Rates ..Rates..Rates---MID-WEST

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by prairie, Mar 28, 2002.

  1. prairie

    prairie LawnSite Member
    from kansas
    Messages: 115

    Anyone out there in the Mid-West? Looking for some input on my prices for installation. $100-125 for roters and 50-65 for sprays.
    How is that compaired to most of you in the mid-west.? By the way I'm getting $50/hr for any kind of sprinkler fixes or maintenance.

    PRAIRIE LANDSCAPE "For All Your Landscaping Needs"
  2. HBFOXJr

    HBFOXJr LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,712

    I don't price by the head even though Imay ball park by the head.

    Your Hi-low or rotors vs sprays inerestest me as others here in NJ have done the same thing for years. I don't get the big difference.

    I pre set my costs in units. Ex: hunter I20 adj, 35 ft 1" poly or pvc, one "T", a swing pipe assy and 1 line size fitting for good measure. With tax it'll be in th $18-$20 range. With a good spray like a RB 4" 1800 and nozzle you save 20 ft of pipe and $8-$9 +/- on the head. That's about $11-$12 difference with tax.

    Labor and all other functions ad components remain virtually the same. Don't even mention pipe pulling becasue it doesn't take vary long to go 20 ft more for the rotor with a vibratory plow.

    Your not odd or different and no insults intended. I'm just looking for insight into how these numbers came about since the theory is sort of universal.
  3. prairie

    prairie LawnSite Member
    from kansas
    Messages: 115

    I started out bidding jobs thesame way you are currently. Then I spread sheeted everything out to get my average. By doing this I have came up with a simple way to bid and job cost.

    If I have an existing lawn with mature trees and plant beds I increase my margin by 25%. All other jobs are ran on a per head Scale $100-125/ roter and 50-65/spray. This is also easy to calculate out who is slacking off(if any) and I can go talk to the crew that is slow. I run this by making sure my profit margin is always around 42% give or take a few %.

    Also my irrigation supplier advised me to spreedsheet it out this way so I can keep better track of things.. Just a thought , but try it, it will make your life a lot easier when bidding(less Headachs) and more time to play golf.
  4. HBFOXJr

    HBFOXJr LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,712

    Your not understanding my question. With so few dollars difference in maerials per head why does a rotor cost double of a spray or a spray 1/2 of a rotor.

    Takes a man the same time to dig a hole and install either assuming the pipe is the same depth and you swing joint or swing pipe them both. The same truck setting there for those same hours too.

    So a 30 head rotor job is 3 grand and a 30 head spray could be $1500. It possible that both jobs might take the same number of valves, controller and hours to install. The spray job taking about $330 less in materials for the spray job vs. the rotor. The cost and time to connect is the same.

    I'd price it the spray job at $2670 in this simple analysis.

    Why are sprays 1/2 price of rotors in Kansas or NJ???
  5. prairie

    prairie LawnSite Member
    from kansas
    Messages: 115

    The simple reason is that I get the Sprays for half the cost of the roters. Don't know why, but thats what I'm getting from my supplier..I went over the #'s with him and he was very pleased with them. I should just charge $75-115/ head and leave it that way, but then I'm not complainning about my jobs and money I'm making. I really can't answer you rquestion completely, but that I get the sprays cheaper.
  6. HBFOXJr

    HBFOXJr LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,712

    Do you get your truck for 1/2 price from the dealer, insurance for 1/2 price, phone for 1/2 price, advertising 1/2 price, labor for 1/2 price, taxes for 1/2 price when you install a spray head?
  7. SprinklerGuy

    SprinklerGuy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,778

    Funny how different people are huh?

    Personally I choose to cost each job on a per job basis, meaning I decide how many grass zones and whether or not it is spray or rotor. Then I know my per head cost for each of these systems. By cost I mean parts ONLY

    Then I figure out how long I think it will take my crew. I already know their costs. The way I do it their costs just happen to include overhead and other associated costs. DON'T ASK, DO A SEARCH!!! ha!

    Then I figure out what profit margin I want on the job. If we are swamped I might make the margin bigger, not busy maybe smaller.

    So you see for me to just take a per head cost and run with it on every job, I think it is silly. I like my way, you like yours.
  8. HBFOXJr

    HBFOXJr LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,712

    Trust Tony & I on this. The cold weather must be numbing your brain. Don't go with what the distributor says.

    NO ONE can explain the origin of this pricing or th materials times 2 nonsense. This crap is the fastest way to lose your butt there is. It'll will result in a slow financial death or at the best keep you pinched and you won't know why.

    If you ask your distributor how he formulated those numbers or where they came from he won't know.

    The price of the materials has NOTHING, NOTHING, do ya here me??? NOTHING to do with controling the price of the job.

    You have to cost out the materials, yup ALL of them, the labor and ALL taxes, ins, benefits etc, production equipment and subs. Add in the overhead and profit and voila!! You have a bid.

    Sounds like a lot of work but once you figure how much the components are the first time then it only takes minutes to do a residential proposal after that.
  9. smburgess

    smburgess LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 467

    I didn't read all the above responses, it seems many people have their own system. I go with $100.00 to $125.00 per head (depending on degree of difficulty), mist or rotor.
  10. Planter

    Planter LawnSite Member
    from Utah
    Messages: 214

    I have a friend who prices out by the head and valve. I recently bid a small job and for fun plugged in his formula to see how far apart we were on the job. I came up with $1325.53, his formula is 1216. So we are $109 apart. I suppose he must need a lower profit margin than I do. Maybe he's faster, I don't know. I do know that I need $1353.53 to do the job or I need to find another job that brings me the same profit.

    I "guess-timate" with the head formula, and bid on a cost of parts, cost of labor, cost of equipment and overhead plus mark-up method. Can't make a buck another way.

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