How to write out my first commercial lawn care bid.

That first time you bid on a commercial property can really throw you for a loop if you are used to only working on residential properties. In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, one entrepreneur is trying to figure out how to include services like adding mulch to an annual lawn care bid. Should he charge up front for materials or spread the costs out over the entire year?

One lawn care business owner wrote “when submitting a lawn care estimate for a commercial property that requires mulch, do you break up the cost over the term of the contract. For example, $1,000 in mulch and $500 in grass cutting a month for 10 month contract. So should I charge a one time mulch job fee or $600 a month for the term?”

A second lawn care business owner said “when I create an estimate for a commercial property, this is the layout I use.

Amount per cut x 28 cuts annual ( April-September once a week is 24 cuts)
(October and November bi weekly is 4 cuts).

Mulching Amount ( just include edging and weeding before application into price per yard and get more per yard ). I get $70-75 yard with that included.

Spring Pruning Amount ( usually get $100 to $125 more for spring pruning ).

Fall pruning amount.

  • 3 weedings.
  • 1 beginning of year.
  • 1 before mulching(included in mulching price).
  • 1 towards end of year.

Spring clean up amount (  include de-thatching of grass and blowing out beds & bushes ).

Fall clean up amount ( maintenance visits during October and November. I bag everything or blow into piles and use a vac that shoots it in the back of the truck. Price according based on the equipment you own. Include price for 1 final clean up at the very end of the year. It’s hard to figure out the amount of extra time it will take you but you have to remember you are already getting the amount for the cut during the visits so you can’t get too greedy.

I add all the amounts up and add tax and divide it out for 8 equal monthly payments.”

A third landscaper shared “I usually break down the prices. This gives the property manager a clear view of what the property needs, plus they most likely have a budget so some of the services may just get crossed out.
If you have a scope of work written out per service that will be very helpful.”

Read more about Lawn Care Business Bidding Tips, Upsells, And Disasters To Avoid. Learn how to improve your bidding process with this book and be prepared before hand by knowing what you should be looking out for before a problem occurs.

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