Mulch Prices

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by ojays lawn care, May 8, 2012.

  1. ojays lawn care

    ojays lawn care LawnSite Member
    Messages: 32

    I only do landscaping Fridays and Saturdays, basically mowing and spring/fall cleanups.

    I recently had a few customers ask me to quote them mulch prices and i was wondering if people thought i was way off. I can buy pine bark mulch, delivered(5 yard minimum) for around $35 a yard. i just had a quote to 1200 square feet of work topping off preexisting beds. I figure i need just under 8 yards for a 2" layer. 8 yard delivered price is $32 a yard. I figure $75 a yard is good, to cover mulch and labor to apply, so that comes to $600. Does that seem fair?

    On a side note this particular lawn needs a spring cleanup, beds need to be cleared of leaves and debris and weeded before i can apply mulch, I also run a jrco rake when i do a spring cleanup. maybe a 2/3 acre lot in a "rich town".
    I figured an additional $200-$300 for this so total job cost would be $800-$900.

    I'm a one man crew so i figured i would have to bring in a helper for the day at $12 an hour. so $800-$100(helper)- $260(mulch cost)-$40(gas and other misc) leaves about $400 profit on job? Am I over pricing this?
  2. orangemower

    orangemower LawnSite Silver Member
    from pa
    Messages: 2,768

    I just finished a mulch job yesterday. I spent about 15 or so man hours doing prep work as well as some other misc stuff. It took 4 yards of mulch. The bill was $1500 and change. The customer was extremely happy with everything and thought the price was more then fair for the amount of work. Don't short change yourself.
  3. hi_speedreed

    hi_speedreed LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 534

    ojay, the mulch sounds fair to me but I think you are underpricing the cleanup. my brother and I put down 6 yards in an hour the other day. Paying a helper a $100 means you are budgeting 8 hrs for the mulch and the cleanup. If the clean up takes you 6, that is 12 man hours and you are only charging $25 per labor hour for the cleanup. you are making a little over a $100 an hour for the mulch. Raise your cleanup price to what you want to make. Only you know your expenses. I understand sometimes all people want is another set of eyes to maybe point out what they didn't see. Some people don't do that though. They only feel good about themselves when they are pointing out the supposed deficiencies of others. I have found some people very helpful on this site. Others, not so much.
  4. nobagger

    nobagger LawnSite Gold Member
    from Pa
    Messages: 3,065

    After all the years doing this and on here. I'm still surprised there aren't more guys just doing materials + labor, its fair to you and your customer. The whole goal is to have these customer's be return customer's and if they think they've been taken advantage of due to a miscalculation on your part they will go running to someone else. On the other hand, your here to make money and not do charity work. Come up with a fair, profitable hourly rate, mark up some materials by 20% and make it easy one yourself. Some of our hourly rates are different due to the type of equipment we use but for just humping mulch around I would think you should be right around 40-55.00 per man hour plus materials.
  5. ojays lawn care

    ojays lawn care LawnSite Member
    Messages: 32

    i was figuring 2 yards per hour for 4 hours of mulching, and probably 2 hours for the cleanup. 6 hours total,i rounded up on my help payout
  6. orangemower

    orangemower LawnSite Silver Member
    from pa
    Messages: 2,768

    How do you "round up" a employee's earnings?
  7. ojays lawn care

    ojays lawn care LawnSite Member
    Messages: 32

    My "employee" is actually a younger brother thats helps me on big jobs, so I have a set hourly wage i give him but if its a big job and we finish in less than 8 hours ill pay for the 8 cuz im nice.
  8. Njon16

    Njon16 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 33

    I normally do $100 a yard this covers workers and edging gas etc and if the beds need a clean up I'll give them a discounted clean up rate. I haven't had any problems with this price. Just did a 3 yard mulch job and a quick clean up $425.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  9. ojays lawn care

    ojays lawn care LawnSite Member
    Messages: 32

    Thanks for the responses, It seems like my quote was fair, but they yet to call me back. I quoted 3 big mulch jobs, 2 from regular customers and one from new one. The 2 regs took the bid where as the new customer I have yet to hear back from.
  10. MR-G

    MR-G LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 479

    we only use bagged mulch...for us its easier and much faster...and its more accurate when pricing..we charge 2.5 times product cost for mulching existing maintained beds...if beds need weeded and cleaned up its 45.00 per man hr.

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