Wasn't worth it...

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Bassman, Jul 14, 2000.

  1. Bassman

    Bassman LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 270

    Just finished a cleanup on a property and feel like I went 10 rounds with Lenox Lewis. I bid it at $300, took me 13 hrs. to complete. Not bad money but I won't do the same thing again. The weeding was a nightmare. Crabgrass deep rooted in rock. Entire perimeter of large home and about 18 concrete bordered areas where it was grueling getting it out. The mow, hedge and shrub trim, etc. was a snap. But the weeding was unbelievably tedious and difficult. The property looks great but I wouldn't do it again for $500 bucks. Also, had to haul out about 1/2 a ton of crappy plants in pots. Anyone ever take a job and wished they didn't, even if the pay for service was pretty good?<br>Bassman
     
  2. Lazer

    Lazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,446

    That pay for that service is $150 too low.<p>Many operators have jobs they shouldn't be doing, sadly most don't realize it.<p><p><br>
     
  3. bob

    bob LawnSite Platinum Member
    from DE
    Posts: 4,254

    You learn by your mistakes.
     
  4. John DiMartino

    John DiMartino LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,555

    I would take almost any job,and the one that you described I would've taken too,but you cut yourself way short money wise,I probably would've bid it around 520-560 figuring $40 per man per hour.The unfortunate part was you lost your shirt so to speak and make guys like myself who bid correctly look like rip-offs.What you did was hard manual labor and you should be well compensated.We all learn from our mistakes,when Im busy i always bid it a little high being I dont need the work and Ive found that I get alot of jobs that I thought Id lose to lowballers,<p>----------<br>John D<br>
     
  5. Bassman

    Bassman LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 270

    I agree, I bid too low. Forgot to mention was stung by wasps and bitten by fire ants. I'm learning. Picked up $600 my first week and managed to sign 5 yearly accounts. 3 of which came from putting out flyers in my neighborhood. Wish I wasn't so busy from the get go as I would like to place more flyers close to home. I'm learning and am glad I got into this biz. Just have to be smart about bidding jobs. Considering this was my first week I chalk it up to valuable lesson about the worth of labor for this type work.One thing I learned from this forum is not to under price/low ball work. With this 1 exception this week, I have not done that and I thought I bid on the high side with this job. Won't make the same mistake twice. Thanks as always for the input from you guys.<br>P.S. Had a guy with a crew that was working the same area as me ask if I needed any more business. He has been in lawn service and tree biz for 9 yrs. Told him yeah. He said he could not take on any more business, he was going 7 days/week and maxed out. Asked for business cards and that he would refer people to me. Nice guy, gave me lots of good info about biz.<br>Bassman <br><p><font size="1">Edited by: Bassman
     
  6. yardsmith

    yardsmith LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Posts: 627

    I think most of us have at one time or another.<br>What is important is what you do with them after you realize it.<br>Had one back in '97 that was the last new account foe the season. Ended up the lady wanted me to camp out at her friggin doorstep & wait for the weeds to pop up. Couldn't do that so ended up hating the place everytime I showed up. Since then I am more cautious on what I take, & what my limits are as to what I can reasonably manage time wise. Live & learn.<p>----------<br>Smitty ô¿ô<br>
     
  7. Barkleymut

    Barkleymut LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,117

    Bassman, become GOOD friends with this other guy who is feeding you work. I would even ask him how he would bid the job. If he is so busy that he doesn't want any more then he isn't really a competitor. Don't assume your good at bidding jobs just because you didn't do well on one job. It took me almost 2 years to learn how to bid mowing alone. Now I can estimate down to the minute and know what equipment is necessary for the job. Also bidding is different in each area of the country. If this guy is willing to help take him up on it (once or twice) but don't waste his time with too many things.
     
  8. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,028

    As long as you are learning then it was worth it. In the future you will now have this experience to go back to. I've done this too. I write it off to a learning experience and figure that I did get paid something for being out there so I guess it was better than sittin at home doing nothing. <br>It will come with time - bid high, you have to believe you are worth it.
     

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