Commercial Accounts

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by mattslawns, May 14, 2012.

  1. mattslawns

    mattslawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    What's everyone's game plan when trying to land commercial accounts? Do you bid it out as low as you can go, or do you keep things moderately high because they are a business? What month do you approach the company, and how? Just looking for everyone's feedback on this topic!


  2. stevenf

    stevenf LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,612

    I wait for them to come to me. Then I try to bid it completely blind. I don't like to know the other companies bid because it makes me try to be competitive with there price. I like to break down my own bid and know exactly what I have to charge.
    I just signed a commercial customer today. He told me the prices of a few bigger companies weren't much higher then mine. One even told him he could work on the price if someone bids lower. The customer told me " Why would he work on the price?... because he was bidding to high in the first place and taking advantage of us..."

    Commercials in my area know that a cheaper price means a cheaper quality.
  3. grass-scapes

    grass-scapes LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,552

    I just bid them as if they were any other property. I determine what work they want done, the level of difficulty and amount of estimated time per service, and submit a bid. If I get it, good. If not...well there are always others.
  4. mattslawns

    mattslawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    If you do not mind me asking, how much do you/others bid for Clean Up, tree Trimming, Etc at an hourly rate. People around this part of Idaho seem to stick to around $45 an hour, so I underbid them at $27 per hour. At that price Im still able to do a great job, and be comfortable with my wages.

    TJLANDS LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,668

    hey matt,
    I am assuming solo?

    you simply cannot make money at $27 an hour,
    as a legit business, in this country doing landscape work
    any landscape work,
    any state
    cannot be done

    unless you are willing to work for less than minimum wage,
  6. JB1

    JB1 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,903

    there's your sign.
  7. mattslawns

    mattslawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    The reason that I ask is that I have actually had a few of my clients complain about $27 per hour. Saying that "they only pay their general contractor $20 per hour". Do not get me wrong, I would love to charge $40+ per hour and make more profit, but it seems that the market is too cheap, and Im definitely not loosing money at $27. And the majority of my work is solo, but i hire help when needed. i am only 19 and have been somewhat in the business for five years now. Im just exploring new virtues
  8. Puddle of Oil

    Puddle of Oil LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,202

    What is your operating expense per hour?

    TJLANDS LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,668

    They are just playing you
  10. mattslawns

    mattslawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    Operating expense if I am working solo just depends on the job. if it's a clean up job its right around $10-$15. If I have to use machines or stuff like that, then obviously its going to be higher. But yes, it seems as though they are playing me. Here in Boise, even the rich community is pinching their pennies.

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