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5 bidders and the results

Discussion in 'General Industry Discussions' started by steve122, Apr 20, 2005.

  1. steve122

    steve122 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 208

    I participated in a bid recently. It was for low income housing projects, 6 sites for 2 years and 1 site for 1 year. One bidder gets all. I had the contract 2 years ago so I was familiar with all of the sites. Someone came in two years ago and cut the prices almost in half. I picked up bid package and almost didn't put in a bid because of the specs and because of the new director of the housing authority. Knew of him and he is a real jerk, who likes to micro manage and nitpick. Anyway, just for the hell of it I'm posting the results of the bids so you can see how differently people see things. The names have been kept out to protect the innocent and the lowballer.
    2 year price for 6 complexes
    • 34,195
    • 55,440
    • 57,385
    • 85,500
    • 94,910
    1 year price for 1 complex

    • [*]10,800
    • 17,500
    • 18,400
    • 32,890
    Mine was the bid shown in red, the highest and I didn't feel the least bit of remorse at not getting the contract. The winning bid is in blue, for 55,440 and 10,800. The guy with the lowest bid was the one who held the contract for the last 2 years, don't know why they didn't give it to him unless he had bid the $34, 195 for one year and would have been in 3rd place if they multiplied it by 2.
  2. JB1

    JB1 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,904

    Somebody left a lot of money on the table.
  3. Todd's lawncare

    Todd's lawncare LawnSite Senior Member
    from P.A
    Messages: 548

    Are you a lowballer because you came in almost 10 grand less then the one guy ???????? Let me guess your answer NO
  4. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,501

    Almost 95 grand? How much of that is trash pickup I wonder...
  5. pagefault

    pagefault LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 492

    My guess is that the guy who had it for the last two years lost it because he did poor quality work or did not hit it off with the new director. If he is a nit-picker, that seems like a reasonable conclusion.

    I too, am confused about the whole lowballing thing now. Up until now, when someone said "I got lowballed. He bid $25k on a $35k job!", I've thought "Yeah, that sounds like lowballing." I did not agree with the reactions to the lowballing and I had my theories about why the person was lowballing, but I agreed that it sounded like lowballing.

    Now, I see two jobs. One is bid from 11-33k and I am certain that most of the people on this site, if they bid 33k and lost to someone who bid 23k, would call that lowballing. Likewise, most people bidding 32 and losing to someone who bid 17 would probably feel lowballed. As would the guy at 17, if he lost to the one at 11. So, who is right?

    In the more extreme case, the range was 34-95k. The high bid was nearly triple the low bid. And it wasn't just one bidder at the top, either. One was 85 and one was 95.

    I know that I am just restating the information in the original post, but I am dumbfounded. It looks like the reasonable bids on the larger job were 55 and 57. But, if Steve hadn't been so open and had just started the thread by saying "I bid 95k and the job went to a lowballer at 55k", few would question that.

    I guess what I am wondering is how the range can be that wide. It almost sounds as though the RFP was unclear. Maybe the low guy who had the account before did not do everything that was expected. Maybe Steve, having done it in the past, knew what was expected and bid appropriately, but was too high because there was a new group who either did not understand what was expected, or did understand and lowballed based on a realistic expectation of the work involved.

    Either way, I appreciate all of the information, because it makes me think.

    I know that in the past, I have had to solicit bids for development work, testing, etc. If I ever got a range like that, I would be looking at my original request to see what might be unclear.

    Wow. ;)
  6. DSSinc

    DSSinc LawnSite Member
    Messages: 32

    Not to get off topic, but you gotta love how the government does business. Especially in Illinois. There was a local bid for lawn and tree care and the winner mysteriously came in $40.00 over the municipality's FY budget. The second place company, which had the contract last season, came in at $7260 more. Now you tell me there wasn't any insider information given to the winner before the bids were due. That's one of the reasons why I don't participate in government bid opportunities. I see where steve122 is coming from with his bid.

    Just my .02ยข
  7. pagefault

    pagefault LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 492

    I have to wonder if the winning bidder knew the director.
  8. moneyman

    moneyman LawnSite Member
    Messages: 136

    In Oklahoma im told If the Contractor does not seem competent or prior dealings with the contractor were BAd they can decline the lowest offer.
  9. joshlawn

    joshlawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 143

    It's the same way in Knoxville, TN. The same crew of people get most of the gov. contracts for the road medians every single year. They bid right at the departments budgeted amount every time. They do a horrible job, they're always late and they look horrible doing it (generic equipment, torn clothing and such). It happens that the lawn crew is all black (no white's, Hispanics or other), and the gov. director is black too. -PLEASE don't get me wrong here, I'm NOT racist, or saying there's a conspiracy!- I'm just saying that in life it's who you know, not what you know. Myself, and many other LCO's I've talked to still bid every year on them, but realistically hold no hopes of getting them any time soon.
  10. Jeff@SGLC.ca

    Jeff@SGLC.ca LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 576

    Todd unless you are trying to stir something up for some unknown reason I've come to not respect your comments each post I read. Are you calling him a lowballer because he was not the most expensive? Is there some point behind ppl calling others lowballers you are trying to bring to our attention?

    Just because Steve was not the most expensive does not make himself a lowballer. He has experience from previous years working the account and knows what to expect, I'm sure he bid what he felt he wanted to get. Now is the guy who bid half of what everyone else bid a lowballer? Probbaly or he just has no clue.

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