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  • My First Bid

    I got a chance to bid on a brush-clearing job! I think I bid very cheap at $100, especially since my customer wants both cutting and clearing of the brush, but I'm going to consider this first job more of a learning experience than a money-maker. I'll get better at estimates and bids as more opportunities come along. How much might you bid for clearance and hauling of this property?
    Attached Files

  • #2
    that looks like a $250.00 job to me ,how big is the lot ? do you have dump fees for the crap ? how long to complete the job including the haul-away ?

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    • #3
      Yeah you definitely left a lot of money on the table. I wouldve charged at least 3 hours and a $75 dump fee. Thats conservative too. It may take more then one trip to dump that brush unless you shred.

      For comparison, I charged $100 for this job and it took a hour. Even this little bit of brush almost filled the back off my pick up.
      Attached Files

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      • #4
        You really screwed yourself, don't do that anymore. I understand where you are coming from, that was my mind set last year as well, "learning" well I learned real quick I don't like working for hack pay.

        But it is what it is so make the best of it.

        For me it would have been..

        Private owner: $225-$250

        Bank owned $275-$300

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        • #5
          bidding gauge

          Thanks a ton, guys. This is exactly why I'm on this forum. Seeing as this is my first bid, and I'll have no dump fees for one load next Saturday because it's a local dump to me in Milpitas, I decided to include the dumping. Soon, I'll have a much better gauge of how much to bid. The most important thing is, I'm getting out there and making connections. I've also signed up for a volunteer day with the local County Parks and Recreation Dept. Tomorrow. I'm gonna come home sore, but with a good contact or two :]
          Tom

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          • #6
            I'll have no dump fees for one load next Saturday because it's a local dump to me in Milpitas, I decided to include the dumping
            My local dump only charges $5 a load for brush. Your charging for picking up, unloading, fuel and time. Believe me when I say it will take more then a hour just dealing with the debris.

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            • #7
              My Thought

              I have come across jobs like this many times here in SW Florida. Especially with the construction boom having boomed out, there are many developers sitting on empty lots. Here is how I sell them. First I call in my sub who supplies bush hogg cutting. I take his bid, add in 20% and submitt that to the customer. To avoid dump and clean up cost, I sell them on the idea of coming in with a 60 inch mower equipped with mulching blades, this mulches the dead grass, adds a bit of nutrients to the soil and saves them sending horticulture debri to the land fill. Win Win!

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              • #8
                $175 on the low end but could easily be over double that - what kind of access you have to it would make a big difference. On jobs like this its the stuff that you don't see that gets you in trouble. Wear & tear on your equipment should be part of the price you are quoting on anything that is overgrown.
                Evansville Lawn Mowing
                Newburgh Lawn Care

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                • #9
                  What's the size of the property and how much time were you estimating it would take you?
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                  • #10
                    first bid

                    I didn't measure the property, but I think it's about a 50'-60' by maybe 25' plot. I was a little bold, thinking I could get the cutting done in a couple hours, and today, actually got it done in about three. I will be going back for a second trip Saturday to haul away the stuff, when the dump fees will be free for locals like me. This was certainly not the ideal situation, but I will learn better. I'm reading and listening up.
                    On a more positive note, I got a lot of good out of this job in that I got acquainted with my brush cutter, got a better feel for how long it takes me to get the work done, and some physical conditioning to boot! Exercise like this makes my food taste better and my sleep sweeter.
                    It's still early in the season, but I'm seeing more and more pickup trucks out there with racks, weed eaters and lawn mowers on them.

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                    • #11
                      when the dump fees will be free for locals like me. .
                      is only free for your own stuff they will soon catch on that your going to the dump more then a home owner would doing there own lawn/yard and will start charging you commercial rates ,best to start figuring that in on your bids now not later once they catch on
                      Chris Hoeltke
                      serving Winchester Virginia and surrounding areas
                      C&S Lawn Service

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                      • #12
                        It may take more then one trip to dump that brush unless you shred.
                        What would you suggest he use to shred the brush that is cut?
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                        • #13
                          Something like this but you could even use a beat up lawnmower.
                          What would you suggest he use to shred the brush that is cut?



                          Three hours was what I was thinking it would take. In a way your lucky you got out of there that quick. You couldve been there five. Now its clean up time. With it all on the ground, how long do you think it will take to remove?

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                          • #14
                            so all said and done with dumping it will be like 5 hours? $100/5=$20 not bad starting out and think now you have a great BEFORE AND AFTER pics for your flyers.....

                            btw where is our after pic

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                            • #15
                              so all said and done with dumping it will be like 5 hours? $100/5=$20 not bad starting out and think now you have a great BEFORE AND AFTER pics for your flyers.....

                              btw where is our after pic
                              Those figures are about right, only I'll be renting a U-Haul for $30+, which I will definitely figure into upcoming bids. It will be a 17' box truck, and I'll just use a pitchfork to load the four piles I made, and to offload it at the dump.

                              One simple but powerful thing you've helped me to do is set time-oriented goals for myself. I'd like to get this haul done within a couple of hours. When I did this the first time, I didin't really consider how long I would take, just got the job done.

                              My resources have gotten a little tighter for now, so I'll hold off on getting any more new gear until I've got some solid revenue coming in, but those shredders are pretty cool.

                              I will have to look into how my local dump views dumping yard waste there for my business. I'd like to have a good relationship with them. I've also got contact info for haulers like Recology, with whom I might be able to form a working relationship, ie, I cut, they haul. They might be a lot more benefitted in the deal, but it could open up more opportunities.

                              I will post some after pics after I clear the area on Saturday, and look forward to sharing it. It's an empty lot that the owner just wanted clear of vegetation that could be a fire hazard, and wasn't trying to beautify it, really. I think he's just holding it for someone to buy and build on it. There were a lot of rocks, busted concrete, garbage, and even rebar sticking up out of the ground.

                              Thanks for your advice and support, guys. More to come...

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