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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was asked to bid on 12 acres today for a church. I have never bid on something this large. I usually only do residential lawns. I have the equipment to handle this size property.

What would be a ball park price? I'm thinking $480

The land is pretty wide open. It is broken up in 4 sections. One of the sections in a soccer field. there isn't a whole lot of trimming. Maybe an hour worth or 1/2 hour with 2 guys.

I figured I could have 2 of us cut it with a 60" and a 52" ZTR and both of us trim when we are done. I have a third mower if I need to use it.

They were paying one of the members to ride around on their tractor, but he got hurt and now they want to see about hiring us. I figure they won't want to spend to much money. When I met with them today. The lady asked me what the ball park price would be? She said $500, $300? I told her it was around $480 but I would have to put a pencil to it. I was the only one they had talked to at that point.

What do you guys think? I can sub it to a friend with a 8' finish mower too if I need too. He is going to go by tomorrow with me to see what he can do it for. I haven't decided if I want to try to bid it were I can make money on it, or let him bid it for me and add $50 per cut for myself.

I usually bid about $60 per acre, but I don't do anything over 2 acres.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Metro, Do you maintain properties this size?

$40 per acre was my thought too. Now that I think of it, I doubt that it really is 12 acres. They have a huge parking lot and the church is pretty big too. The lady just told me it was 12 acres. I'm thinking that is the total of the property and not turf.

I wouldn't know what 12 acres looks like. I also can't really tell how long it would take us either. Like I said, this is new to me. I know it would be nice to land the account. That would equal 12 or so residential customers.

I'm going to try to get by there tomorrow and measure it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Do you guys have a rough ball figure of how long it would take just for the mowing. There isn't a lot of trees or anything in the way. It has some hills, but nothing that would really slow us down much. I would be using a 60" Dixie Chopper and a 52" Hustler Z.

I know the time can vary a lot, I'm just looking for a ball park. I'm guessing 4 hours, but I really wouldn't know.
 

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Unfortunately, all larger acreage goes real low, around here. Anything around 10 acres and up, usually ends up going for around $20 an acre - no lie. There is a munipality near us (Township hall, fire, and ploice dept.) all in one complex, along with a nice park, complete with pavillion and ball fields. It is 20 acres. The winning bid was just under $400.
 

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What I would like about it Soupy, as far as being equal to 12 (or so) residentials, is no traveling time. No doubt when the lady said 12 acres, it is the total area. Will be a nice job for you I believe.

Many years ago, I had worked with a man, at a celebritie's estate (actress, country singer, amusment park owner) and I never ask my boss how big the yard was (could ask him now, but he turned into a cr*ckhead, in the last 5 years or so.....and lost it all) BUT, it took us (3) all day to cut. I on a Shind. T-25, he on a 60" front deck Deere (935?), and co-worker on a 52" (or 54") yellow-deck Deere. ALL DAY LONG. No breaks, no lunch, just stopping long enough to fill back up with fuel. Had to do it in 1 day, cause Wed. was the only day it was opened to any type of workers.

*what I thought was so kool, her husband was cutting the "back part" with a tractor/bush hog, and he was cutting all day long, too. Regular man, regular clothes, seemed down-to-earth.
 

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......Haven't maintained anything that size in a while, but my personal yard is 10 acres (total) but around 7 acres get cut with my Ford 3000 diesel, and bush hog.

Well, the yard I currently live at, I can weedeat in about 10 mins.
(My brother lives on the 10 acres.)
 

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(couldn't hit the edit button in time.oops)
Just by the size of your mowers, based on eXmark's figures, a 60" @ 80% efficiency and 5 MPH would cut over 2.5 acre per hour, and a 52" (again 80% and 5mph) would cut over 2 acres an hour. Just to give you a very basic ballpark figure/average. Still should make good money. Good luck with it Soupy. Let us know how it works out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I think I would be doing closer to 8 miles per hour. I think 2 of us can do it in 4 hours. But like I said, I have no experience. I know I would like to put some killer stripes on that soccer field. I'll keep you informed.

I'm just debating if I should go lower. I don't think they are going to bite at $480. The lady told me they were paying the member $50 bucks to cut it with the tractor, but that is all he would take. She told me before I gave her a price that she was ashamed of the amount they have been paying. The church looks like it has money, so who knows. I'm going to call her tomorrow and feel her out. I'm at least going to ask her if I can have the opportunity to match any lower bids. Then I can decide what to do at that point. I know I'm not doing it for peanuts.

I don't think there is a lot of guys around here that will even bid on it. I have been hearing that I'm the only guy that answers the phone out of the yellow pages. We have a ton of the small outfits, but not all that many that can handle the larger properties. We don't have a lot of large properties in this area anyway.
 

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Kool. @ 8mph you'll have no problem cutting it in 4 hours (again, just in eXmark therory, @ 80% and 8 MPH, just on your DC, in 4 hours you could cut 15.52 acres 3.88 X's 4hrs, so you'll have no worries. (really, you could go lower, say.....300 (not that, that would sound like a good idea to alot here) BUT, there might be alot of church members that would need your services. Just a thought.

