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1st Commercial Job, is this bid too much?

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  • 1st Commercial Job, is this bid too much?

    Hi guys just joined this great site!!

    Looking at bidding on the property below with the following services..

    Mowing (Approx. 30 cuts per year)
    Edging/Trimming
    Blowing
    Trimming small trees, shrubs, bushes
    Lawn, tree, and shrub fertilization (3 x per year)
    Weed Control
    Leaf Removal

    I run a solo operation and I'm not really sure how my estimate will stack up to other 2-3 man crews.. The property is a 13 building apartment/townhome complex, if you look at the picture there is tons of mowing, trimming, blowing every week so I'm definitely intimidated to take this on since I'm only running part time. The other story right now is that one of the owners filed for bankruptcy about 4 months ago.. They still rent units and maintain everything, but the landscape is another story, tons of weeds all over the place and hasn't at least been mowed in 5-6 weeks is my estimate.. Right now I'm looking at bidding $525 per week.
    I feel that I'm too high and at the same time I'm only allowing 8-10 hours per month for tree/shrubs trimming, picking up branches and when the leaf time comes..

    Any thoughts?

    Everything inside of the line..

  • #2
    How many acres or what is the sq.ft to be maintained ?
    It's kind of hard to estimate off of a google earth picture.
    As a part timer how many other accounts do you have ?
    I would probably recruit a helper for a job like that unless you don't have a lot of customers.

    Comment


    • #3
      Another way to look at it is, treat each building as a home, most properties like that have the same landscaping around each one, or atleast similar. On paper bid out your time for each building, for all the services you offer, multiply that by how many buildings, and you have your total.

      Thats the idea anyway, haha. and i agree with turfmaster, get some help, or it is time to go full time, from the looks of it, that is going to be some time, to PROPERLY take care of the property, (quality is tough to do real fast)

      So, let us know what you come up with, and good luck.
      Welcome Advise, Incourage comments, and never stop Cutting. Geoff<img src="http://www.gopherforum.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=1595&d=1253928284">

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      • #4
        The other story right now is that one of the owners filed for bankruptcy about 4 months ago.
        Have they come out of bankruptcy yet?

        tons of weeds all over the place and hasn't at least been mowed in 5-6 weeks is my estimate.
        Is it possible they don't have the money to pay for the service now? I would be very weary of this. Especially because this would be such a huge step for you and require a large commitment on your part.

        What type of equipment are you planning on using to mow?

        How long do you feel it would take you to do each of these services per week?
        • Mowing (Approx. 30 cuts per year)
        • Edging/Trimming
        • Blowing
        • Trimming small trees, shrubs, bushes
        • Lawn, tree, and shrub fertilization (3 x per year)
        • Weed Control
        • Leaf Removal
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        • #5
          Thanks for the reply's you guys!

          I dropped my bid of yesterday and explained my services, I set the bid at $525 weekly for all of the services mentioned.. I think the only thing I overshot my price on was the fertilizer application but I feelt good about the bid..

          Later on in the afternoon 3-4 of hours later I decided to call back again to ask about the last crew and the bankruptcy and didn't really gain a whole lot of information other than it was 1 of the 4 owners that filed for it, the current manager had only been on the job for 2 weeks and said that she had heared that the last crew was good friends with the last property manager.
          After that I decided to throw myself out there and ask if my bid was close to what they were budgeting for or if I was close to any of the other bids..

          She replied with "we scheduled some guys to come out and mow since the property looks overgrown and those guys are charging $300 per mow, but I really like your layout and price because all of their services were extra and they were very expensive" of course now I'm already cringing about what I had bid but at the same time I was providing more services.. She also mentioned that they would really like to find someone that did Plowing which I don't do..

          Ok last but not least she mentioned that everyone they do business with had to be a member of a site that allows them to check your credentials or whatnot.. I have the name on a peace of paper and I'll post it later, but have you guys ever heared of anything like that?

          BTW last night I'm sitting there checking email and I start reading the monthly news letter from the site.. Needless to say I wish I would have known about advertising the extra services later on... :hammeronhead:!!!

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          • #6
            I dropped my bid of yesterday and explained my services, I set the bid at $525 weekly for all of the services mentioned.. I think the only thing I overshot my price on was the fertilizer application but I feelt good about the bid..
            When you came up with the bid how long did you figure it would take you to do each service per week?

            * Mowing (Approx. 30 cuts per year)
            * Edging/Trimming
            * Blowing
            * Trimming small trees, shrubs, bushes
            * Lawn, tree, and shrub fertilization (3 x per year)
            * Weed Control
            * Leaf Removal

            we scheduled some guys to come out and mow since the property looks overgrown and those guys are charging $300 per mow, but I really like your layout and price because all of their services were extra and they were very expensive" of course now I'm already cringing about what I had bid but at the same time I was providing more services.
            $300 say at $50 an hour would be 6 man hours to service that property?

            last but not least she mentioned that everyone they do business with had to be a member of a site that allows them to check your credentials or whatnot.. I have the name on a peace of paper and I'll post it later, but have you guys ever heared of anything like that?
            That is almost laughable considering it's them having the bankruptcy issue. Did she mean like Dun & Bradstreet or a landscape association? And what credentials do they need?

            last night I'm sitting there checking email and I start reading the monthly news letter from the site.. Needless to say I wish I would have known about advertising the extra services later on.
            Could you tell us more about what you meant on advertising the extra services later?
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            • #7
              Here we go, you might look at some of my hours and think they are high but I did a monthly average on some of the services to come up to what I was going to be charging. You guys are going to think I'm crazy but here is how I do my bids, if you do have suggestions on how to do it better I'm all for it..

