As a general rule, I try and get 2-3 times the price of the mulch. if I am having to wheel it a longer distance, I just up the price more towards the 3X price. Usually it is just that, a guideline, and every job should be looked at differently.
Twins...so what if a customer wants dyed mulch? in our area its almost $30/yard? Some of the lesser quality mulch sells for as little as $12/yard.
Unless I'm missing something here, the labor effort to install 3 yards of cheap stuff is no different than 3 yards of higher priced mulch. But with your formula, it would seem to work ok for the higher priced material but not so well with the low end mulch.
I;m not being critical of your approach, but rather just curious how you can install mulch for $24 per labor hour based on that formula?
Like I said, this is my general rule of estimating on site when I am called over across the street. Some people just want a guesstimate. If they want an estimate I will stand on, I tell them I will write one up and bring it by tomorrow, so I can make sure to get at least my minimum labor cost needs (for mulch I try to get $30 per hour, which is about 1 yard worth)
I am glad you pointed this out though, so others don't just use it an wonder why they're not making money.
I haven't done too many mulch jobs as of yet, and the one's I've done so far have averaged about my $30 per yard larbor fee, plus i mark up the mulch %50 of cost to me. So for a $12 yard mulch, I'll get $48 installed.