Estimate dispute- 30x100ft parking lots?

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by Ramairfreak98ss, Jun 8, 2007.

  1. Ramairfreak98ss

    Ramairfreak98ss LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,210

    Well, not really a dispute but i have a client that is requesting FOUR parking lot areas put down for a commercial lot.

    They want either 3/4" crushed or recycled crushed concrete put down over existing dirt near a roadway.

    Each lot is 30'x100'. I figured my calculations out to be 4" thickness

    3000 cu ft if 12" deep, divide by 3 for 4" total thickness and divide by 27 to get the amount of yards of stone ill need. It comes out to 37 yards or ~55 tons worth since each yard is around 1.5 tons depending on how its purchased.

    3000cu ft/3=1000cu ft /27=37 yards x1.5 x $25 cost per ton =$1,387.50 cost per 30x100sq ft parking area

    Now for FOUR lots, it would be $1387.50x4=$5,550 cost for materials.
    Hauling per load is $65. Now this is the more confusing part... It would eat up SEVEN 18 wheeler trailer loads full figuring their truck weighs ~20,000lbs and are carrying 60,000lbs worth of stone. Ive never done a parking lot install, at least nothing this big with 4 of them at a time.

    That seems like TONS of stone, but either way, now add in that $65x7=$456 for delivery.

    Now my labor to move this from each area where the truck dumps it or the street, onto the lot which is right next to the street, spread it around, level it off and pack it down "by tire/skid steer weight". Normally id rent an actual rolling packer machine for something like this but they insist that just cars driving on it 4" thick will be fine. Its not a very wet or muddy area, dry if anything.

    I quoted them $9,300 for all 4 lots. Im at 6 grand minimum for materials, without markup on materials yet plus my labor for a two day job with two guys, my tractor and a skid steer......

    On a job like this i get 20% markup on my materials. Thats $7200 plus labor i estimated out to be $2100 for 2 days/3guys/8hrs day is 24hrs@$87.50hr with skid steer, tractor etc... I feel this price is pretty fair. They insist that i can use only 100 tons for all four 30x100 lots and make it at least 3" thick for $7,500? WTF?

    Should i just tell them fine, $7,500 for 100 tons of rock spread out and don't give a flying hoot about the depth minimum of the stone? That is only $1,625~ in stone cost plus markup and labor, now thats a deal right there! It estimates out to ~1.5" thick, if thats what they want ill take a $7,500 job instead of my $9,300 job.
  2. gavin478

    gavin478 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 139

    Yes, so long as you have a contract saying that you are being paid to spread the amount of stone in weight, not volume, and not the thickness. This way, if this amount dosen't spread out and be thick enough, you still completed the contract.

    SDNCLAWNCARE LawnSite Member
    Messages: 232

    Good Luck man... That seemed like a good price to me. People want everything for nothing. Just get everything in writing.
  4. MarcSmith

    MarcSmith LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,157

    around here they usually deliver by a 6 axle dump truck which can haul about 20-30 tons. so you'd be looking at 2 dump truck for each lot....more or less

    I'd have the dump trucks help you by having them "spread" the rock for. by only partially opening the date and then driving off the lot as they raise the dump body.

    I think you also get a mroe consistent spread with a york rake on the back of tractor.. but thats JMO

    I agree with you that a roller would be a wise thing to have on site as well....but if they don't want to pony up the $$$ just put in a disclaimer....25 cubic yards of material will cover 2700 sqt ft 3" deep... I'd bet that they are confusing their tons/yards....and not taking into account weight, ect...

    if the customer wants to dictate the terms, then spell it out in the contract and make sure to make mentions of you estimates of coverage... based on what they want.

    also mention that if you have to come back and spread another 25 tons on each parking lot to get the 4" depth, you will gladly charge them 7500 again for that priveledge...not 9500 as originally estimated.

    why such a low markup on the materials?????
  5. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Well idk about the price but it just sounds like they want something for nothing, that's what teh.

    One thing I learned, is NEVER give the details of how you're going to do it or what you are going to use, that is what leads to the lowballing. If anything, just say you're going to use a decent quality material that you've used before and put it down at a depth that will last some time, stuff like that is what I say.
    And just give them the price, that's how much.

    Nothing else seems to work.
  6. Ramairfreak98ss

    Ramairfreak98ss LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,210

    thanks Marc, well it depends, normally i get between 20-50% on landscape "supply" items. I estimated this job out originally at 30% but once i had so much profit just in labor im not too penny pinching over the markup percentage on the supplies.

    Most likely for this type of job id spread it out with a good loader or skid steer and then have my smaller tractor just spread out with the landscape rake on the back to smooth it out well.
  7. Ramairfreak98ss

    Ramairfreak98ss LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,210

    I know, well i go out in detail on most estimates for landscaping but like this place, they went and called up a few places to get a price on rock cost etc. I do not quote out in detail exactly the process or else people start figuring out hmm.. its only going to take this guy 20 hours and he wants $5,000 in labor cost? well how ever way they guess what im making, but then others see a 7k bill and figure, what am i paying for, these supplies only cost $1,500?

    I dont break down supplies cost individually either, thats nuts, people will be all over you for charging them $5 over cost for a tree they could have at home depot on sale with 10% off coupon for less:dizzy:
  8. sheshovel

    sheshovel LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,112

    The delivery truck should be able to "spread" it as they dump it, that is how it is done here anyway.
  9. Harley-D

    Harley-D LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 508

    Might want to double check your labor.
    3guys/8hrs=24X87.5 an hour=2100 but that's for one day and you stated 2.
    That's 4200 now unless i missed something. Don't want to take a 2100 hit on labor.

    This is definitely a job you should "pad" your estimate on. Throw in another 5-10% in "administrational fees" and "OSHA standard safety guidelines to be followed".

    Just CYA. Always CYA.
  10. Ramairfreak98ss

    Ramairfreak98ss LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,210

    True i sort of missed that in the original type up, but so far it looks like they want just 100tons spread around and thats it. Now if it takes a day, which i think it could easily, thats ~5k for one day or $2500 for each day of 2 total... im happy with that, if anything they went from ~250 tons for $12k~ to 100tons for 7k, im making much more on that than either of my original prices.

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