              Even thou you might see my services below my actual bid comes from some different math..

              Hourly rate is $40 and unit = hour.

              * Mowing (Approx. 30 cuts per year)
              * Edging/Trimming
              * Blowing
              *Trimming small trees, shrubs, bushes
              * Lawn, tree, and shrub fertilization (3 x per year)
              * Weed Control
              * Leaf Removal

              Here is the where the pricing comes from:

              Mowing 4 units __ $160
              Edging trimming 2 units __ $80
              Blowing 1 unit __ $40
              Gas __ $40
              Weed control material and labor monthly _ $40
              Police area __ $30
              Furtilizer Monthly __ $55
              Shrubs/Trees __ $80

              With a real 2-3 man crew I think 3.5 hours max on this property if you got 2 mowers and one guy doing the trimming/blowing.

              Yeah when she told me about the site I kinda chuckled but whatever, i still can't provide the site name because the peace of paper i wrote it on is in my other car, when I looked at the site Dun & Bradstreet was part of it but it looked like they just advertised there or something..

              When I said credentials I'm sure all they meant was are you insurred blah blah..

              As far as the article I read, it basicly talks about how you should always consider price to be the first factor and only bid with the intent to provide the minumum services (mowing, trimming, blowing) if the company wants anything extra, you present those services later. Most times the customer will only want the minimum or consider the other services add ons that they currently might not need.

              Comment


              • #8
                Here is the site I was talking about..

                http://www.compliancedepot.net/

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                • #9
                  Here is the site I was talking about..

                  http://www.compliancedepot.net/
                  Oh I had never seen that site before. Interesting.

                  Mowing 4 units __ $160
                  Edging trimming 2 units __ $80
                  Blowing 1 unit __ $40
                  Gas __ $40
                  Weed control material and labor monthly _ $40
                  Police area __ $30
                  Furtilizer Monthly __ $55
                  Shrubs/Trees __ $80
                  When you say mowing 4 units = $160, there seem to be a bunch of units, what about the rest of them or maybe I am missing something?

                  Edging trimming 2 units = $80, why only 2 units?

                  Also say you had a 3 man crew at $40 per man-hour each working 3.5 hours a week there?

                  (3*$40)*3.5 = $420 a week?
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                  • #10
                    When you say mowing 4 units = $160, there seem to be a bunch of units, what about the rest of them or maybe I am missing something?
                    Units = Hours.. I had a line explaining that in the other post but I probably made it confusing
                    So 4 hours is $160

                    Edging trimming 2 units = $80, why only 2 units?
                    2 hours = $80


                    Also say you had a 3 man crew at $40 per man-hour each working 3.5 hours a week there?

                    (3*$40)*3.5 = $420 a week?
                    I was saying if you had a 3 man crew 2 running mowers and 1 doing the blowing/trimming, 3.5 hours is the maximum time I could see someone beeing there for.

                    The business they recruted for the 1 time mow is a large company that services state wide, so I'm sure they charge $70 or $80 per hour


                    Have you guys had experiance with any of those websites or beeing a member of a certain organization before you would be considered to do business with the company??

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Have you guys had experiance with any of those websites or beeing a member of a certain organization before you would be considered to do business with the company??
                      I've never seen that talked about here before. These sites can pop up anywhere. Maybe if they put their partner through it first, they wouldn't be dealing with the bankruptcy issue LOL

                      As far as the article I read, it basicly talks about how you should always consider price to be the first factor and only bid with the intent to provide the minumum services (mowing, trimming, blowing) if the company wants anything extra, you present those services later. Most times the customer will only want the minimum or consider the other services add ons that they currently might not need.
                      This is a very interesting topic as well. I have seen different view points on this topic. What fascinates me is that the more experienced companies (those that have been around longer) tend to offer more services and include them in their bids. They figure add ons can always be taken out if the customer chooses.

                      Although If you are bidding on a commercial job with very specific requirements, you might want to bid only on those items and suggest additional services as you deem necessary.

                      It will be interesting to hear how all this turns out! I am crossing my fingers for you
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                      • #12
                        Steve,

                        Would you have done anything different? How would you have prepaired the bid, would you shoot them the basics or include the whole package in the bid?
                        When I say the whole package, I mean the same type of services I put down..

                        Is it good practice to call the place and ask where you stand against the others? Do you ever go back and rebid to the same business of do you stay out of their way for a while and wait while they call..

                        I guess I always look at it as a job interview, if I put a bid in I always try to follow up and call to show you have genuen interest in providing your services.. Any tips you can give me there?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          would you shoot them the basics or include the whole package in the bid?
                          I'd give them what they wanted and then if I saw problems, I would point them out and let them know what it would cost to resolve the issues.

                          Is it good practice to call the place and ask where you stand against the others? Do you ever go back and rebid to the same business of do you stay out of their way for a while and wait while they call..
                          Any information you can find out is fantastic. Following up shows you are interested in helping them with their property maintenance issues.

                          Keep us posted on how all this turns out!
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                          Download your Free trial of Gopher Lawn Care Software.

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