lowballed big time

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by 1stclasslawns, Dec 18, 2003.

  1. 1stclasslawns

    1stclasslawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 565

    Yep I have been lowballed to the tune of about 40.000 grand!

    I have been beat by about 40% on 15 apartment complexes. I don't know how they can do it so cheap they must like to work for nothing!

    I saw the bids and I was about 10% higher then the average bid so I was about right. I have done them for 3 1/2 years out of the last 4 so I made my money!

    Now it is time to concentrate on the application side of this bus.

  2. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Messages: 8,745

    What was everybody elses average bid?
  3. impactlandscaping

    impactlandscaping LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,332

    Jim-We have been underbid by as much as 50% on commercial props we had been caring for previously(3 yrs).It seems when the management changes, or board members change, the first thing they do to "look good" is cut the landscape maintenance budgets. Not caring about quality or customer service, but about the bottom line. I don't know how people can cut prices like that and make a decent profit. Based on my overhead costs, we were making 28% on one property. Got underbid by HALF... how could someone make any money doing it for that? Let it go and re-focus for 2004.It looks like a good year ahead for us all. Good luck..Merry Christmas All!!!:D
  4. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,699

    They do it and they're making money doing it. They just use a different business model. Some of the highlights of their business model are:

    1: Cheap labor paid cash.

    2: Buy used equipment and run it into the ground. I have seen a crew out cutting grass when there was a caster wheel missing off of the front of a ZTR. No lie! I have also seen 2 "cheap labors" pushing a 48" walkbehind. See #3

    3: Never, ever stop cutting grass for any reason. The entire route must be done every day.

    4: Quality is not the issue, only quantity. I have a new digital camera now and I will post some pics next year. You will not believe what some LCOs are doing in my area.

    5: If you get injured just go home. They will hire someone else tomorrow. The "cheap labor" is contributing to this policy. I have heard 2 first hand accounts in the last year of "cheap labor" being seriously hurt and then refusing to go to the hospital. One had a 18" long gash cut in his leg by a chainsaw and the other one had a 1" drill bit go right through the palm of his hand. In both instances the "cheap labor" was covered by worker's comp and was in this country legally. Imagine what the uncovered and illegal "cheap labors" do.
  5. 1stclasslawns

    1stclasslawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 565

    Tideman, Some of the bids were higher and some were lower, as far as an average it depended on the company. They are replaceing with 4 other companys.

    Impact there has been no management changes, but i did have them over a barrell when I got the last contract. I did them in 2000 and had a verbal agreement for 2001. You said it upper management change and the "new" lawn guy they had for 2001 SLEPT with that manager to get the accounts. He couldn't keep up. Major management change that july and I got them back in August with a contract through 2003. 2 1/2 contract.

    It gave me a chance to relly find out what was happening in the LCO world. Will I go back if they call, and they will, I may have to but I hope not to.

  6. thfireman

    thfireman LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 541

    The summer before last I was on my fulltime fire department job and we had a medical call for an traumatic injury. When we got there it was a Mexican feller that had been hit in the foot with a post hole digger. The landscaper he worked for took him up to the Exxon station and dumped him out and told him to call for help. He left him there without any contact info ot money for the hospital.
  7. broken leg

    broken leg LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 285

    To thfireman
    I hope they hung the LCO out to dry I would hate to do that to any humanbeing let alone a man who worked for me.
  8. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Messages: 4,899

    2: Buy used equipment and run it into the ground. I have seen a crew out cutting grass when there was a caster wheel missing off of the front of a ZTR. No lie! I have also seen 2 "cheap labors" pushing a 48" walkbehind. See #3

    Dam, would I love to see That! I would be laughing so hard I would just call it a day. LMAO

  9. Green Care

    Green Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 530

    Richard same here big nursery in my area swallowing up everything they aren't giving quality services when it comes to mowing they butcher everything is cut to low.

    What part of md are you in.
  10. Lbilawncare

    Lbilawncare LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,119

    Sorry for you fisfortune, unfortunately people don't look at things the way they should. You'll probably rebound to the point where you'll never miss them. Every time we lose an account like that (well, not quite that big), another bigger and better and less of a pain account calls. Good luck.

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