Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by paullyllama, Feb 15, 2008.

  1. paullyllama

    paullyllama LawnSite Member
    from mpls,mn
    Messages: 24

    Have a chance to bid on a few million square feet in town and i know what my price should be at with the upcoming year but was told that the others companies bidding against me are right around $3/1000. I have tried every formulation out there to come up with that number and it is not possible. I know how there are doing it, cutting application rates is the only way that I could figure. Question for all you, can you function as a company charging $3/1000 without reducing your rate?
  2. FdLLawnMan

    FdLLawnMan LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,253

    What are they exactly asking for as far as number of rounds and what each round is. Is that per round or for all the rounds?. If that is for the year there is no way that they are putting down enough fertilizer.
  3. Turfdoctor1

    Turfdoctor1 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 707

    I think you are going to find answers to this question very regionalized.

    Personnally, I only add $3/1000 for any lot over 10,000 square feet. And, my prices are competitive in my area. I am also a one man operation, so less overhead, etc.

    LIBERTYLANDSCAPING LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 1,283

    Depends what you are doing... Pre-m, ferts, broadleaf w/c sprays? How many apps. a year? Is the few million Sq. ft. Mostly flat & open? Do you have a high volume sprayer/spreader, ride on, etc, or just pulling a hose? When you get into LARGE area applications, don't expect to get it & keep your cost of product in the 20%-30% range.

    And yes, they probably are cutting rates a bit:)
  5. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,955

    Hi paully -- When it comes to very large bids, everything changes... To bid this one, you should price it on "time plus materials". Estimate how many hours it would take to treat. Then figure how much it costs for material. Then you have to decide how much to charge for labor per hour or per day. This will also depend upon what equipment you use -- keeping in mind that "state-of-the-art" equipment/maintenance is not cheap.

    Bottom line, try to figure how much money per applicator per day you want to charge for. Then there is the difficulty factor (how hard you have to work to get the job done).

    Figure how much it costs per acre of product, and go from there. You might be surprised how low you can bid this one -- especially if you can charge extra for "service calls". Conversely, adverse weather could be a headache while trying to provide your service on a timely basis.

    Bidding on large accounts = taking a higher risk, and it's better to bid too high than too low. Good luck.:waving:
  6. turf hokie

    turf hokie LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,753

    This is a regional question. I wont do a straight fertilizer on wide open property for $3 per 1,000. But where I live dictates that.

    I agree with Larry, base it on time and materials.

    Just make it a number that you can make money with and not feel that you left something on the table just to get the job.
  7. LushGreenLawn

    LushGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,120

    I could do $3 per thousand if I had to without cutting rates.

    I buy my fertilizer from a local ag supply store, and pay much less than I was at Lesco. The formulations are almost the same, scu, fe percentage is the same. I don't use 10-10-10, but to give you a difference in price my (discounted?) cost for 10-10-10 Ammonium Sulfate at Lesco would be $26.10 for 50lbs, at my ag supplier the same product is a little over $8 per bag.

    My supplies never cost more than $2 a sq. ft, even my weed control apps.

    Thats $1000 of income per million sq. ft. if I'm making $1 per thousand. Were talking about 23 acres. I could walk that in 12 hours(not that I would, I would tire out before I was done), but a ride on would pay for itself in 6/7 million sq. ft. and cut time way down
  8. Paul Klose

    Paul Klose LawnSite Member
    Messages: 15

    been in the industry for quite sometime. Do realize the difficulty factor between jobs, do realize the costs of modern spray equipment/techniques. Will not drop my price to "just" get the job. Sure it would open the door to possibly more business just by the name getting out there. Right now I'm doing approx. 200 acres right now at a rate quite higher than 3/1000. I do have a spreadsheet formulated with all variables accounted for except for human nature, the drive to get the job without looking at any other factors. I would, if interested, in some advice on this. I already know what it takes to get the job done, what equipment is needed for said job. At all costs my application rates will stay the same. this company is looking for three ferts and at least 1 blanket weed control. This is my "standard" program that is offered. Keep in mind program can change very easily.
    3 ferts
    weed control

    As far as regional, it is and it isn't. It is for the fact that one nationwide company has a difference of 2.85/1000 to 7/1000 in the same state. It isn't because the cost of product is the same for the company
  9. rcreech

    rcreech Sponsor
    Male, from OHIO
    Messages: 6,163

    I charge less the $3.00/K on larger commercial jobs...and I make VERY GOOD money using full rate fert and broadleaf control!

    I am talking jobs greater then 10 acres and wide open spaces.

    It there are a bunch of side walks and hand work I will be very close to $3.00 but a lot of it depends on you costs!

    You will just have to get our the pencil sharpener and see how it looks when you get done!

    Good Luck!
  10. Grandview

    Grandview LawnSite Gold Member
    from WI
    Messages: 3,251

    I would do 23 aces for 3.00/1000. That still comes to 130/acre. I can average 3 acres/hr with my Permagreen so that job can be done in a day. Product costs are going to be 15.00 to 50.00/acre. I always keep track of time and materials on my big jobs to make sure it is worth my time. Definitely worth my time but that is a personal decision. Just bid it so its worth your time or find a way to do it so it is worth your time.

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