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My First Commercial Bid......Pleeeez Help

Discussion in 'Bidding & Estimating' started by snoflymitch, Nov 20, 2008.

  1. snoflymitch

    snoflymitch Junior Member
    Messages: 4

    I was at a very established church site this afternoon to place a bid. Here are the details of the needs of the customer. I can price the plowing aspect of the bid with confidence, but there is 3668 sf ( 675' x 5' ) of sidewalk which they want calcium chloride put down. How much should I charge per 50lb bag to apply it ? My cost on the calcium is 18.00 per bag, 17.00 per bag if I buy a 49 bag pallet. Not ready to buy a pallet with this being the only customer that wants calcium.

    How long should it take to clean the walks on say a 4" snowfall with a capable snow blower ?

    I was thinking 37.50 per bag applied and 4 bags to do it. I was also thinking 15- 50lb bags of salt to do a 200' x 125' parking lot in which I was gonna charge 12.00 per bag applied.

    Keep in mind they only want a 1" trigger, don't need to be done until 9am, not one obstruction in the parking lot, entrances are smooth with plenty of stack locations in the lot. I should be there often with 1" trigger which is good.

    Please be critical, I need to learn this fast.
    Thanks for any help you all can give me. I appreciate it very much.
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2008
  2. dirtmandan2

    dirtmandan2 Senior Member
    Messages: 274

    I think closer to 3 bags on the walk, and an hour to blow it off at 4". I think you should lower the cost on calcium a little, sounds like you really want this job... that lot I would put down 10 bags.. I dont know what your paying for that salt. if your putting it down by hand it's going to suck! otherwise this sounds like a nice lot to have, bid accordingly.. good luck
  3. IMAGE

    IMAGE Sponsor
    Messages: 1,736

    30-35 minutes plow
    20 minutes sidewalks
    15-25 minutes salting sidewalks (depending on how they are laid out)
    25 minutes salting lot with a walk behind.

    my best guess. If its a really easy the plow times might be more like 25 minutes depending on your setup.
  4. snoflymitch

    snoflymitch Junior Member
    Messages: 4

    I"m glad I posted this thread. I was about to overbid this job and this really helps me look at it again in a diff. way. I"ll be putting the salt down with a snow ex tailgate spreader and the calcium by hand. Plowing the lot with my 02 GMC 2500hd w/ 7 1/2' Boss straight blade. I just bought 2 pallets of salt at 5.00 even per bag.

    Is there a way I'm not thinking of to get a snow blower to the site other than a friends pick up truck ? My truck will be loaded with salt and calcium with the spreader using the hitch.
  5. dirtmandan2

    dirtmandan2 Senior Member
    Messages: 274

    if you only have the one trk opt1 buy a swing mount for your spreader opt 2 buy a little toro snowthrower, light enough to throw in over the side of your truck
  6. IMAGE

    IMAGE Sponsor
    Messages: 1,736

    ^^^ yep ^^^
  7. Burkartsplow

    Burkartsplow PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,248

    I have a little toro That i cant pull in out and out of the truck. The tailgate spreader is hooked to my receiver so I can not use the tailgate. The snow blower weighs around 60 lbs. I pick it up from the bed and put on top of salt spreader and then get out of truck and pull it down. I do it slow since it is only 60 pounds but doing it properly will save your back. that is the last thing you need to go on your body during a blizzard. it is a little single stage but it does the job I ask. I never let my walks get out of control unless it is a blizzard and there is usually nothing you can do, and when it gets to that I can drive up in the curve easily at my large commercials and scrape away the snow. But that only has had to be done once....:salute:
  8. terrapro

    terrapro PlowSite Veteran
    from MI
    Messages: 3,868

    plow lot =$70
    clear walk =$15
    rock salt =$80 400lbs
    ice melt =$40 75lbs

    buy that pallet you will use it and watch that calcium chloride, it can burn your hands.
  9. TreffertLawnWrx

    TreffertLawnWrx Senior Member
    Messages: 122

    You should be charging at least $35-45 per 50-80lb salt bag applied. Remeber it is not just the cost of salt, it includes, purchase, storing, delivery, application. And they are requesting the CC, sell them on the idea of rock salt.

    Always make sure you are making a minimum on your time. I understand this may be your only account but sometime down the road your 30-45 minutes will be earning you $60 elseware ($80-100hr/truck).

    Same with shoveling, its no fun out there and your time should be charged at 30-50 per hour per laborer with a shovel.

    All this add's up to $60 plow, $35 walks, $75 salt, for 1-3 inches without seeing the property. $170 for 1.5 hours of work sounds about right!
  10. snoflymitch

    snoflymitch Junior Member
    Messages: 4

    I appreciate all your help on this. The guy I spoke with seemed as if he was ready to make a decision right away so here is the bid I turned in Friday morning. I'm starting to think I shot myself in the foot.

    190.00 - 1"-6" (over 6" 240.00) to plow parking lot & 3 entrances and small adjoining alley, blow 670' ft 5' of sidewalk w/ three sets of steps (4 high), 120.00 to apply 10 - 50lb bags of salt, 120.00 to apply 4 - 50lb bags of calcium.

    In the proposal I didn't break down how many bags of each. He can figure it out I guess.

    A 1" - 6" snowfall will cost them 430.00 & over 6" snowfall 480.00.

    There is a decent amount of work there, hopefully I didn't take myself to school.
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2008
  11. MileHigh

    MileHigh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,827

    I hope you get it at that price....

    you didn't sell yourself short, that's for sure.
  12. Rc2505

    Rc2505 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,245

    Are you trying to retire off of just the profits on this job? Man seems high to me. Maybe down in central Ohio you can pull those prices, but in Northwest Ohio that total job would be about 250 with salt and calcium. Good Luck hope you are able to service them weekly. You will love the profits