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-   -   How much to charge for new bed installs (http://www.gopherforum.com/showthread.php?t=18403)

jymie 03-31-2013 06:59 PM

How much to charge for new bed installs
 
I got a call to make a new bed running from the front porch to halfway down the side of the house. To include some shrubbery and plants. Im not to concerned about the plants and shrubs, what would you charge to make the bed from scratch not including he planting. 40 ft X 5 ft with a rounded curve around the corner of the house going out a couple more feet. Thanks

ratchetmaster2 03-31-2013 11:07 PM

I'm not an expert on this, but I feel bad seeing you haven't gotten any replies yet.

So here's how I understand it: currently, there is grass, and the person wants the grass removed, and a garden/plant bed in place of that area (200sq. ft.)?

Here are the steps that I can think of: 1) Removing all of the grass. This could be a challenge, or fairly easily. Some grasses you can just cut in a line and roll them up like sod almost. It grows so thick, that the roots just all come up at once. Other grasses are not so easily. Each cluster of grass, 2in x 2in section, has its own root clump. This would be a pain to pull out over a thousand of these.

2) Till or otherwise freshen the area. You could skip step 1, and just till the grass, but then you have blades of grass mixed up in the soil and I personally think that looks like junk, and not very professional. I do not recommend skipping step 1 because you want to remove as much material as possible. For that professional bed edged look, the bed has to be a bit lower than the rest of the yard for that dramatic looking edge edge. And, in step 3, you should add top soil anyway. Adding water to the soil makes tilling much easier.

3) Add new soil. Depending on where you live, the soil may or may not be crap. New rich soil never hurts though. Especially when it looks so fresh and black. It's pretty cheap too. You might want to mix in some fertilizer if you think that could be a concern. You can mix in the soil with the tiller, or you can throw it on top.

4) Do the edging and clean-up.

For this, I would personally charge between $500 and $1000, leaning more towards the upper numbers.
Removing 200sq. ft. of grass: 2-3 hours at least? $120-150 for this
Tilling: $250+ in labor plus costs. Home Depot rents one for $50. plus gas
Top soil: 200sq.ft. x 2in(?) top soil = ~32cu. ft. Home Depot sells 1cu. ft. for ~$1.50. You can get it cheaper other places. $50 in soil, plus transport costs.
Edging: 50ft. Probably take you an hour to do a good, clean job. $50.
~$600. Plus plants.
Again, not an expert, but this is how I would go about.
Keep in mind, Hose A and Hose B out front Home Depot will quote this person ~$250 for the whole job.

jymie 04-01-2013 11:55 AM

Thanks for the input!

ratchetmaster2 04-01-2013 01:27 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jymie (Post 124635)
Thanks for the input!

Do you feel like what I said applies to you, or helped you?
I know it can be hard to give a customer a big bill like that, but you have to realize how much work it will take. I still have trouble spitting out large numbers like that, but I'm tired of not getting paid enough.

Steve 04-01-2013 01:55 PM

Quote:

40 ft X 5 ft with a rounded curve around the corner of the house going out a couple more feet.
How are you planning on doing this? What equipment would you be using and how long do you feel it would take?

BelleCityLawn1 04-01-2013 02:18 PM

I have done several of these types of projects for people who are having nurseries coming in to plant the plants. I would charge around $1,100 for an area 40x5 depending on if they want mulch, stones, or some type of bed liner.

jymie 04-01-2013 08:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ratchetmaster2 (Post 124651)
Do you feel like what I said applies to you, or helped you?
I know it can be hard to give a customer a big bill like that, but you have to realize how much work it will take. I still have trouble spitting out large numbers like that, but I'm tired of not getting paid enough.

Yes it does, I'll know more after I talk to him wednesday.

jymie 04-01-2013 08:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Steve (Post 124658)
How are you planning on doing this? What equipment would you be using and how long do you feel it would take?

I'm thinking two days to finish, depending if he's looking for mulch too, the scraping the grass up and then tilling will take most of the time. The planting should be simple.

DannyP69 04-01-2013 11:38 PM

HeHe, Hose A and hose B. good one.

I would agree with ratchetmaster. this is a bigger type of job. Most home owners dont realize how much time and work it takes to do something that is quite simple to picture. especially if your posting ads on craigslist when starting out. Most people go for craigslist ads because they want to get jobs done as cheap as possible. but its good to do these jobs as it gets your name out there and quick.

I would easily quote between $600-$700 dollars for this job. keeping in mind that i only work within a certain radius. so it doesnt take me far to drive to either dump off excavation fill, old grass. or to pick up new materials such as soil mulch or stone.

Hope this helped, just kind of wanted to throw in my two cents. Thanks for the great site by the way.

Danny.

ratchetmaster2 04-02-2013 01:06 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jymie (Post 124699)
I'm thinking two days to finish, depending if he's looking for mulch too, the scraping the grass up and then tilling will take most of the time. The planting should be simple.

Yes. Very time and labor intensive work. Be ready for the tiller, it will be a workout. Tilling that much area will tire you out very fast. Other tillers might be different (I would hope so), but the ones I've used are constantly trying to rip your arms off, from the nature of them trying to dig into the soil. Just keep a firm grip and don't let it get away


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