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your proposal "rights"

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by jsf343, Mar 7, 2007.

  1. jsf343

    jsf343 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,786

    Someone talked about this a few weeks ago ( whoever started it I am sorry I am bringing it up again ) but I can't find it anywhere. Does anyone have certain wording that protects your proposal from being used in bidding wars or from being shared with other companies?
    Like the person who brought this subject up before I feel that I have done a lot of work in preparing my proposal for various commercial properties and I do NOT want it to just be given to some joe lowballer for use in a bidding war or anything else. Let them stand on their own 2 feet, get their own measurements, figure their own time involved, etc. I am looking for some wording that will help protect my bid or proposals, anyone have something they wouldn't mind sharing?

  2. theturfboss

    theturfboss LawnSite Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 47

    I would question the integrity of the person who distributes your proposal (or mine). You can leave valuable information (area for example) off the proposal, but still include price and at least make it more difficult. I may be in a minority in my thinking, but I do not want to deal with a potential client that would send out my proposal looking for lower bids. This person is obviously only interested in price. You need to make sure that price is not the only crutch you are selling.
  3. jsf343

    jsf343 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,786

    come on old timers.:waving:
  4. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Oh yeah, if I know they are likely to shove my estimate in the next guy's face, then I send them a polite no-bid letter and they don't get an actual written estimate because doing it that way to me is wrong.

    Usually I can spot these kind coming when they volunteer that they've called or are calling several other companies. Not that I care if they do, but I find it is a matter of tact involved, which is to say that if you are the customer and you are shopping around, then that is your business and you should do so discreetly and not tell me to my face that you're doing it.

    Because first of all, as soon as someone goes 'oh by the way we're calling other guys too' that throws off my price, don't know if you've ever noticed that but as a rule it sends my thoughts spiraling in the lowballing direction and I don't like it when someone is playing mind games with me.

    No doubt some will shop around, and I have nothing against the practice so long the customer does so discreetly, which that tells me they are less likely to shove my estimate around, but will keep the information to themselves and make their decision based on that, and this I have no problem with because to me it makes for clean, and healthy competition.
  5. richallseasons

    richallseasons LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 479

    Everyone on this site will or has come into this situation at one time or another, and it will happen throughout your time in business, thats just a fact. I found it helpful for myself to try to read the potential customer as best as I possibly can and figure out what the intention is. Some people just let you know up front that they are looking for the lowest price...so heres my philosophy on that- they may or may not be people that you want to work for based on what you know at this point however shopping for a company is part of the selection process for a homeowner so it serves me no purpose to not give them a professional estimate or treat them as I would someone that I have worked for time and time again. Also remember not to get into your head that you need to scale down the bid in order to be competitive because you have different earning needs than your competition so just be fair as always and submit a professional bid or choose not to, its up to you...but in all honesty 9 times out of 10 when I label someone as a waste of time they end up calling to discuss further details and I am left saying well I didn't think they would call back.............
  6. Jason Rose

    Jason Rose LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,858

    Had this happen last fall. HOA deal, previous contractor wasn't licensed for pesticides so they had scamlawn doing it, plus the lawns just looked bad. I got the call to bid it. I guess I should have called the previous LCO and told him it was up for bid and got his prices so I could bid higher... Yes, that's how it works here, there's a network of the 10 or so "big" guys and they all do that. I bid it what I thought it was worth to me. Priced the fert and snow removal as well. I submitted the bid and didn't hear a word for weeks. I just wrote it off. Then the guy calls and told me I got the bid! Great! Actually I'm set to start on it today (I'm here cause I woke up sick this morning). But about 2 weeks after I got the job I got some dirty looks from the previous LOC's employee. Yeah he said I "undercut" them by a lot and was mad that I had bid against them like that. One, I was mad that I was that much lower (though I don't know the numbers for real). and two, I was madder that the schmuck from the HOA showed them all my prices!!! I'm assuming it was one of those, "if you will meet these prices you can keep it" deals. But still... Now I'm the ass because I didn't "follow the rules of the LCO" here.
  7. jsf343

    jsf343 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,786

    Thats kind of what I am refering to. Congrats on getting the account though, and hope you feel better. I just got over that really bad flu, down for 16 days.


    DUSTYCEDAR LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Messages: 5,132

    if your makeing money on it who cares and now u know u can jack up the price next year to make more
  9. ACutAbovesiny

    ACutAbovesiny LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 590

    "I guess I should have called the previous LCO and told him it was up for bid and got his prices so I could bid higher... Yes, that's how it works here, there's a network of the 10 or so "big" guys and they all do that."

    ----illegal:nono: :nono: :nono:

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