Mowing pricing formula

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by LAWNGODFATHER, Jan 31, 2002.

  1. How can we come up with a good formula for mowing estimates?
  2. 65hoss

    65hoss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,360

    1st off it is a must you know your costs! Without knowing cost you are shooting in the dark.
    Several different ways to figure cost, on an hourly scale, a per stop scale or sf scale.

    I prefer the per stop scale, you can get more accurate.
  3. What does that mean per a stop, is that like a time thing.
  4. 65hoss

    65hoss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,360

    not exactly. Figuring out your cost everytime you drop the trailer. This helps keep drive time from being as big an issue.
  5. Ok I've heard $1 per 1000 sq/ft

    $2 per a 1000 sq/ft

    What about if i used .0015 x the sq/ft?

    That's $1.50 per 1000 sq/ft

    How do you calculate the trimming in? I don't want to use liner.
  6. 65hoss

    65hoss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,360

    I wish I could find some getting $1 per 1k. I will sub out my entire route to them.

    10k lawn cut for $10. That would be great!

    If I remember correctly kutnkru does his by the sf and linear ft.
  7. LMAO me too.

    I think they must have a set minimum.

    $30 to drop the gate and so on.
  8. fshrdan

    fshrdan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 142

    Is this a public service message? It sounds very rehearsed, like an AM radio commercial or something. Just wondering...
  9. Atlantic Lawn

    Atlantic Lawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Outer Banks NC
    Messages: 948

    I do have a $25 minimum. Other than that it's really not been a sq ft formula sorta thing around here. I guess it could be in big developments with the same size yards over and over.
  10. HBFOXJr

    HBFOXJr LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,712

    Anything purchased by time, like employees, must be sold by time even if bundled into a fixed price for the consumer. You can develop formulas but they must have their origon in time and another unit of measure like sq ft, lin ft, etc.

    This means if you don't measure time, area, volume, count pieces etc. you must begin to do so.

    I kept records years ago of mow time (trim, edge, blow inclusive)and size. I put the info into a spreadsheet and began to sort and resort the info based on time per thousand or groups of sizes etc. I looked for production numbers with similarties in min/K of area. I also gave them a subjective difficulty rating and sorted them. Eventually I came up with numbers I could use for bidding other similar jobs.

    Today it could be more simple. I'm not confident that what I did was the best and it was not the easiest. I only cut grass one day a week now with a 2 man crew. A 60" Z is our primary machine. I think that if you know how much time it will take to mow the site with your primary machine, add in a 2nd guy for trim, edge and blow for the same time you have a beginning.

    If you are heavy on trim, edge and blow and light on mow use the greater time as an estimate. Remember this is a rough scheme still subject to job variances.

    Of course all of this still only gets you estimated time. You must know your per hour costs of providing service. And don't forget about the dead time like drive time and prep time (morning load, grease, blade change etc.) that must be calculated in. If you know your per hr costs all day long you can calculate the daily cost and divide by the number working hr to know what you must get per on the job hr.

    I did a wee bit differnet figuring if we worked 9 hr, 1 hr was spent in maint of equipment and other misc duties and 8 were working including driving. If costs are a ficticious $81/day or 9 $/hr then the 8 working hr are $10/hr.

    I add a stop charge of x amount of time to each job's production time to account for all my hrs.

    In irrigation I charge a price equal to .5 hr work just to come to the door. This covers truck stocking time, go over the work order with the tech time and drive time. If I pay the man for 9 hr I want the equivalent of 9 hr of billable time one way or another. So if he has 5 stops for the day he picks up 2.5 hr in svc calls adn I want to see 6.5 hr of billable hr.

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