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Commercial Mowing Bidding

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by osmann_lawn, Feb 11, 2012.

  1. osmann_lawn

    osmann_lawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 268

    I am new to the commercial bidding. How much more do you charge compared to residential mowing? I was wondering what you guys charge per acre? i know there are a lot of factors that include in the price such as time, trimming, edging & blowing clippings. I kind of go by the rule $1.00 per min. Its seems to be pretty accurate way of figuring out a price. Let me know what you guys charge for a 1 acre lot.

  2. ROC lawn and landscapes

    ROC lawn and landscapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 82

    Its more like how much less do you charge for commercial properties.... sometimes its not that way but typically your not gonna get the same profit margin as you would for residentials. Sit down and run your number for each piece of equipment until you come up with what you absolutely have to have per hour then add on your percentage of profit... and dont forget to add in your monthly overhead (shop,phone,utilities, advertizing). When bidding commercial properties you need to be as efficient as possible (as efficient as your competition or they will probably beat your bid). Most people dont bid by the acre because there are a lot of variables that go in to figuring how long a specific job will take. Time estimations take alot of practice and record keeping. Everytime you mow a property make sure you write down how long it took you from start to finish (make a log). It will greatly help in the future. Make sure you are ready for the commercial side of this business. I wanted to bid on the mowing for a large highend apartment complex this year (had a very good chance at getting it since I have done previous work for the manager) but I had to decline because my company isnt ready for an account that large due to not enough manpower or equipment. It really hurt to decline a potential 30,000 dollar account but I rather have the chance in a year or two to give them a bid rather then to shoot myself in the foot and never get to bid it again.
  3. OP

    osmann_lawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 268

    dang that sucks! i have the man power and ability to do the work. just didn't want to loose money.
  4. martinlawn29

    martinlawn29 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 146

    you can look at it in many ways like whats it worth to you to do the job.
    i try for 40 to 50 per guy per hour just all depends.
    how open the job is
    how much whiping is there
    how long will it take to mow it
    if its an hour job with 2 guys you will be safe at 80 to 90 per cut
  5. andyslawncare

    andyslawncare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 812

    we have a 1 acre residential that we charge $95/ service 31 times per year = 245.42/month + weed control + core aeration
  6. CozyHollow

    CozyHollow LawnSite Member
    Messages: 130

    This will be my first year in the Biz. I've talked with several Landscape Co. owners who tell me up here in the North East we are to typically charge $125.00 per acre. I worked several years in the Biz as a laborer back in the late 80's thru late 90's and the prices that were charged back then have practically doubled...just sayin'

    Now as for the commercial buildings...I'm also told that THIS is the "bread and butter" of your company. The guy I work with at my day job has been at going on his 4th year. He works a day job and has 2 guys running his Landscaping Biz. He has a commercial property he maintains year round that brings him $120,000.00 yearly income. He also has over 70 residential as well. He tells me after ALL (maintenance, laborers, etc.) is paid out...he walks with $3,100.00 a week in his pocket. Where I live there are medium to high income residential properties and meeting with my coworker and looking at a property I asked "what would you charge?" (I was thinking $40.00) He said without a thought "$65.00". (It looked to be @ 1/3 acre) Man was I surprised!

    Hey, I'm as "green" as they come on the business owning side. Starting small with everything I need equipment wise paid for in cash. No credit cards or debt here and I talk to and ask everyone I see "out and about" who is pulling a trailer with lawn equipment...so far I'm getting just about the "same" input whoever I ask.
  7. lawnlandscape

    lawnlandscape LawnSite Senior Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 780

    lol... your original post... 'how much more do you charge?'

    We make less on our commercial properties and charge less

    1) Its more competitive
    2) Personal Relationships matter less and price matters more
    3) Commerical properties are often (generalizing) easier to mow with more open spaces, so they can be larger but take the same amount of time as a much smaller home lawn.
  8. justinnielsen11

    justinnielsen11 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    You wouldnt get 40 in grand rapids michigan . rates here are 35 per man for a 60" mower and one man weed whiping and edging . even large companys ive seen their bids at 28 an hour. a good two man crew should get close to 500 a day (250 a person) would be a goal . theres so much competion and prices just keep going down. 35 is a good number for any service plus a small disposal fee if your removing any thing .
  9. martinlawn29

    martinlawn29 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 146

    You can get 40 ..35 is not bad watch your gas cost don't base your price on any BIG LCO in GR ...Set your price let your work talk for its self don't low ball go high-end you will get the work it will take time. 45 to 55 per man hour for cleanups too. Your rie about pricing going down the pooper to many guys out there think they know what there doing. POP UP company's here today gone tomorrow. I would agree with 500 a day but how nice is 300 or even 350 a guy. You of coures can not do that all over. Just my tughts good luck guys :)
  10. crazymike

    crazymike LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ontario
    Messages: 452

    Calculate your cost per man hour

    Calculate how long it will take you

    Add your profit margin

    Add some money for incidentals.

    Calculate it all together and you have it.

    Around here, commercial rate is about $35-50 a man hour. Residential is $50-$60.

    When you calculate your overhead for commercial make sure to allow for things such as interest, etc... because commercial accounts generally take longer to pay.

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