how should I price this job

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Jaysondavislawnservice, Jun 13, 2008.

  1. Jaysondavislawnservice

    Jaysondavislawnservice LawnSite Member
    Messages: 48

    Just got a new customer tonight and he also asked me how much I will charge to deliver soil and spread it. I think it will be around 2 to 2 1/2 yds. also he wants a estimate on laying sod for him. not really sure what to charge and did not want to screw myself out of this deal by not charging enough. can you guy please help out so i can give him a good price.
  2. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Where are you buying the dirt, how much do they charge?
    How will you get it there?
    How will you spread it?

    FYI I do whole cubic yards only, better 1/2 over than not enough but either two or three.
    It's too much bs for me with 1/2 yards, two or three.

    More FYI:
    Weight of one cubic yard is roughly 2,000 pounds.
    When carrying dirt on a trailer you will reach the trailer's max. weight rating usually long before it is full of dirt.
    This weight issue has to be seriously considered and researched before loading.
  3. Jaysondavislawnservice

    Jaysondavislawnservice LawnSite Member
    Messages: 48

    rock place up the road about 1 mile. they want $20 a yard and if i get 3 or over its free delivery. same with the sod right next door to the rock place.

    wheel b. from front to back and rack out level.
    the yard is about 1900 sq. ft. how thick should the top soil be and do you think 3 yards will do.
    the sod is about $140 a pallet will need 4 of those th do the whole thing

  4. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,776

    1900 square feet at 2 inches is about 140 yards if I did my calculations right.

    Somebody tell me if I did it wrong,

    1900*12inches = 22,800 square inches.

    22,800*2 inches = 45,600

    45,600 /12 = 3,800

    3,800/ 27 = 140.74

    3 yards of dirt should come to a little over 3 tons, depending on moisture.

    Are you grading or just top dressing for soil amending.
  5. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    I don't know, 140 sounds like a way awful lot but I'm also pretty sure 3 isn't enough...
    Not for two inches thick, that's too big an area for three but 100+ sounds way out there too...

    Look it's easy, how I do it is 19 x 100
    Then 2 inches thick is two inches out of 12, so two twelfths, or 1/6th...
    argggh lol 317... :p
    Oh yeah, that / 3 = 105...
    Something still ain't right.

    Forget all that.
    ONE cubic yard is about 27 cubic feet, that times 6 = 162 square feet two inches thick,
    That is how much 1 cubic yard will cover at 2 inches thick, 162 square feet.
    So then 1900 / 162 = 12 cubic yards.

    Free delivery, $240 for materials.
    Plan 2 cubic yards per hour, it's hard work so make it a High hourly low-cost equipment rate of $40-50 an hour,
    assuming you're just using a flat-end $20 shovel and a $65 wheel barrow it would take 6 hours to spread this out, $240-300 for the labor, I'd say quote $480-540 for the dirt to spread it and all.
    I would also highly consider getting a Landscaper's rake, they're about $40 but they do a really nice job of grading.

    Now I'd still double check that to be sure!
    Don't know about the sod, sorry it's just not something I do.
  6. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,776

    Ya, I was thinking 14 yards, not 140 for that size of an area. 140 is a butt load. Definitivly 3 isn't enough.
  7. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Two more things:

    1. Call around to every single place you can find and keep getting prices on dirt.
    2. See if any of them offer any types of discounts.

    Because the place I get mine from I get 10% off always because I have an account there or some bs, but also it only costs me $18 a cubic yard so then -10% times 12 cubic yards would be $205 (with tax) still saves the customer $35! And then I take $25-30 off their bill and put $5-10 in my pocket for going through the trouble, yes indeed.

    And you might think 5 bucks ain't worth the hassle but once done I put 5 in my pocket every time after that too.
    It pays to shop around, both for you and the customer, of course it's never over but that's why they hire guys like us.
  8. yard5864

    yard5864 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 1

  9. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,776

    Also, my supplier has 600 square feet of sod on each pallet.

    At that you would need a little over 3 pallets of sod.

    Couldn't tell you the price, as it fluctuates up and down a lot.

    But my guess without getting into specific numbers, your area of the country, I would say anywhere from 2000- 3000 for the entire job.

    Anybody got any input for those numbers ???

    Yard 5864, that's a cool calculator, thanks for the info.
  10. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,108

    1900 square feet.
    Figure $2200.

    About $1 per square foot.

    $300 is alittle extra padding for the additional extra sod needed

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