Need help with apartment complex lawn care estimate.

Are you scaling your lawn care business up from mowing residential customers to servicing commercial properties? If so, you might find it helpful to check out this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum and see how these lawn care business owners estimated the amount of time it would take to mow and how much they would charge to perform a job at this apartment complex.

One lawn care business owner wrote “I just got this apartment complex lawn care bid request on short notice. There are 6 apartment in this complex. The total size of the property including buildings, parking lots, and lawn is about 165,000 sq ft. Since this is the biggest commercial property I have been asked to bid on yet for lawn care, I need some help on how to estimate it.

The management company wants the grounds mowed every 5-10 days. They also want the grass trimmed and blown off of pathways and surfaces. Edging is to be done every 3weeks. Leaves removed as needed. Flower beds, natural areas, sidewalks, parking lots and street must be maintained free of grass and or weeds. Trees and shrubs pruned as needed. I also need to pick up any trash before mowing.

During the dormant season, all property issues addressed during the growing season are to be completed on an as needed basis. The site is to be visited at least weekly to inspect. All fertilizing and seeding is to be completed in the spring and fall. Contractor provides the labor, complex provides the materials. Plant beds are to be reworked and pine straw put out twice a year. Trash and debris picked up and disposed whenever on site.

Items to be completed on an as requested basis and charged in addition to the lawn care contract. Complex will provide all seed, fertilizer, chemicals and pine straw. Along with trees, shrubs, plants and bushes if requested to be put out.

Now all I need is a monthly amount. This is what I have estimated so far.

Mowed weekly. approx. 2 hours.
Doing the trimming. approx. 1 hour
Blowing. approx 1 and 1/2hours
Edging. approx 2 hours
Leaf removal mostly in the fall, weekly approx 2 hours
Trim shrubs and trees monthly. approx 2-3 hours
Trash pickup before mowing. approx 30 mins”

Apartment lawn care bid example

Apartment lawn care bid example

A second lawn care business owner suggested “Here is how I would bid this job. I’d need 2hrs per week to mow. 1hr to trim, 1.5 to blow, 2hr to edge, 1hr to trim shrubs, 30min for trash removal. That is about 8 hrs a week. At my rate of $35 per hr it would come out to $280 a week.

I think it would take longer to line trim most places than to edge it. If you are spraying round up it will need it more like monthly and that extra time would need to be factored in as well.”

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