't want any parts of getting charged for us not coming and didn't want to accept the fact that we would have to cut it sometimes twice to mulch and get it back in shape. We kind of sat that to the side and went to the next thing. They asked for estimate on cleanup and mulch.

    We measured their gardens @ 2000sq/f for a 2" layer would take about 12 yards. We priced @ 50.00 a yard.

    They had just got finished telling us the guy last year dumped the mulch in the beds and blew it around with a blower and killed many of their plants because of this. They said they were completely unsatisfied with him, he came and went as he pleased and was very hard to get a hold of even after they called and told him they wanted something done about this. He charged them 350.00 for this last year.

    We gave them a price of 150.00 for clean up and edging the beds (no edger on them now) and 600.00 for mulch. We chose 50 per yard based on what the guys on the site here charge. Some charge 35.00 and some charge over 75.00, we decided 50.00. We may have to adjust this.

    When we told them the price of the mulch the husband immediately replied absolutely not and said it was double the price they paid last year. After he just finished telling us how absolutely disgusted he was with this guy.

    So were we wrong here or was the guys cheap? I really didn't like the way he came across with the mulch and the rain thing, even though this guy seems to be absolutely cool. Help me out.
     
  2. Randy Scott

    Randy Scott LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,915

    He doesn't seem " absolutely cool " with that attitude. Give him your price and that's it. If he doesn't want to pay it then he can find someone else. Once again, taking numbers for pricing off LawnSite is not going to work if you don't know what your area will pay and what you need to make. First off, did you even see what you can buy the mulch for? Secondly, what do you want to make to cover expenses and pay yourself. That's where you get your prices, not the average here on this website. All different companies in your area will get different prices for their work based off reputation and so forth.
     
  3. RYAN

    RYAN LawnSite Member
    Posts: 211

    I charge $55 per yard to install mulch and it costs me $23 to buy it. I'm not sure how that guy could have charged that little unless he found somewhere to get it REAL cheap. According to my calculations he would only make about $75 off that. I would stick to my guns if I were you. If he looks for another estimate from a LEGIT company they will likely be in your price range or higher. I would also explain to him that if he wants the job done right he will have to you pay more than he paid Slick Willy last year who killed his flowers.
     
  4. Ocutter

    Ocutter LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 314

    I pay $18 a yard and charge $50 per. This guy would send up a red flag right away. If he balked at the guy he had last yr. he will only find something wrong with you eventually. Sounds like he is only interested in price and not quality. Thats why hes looking for a replacement now. Give your price and dont lose sleep over it.
     
  5. kutnkru

    kutnkru LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,662

    You know what your costs for overhead are. As for figuring the costs for mulch dont forget to try to double your price for the product, add on your overhead and operating expenses and then charge your labor rate per hour on top of that.

    If you have a structure that is too rich for their blood let them know that your price is valid for 30 days and then move on.

    People will either waste their lives price shopping or become satisfied paying a fair price for your labor.

    Good Luck this season!
    Kris
     
  6. Freetime

    Freetime LawnSite Member
    Posts: 112

    I agree with the sticking to your price and getting paid what you are worth. Sounds like the guy is price shopping and a BRIGHT RED FLAG does come up. Be polite and tell him to “drain all the water out of the pool and dive right in, just be careful in the deep end you might bump your head” no just tell him if he wants your reputable and legitimate company to do the work that is the price and move on. People like this are never satisfied just pacified till next month.


    Stick to YOUR PRICE/ COST not what comes from here.

    Good customers are hard to find but whiners are a dime a dozen.

    Mo, mo, mo yo self quickly to de bank!
     
  7. 1MajorTom

    1MajorTom Senior Moderator
    Posts: 6,073

    Quote: Once again, taking numbers for pricing off LawnSite is not going to work if you don't know what your area will pay and what you need to make. First off, did you even see what you can buy the mulch for? Secondly, what do you want to make to cover expenses and pay yourself. That's where you get your prices, not the average here on this website.


    Exactly! I couldn't have said it better myself. It's interesting to hear how others are pricing their jobs in different parts of the country, but using prices from Lawnsite is not the way to run your business.


    [Edited by 1MajorTom on 03-24-2001 at 09:40 PM]
     
  8. syzer

    syzer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,266

    Thanks for the info guys, I did all my figures and I we would need to charge 50 a yard to make a decent profit and cover all costs. I used lawnsite kind of a structure, but you are right you cant just get a price from here and use it in the "real world".

    This guy is paying us 10.00 more to cut his lawn then the previous guy. We charge 35.00. The other guy was a scrub, showed when he wanted, couldn't be contacted, etc. I don't know what this guy is thinking of but I really didn't think that my figure was out of the ball park =(.
     
  9. smburgess

    smburgess LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 469

    Chris...

    I don't recommend a price structure for anything on here because I'm not in your market, but you are NOT in the wrong on principle. The first thing I probally would have said to the guy - "Well, you got what you paid for, now your dealing with a professional..." and went from there.
     

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