I am keep doing under estimating

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by guven, May 15, 2006.

  1. guven

    guven LawnSite Member
    Messages: 205

    I am almost two years in lawn mowing business , I mow and clean yard, most of time especially fall and spring clean up, I am under estimating, I work full one day and making 180 dollars. my wife is telling me go find another job because you are killing yourself. I am afraid of getting no job therefore I am super busy and not making enough money. how can I make better money. I need customer. thanks
  2. wski4fun

    wski4fun LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 323

    Charge more. Charge for 5hrs and work for 4hrs. Make sure you charge for all your time and dump fees.

    FIREMAN Q LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 260

    I have had good luck just telling the customer that the job is going to be by the hour. This way I don't under bid and they don't feel that they are being over charged. Now with this said, if the property is cut and dry then you would be better off just giving them a solid estimate.

    When I tell them it will be XX and hour I also tell them that it should be around X hours give or take. THis has worked out very well for me so far this year and I have had no complaints.

    Good luck.
  4. Ric3077

    Ric3077 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,113

    Try to think how long it will take you... pick an amount you want to make per hour...figure in any dump fees and the time to dump it...and charge the customer....say you think it will take you 3 hours and you want to make $60/hour (includes your pay and taxes and equipment exp etc) and it cost $25 to dump...charge $225 maybe a lil more if you think it might take longer....
  5. CutInEdge Lawn Care

    CutInEdge Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 677

    I never give an estimate on the spot unless it's just mowing. Let them know as soon as you get back to the office or within 24hrs you will have an estimate for them. That way reality sets in and you will give them a more competant estimate. Not a fly the pants one. Driving away from location and thinking about the job will pay for itself in the short run. Ex. there have been times I almost spat out a $ amount and bit my tongue. Drove away and reflected on job and called them back with a bid several hundred $ higher than what I was going to say on the spot. Won the job, and upon doing the job realized that I was so marginal in $ that I would have not only been working for free but having to dip into business funds just to purchase material. So when starting out DO NOT JUST SPIT OUT ANY OLD #. Take time to absord the real cost of doing business or wife will quickly let you know #'s
  6. Imran-Ali

    Imran-Ali LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    I agread with Mr cut in edge lawn care.I did the same things that you did in the past.good luck
  7. Dunn's

    Dunn's LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,534

    Well you need to figure out an hourly rate and charge for how long you think it will take. You also need to let the people know that an estimate is just that ...it's an ESTIMATE. If you don't work as long as you thought, the price will be lower than you thought and if you work longer it is going to go up. We had that problem a few times so just explain to them that the price can go up or down ...don't make it a drastic change but say for example you have a job to do and they want an estimate. Tell them that your hourly rate is $(whatever your amount is) and it could take me anywhere from this many hours to that many hours and give them the approximate amounts.
  8. guven

    guven LawnSite Member
    Messages: 205

    thanks for all your nice advice, I will try to make money .many thanks . I love The USA and the people. they are very friendly and helpul. thanks again for your time.
  9. grasswhacker

    grasswhacker LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,873

    Since your in N.J. you might want to look up Bobby Gedd on this site. He's good at making lots of money without working very long hours.
  10. PMLAWN

    PMLAWN LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,534

    All day for 180. The fix is easy. Just do exactly what you are doing now as far as estimate. Just charge 3 times what you are charging now. That should put you right about where you should be.

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