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Baffle with Bull **** or Dazzle with your Brilliance

Acme Bunny

LawnSite Member
I just got to know. Do you get a better response from a very detailed bids on what the potential customer asked you to bid. Or, do you get a better response by comming in and telling them a price and some crape and work out the details latter.

I have missed out on two large bids. Both were for just under $30,000. One I missed due to price. They went with a cheap bid and had to ***** at the guy for nine months to get the job done right. Now, they are not taking bids for this year because they had such a hard time training this guy (getting good work for a crape price).

On the second one, the company comes in and bids all kinds of extra work. They give the contract to them and extra work that was not in the original bid request. Never really compared apples to apples.

When I spoke to them both about the bids, they said what a profesional bid I had detialling everything to be done for individual areas and the great cost break downs. But, I still did not get the contracts.

B.S. bid or Pro?




LawnSite Fanatic
It all depends on the customer I feel.

I usually give them at least a minimum of three different price options to choose from. Like for example in a landscaping project. This way you are covering all of your ends in case someone else is coming in at a lower price you already have 3 different prices for them to choose from. The higher price has more material involved, while the lower price has less material such as less plants, perennials, annuals, etc.


LawnSite Platinum Member
Ditto Tiedeman
I have clients that ask for the moon and you get that sense that they don't have the $$$ for what they asked for, so I always give them a few options from what they wanted down to what I think they can afford. If I'm wrong and they have all kinds of $$$ I'm there but if sticker shock hits them, Im still there.



LawnSite Silver Member
Morgantown, WV
I never give too much detail in my first bid takeoff. I've had too many property owners take our bid outlines (when I first started) and give too much info about the specs to other bidders or other employees who had friends bidding. If its a limited amount of info in the beginning and they are serious about the price, I will send a detail outline with full specs.I'm not in this business to do the legwork for someone else to take money out of my pocket. It burned me to no end when I placed a bid and some scrub who can't properly estimate or calculate got the job because the prop. owner took my outline or another LCO's bid and turned it into a bottom line price free for all using the outline as planned to get the lowest, cheapest SOB who doesn't know his azz from a hole in the ground to do the work.It's crap like this that ruins competitive bidding for legit LCOs and LMOs. Now I keep these property owners guessing until all bids are in.It's not so much a problem with residentials,though.Sorry for the long vent..


LawnSite Bronze Member
As far as commercial goes when they want a bid for just mowing maitenance I do a professional bid with no break down in price. I describe the service they will get and frequency and the price per week. I also include all the other services that I offer but I dont do bid for each service unless they are interested. When its all said and done the estimate is about 3 pages it looks good, they now know what my company offers, and how much the service they inquired about will cost.