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Trying to bid, please help

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  • Trying to bid, please help

    I have tried to do this on my own by reading and using the calculator on here and am still very confused?????? I have always done residential mowing and snow removal but decided to start commercial this year. I have been asked to bid a bunch of properties like Olive Gardens and Applebees(small restaurants,little trim), basic maintenance(mowing,weedeating,blowing etc.) on a weekly basis. Do I charge the same hourly rate as I would for a residential lawn? Do I include fertilizing and aerating etc.. even though they didn't specifically ask for that service yet? I can't really show pics since everything is still covered with snow here. I also have one that is 5 acres but really easy mowing with little trim? I hate to be a pain but I don't wanna low ball and want to do this right. I figure if I can land a few I can learn from those bids. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  • #2
    I'm really new at this so I don't know if my advice will be worth anything. I just had a question about commercial bidding and from what I'm seeing you should charge about the same you would for a residential account.

    That's awesome that you got all those properties to bid on! How did you get them? Did you call them or did they contact you?
    Tianna D

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    • #3
      I have been cold calling for two weeks. Alot of work but hopefully worth it if I can figure out how to bid them correctly.

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      • #4
        Hi lakeeffect,

        Welcome to our forum.

        I have tried to do this on my own by reading and using the calculator on here and am still very confused??????
        What do you find confusing about them?

        I have always done residential mowing and snow removal but decided to start commercial this year. I have been asked to bid a bunch of properties like Olive Gardens and Applebees(small restaurants,little trim), basic maintenance(mowing,weedeating,blowing etc.) on a weekly basis. Do I charge the same hourly rate as I would for a residential lawn? Do I include fertilizing and aerating etc.. even though they didn't specifically ask for that service yet?
        I would think you should present them a price on what services they ask you to perform. If you want to present them with prices for other additional services, you can do that. Have they asked for specific services or where are you at with them so far?
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        • #5
          They are basically asking for mowing,weedeating and blowing off the surfaces but have asked if I perform aerating and mulching. Do I just bid the basic maintenance and offer the other services at their request or show them what they would be? Biggest problem I have is that I have a much bigger mower now(Z Master 62) and I'm not sure how fast it will mow an acre? I can measure all the properties with Google Earth but not sure how to do my man hours with this new mower? Sorry to sound like an idiot but i really don't want to lose my *** on these but don't want to come in way over either.

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          • #6
            I would say present them a bid for the services they ask for, but you can and should suggest additional services as upsells. If they go for them great! If not, that's ok too.

            Have you broken down how much each specific job would take and how much you want to charge for those services? What have you come up with so far?

            Will you be providing all the services or sub-contracting out some?
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            • #7
              I will be providing all the work. I'm told $60.00 an hour is a good rate in my area but that doesn't do me much good if I can't figure out my mow times. I have been trying to find out how fast the 62" Toro will mow but haven't been able to find out much. My one property to bid is 150,700 sq.ft. but is very easy to mow with little trim. Guess this is gonna be a huge learning curve.

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              • #8
                Here is an idea for you. Why don't you go over there with your equipment and ask if you could service the property for free and then keep track of the individual times for each specific job.

                That way at worst you are out only the time spent there on the job and you won't underbid it and lose money all year long. Also, you will leave the manager with a positive experience because how many others will perform the service for free? They will get a chance to see what kind of work you do. It's a win-win for both of you.
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                • #9
                  I wish I could, we have 3 feet of snow on the ground right now. I live in upstate New York, the Lake Effect snow capitol of the USA!!! That is what makes this hard, I can't even go out and test my new mower to see how fast I can mow. I have to view the properties through Google Earth just to see and measure them. Tough situation but all the places out my way are accepting bids now. Is there anyplace I can go to get some specs on how fast this mower is? I believe this will help or is this info not needed?

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                  • #10
                    The manufacturer might be able to tell you but you could also do something as simple as drive down the street alongside a car and see what your mowing speed is?
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