Bidding question

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by blawncare, Mar 20, 2007.

  1. blawncare

    blawncare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 10

    I was told to do well and win bids is to measure sq footage times whatever the cost I want but my question is, Whats the average price for Weekly mowing if You are going to calculate sq footage? Tell me the price range for Residentals and Commercials Hence my math stunk so please help me out and tell me how to calculate, I do know how to caluclate the sq footage but then what if I wanna go like 10 cent per sq foot and it comes up way too high.

    Spring Clean up is going to start here pretty soon and so far I ve got 75 customers listed fa GO FOR IT. They wanted me to do em without quotes but bill em afterward. So from the first question up above, Should I mulitiply by 2 or 3 for Power raking and pick up and dump?

  2. Frontstreetlawns

    Frontstreetlawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 168

    someone around here said a good estimate was to time the sq foot by .05 and that gives you a good estimate. i times it by .055 and then facture in obstacles, but thats only push mower stuff when i get my big machine out i try to figure 45 a hour.

    someone around here told me a good estimate was about 4 to 5 time the amount of mowing for thatching

    JKOOPERS LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,259

    personally what i like to do is set a mininum fee and then go up from there
  4. firefightergw

    firefightergw LawnSite Gold Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 3,340

    I don't do square footage. I do time. Everything is about time. Time is a friend and an enemy. Time at a jobs = revenue Time at jobs = labor. I look at a job and see time and estimate that job based on how much time it will take and what I need to bring in per hour to reach our goals. When I quote a price or give and estimate, I don't even mention time. I give a flat price. That way if it doesn't take as long as I figured (and I always estimate "time on my side" or "wors't case scenario") I come out ahead. If I bid wrong and it takes longer than I thought, I eat it. Doesn't happen often.

    As far as getting 75 customers to say GO FOR IT without a signed agreement, I think you are asking for problems. There is a good chance that some of these people will feel you are trying to rip them off when you give them a total. It is better to give them a bid and have them sign it so that you know that they understand the cost up-front. You also have recourse if they don't want to pay.

    Square footage has too many variable. What if the turf is uneven and you have to mow slower than normal to avoid scalping? What if their yard is tiered to where you have to take your mowers up steps to get to the upper levels? What if there are areas that are fenced that a mower will not reach and it has to be weed-eated? What if it is a small lot but surrounded by side-walk (all sides must be edged)? Time is a constant billing measure.
  5. supercuts

    supercuts LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,808

    always give prices upfront and let them know exactly what you are doing for the money, otherwise you open yourself up for many problems. have them sign a proposal too
  6. martinfan06

    martinfan06 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 631

    Same here I dont like sq ft estimates look at the job and see how long it will take and what kind of variables there are.....go from there.
  7. Frontstreetlawns

    Frontstreetlawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 168

    thats what i was saying. i look at other things to. the sq foot is just to give you a good idea and you compare it to other jobs you have. if its an open area its less, if its got alot of obstacles its more
  8. blawncare

    blawncare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 10

    Thanks guys, Been busy lately and didnt have time to be online! I think I ve got it all figured out and so far its good and I did lose some and win some which tells me Im doing good.

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