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  • Help Pricing A Job

    Hello all, I could use some professional help!
    Over the past year, I have been seriously considering starting a lawn care business. I have been taking on jobs for neighbors and friends to get a good feel for the job and a good client referral list. This new job has me second guessing my pricing though and I could use your help.
    Here is the Job
    Removal of 4foot high Shrub close to a gas main (already done, hand dug and used a hacksaw on roots)
    6foot High Bush approx 4 feet wide.
    installation of 1yard of Mulch and 1 yard of soil
    weeding and pruning of 5 fair size flowerbeds
    mowing,trimming, edging of lawn
    yard cleanup
    So far i am on my 4th day (please keep in mind I do not have professional tools or help)

    Would $400 be to much to charge?

    Any help would be much appreciated!!!

  • #2
    where are you located?
    no it is not to much around here. for westchester and fairfeild counties 30 miles north of NYC
    400 is low

    what i would charge

    we charge $ 85 per yard of mulch/ topsoil if under 5 yards. if over 5 it drops to $75 a yard
    cutting the shrubs/bushes would be at least $100 for both.
    i would charge a disposal fee if i needed to take them off property. dispose of
    mowing at 60 an hour.
    edging at 50 cents per linear ft.
    weeding at 25 an hour
    pruning at 45 an hour
    this is what i would charge.

    this job would take 1 guy 2 days max unless the flowerbeds were bad.
    you can spread a yard an hour.
    the bushes would take about 1-2 hours.
    Krzysztof
    Zawadzki Landscaping
    203-212-2498

    www.zawadzkilandscaping.com
    http://www.facebook.com/ZawadzkiLandscaping

    Comment


    • #3
      Removal of 4foot high Shrub close to a gas main (already done, hand dug and used a hacksaw on roots)
      How long did that take you? How long did you initially think it will?

      6foot High Bush approx 4 feet wide.
      What are you doing with this? Removing it? Trimming it?

      installation of 1yard of Mulch and 1 yard of soil
      How long are you expecting this to take? What will be the cost of materials?

      weeding and pruning of 5 fair size flowerbeds
      What size (sq ft) would this area be and how long are you thinking this will take?

      mowing,trimming, edging of lawn
      What size?

      yard cleanup
      What size and what condition is it in?

      These are all the things to think about when you are putting your bid together. I look forwards to your responses.
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      Comment


      • #4
        Thank you for the responses. The area is Mississauga,Ontario,Canada.

        The 4foot shrub took about 2.5 hours the 7 foot bush took 3 hours to remove. Then 2 hours to cut it all up to be taken away by our brown bag pickup. Total 7.5hours for both including 30min cleanup.

        For the mulch the Yard was delivered. I was t just instal it after instaling the Yard of dirt. Now I busted my *** with a wheelbarrow and the both took about 2.5hours to get it all to the beds, then an hour to even out 40min cleanup. Total 8hours for both. You guys can really do an hour a yard? I see no way i could have done it that fast. So many flowers,shrubs and trees to get under.

        Not sure on the square feet. But thank you for pressing me on that, I can now see how that will help me with quotes. Total pruning time was about 1 hour, weeding was about 2hours

        Mow,trim,edge was about 1.5hours. rest was yard cleanup

        Being very new to pricing and the business my hourly rate has usually been $20hour so as to give a good price, also because I have very little to no extra costs such as gas etc..

        The Pricing I am now looking at looking at is $125 each for the Mulch and Soil.
        Weed and Prune included
        4 foot shrub $75
        7 Foot $125
        Mow,edge,trim $35
        Yard Cleanup $75
        Total Hours worked 34

        $560

        What do you all think?

        Comment


        • #5
          Forgot to mention. Here in Toronto, we pay $139.00 to have 1 Cubic Yard or dirt or mulch delivered .

          Comment


          • #6
            Mulch prices seem high. Here, its $30-$44 a yard. Delivery is $20-$60 depending on distance. Most places will give you 10% off for being a contractor. You can also get in good with a yard and get more discounts. I bought a 100 yards so far this year from the same people. They love me!

