dilema w a mulch job- HELP!!!!

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by LawnPatrolNY, Jul 12, 2012.

  1. LawnPatrolNY

    LawnPatrolNY LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    hey everyone, thanks for reading and helping in advance. i have been reading posts for weeks now and finally signed up for an account on here. you guys are great!! so this being my first post i have a dilema. GO EASY ON ME PLEASE

    I took on my first mulch job and shrub trim, and i think i quoted way to low after reading what people charge. i quoted "about $200 plus materials", but also told him depends on how long it takes to clear the beds and how many hrs i put in ... so after clearing the beds and putting in about 5 hours of prep work i layed 2 yards of mulch. totaling about 6 hrs of work.

    i had my helper @ $10/per hr, cut the shrubs took him about 5 hrs to do that and clean it up (yea i wasnt to happy bout that)

    during this time the client also added on to clean up the side of the house that had old logs that were deteriorating and causing a mess, and also mentioned 1 more shrub to be trimmed (about 45 mins of work)

    so basically i quoted to low, but like i said i did tell him "depends on how many hrs i put in", so my question is what do i tell this guy, i do have a weekly mow service w him as well, and i dont want him to think that im trying to scam him, and lose his business all together, but i really just thought it wouldnt take me as long as it did. after reading some people and what they charge , its seems like i should have charged about 500 plus material... i dont think i could go and tell this guy that he owes me like $600 now , so what do you think the fairest way to go about this is and what should i charge .

    ive also noticed that people haev put comments about typing or spelling, well guess what im typing on the computer and this isnt a proper document so there will be errors and u will just have to deal w it . thanks
  2. Mahoney3223

    Mahoney3223 LawnSite Senior Member
    from midwest
    Messages: 995

    Suck it up. You bid it. Take your lumps and move on. Welcome to BUSINESS
  3. Dr.NewEarth

    Dr.NewEarth LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,476

    It's a learning experience.

    I figure my employees are always going to do things slower than I do, so I estimate accordingly.
  4. jsslawncare

    jsslawncare LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,673

    He didn't hear "It depend's on how long it take's me" all he heard was $200+ material's. Charge him what you said and move on. Just remember the next time you bid.
  5. dose0018

    dose0018 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    First off, Are you ready for the flames?
    I am going to make a comment on your spelling and grammar. It indicates that you may well be a younger man. Me and others are going to wonder how old are you?

    Not that age relates to price, but being an LLC, or incorporated and carrying the proper insurances does. If you are not properly licences and insured for your area, IE. you would describe your job as on the side or you are going to school then you will not and can not charge what legitimate businesses charge. So be careful about comparing your prices to what people read here.

    Well, I think there is a lot for saying you live ya learn, you can up charge a bit for the additional work that he asked you to do but you cant raise to the prices you were talking about. You bid it... your problem.

    Anyway, lets hear what you end up doing. Also, if you are not paying insurance or taxes (working as a teen or kid on the side of school) you did not lose your ass. You will get better than 200 (am hoping in addition to materials) and you paid out 60 so your fine. If you are running a proper business you lost your ass on this job and bid the next one better.

    Well, sincerely best of luck I like seeing people out there hustling especially young people (remember I am assuming from writing style).
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2012
  6. KrayzKajun

    KrayzKajun LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,737

    Welcome to the Game!!!
    Posted via Mobile Device
  7. C Jovingo Landscaping

    C Jovingo Landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 436

    Agree with a everyone above. The money you left on the table was the price of the learning expeirience. If you are gonna use a helper don't estimate how long it takes you to do something like DR.NewEarth stated. By the sound of your post, I'm gonna say you are under 18. "Depends on how long it takes me" sounds like something a kid would say. Bid a job with full price, not labor + materials. Again labor plus material sounds like kid bid. If you bid a job & don't know the cost of materials take notes at property, then tell client you will get back to them with a bid after you price materials. If you are under 18, you were probably hired because kids r cheaper than a real LCO. You can't price jobs by what you see on here. You have to know your overhead costs. A large LCO has more overhead so their bid would be hire per man hour than yours. Good Luck on future jobs!
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  8. C Jovingo Landscaping

    C Jovingo Landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 436

    You were right abt others wondering age. I started my message before you posted, got side tracked by daughter goin to store, then posted mine & we pretty much said same thing.

    OP also the "Deal with it" at end of your post sounds a lil arrogant & again like a kid. If ur askin for help, don't tell us to deal with it. You should have ended with an apology for grammer & spelling mistakes.
    Posted via Mobile Device
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2012
  9. LawnPatrolNY

    LawnPatrolNY LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    Thank you to everyone that replied as fast as you did. to address a few questions that everyone had:

    Age - 27

    Reason for doing - extra $ on the side

    License/Insured - no for as i only do a few lawns/jobs on the side, but if it starts to take off then i will change this

    "deal w it" - i was just refering to some other ppl on this forum that go crazy about spelling/grammer mistakes - that in the long run DO NOT MATTER, like i said this isnt a professional document that im typing just something quick to get my point across. yea being younger we tend to do things differntly and as we think more efficiently then sitting n holding the shift button down or making sure the camma is in the right spot so thers no run on sentence or making sure that every word is spelled correctly well guess what, people dont read the entire word the brian mainly looks at the first and last letter, its been proven.

    anyways thank you for the posts/comments and i had a feeling that alot of ppl would say what u all did about just sucking it up and dealing w it , and i will , sure ill add on for the extras that were added but i said a price and ill stick to it .

    i love being outsde and working w my hands, as my day job doesnt allow for that . any other tips/suggestions that ppl have to a newbie would be great.

    thanks again for your help
  10. C Jovingo Landscaping

    C Jovingo Landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 436

    More advice... don't second guess bids! When you figure up a bid & it seems high, don't drop price cuz you think you won't get the job. You will prob regret dropping price once you do the job. Your time estimating skills will get better with the more jobs you do. Anything can happen...check into insurance. Good Luck!
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