how much would you bid to mow 33 acres?

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by agent walker, Feb 13, 2012.

  1. Procut lawn expert

    Procut lawn expert LawnSite Member
    Messages: 67

    see its people like that , that will take 11 dollars a hr to mow commercial property that is making it so hard for the guys that are going to make it . but we don't have to worry about them long usually they can't buy gas next summer or when it goes to 5.00 a gallon this summer .. i don't sees how they can have insurance and gas money for 11 a hr i pay my men 10.00 to 15.00 then put 12 a hr up for equipment i figure up the cost of each piece of equipment break in all the way down to the life time hours to get how much a hour to charge for it .
  2. gqnine44

    gqnine44 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 502

    U r right . My experience with huge acreage is somewhat limited. We do mow a property about 15 acres and it takes two guys most of a day but we do usually have to mow it twice because it is not cut weekly. For 33 acres I would still want at least 1200. A Jacobsen is the way to go.
  3. crazymike

    crazymike LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ontario
    Messages: 452

    Just because the Jacobsen can do it faster doesn't mean you can do it for dirt cheap.

    That jacosbsen has a much higher initial investment. You are dealing with dozens of hydraulic lines, etc... which are susceptible to leaks and the like. More fuel. Expensive repairs. Hard to find a backup in case of major failure.

    Then factor in this is the only property you have to use it on, what if you lose the bid?

    I've been tossing around the idea of buying one, but I just can't justify it unless I went after a whack of work requiring it. Those machines just are not worth owning unless it's running most of the week.
  4. 2brothersyardcare

    2brothersyardcare LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,116

    3 man crew probably a day so about $1,800
  5. TXLWN

    TXLWN LawnSite Member
    Messages: 52

    Full day with 3 guys??? Are you using 32" walkbehinds lol?
    I really dont want to create an argument here since I am new to the forum and I respect and appreciate everyones input here but I am just a little baffled by the fact you guys think it will take such a long time to mow an area that size. I have mowed open acreage this size many times before and if you have a good crew its not a big deal.
    Here is what the productivity should be based on my experience......
    I dont have experience with walkers but I assume they are just as productive as other ZTRs
    Mower #1 Exmark 60"
    Mower #2 Walker 72"
    Mower #3 Walker 72"

    Total width of 17ft so lets say 15ft to cover for overlap.

    Average Mowing Speed in Wide open weekly cut Lawn 5mph(actual) Based on ZTR rated at 9mph once you factor in turning and cutting speed comes to around 5mph

    5 (mph) X 5280ft(1mi)= 26400ft linear distance covered per hr

    26400ft X 15ft (cutting width)= 396000 Sq ft covered per hr

    396000 divided by 43500(approx 1 acre) = 9.1 acres per hr

    That comes to about 3.5 hrs to do the job. So lets say 4 hrs

    500/4 = $125 per hr per crew

    -200 Wages
    -105 Mower and Mower Fuel Operating Cost
    - 15 Truck and Fuel ( Assuming Half Day Truck Use and Fuel on Route to Other Jobs)
    - 20 Misc Office and Other Expenses
    $160 Profit before Taxes send out the guys to do it. I agree its not great but its not bad either to add around another 4k profit to the year. If you had a full schedule of jobs like that at that profit rate you would add another 50k a year to your profit before your personal or corperate tax based on an 8 month growing season. Now tell me if you think Im still wrong.
  6. Cadzilla

    Cadzilla LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 903

    I'm sorry. You can't mow 33 acres in 3.5 hours with three mowers.

    Unless you're mowing in Disneyland.

    Your prices are very reasonable though. I wish you lived around here. I'd have you cut my lawn every day for 15 dollars and 15 cents an acre.
  7. TXLWN

    TXLWN LawnSite Member
    Messages: 52

    Thank you for your opinion Cadzilla.
  8. psdnate

    psdnate LawnSite Member
    Messages: 123 Go here and there is a mowing calculator. I've never used it so I don't know how well it works. I put in 72" mower at 5 mph and it says you can mow 3.27 acres an hour.
  9. johndeereguy

    johndeereguy LawnSite Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 220

    You can mow 33 acres in 3.5 hours with 3 mowers. Its wide open area. I am not sure why a guy is posting this question. First of all, if you are already in the business, one should know how to price something. Second, if a guy is used to mowing small areas, residential, light commercial, how can you give a resonable answer to this? Also, on areas like this, you have no reason to buy a Jacobsen mower. Its one job. I own two Jacobsen R311T mowers, but we mow 450 acres a week! I think I read $1500 is what someone would charge for this, really? I am not sure why anyone ask or answers the questions about what to charge. It all depends on what your area can and will pay. I know out here in the middle of Iowa, I cant charge near what others do, especially on plowing snow. The market just won't bear the higher prices. These questions are kind of funny to read, but even more comical when I read the responses.
  10. agent walker

    agent walker LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 477

    thanks txlawn for your formula. I looked at the property today and its not as flat open mowing as i was led to believe, there are several buildings, track, driving range softball field and 2 small ponds and rc airplane runway to go around. it also has some rough spots.

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