1st commercial bid

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by delabarre, Sep 16, 2009.

  1. delabarre

    delabarre LawnSite Member
    Messages: 15

    this will be my first time bidding on a commercial property.. its a church that i go to, and a couple of the financial people in the church have asked me to put a bid on the property. the person that mows right now does a great job, but doesnt go to the church. the church would like to support its members. the company mowing right now trims hedges and fertilizes and weeds but the church doesnt want to pay as much as he has been charging. would it be ethical for me to charge more for mowing and then apply fertilizer and do some weeding complimentary? if you have any other solutions please let me know. or if there is something im missing please tell me

  2. Kennedy Landscaping

    Kennedy Landscaping LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,597

    Your plan sounds good to me. However I wouldn't do the fert. as a complimentary service. I would maybe stick with the weeding/hedge trimming as the complimentary part. Hope you get it.
  3. bohiaa

    bohiaa LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,220

    dont work for family, friends, and especially the Church you attend...

    you'll Go Broke, and loose friends
  4. SangerLawn

    SangerLawn LawnSite Senior Member
    from indiana
    Messages: 736

    I agree 100 percent with bohiaa. You already said they don’t want to keep paying as much as they already are. As a result they came to you thinking you would probably give discount since you tend the church. This means they get something for free and you get the shaft. Think about it, why would you want to do the same thing for less money then someone else when you have the same bills.
  5. deitleman

    deitleman LawnSite Member
    Messages: 31

    I respect the opinions of the last two posts, it is a business, and we all have bills to pay. With that said, I also believe that the more you give, the more you get. If you can cover all your costs, and put a few dollars extra in your pocket for your efforts, I say go for it. It might be a good way of advertising, and bring in new customers from the church too. It's never a bad thing to give a little back to your community. Just my two cents, take it or leave it.
  6. mowerbrad

    mowerbrad LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,268

    I have no problem working for friends, but I also have not yet had a problem with working for a friend. I also think that with it being YOUR church, it does make you look better. You could charge a price just enough to cover your expenses and then use this as a charity type work and write it off on your taxes :)
  7. Triple D

    Triple D LawnSite Member
    Messages: 78

    Here is what you are missing. You said it in your post, they do a great job, but the church doesn't want to pay as much. I will almost guarantee that the church will expect the same "great job", whatever you charge. If you can't supply that for whatever you charge it will be a bad situation for you and the church. And instead of getting more work from other members, well you know the rest.
  8. Lawn Shark prop mgmt LLC

    Lawn Shark prop mgmt LLC LawnSite Member
    Messages: 64

    I agree 100% don't do it.
  9. SLMGT

    SLMGT LawnSite Member
    Messages: 245

    If you take the job, you will soon be looking for a new church to attend. My experience is churches don't appreciate free or greatly reduced prices for services rendered. If you give someone something for nothing, that is often the value that the recipient puts on the gift. If a church drops a quality contractor for a member, what does this say about the churches efforts of reaching out to the community?

    As far as a tax deduction, you can not deduct for your time donated. You may be able to deduct your materials and expenses but not for your time.

    Been there, done that. Will not make the same mistake twice.
  10. SLMGT

    SLMGT LawnSite Member
    Messages: 245

    The church could probably get a preacher to serve for less money also. Maybe the replacement preacher could throw in hospital visits for free and deduct it on his taxes.

    There are plenty of opportunities to give back. There are tons of older folks who are not able to mow and can not afford to pay for mowing. Don't be a pharisee and do something at the church to make you look good. Go do something good for someone who needs the help. Do it in the name of the church if you want to do something for the church.

    I have made it a rule to not go after work that another contractor is obviously doing a good job with. As you grow your business, you will hate to lose contracts to someone who knows someone or has an inside conection.

    I too believe that the more you give, the more you receive. I also believe that what goes around comes around. So be prepared to lose a few of your good jobs to some lco who happens to be a member or a friend of a friend.

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