We got our first really big job

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by zippy-phil, Oct 4, 2012.

  1. JContracting

    JContracting LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,878

    You don't sound like the expert that you should be as the contractor.

    Who uses round up? A glysophate from JDL or something of the like, is what you should be buying. Why is she buying plants? If a client says they want to buy materials or w/e, they're gone. That p!sses me off when they want to buy materials for a job YOU are doing. If they want to be the DIY homeowner, direct them to Home Depot and DIY Network.
    Also, if you use fabric (it is useless for mulch, any weed seed that sprouts, lands in the mulch and then grows, making that $50 worth of fabric pretty much a waste).
    This person sounds like a complete cheap a$$ and is not worth any contractor's time.

    Charging (not hourly but figuring) only $45 an hour (gross, but even netting that isn't very much), regardless of your situation within life, will not be enough.

    As for the guy that thinks you don't have to figure $100+ for fuel. I did an rock removal/install & several plantings installed & some sod, 6 houses away from me, I burned about $75 in fuel between getting material and dumping the removed stuff.
    Depending on the task at hand for a job, I figure a minimum of $100 in fuel for my truck. Usually one tank, fuel prices are a bit lower than they were last summer so a full tank is only about $75-$80 so it makes things easier and profits are higher.

    *Just because you already have said material that is going to be used does not mean you charge less!!!*
    Having material (pavers, retaining wall block, etc.) leftover and keeping it at your shop is a great advantage as you don't have to purchase as much, meaning more profit.
  2. ToddH

    ToddH LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,192

    My fuel bill is not that high, I would have to try very hard to burn a full tank of fuel in a day. Then again, it would depend on the truck. If there are pick up and delivery of materials then I do include a cost for that and it would likely be 65 to 250 depending on the load and distance.

    I just have a different way of cost alocation than you do.

    I run the number pretty hard and look at them perhaps more than I should.

    I do not make huge margins but again, I am not considered to be cheap either. People ask me if the E stands for expensive.

    I far from a low baller to based on many of the public bids I have participated in and looking at the score cards.

    My most recent bid was more than twice the existing budget and I was 30% higher than the low bid. Lucky for me, I still got the job based on reputation.

    The bottom line is you have to make enough money on any given job to do it correctly.

    I agree, material from inventory needs to be priced into the job because you will need to buy more.
  3. srlawn

    srlawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    Too many people want to buy the materials themselves. Then when you plant what they bought and it doesn't make it they come crying to you for a refund cause they didn't survive. Not out fault. I walk away from the job unless it is replanting something from one area of the property to another. But Even at that I write in the bill not responsible for the hardiness of the moved "x" financially. 100 for gas should be the minimum charged as you can easily superxede that amount with unforseen circumstances. Roundup is OK when used for certain things but expect to be back later on re-treatinf the area. The main reason for not allowing custoemers to supply material is you cannot guarantee it and you cannot mark up on it.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  4. ToddH

    ToddH LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,192

    If you have done your home work. You should be able to sell them stuff at a fair enough price they do not need to go buy the materials. If they insist just raise your prices :) to compensate.

    I honestly do not have this problem. They buy it they plant it and own it.
  5. srlawn

    srlawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    Exactly. A slight markup per item x's x amount adds up. I wouldn't go adding 11 bucks to everything however.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  6. ToddH

    ToddH LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,192

    I had some fool wanted me to pick up some bagged mulch that they would buy. I just looked at them and said Really?
  7. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 19,647

    I would think 400$ to 500$ after expenses for a days work and being your first job would be GREAT.
  8. srlawn

    srlawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    It's a good amount but the guy is selling himself short regardless. That's a pretty big overhaul he had going on there. Worth much more than his bid
    Posted via Mobile Device
  9. srlawn

    srlawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    Why not just buy it in bulk? Better deal And they would save money also
    Posted via Mobile Device
  10. 205mx

    205mx LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,393

    Don't forget your tax rate!!!! 15% of 500 is 75. That's $425.
    Posted via Mobile Device

Share This Page