First time bidding on a villa community.

Dan Goodwin

LawnSite Member
I've received an invitation to place a bid on a villa community for lawn care and snow removal, it's a 3 year contract and they want out clauses for each side. Hoping someone who is already doing these can chime in. I have advice from someone else that they always bid by the man hour, however I've always bid by the SF. With the amount of work required, I'd have to purchase more equipment... ie they want the sidewalks cleared for snow removal and that totals over 12k SF so no way could I do that with a shovel. They want the front yards pushed and bagged... so would need to purchase a commercial walk behind. Back yards and common areas can be done with traditional commercial equipment. My question is, if charging by the man hour, how do I figure out how long this would take? Including yards it totals over 11 Acres that need to be mowed so it wouldn't take much in terms of a mis-calculation to find myself in trouble.


LawnSite Fanatic
You said you bid by sq ft, so does that mean you know how long it takes to do a given amount of area? What's your sq ft pricing on 11 acres?


LawnSite Senior Member
Owasso, Oklahoma
When you yourself say” I’d need to purchase more equipment…” , and that they want out clauses, I would really look at this several times to make sure you can really do this,, or could absorb the hit if they exercise an out and your left with equipment not being used.

i like the idea of possibly reviewing the current contract too. Don’t leave yourself short or find yourself slammed. 11acres is a decent chunk of real estate.

I bid one of these with 7 acres ( no snow), they went with a bid that was half of mine. I just received a text from the president of the Hoa if I could do it for what they bid, as their unhappy and the grounds don’t look any better.

Gus McGee

LawnSite Senior Member
It is amusing, many commercial accounts / associations frequently choose low-ballers and wonder why their grounds look horrendous. Instead of putting two and two together realizing they are going to get crap service at the bargain price no matter which contractor they choose they keep playing the game of finding a new company every year, bitching about the quality of service, and moving onto the next low-baller.

It makes me think of Albert Einstein's quote on insanity.

Top Forums