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Holy Crap...I never expected this, now how do I price it..

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by From Dust 'til Lawn, Oct 7, 2008.

  1. From Dust 'til Lawn

    From Dust 'til Lawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 127

    I just received a call from the grounds manager of this apartment complex near my home...He got my number from a customer of mine...gotta love word of mouth....anyways...He wants me to give him an estimate on Mow,Trim and Blow......for right now...with hedge work and egde work to come in at a later time.....I've never given an estimate of this magnatude....it's the usual apts complex...14 buildings spread over a 14 acre parcel...lots of sidewalks,trimming etc......I'm a sole operator...I could get a helper I'm sure...but how do I rate it????? Currently I do Resi's along a golf course...I mean this is apple to oranges.....Thanks guys....
  2. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,373

    Just go price out each section of turf as though it was its own yard. When you're done, add them all up, knock off 10% and there ya go.

    Just make sure you're not underbidding each and every area of turf.
  3. Turf Dawg

    Turf Dawg LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,719

    My first advice is not to bite off more than you can chew {this is from experiance}. If you do not have insurance and workmans comp you will need it so figure it into the cost now. I would also add a little time to what you think it is going to take you, because at apartments you will always be waiting on people to get out of your way. I cannot speak for everyone, but my labor rate for commercial is higher than residential. When you figure out your price per cut {do not forget about spring growth and fall leaves} find out how many times they want it mowed then multiply price X cut times Divided by 12. Remember not to sell yourself short. Hope this helped alittle.
  4. robbo521

    robbo521 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 601

    i was going to do two this year till the woman give me the contract at church.i looked it over and said nope cant do it.they wanted it all done and me stay there almost every day doing some type of yard work.i was first told cut,trim blow and go but it was all a lie.
  5. mikewhit1010

    mikewhit1010 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 394

    Man look at your equipment. I am not ragging but you are not ready. This would take a long time to do. I have two guys that work for me full time and some part time guys. I have a rider and a few walk behinds and lots of edgers, weed eaters and what not and it would still take me a long time. Sometimes saying no is better then taking on something you cant handle. Apartments are demanding
  6. From Dust 'til Lawn

    From Dust 'til Lawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 127

    the way i see it...there aren't any really wide open mowing areas...mostly smaller areas..so I think my equipment will do just fine...if it's a time issue...so it takes me all day....for what it could be worth in dollars....what's better...one big job for the day or a few small ones??? one load and unload...me and a helper...one mowing..one trimming..and meeting to finish whatevers after.....I'm thinking 8 hours...
  7. gravedigger5

    gravedigger5 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 505

    Beginning of last season I bid a 12 building (4 units per building) apt complex with about half with detached garages, sidewalks down both sides of street and was sitting on appx 10 acres. I figured around 8 man hours (using 60" z's on most of it) bid $477 and did not get the job. I thought I was even bidding low cause I really wanted this job and get my foot in the door with this property management company, but I am not going to work for free.

    And as far as being new or under equipped, I had not been in business even a year when I bid on a big commercial job with 3 different locations totaling 4 hours of mowing and a 30 acre mow/bush hog job plus extras. I got that job and 8 years later am still doing it. So just be confident, don't under bid, and if you get it bust your a$$ like I did and you will be making enough to afford bigger better equipment if you need it.

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