Ok, after 30 bids in last week I land 1. What the heck? I was in the ball park on time and money why did I loose the bid???? Low and behold I am driving aroud today, getting stuff ready for next week and to hit the weekend turkey slaughter, and I see the same guy at 5 of the jobs I bid. That is it. By the 4th one I was fuming. I finally pull over to talk to him the fifth time I see him at a bid I just did. This is what I learned. 1. You can price yourself out of the game before you pull up. 2. You can price yourself out of the game when you open your mouth. 3. You can price yourself out of the game when you hand them the estimate. So what did I really learn. 1. Joe blow mowing and such gives bid that is accepted. Why? People are looking for a cheap price and he fits the image. (even though prices are within 5%) 2. You spend to much money to try to portray a professional image with nice uniforms, trucks, and quality equiptment. (Ie. My over head for quality puts me out of range for the middle class.) 3. If you sound intelegent you must want alot of money for your services. (two statements that lead me to this from one customer. " billy bob said heeeddd doit frrrrr 80 bucks a week!" What does that entaill? I ask. " Mowin and such." Ok Probably not someone that I would like to work for but money is money and he some how related to billy bob more than he did I. second statement " do you use that miracle grow fertilizer that I hear so much about?" No sir I use the product that is needed for your turf at the particular time that I apply. I do soil tests that tell me what is best and most cost effective for you and your turf. "Hmm No miricle grow? I will be in touch." 4. In handing an estimate you need to learn how to ease them into the price. Ie there are few people that measley money does not mean alot to and I don't work around Donald Trump. HMMM Now the problem. Do I keep up and win about 5% of bids or do I change and charge 3% less and win more bids? At this time I don't think I won't change but let me tell you If I don't have a full schedule by mid may I will have to rethink things a bit.