Discussion in 'General Industry Discussions' started by surfsk869, May 7, 2007.

  1. surfsk869

    surfsk869 LawnSite Member
    from mass
    Messages: 16

    quick question pertaining to quoting... hypothetically speaking, if i were to be asked to clear a given section of land ( nothng too large, mainly comprised of loose underbrush and small plants) and make it suitable for mulching. how would one go about pricing this... also, does anyone have any good links to sites/threads with how to accurately quote jobs. i currently charge customers an hourly rate and would like to start giving flat quotes... thanks in advance
  2. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,183

    2 ways I would approach this. Sub it out to a farmer who has the land clearing equipment and put 10 or 15% on top of his price and don't even touch it. Or else I would base everything on time and material. No hard bids for something you havn't done before. Surest way to lose your shirt. I don't know about you but Murphy tends to follow me around on jobs from time to time. Something you never expected always pops its ugly head up and smiles at you.
  3. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    One way I can think of is use the experience gained from the hourly jobs in the future, so as to determine how long it should take in advance.

    For example, if you've done 3 mulch jobs, then the next time you get a call for a similar mulch job, you can likely give the customer an estimate based on the average price of the previous 3. So, assume the first 3 each was 4 or 5 cubic yards and they all took 2-3 hours, and you charged $200 each, then likely if the next job is similar, you can quote $200 as well, in advance.

    You just have to do enough of a certain kind of work to start remembering, and make it a point to remember, and yes you will make some mistakes but it gets better in time, a flexible estimate works also (such as quoting 200- 240).
  4. Bill S

    Bill S LawnSite Member
    Messages: 184

    document, document, document

    Keep track of all times. Do a spread sheet and analyze on a regular basis. You should know how long it takes to cut Mrs Jonhsons 5K sq ft lawn. You should know how long and how much material it took for the spring clean up at the local suds and soda. Once you know your times (the abilities of your crews) you will know how to bid in the future.

    Always, Always, Always leave yourself a cushion. You never know when something unexpected might pop up.

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