            Now as far as your prices your way off. You should be able to afford to pay someone to do all the work and still make 3 times more then what you paid him. For 34 hours, you shouldve came in somewhere between $1200-$1700.

            Comment


            • #7
              what took so long to remove the 2 bushes.
              i figured about 1 hour to take them down. we go down about 3 inches under the soil. we are using chainsaws to cut the roots.
              i would not have baged the bushes in brown bags. it takes to long.
              you would have been better off making bundles and tying the bundles up.
              Krzysztof
              Zawadzki Landscaping
              203-212-2498

              www.zawadzkilandscaping.com
              http://www.facebook.com/ZawadzkiLandscaping

              Comment


              • #8
                All I had to use was a Shovel, axe ,hand saw, and hack saw for the one near the gas main. Also i had to hand dig that one.

                Comment


                • #9
                  First off I'm confused at why you have started the work before coming up with a price that you & the homeowner have agreed upon. That's asking for trouble and issue. All other information above is accurate. Ontario's delivery rate is obsurred ! Best of luck

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    why you have started the work before coming up with a price
                    How did that come about and what is your view on handling it like that?
                    - Subscribe to my Lawn Care Marketing Blog Feed and get daily tips sent to you. Free!
                    Download your Free trial of Gopher Lawn Care Software.

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                    • #11
                      With only taking on jobs for neighbors and friends, also being new to all of this I have always just said pay me what you think is fair. Also before this the jobs have usually been straight forward ie. fall cleanup, retaining walls, gutters, and mostly 1 job at a time. This was my first Job with multiple tasks, that use different skill sets. Also my neighbor (the customer) asked to hire me, right before she was going away. So I diagrammed out the job on paper, and she approved. I did not consider until the second day, that if i charge my usual this was gonna cost allot. (not making this mistake again)

                      I am positive she knows it was allot of work, but i was still apprehensive when figuring out how much to charge. That is when I found you website, and was like wow. So i thought couldn't hurt to ask. I will find out tomorrow ,how it will turn out. I decided to just break down all the jobs, show hours worked on each and just multiply that by 20$ hour. 31.5 hours rounded down to $600. Then if she was not expecting that much, explain and reduce price if needed. I will not be doing it this way again, I was just hoping you guys could let me know if i was to low, to high or in the ballpark of what normally would be charged.
                      I do appreciate the responses, and really appreciate this website! I have allot of reading to do
                      Last edited by JustCallMeJImmy; 04-26-2012, 09:33 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        as a friend $600 is fair, as a business $1200 is.

                        I'm going off your hours worked and not how long it would take me. I mightve been able to do it in 15, so $600 would work for that. At the sametime I take your word for it. If you say it took that long it was a hell of a job to undertake.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I agree with SECT. Thats why I mentioned getting a set price before work is started.....only because " Is he gonna do the work as a friend?" "Is he charging me full price? " friends and family are always the ones lookin for free handouts and deals, youlle never get ahead until you distinguish what you are....friend helping friends....or this is a business? Best of luck

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I mightve been able to do it in 15
                            What do you feel might have been a more realistic hour number for you?
                            - Subscribe to my Lawn Care Marketing Blog Feed and get daily tips sent to you. Free!
                            Download your Free trial of Gopher Lawn Care Software.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              With the right tools ie. Chainsaw, or a digger, the tree and shrub I could have done in considerably less time. Also I could of had her get the gas lines marked, there may have been no worry at all about cutting or bending a line. I cannot see anyway the mulch and dirt could have been quicker. They were delivered in bags (https://bigyellowbag.com/), and placed at front of her driveway. Distance to backyard beds was roughly 135 feet, with a pool to navigate all around. There was also no way to just dump them into 4 of the 5 beds, as there were retaining walls and flowers all along the front. Using a blower was out of the question for the beds as dirt and old mulch would have ended up all over her lawn and pool cover. I will try to take pictures tomorrow morning.
                              I talked to here today, and she was really impressed by the job, and was not phased by how long it took ( she said she new it would take along time)
                              Hopefully she feels same way about price, when I go over this morning

                              Comment

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