(being a church.........and just me, I personally would give them a break. Things do happen in "mysterious ways") Sure alot here will say the 3 worst @ paying are lawyers, doctors, and clergy, but still, I would give them a break. I have tremendous luck, and know someone's looking out for me. I like to TRY to return the favor. So to speak.
 

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Opps...that should have been doctors/lawyers and 3rd......drum roll please........ Real-estate companies! luckily, I have 2 that pay like gold, and I get as many as I want..... hand select the best, out of all of them, And can never be replaced. Sweet jig!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
4 hours would be right on target with our hourly rate at $480. that would be $60 per man hour.

I don't think I would go lower then $360. That would be $45 per hour but less paper work and I don't think I would have collection problems with a church. I could possibly get this done in 3 hours and that would put me back at the $60 per hour mark for a 2 man crew.

Oh well it is late, I'm going to go watch some X files and try to get to sleep.
 

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No, you shouldn't have any prob. collecting from a church, alot of people have trouble collecting from the idividual pastors, reverends, ect. (and the way they live and conduct their personal business can vary greatly..... Have seen all types, but a few remind me of the reverend in the movie Friday. (Know alot of Smokeys, too. . a few Big Worms...but I digress.. he he he)

Oh Soupy, deff. shoot me some pics of the soccer field after you stripe it.
 

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Check with the web-site for the local appraisal board and figure out the size minus the buildings to make sure of what you're bidding. It may be more, but hopefully less which makes it more profitable.
 

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Get out a measuring wheel and walk it off. Make sure that you are not basing your price on 12 acres whenever you are only cutting 8 acres as an example.

I would price it at @ $ 120/hr for a 2 man crew as suggested. However, I suspect that when you measure it off you'll find that you can do it in possibly 3 hours. Don't expect them to only go with your estimate. If they don't shop it around now, they will later. Remember that they were getting a favor to have someone cut it for $50. She through out $300 and $500... see if you can get your time down to where you can get closer to the lower number. You may benefit in the long run.... a lot of potential customers probably go to that church!

Don't get me wrong, I'm not suggesting that you give them a deal or not make $60/hr/person. I'm just suggesting to make sure that you price it for the actual amount that you will be mowing.

Good luck.
 

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Originally posted by Soupy
I was asked to bid on 12 acres today for a church. I have never bid on something this large. I usually only do residential lawns. I have the equipment to handle this size property.

What would be a ball park price? I'm thinking $480

The land is pretty wide open. It is broken up in 4 sections. One of the sections in a soccer field. there isn't a whole lot of trimming. Maybe an hour worth or 1/2 hour with 2 guys.

I figured I could have 2 of us cut it with a 60" and a 52" ZTR and both of us trim when we are done. I have a third mower if I need to use it.

They were paying one of the members to ride around on their tractor, but he got hurt and now they want to see about hiring us. I figure they won't want to spend to much money. When I met with them today. The lady asked me what the ball park price would be? She said $500, $300? I told her it was around $480 but I would have to put a pencil to it. I was the only one they had talked to at that point.

What do you guys think? I can sub it to a friend with a 8' finish mower too if I need too. He is going to go by tomorrow with me to see what he can do it for. I haven't decided if I want to try to bid it were I can make money on it, or let him bid it for me and add $50 per cut for myself.

I usually bid about $60 per acre, but I don't do anything over 2 acres.
According to the other thread about charging by the acre... you should charge $780 per cut. :rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
well, I talked to her today about writing something up and she said not to bother. She said they (who ever that is) about hit the floor when they heard the price.

I told her I would go $400, if they change their mind to give me a call and I will write something up.

By the way, I had my buddy that does most of the commercial work in the area and he said it would be a $450 bid if he did it and he would throw me $50 every week.

Looks like I won't have to worry about this bid any longer.
 

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If the church was paying a guy $50 to cut it with his tractor, I dont think $480 will win the bid...The church might be feeling guilty about this, but I am pretty sure someone will come in an cut it for less than that...

$480 is a good figure. Will the church pay that? Probably not. Not after paying just $50. You said your lowest would be $360. I dont think they would bite on that either.

Alot of people on here get $60 an hour per acre, but the more acres you are bidding on, the less the dollar an hour figure becomes.

Listen to this, an see what you think...If you are using a 60" rider, you should be able to cut 4 acres in an hour easily by yourself. Toss a 52" on there an I believe that you could finish this place in 2 - 2 1/2 hours. You cut the open areas with the 60", an the 52" cuts the rough parts. The 60" should be cutting 8 acres, an the 52'" cuts the rest. This is a conservative estimate also, with the 60 cutting 8 acres in 2 hours. If you are keeping up with the grass,12 acres in 2 hours is easy...

I imagine there are alot of open areas that dont get weed whacked. When the 2 of you are done mowing, you should be able to cover the weed whacking in 30 minutes...

2 1/2 hours for the job @ $50 per man hour= $250

Personally I would bid $300 to cover any unforseen circumstances. That also equates to $60 an hour...

I havent seen the property, but from what I have read there are alot of open areas.....I think this would be a fair price...IMO
 
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