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Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by miltthemower, Nov 15, 2007.

  1. miltthemower

    miltthemower LawnSite Member
    Messages: 76

    I currently live in a subdivision with 1223 houses. The current landscape company is doing a poor job. The common areas have huge weeds growing in them. As a member of the HOA and a landscaper I was suprised that the well known landscaping company did such a poor job.

    I have been offered to provide my subdivision with maintenance. This will be the largest job I have done. I have to submitt a proposal. I have no idea where to start.

    What do I need to have in a proposal, also does anyone have a generic form that I can use.

    Also, how do you determine the price to charge. The last company charged 100K.
  2. supercuts

    supercuts LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,808

    perhaps you can state you think the reason they did or poor job is because they were underpriced for the amount of work it needed and ask for more. or you can take over at the same amount since its known you already know how much they charged. be careful not to keep all your eggs in one basket though, loose that account could put you out of business if thats all your doing.
  3. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,087

    Considering that is the case, I'd probably go out with the figure of 120K in my head right off the bat.

    Then I would look at it very long and very hard about what the job is worth "done right".

    If it was 120K, that is what I would propose, if it was more so be it...

    As far as the proposal is concerned, it would help you to see the current one.
    This may tell you they are billing 100K for mowing only... maybe not.
    You need to know what "was" included, and what they expect you to include for the price.

    What you will do and how much you will do it for is the proposal in a nutshell.
  4. miltthemower

    miltthemower LawnSite Member
    Messages: 76

    Thanks for the info. I do know that the HOA does not want to pay 100K. How do I go about bidding? What equation or formula do I utilize to come up with an asking price. Do I include purchasing of the mulch, flowers etc plus man hours? Time it takes to do the job and multiply by man hours.
  5. corey4671

    corey4671 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,931

    being a memeber of the HOA, doesn't that raise an issue of conflict of interest?
  6. miltthemower

    miltthemower LawnSite Member
    Messages: 76

    I am a member of the HOA based on my participation in helping the group form and assist with setting up meetings. I am not actually on the board. I should have stated that.

  7. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,087

    So the HOA wants better service and more service for less?

    Not likely to happen.... not without YOU getting the shaft...

    I can tell you up front though, having never looked at it.... more likely than not, the current guy is giving the HOA 100K worth.

    I'm not trying to be gruff or anything, it's just that I see this all the dang time. There's some place visibly getting poor service or complaining about poor service.... and what aggrivates me is that more times than not, they are not paying for any better service.... yet they want what they are not paying for and also want it for less than they are currently paying.

    Well duh..... no wonder the service you are recieving is pizz-poor.... and no wonder you can't find someone to do it right... (know what I mean?)

    Also, the trouble with big jobs is that LCO's fall all over themselves over them. Like a male chasing a female in heat... and often stupid mistakes are made.

    All I'm saying to you is.... do not allow yourself to get 'caught up' with dollar signs in your eyes over the money this job is currently paying. Remember that is gross, not NET..... and do not allow the board to use 'the power of suggestion' to effect your pricing on the job.

    If I were in GA, I'd come by and help you with a proposal.
    But I am not... so what sort of 'scope of work' are we talking?....

    Turf area
    Number of turf areas
    Linear feet of trimming and edging

    Other services included......................................

    Are you currently set up to handle such a job?
    Or will you need more stuff and/or help?
  8. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Yup, same old story, and here's why:

    There is the reason why the current Lco is doing the absolute minimum, they simply can not afford to do more.
    It may sound like a lot of money, but 1100+ homes? LOL!

    That having been said I warn you about taking on a hoa without a crew that includes at the least a manager, a supervisor, and a secretary. You do NOT, that I know of, want to be the one dealing directly with the members.
    Trust me on this one, there are sure to be a FEW... Likely if there are 1100 members I would guess 20-30 have too much time on their hands, based on a pure law of averages, these 20-30 will stay on you about anything and everything. Sure they may not pester you directly, but they'll pester the president who in turn calls you, ignore this and soon you get calls every day.
    So, you need a CREW to deal with that alone, not to mention the actual work.
    Unless you feel like working for minimum wage all over again?

    You could try and explain it, but I doubt much would come of it.
    Bid 165,000 and be done with it, let them figure it out.
  9. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Actually it may be even smarter to submit a 'No bid' letter.

    Bid say 200,000 and its so high you're laughing about your smarts until teh wonder of all wonders happens and they accept !!!
    So then you think that must be good as this surely means your troubles are over but in reality they now expect double what they were not getting before and it's just the same nightmare all over again.

    Like Envy I'm not trying to sow dark clouds to make sure you don't get the job because I'm jealous or some other bs reason...

    See that, I am so guilty!

    That's how I learned, all it took was one... It wasn't anywhere near 100k, not even 5 digits and that tiny contract busted my chops good. I can hardly recall a tougher lesson, there might've been one or two, but that was my first and last hoa.
  10. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,452

    The key important thing is to go talk to one of the directors of you HOA and ask them whether they are satisfied. You might be surprised. And since you live in the area you get the yearly report so you can see exactly how much of the HOA budget goes into all the items and if they would have enough to pay you more. The easiest way to put together a a bid is to simply monitor how long it takes them to mow..and how many guys on crew etc..etc. The property manager for the HOA should have a bid package with all the details concerning what they what done. For example ours states fertilize/weed control 6 times a year, trees trimmed up to 8', Grass mowed weekly, all leaves removed...etc. etc. Flowers, irrigation, mulch are bid seperately. Keep in mind property managers have their own list of preferred cronies so unless you have strong director support it might be tough.

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