first bid and grass is 8"+ DID I BID TO LOW??

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by johnjw77, May 10, 2013.

  1. johnjw77

    johnjw77 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 22

    I agree 100%.

    The company that does my apartment complex is probably the biggest company in the area I am at. I can't even imagine what this company is worth, but they are probably 100% commercial as well. They leave high spots, completely missed sections, shredded trash that they "forget" to pick up before mowing over it and never edge anything. I am certain my little 36" and I could make their work here look awful (although where I started would probably be ready to cut again by the time I finished haha). It's not that they couldn't do a better job, but as you stated they are so quick in and out to make the fast buck that the quality suffers tremendously. I never want to be that guy, and I plan to stay small for that reason.
  2. weeze

    weeze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,746

    part of it is their workers. they aren't always the brightest people in the world. i can't imagine hiring anyone to help me out. it seems like the scum of the earth would be all that was interested.

    i guess there is this stigma on the lawn industry that if you mow lawns that means you smoke, drink beer, never shave, and dress like a homeless person???

    they just can't get it through their heads that a lawn person is the same as a doctor, lawyer, teacher, engineer, or any other person in the world.

    some people just aren't in touch with reality. they think cutting grass is something a kid does for a summer job. they don't realize it's a legitimate career.
  3. Blade Runners

    Blade Runners LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,021

    I think your bid is very close to what we would have bid. We add 50% for dbl cutting.

    You won't have much trouble with 8" grass and you have already figured dbl cutting into your bid. You might even get away with 1 pass or just dbl cutting certain areas if you have a good mower and the grass isn't too thick.
  4. Penncare

    Penncare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 179

    I agree that you won't know until you actually cut it the first time whether you underbid or not; however, keep in mind that as you do this take notice of all your costs because at the end of the day if all you are doing is breaking even, you should have stayed home. You will learn as stated and don't think you have to know everything the first month. For me it seems just as soon as I think I know something, things change. Good luck and happy mowing.
  5. johnjw77

    johnjw77 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 22

    I thought roughly 50% sounded fair for a double cut. The guy actually sent me pictures of his lawn since it has rained again and asked me to make sure I thought the price was fair because he wants us both to be treated fairly here. I tell you what, I think I have landed the holy grail of customers on my first cast haha. I kept my price where it was at however. I try to be a man of my word and I think that alone will take me further than an extra $10-20 anyday.

    I am guessing with travel time, gas and other expenses I wont clear much to pay myself on this particular job. The up side will be if I can land more jobs in his area, and since I'm just starting and treating him fairly hopefully he will spread the word. I work another job as well so my bills are covered, I'm just hoping to put everything I make right back into the business for the first couple years and see where it gets me :cool2:
  6. TailboardJoes

    TailboardJoes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 16

    Sounds like a pretty good deal to me.

    Generally if our first cut is going to be at heights like that we charge what you did, only if they're going to be a weekly customer.

    Had a lady drive up to us last week. About a foot high, broadleafs that were 4 foot high here and there, wanted a one time mow for code enforcement. $125 instead of the typical $50ish. Double cut, just over an hour of work.
  7. weeze

    weeze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,746

    i don't even bother with one time cuts anymore. i just say i don't do them. i only accept all season long customers.

    i could give them a high price but they will pass on it so i just save us both the time and settle it for them. :laugh:
  8. exmarkking

    exmarkking LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,012

    we don't fool with one time cuts either but I love it when we are cutting a customer on a Friday and the guy across the street comes over in a frenzy because he has company coming into town and needs it cut now, I tell them we don't have time and that i can make time for some crazy price and they always jump on it.
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  9. weeze

    weeze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,746

    yeah i hear you if you can get away with it.

    i'd rather just not fool around with messing up my schedule just to make an extra $100. when all is said and done that much money doesn't make any real difference in the profit you make for the year.

    if i was already right next door then yeah i would do it but i've never had that happen. usually they call and they are on the other side of town or something. no thanks. :laugh:
  10. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,139

    Well it's a little like going blind double nil in spades, you never know what is going to happen.

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