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Large Commercial Accounts

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Grassman_Floyd, Jan 19, 2008.

  1. Grassman_Floyd

    Grassman_Floyd LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4

    I have a question. But first I will give a quick profile of my company. I operate a mowing service in a rural area 50 miles north of Seattle Washington in a town called Stanwood. I have roughly 220 clients 70% residential, 25% HOA's and 5% commercial. I would like increase the commercial side where it takes a bigger percentage than it has now. Heres the the question or questions- 1. How can I market my company to commercial management firms? 2. What are ways I can find out that certain commercial clients are up for bid? 3. Would anybody have an idea how to come about bidding on govenment (local, state, military) accounts? Hey thanks for any help.
  2. corbster

    corbster LawnSite Fanatic
    from OHIO
    Messages: 29,505

    Open the phone book and look up property managment ...then you can cold call them or send them a letter of intent. They will contact you when property's are open for bid.
    Question for you: How many employees do you have or are you solo?
  3. Grass Man Floyd

    Grass Man Floyd LawnSite Member
    Messages: 11

    I have 5 full time and then I will be hiring 3-4 seasonal.
  4. Flex-Deck

    Flex-Deck LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,845

    I mow for the county conservation boards of 2 counties. These are approx. 40 acres for one, and 50 for the other. They entail campgrounds, picnic areas, and parks. I found out about them by calling the Conservation Board office and asking when they bid out the jobs. In this case, one bids every two years, and the other every three. The one that bids every two, now just has us do it, as even though they know they can get a lower bid, they spent 20 years using the low bid, and the work never got done on time or well. I can probably mow for that account as long as I want, as long as I do not get rediculous on price. The other one is one I just landed (I was the high bidder), but the reputation we have with the neighboring county became something they considered very heavily, because they too were tired of being burned by the low bid. I now have a city (I called the inspection department to inquire about that one, and asked for an opportunity to demonstrate what we could do to keep about 20 miles of curbs looking pristine without having to hand trim them-they were dually impressed) that is waiting for the present contract to run out to in all probability have us do what they need done.

    I guess it all boils down to getting your foot in the door, doing a good job, then getting what you deserve or need will come.

    Curb Trimming-Target.jpg
  5. 1wezil

    1wezil LawnSite Senior Member
    from tn
    Messages: 532

    could you give me your ideas on this ? i am bidding on a 60 acre commercial property that is distribution center. 3/4 of it has irrigation on it but that is a separate bid . all the trees and bush trimming needs to be done by a licensed professional so i will have to sub that out. so what i am bidding on is the mowing and trimming and mulching . that i have priced it at 1830.00 for 70yds of mulch and 1830.00 for removing the old and 1830.00 for new mulch they want the old mulch removed yearly ? the crew that has been doing the mowing in the past has taken them 2 days a week with 2 trucks and 8 people a total of 16 hrs . we have 2 60" z turns and one 52" z turn i will have 3 or 4 people working it, i don't think it should take 16hrs . it looks like it will need about 42 mowings per year .they want the bid broken down to clean up , mowing , mulching , trimming , pruning , but at the end it all gets added back together . i'am thinking at maybe 45.00 to 50.00 per acre for easy adding and then i would brake it up for them from my total . any help would be great ...THANKS !
  6. Swampy

    Swampy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,435

    If you can cover all the services that are needed for them. I.E. chemical applications, snow removal, interiorscapes, brush cutting, irrigation, ponds, tree, shrub, and turf maintenance along with install/repair. Some don't require all but the more you feed their plate the better. If so you can work with sub contracting parts of it out.

    Talk to property managers, development companies will have multiple sites and multiple managers. They may hire you to one or a few of their buildings at first but can lead to more properties, so be prepared to expand (if your running around with one ZTR for 3 properties thats fine but when they dump the rest to you say another 10 that one ZTR isn't going to fly)

    Local and County:
    They should be posted in the town hall's and county courthouses. Local paper can lead to the right direction as well.
    State and Federal:
    If your not a company with multiple shops I.E. Brickman, prepare to sub contract out. The government doesn't mess around they want one contractor to do the job, not multiple, its to hard on them to deal with billing issues when they should be focusing on more important matters. If your trying to get local reserve component buildings I.E. like a Alpha Company of ###th Engineers talking to the individual unit isn't going to get you far and they don't have the authority to hire private contractors, your going to need to talk someone higher on the food chain like at the battalion/regimental level S-1 shop (admin) They can give you a number to a civilian that you can submit a inquire too. Also with the military security is a big issue right now and will limit your work force to employee's that are naturally born US citizens, no work visa's, and as the owner they have the option of running a background check on all of your employees and yourself for work behind gated grounds I.E. motorpools, Intell buildings, Dermo lots, Bulk storage areas. But most places will have their own grounds dept.

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