Estimate help

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by AutumnRidge, Sep 19, 2017.

  1. AutumnRidge

    AutumnRidge LawnSite Member
    Messages: 40

    So, starting out, I've noticed my biggest challenge so far has been estimates. I don't wanna scare people off, nor do I wanna screw myself
    So anyways, we could probably talk all day about estimating jobs, but I have a more specific question.
    I just started a seeding job. New construction and soil in fair shape. It's approx one acre and I've already spent a solid 4hrs on a tractor, repositioning dirt and running a roto-tiller to break up the dirt clods.
    This is the dad of a friend of mine and also my son's pediatrician. So, I really wanna do this right. However, all the prep work has been more than initially expected, and its been kicking my butt.
    I think I'm done w the tractor work. I just need to finish the seeding itself and throwing out straw.
    How much should I charge? I've for a solid 9 hour day into just the front yard

  2. AutumnRidge

    AutumnRidge LawnSite Member
    Messages: 40

    And the side

  3. AutumnRidge

    AutumnRidge LawnSite Member
    Messages: 40

  4. BigJlittleC

    BigJlittleC LawnSite Gold Member
    from Chicago
    Messages: 3,422

    You should have a minimum hourly rate and or day rate.
  5. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,644

    You're going to hand straw that?
    Haven't done that in decades
    No one you know has a hydroseeder or at least a straw blower?
    Ijustwantausername likes this.
  6. AutumnRidge

    AutumnRidge LawnSite Member
    Messages: 40

    I could rent a straw blower, but rentals are expensive and would cut into profit.
  7. starry night

    starry night LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,597

    Tell us more details.
    You're asking for help on the estimate after finishing the bulk of the work?
    How much did you tell the client before you started?
  8. Matthews Lawn Care

    Matthews Lawn Care LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,621

    Well, for starters you need to figure out what your hourly rate is. Example; on any landscaping job I bid my labor at $30/hr, plus materials/markup, expenses, etc. The fun part is estimating how much time it will take when your just getting started in the industry. Bidding labor at half days or full days has been the best way I have found when I first started and I still bid jobs that way today. Always have your bid accepted with proof before jumping on any job. It's an easy out if they don't like your price after you've already started the job.
  9. brycez28

    brycez28 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 314

    I would use an erosion control type blanket. The cost of it would have been included in my quote for the job. upload_2017-9-19_9-11-48.png
    Ijustwantausername likes this.
  10. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,644

    Rentals don't cut into profit, you add them to the cost of the proposal.

    That's like saying straw is expensive and it cuts into profit.

    Time + material + rental and fuel + any other costs like delivery fees x 1.3
    There's your price
    Bcoogan23 likes this.

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