Need help, please.

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by tomogg, Mar 31, 2011.

  1. tomogg

    tomogg LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    I was sent a bid for a trucking company in deep south Louisiana. I do select residential and commercial lawn care, mostly just cutting, weed eating and blowing. This bid wants the services of Spring Clean Up, Fall Clean Up, can figure that myself, I believe. Also, wants Fertilizing (1 pre emergent, 1 weed & feed), Hourly rate for weeding, Hourly rate for Irrigation Services, Shrub Maintainence. Need to turn in bid by Sunday, April 3rd. Not sure what Irrigation Service is, or the Fertilizing. Can someone help? My lawn care rate, commercial is $75 an hour. Plus, I have to drive 2 hours each way. Thanks!
  2. Dr.NewEarth

    Dr.NewEarth LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,476

    I hate when they ask for an hourly rate for "other stuff" on top of the monthly totals.

    Fertilizing. Measure the area, compare that to what a quality fertilizer with a slow release nitrogen says to apply (N=first number of the three) and get the cost for the proper sized bag. Cost out a "broadcast spreader."

    Figure out how long it will take to pick up the fertilizer and bring it to the site.
    How long will it take to apply the fertilizer
    I'm guessing here...$65 for the fert. 45 for the spreader and two hours labour to deliver and install at label rates at say $35 an hour so check my math is that 180?

    Is the pre-emergent for the lawn or the gardens? Do the same calculations.
    You will need safety gear.
    Read the directions every-time you use a pesticide or any product for that matter.
    They could have changed the directions or amounts to use since the last time
    you used the product.

    If you need an applicators license get it, or sub contract..

    You know what to do, don't You?

    Re: irrigation service....does that include repairs?

    In the spring:
    You need to know how to turn on the irrigation system and test all of the zones.
    You have to be able to set the timer.
    Ask for an "as built diagram or schematic" and also the control modules operaters book
    Some timers are set differently and you may have to play with it to get it to work.
    Can you go after hours and play with it? (haha)

    In the winter you have to blow each zone of the system out with one of those large tow behind compressors. A shop compressor will NOT winterize your sprinkler system.
    Be ready to wait in line for the rental. Big companies will be ahead of you.

    So, you'll need to find the rental price of this for the fall. Blow out the system before the last frost.

    Find out what irrigation system the company is using. Look at the sprinkler head for a name and locate the wholesaler in the area.
    They will be beneficial with further help and supplies you can use.
    Go on line, there is information there.
    I would say figure out the start up and winterization times and then say "Parts and repairs are contingent" x is our hourly, non emergency call out rate, parts will be billed as required.
    Get Certified in sprinklers

    Relax and have a beer tonight.
    I know you're pressed for time and want the gig. Good luck man.

    My success rate for estimates before the recession was fourteen percent for home owner assocations.
    Commercial want to pay even less money than home owners, so my statistics are dismal there.
    I haven't landed a new big fish since late 2009. I'm relying on old clients right now.

    Bigger companies with more employees, can spread the company overhead amongst all employees hourly rate and that's how they can bid things lower.

    I'm hoping the recession was just a big bad dream and we'll all wake up refreshed soon.
  3. Dr.NewEarth

    Dr.NewEarth LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,476

    I should add...whatever research and experience we gain from estimating is always
    useful for future projects.
  4. TurnerLawn&Landscape

    TurnerLawn&Landscape LawnSite Member
    Messages: 127

    have to drive 2 hours each way? hauling gear? id say thanks but no thanks and save yourself the time and the hassle. I am mainly upper-end residential, 2 years ago i took on an apartment complex. Mowing, weed-eating, and blowing took two guys 3.5 hours. I was getting $335. They never paid on time, and it was just an overall "learning experience" for me. Do you think you will be able to make money of this job. My cousin works for the big company in the brown trucks and he told me they are only charging $20 per man/hour when cutting!!!!!!! How the hell ?

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