new lawn installation....HELP please

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by srk1378, Apr 29, 2005.

  1. srk1378

    srk1378 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    We are a small mostly trucking and mulch installation company in Ohio. One of our regular customers just built a house and has asked us to install a new yard. The yard is about 42,000 sq. ft. and the "finish" grade is not too pretty. Also, about half of the yard was not graded and the grass/weeds need to be killed first. While both my partner and I have put in yards before, this is a new venture for our business. Here is how I figured it. Let me know what you think:

    Kill grass- 200.00
    4 hrs. grading w/ skid steer- 180.00
    tilling and seed bed prep- 1250.00
    seed,lime,fert. and labor-1050.00
    Pennmulch- 1175.00

    Total= 3855.00
  2. RedWingsDet

    RedWingsDet LawnSite Gold Member
    from Detroit
    Messages: 3,556

    that seems wayyy low to me... for a 400sq foot sod job that had to have the old stuff removed and new stuff (sod) put in, and I charged $2,200 for that. It only cost me about $400 in materials and labor.
  3. snap12.5

    snap12.5 LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 288

    4 hrs grading with skidsteer - $180??? u are giving it away!
    depending on what kind of skidsteer and how much work u can do with it per hour, u should go for around $70 - $90/hr. if u have to rent equipment for it, add that into the charge.
  4. LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 576

    I was going to agree on the skidsteer price. $45 for operator and skid steer is way too low.
  5. i_plant_art

    i_plant_art LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 558

    i agree 180 is WAY to low we are charging 150 per hour with a 2 hour minand cant keep the thing still. also how are you going to kill the grass?? how long after you kill it are you going to seed it. Too soon and the seed wont germinate. Kepp this in mind as well. Check out what the residual is on the chemicals you use to kill the existing grass. Also the seed lime and fert seems kinda low to me. I usually seed (new lawn) @ 17 lbs/1000 ( i know this seems high but it works good thick lawn and no going back to fill in or touch up) wiht that ive got alomost 800 in just seed alone. Double check some numbers. Also since you dont do much of this work call some other local LCO and see what they would charge per acre to seed.
  6. Green Pastures

    Green Pastures LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,457

    $180 for 4 hours in a skidsteer?

    I just paid almost $50K for a Caterpillar 257B, and you're KILLING me with prices like that.

    MINIMUM of $80 an hour for a skidsteer & operator with a 2 hour minimum.
  7. srk1378

    srk1378 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    Thanks all for the responses. I was only figuring seed at 7 lbs/1000, but I agree it should probably be higher. Around us in Ohio, I can't get much more than 45/hr for the skid steer. That is what all of the larger excavators are getting. Snap, where in Ohio are you? I also agree it should be higher, but you can only get what the market will allow. We also have a 4 hour minimum, higher if we have to travel. As for the weed/grass killer, I am open to any suggestions. Again, thanks for all the help.
  8. Green Pastures

    Green Pastures LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,457

    Roundup to kill the grass/weeds.

    $200.00 is low for that as well.

    I'd charge about $350 for that, off the top of my head and without getting out the calculator...........
  9. LawnScapers of Dayton

    LawnScapers of Dayton LawnSite Silver Member
    Male, from Dayton, OH
    Messages: 2,572

    I just paid $70 per hour for my new lawn install.......that was for the rake and the rock hound.......I am south of Dayton Ohio.....
  10. John from OH

    John from OH LawnSite Member
    Messages: 144

    srk1378, you're in a real tough market, I can't believe prices in your area. I have friends down your way and I don't see how they stay in business at the rates I've heard.

    Anyway, 42,000 squar feet, your not even at $.10 a square foot for a complete kill back, grading, and new lawn with Penn Mulch. Can you regrade almost an acre in 4 hours? How much sod/ weed debris will need to be hauled off from the area that wasn't graded? Is the lawn flat enough to use Penn Mulch this time of year without washout and call back problems? Most of your area is hilly, straw might be a better option, if so, will you need erosion netting on any of the slopes? I'd be pricing this one over $.15 a square foot, and probably closer to $.20. Sometimes the most profitable jobs are the ones you don't do.

Share This Page