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Help with info on bidding

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by LawnMan883, Mar 9, 2007.

  1. LawnMan883

    LawnMan883 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 85

    i am starting of fmy business with all the required insurance and whatnot this year, but i do need some help. I am trying to bid of soem commercial properties. The first few i was going to bid on are apartment complexes. One is the apartment complex i live in, which previously they have cut with their own Zero turn mower. I have been the grounds maintenance person for the last 2 years using their equipment, but a new owner bought the business this yera and is faced witht he idea of buying new equipment or hiring a company. I noticed a bid on his desk earlier this week and the office manager suggested i turn in a bid from my compnay and instead of just using his equipment, give him a price using my equipment and doing the whole job.
    Using a 60" Zero Turn the full lawn (just mowing) used to take 5-6 hours. Trimming/edging was another 2-3 hours...so it is a full days job. On top of this i would like to present a price for bush and shrub maintenance because they have been neglected previous years and look like crap.
    I just need some guidance on how i would bid for a property like this or any of the surrounding complexes of similar size. We have about 210 units here as do the surrounding complexes.
    the bid i saw on his desk quoted $275 per cutting for lawn mowing, $1050 for the month, and $8150 for the season. Does that sound about right? I plan to invest in a commercial 72" Mower once i land a bid or two, thatway once the snow melts i will be ready to go. Please give me some guidance.
  2. Ric3077

    Ric3077 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,113

    the bid you saw is way low...
  3. Wells

    Wells LawnSite Member
    from SLC UT
    Messages: 0

    Way, way low....

    8 hours to finish the entire property for $275 per cut equates to about $34 per hour. Now take into account the equipment your going to have to purchase to maintain the grounds, the liability insurance your going to need and the gasoline required to power the equipment for those 8 hours.

    Compare that property to say residentals, lets say you can do 2 properties per hour as a solo operator and you charge them $25 each. In an 8 hour period you could do 16 properties at $25 each equals $400.

    So in the same 8 hour period you could be earning an extra $125. and i'm assuming in order to get the current appartment bid you would have to come in lower then the bid that they already have in hand.

    Not worth the time in my opinion.
  4. proweedeater

    proweedeater LawnSite Member
    Messages: 6

    definitly not worth your time, without seeing the job its hard to say but if it takes all day thats time you could be making money. At least $500 per cut maybe more.
  5. LawnMan883

    LawnMan883 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 85

    Thanks guys. I am so unsure of giving bids thats the major thing i gotta figure out to get going here.
  6. TXNSLighting

    TXNSLighting LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 6,464

    base it around 50-60 per hour! that bid is waaaay to low! i would like to see the company that put in that bid.
  7. JeffW0011

    JeffW0011 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 182

    It's always worth the time to give the bid. Just because some low ballin joker already bid some silly low amount does not neccessarily mean the guys going to take it. Maybe they do a total crap job the first time or show up with a couple 21" walmart specials. If you live in this place and have access to the office people, try to get a meeting with the guy. When he tells you of this low bid, just scoff at that and explain that no pro would touch that job for that kind of money. See what happens!
  8. supercuts

    supercuts LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,806

    without seeing it and going by what you say, very low, im up at about $80/hr
  9. tiggermanh

    tiggermanh LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    Sounds to me the $210 bid was using their equipment.
  10. Mustard Seed Landscape

    Mustard Seed Landscape LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    Hey guys - we talk about striving for 50-60 hr cut/trim blow , gas etc .
    what about 2 hour spring clean up one man ? Rake , pick up sticks , blow
    some bagging that type of thing . $ 25-30 hrs ? lite work ? or still 50-60 ?

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