Commercial Contracts

Discussion in 'Bidding, Estimating and Pricing' started by LeeJLLS, Jan 2, 2019.

  1. LeeJLLS

    LeeJLLS LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    Landscaping property maintenance company located in Southern New England looking for direction when it comes to bidding on commercial properties. Do i go into this like it is a residential customer or does pricing become different ? Also if anyone has any examples to setting up a commercial contract. Thank you
     
  2. Mownmachine144

    Mownmachine144 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 440

    Interesting question. I have no experience with commercial contracts. Last year I just called around and asked if they needed service, it didn't work out to well.
     
    zlandman likes this.
  3. Anthony Divit

    Anthony Divit LawnSite Member
    from Pa
    Messages: 123

    To get started you really have to know someone on the inside. If not you have to do a lot of work to get the chance. I knew someone who knew someone and five years later we are going to strong. You need to make sure your insurance is up to their standards. I priced it out like anything. Cover your expenses and have a profit. So many places go for the extra low price so it is very competitive and in a lot of instances it doesn't make sense. I have two commercial places. Both small and I make good money. Took a while to build up to that with them. I won't go after anymore places. If I was to lose them I would just focus on other accounts. So ask around because at some point someone knows someone. Have fun and if you break a window or door glass make sure a glass place is nearby because it will happen.
     
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  4. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Male
    Messages: 15,215

    That’s a very tight market your dealing with in southern New England
    You have several entrenched players like eastern land management, Ivy League, green giant, bright view and landcare just to name a few.

    Best thing at this point is to stick to the “walk Ins”
    Meaning the gas stations, Taco Bell’s things like that get some time under your belt
    There’s still a bunch of commercial sites where the manager or owner contracts directly, just “walk in” and ask

    Places like target, Walmart, chains, boxes, yada yada yada are not contracted directly from the store
    Do the little stuff first
    Get comfortable
    Get known and then start breaking in by trying to get the “invite” for the RFPs
     
  5. Mow-Daddy.com

    Mow-Daddy.com LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,354

    How much experience do you have in Landscaping property maintenance?
    Are you equipped to take on commercial contracts? Backup equipment or access to backup, and labor? Insurance?
    If your wanting to do commercial, start out as TP said with walk-ins, Mabby some mom-n-pop stores.
    Best thing is, do you have any friends ?
    Start talking, you must know a few ppl who own businesses. Talk to them prove yourself, get your foot in a couple small places. Bust your hump go the extra mile. Word will get out.
    Never stop promoting you and your business. Won't happen overnight.
     
    Mownmachine144 likes this.
  6. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Male
    Messages: 15,215

    Many commercials have funky grass strips in parking lots you can only do with a 21” mower anyway.

    I know several pretty big commercials and pretty expensive hoas done solely by 21s.

    The big fancy equipment isn’t necessarily required.

    But I do agree
    Most people know someone who knows someone who can “get them an in” for more work,
    That’s why word of mouth, networking and self promotion are so important.
    Simply taking about your business at a bar or a New Year’s Eve Party has gotten people enviable contracts.

    I don’t drink
    I can’t tell you how many contracts have been yanked from under me by a barroom deal. I never even had an opportunity to bid... was all decided over drinks.
     
  7. LeeJLLS

    LeeJLLS LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    I’ve been in the field going on 10 years. Worked on many commercial properties. Worked for a well known company in the area. Branched out on my own. LLC, fully insured with enough equipment to carry on if something breaks. Ik how to do the work and how to talk to these commercial reps, just don’t know pricing.
     
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  8. Anthony Divit

    Anthony Divit LawnSite Member
    from Pa
    Messages: 123

    Your best bet is to price one out and see what happens. Understand they want cheap. Go through your cost and send a price over. You will have a lot of bids before you get one, but at least you would understand everything. Look at every inch of a place you want to bid. Islands of grass and places that are not flat along with a lot of cars and people is a normal thing. Parking lots you blow edge to edge so understand that as well.
     
    Mownmachine144 likes this.

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