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Need help with not getting bids

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by skinnydogz, Apr 13, 2007.

  1. skinnydogz

    skinnydogz LawnSite Member
    Messages: 33

    I recently have had two opportunities to submit bids on two commercial jobs which were posted in the newspaper and both I was the low bid.....HOWEVER, both companies have instead decided to use the guy who advertises in my area all the time and has less superior equipment and has also had a couple problems with employees.....I know I am the new guy in the area, but it is so frustrating to be the low bidder and then have these two places decide to pay more and go with the other guy....what's the point in asking for bids???? need advice in how to advertise more effectively and win these companies over.....one is a neighborhood HOA and the other is a cemetary.....
  2. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 7,961

    Maybe you need to include some bribe money in the bids.

    Did they give a reason why they went with the higher bid?
  3. skinnydogz

    skinnydogz LawnSite Member
    Messages: 33

    The HOA was total B.S. - they said something about me not having workmans comp...however the other guy doesn't either and they also said he does a couple yards in the hood, so they decided to use him......workmans comp isn't required in my area either for less than 5 employees

    The cemetary said they had minor problems last year with him and wanted to give another chance.....

    I just couldn't believe it.......I was trying to be really nice and asked "Why did you ask for bids if you already had your mind made up"......they both were kinda like ...."hmmmm, not sure"......

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    I wonder what the deal is there...you're the low bidder which most times means you get the job. Kind of unusual to get shot down twice.

    As for the other guy, maybe he has a better image? Must be some reason. You should follow up with the companies and try to get some feedback.
  5. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 7,961

    I try not to bid anything frankly. I want to meet and greet and get a feel for them.
  6. xpnd

    xpnd LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 378

    Here is how it usually works. Companies are required to get multiple bids. If someone bids lower than the current service company, they will use that bid to depress the current service's bid. If you want the, job match this guys price.

    You are an unknown quanity. Better to use a known quanity with known weaknesses than risk dealing with a new company and unknown new problems.

    Longevity in the business counts for a lot also. There are more company start ups and failures then there are companies that start up and survive even the first year. You may have an attractive price, perhaps too attractive and they see you as one of the failures. Knowing the value of your work counts in the bid also.

    You are the new guy, lack a reputation and lack time in grade. You are in a word unproven. A commercial site doesn't want to worry about where to go get service in the middle of the season when you go belly up. If they go back to the guy you beat, it's an opportunity for him to make a killing on price increases.
  7. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 7,961

    Exactly, often they are not really interested in changing but management tells them to get bids. That is why I try and find out what the motivation is for bidding. If they are un-happy they will often tell you where you need to be to fit the budget. If they are happy they will rarely give you anything.

    Some companies are so bad at shoping bids but never change people in the business will stop even bidding the jobs.

    I was a buyer for 8 years then in sales for 9 years before starting this business with my Partner. He has all the experiance with mowing and hardscape.

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