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Confused About Bidding & Estimating

Discussion in 'Bidding & Estimating' started by DUBCO, Oct 2, 2009.

  1. DUBCO

    DUBCO Junior Member
    Messages: 2


    Ive been reading this site for the last 2 years now and I have learned alot about the business from everbody's threads. Thank you.
    Ok, This is my 3rd season plowing. I have a F350 w 8ft Plow. The first 2 seasons I spent most of the time plowing for my city at a hourly rate (which was crap) and made up some of the time hustling driveways in neighborhood which was just a flat fee. It seems like Im working like a animal and putting the truck through misery and seeing little profit.
    This year I have been approached to do some small parking lots, problem is having trouble deciding which way to bid them and exactly how to turn what you think your worth hourly into actually per push or depth estimate.
    If I'm worth $100 hr the lot will take 1 hr per push and it snowed 5 total inches which I can probably do in 2 pushes. 2 inch Trigger.
    -Do I figure charging my hourly rate twice ($100 x 2=$200) to come up with a figure.
    -And if so how can I break that down into a depth estimate, which alot of people use in my area. 1-3 3-6 -6-9 9-12 12+

    I would love to continue in this business but if I cant figure out away to come on top after all the expenses this may be my last year.
    Any info will be greatly appreciated.
    Thank You
  2. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    If it snowed early morning then later that night you can hit them up for 2 pushes. But if it snowed over night and you do only one push(5 inches) you can maybe hit them for a 3-6 inch plow.Maybe charge charge them 1 and half (150.00)
  3. terrapro

    terrapro PlowSite Veteran
    from MI
    Messages: 3,912

    If you are worth $100 per hour that is $1.60 per minute so a lot that takes 30 minutes will be worth $49.99 per push. That would be for the first 0-6" every 3" afterwards is 50% extra.

    If the lot is $49.99 up to 6" that means every inch is worth $8.33.

    I guess I don't quite understand what you are asking.
  4. DUBCO

    DUBCO Junior Member
    Messages: 2

    Thanks for the quick response guys. I appreciate it.
    I guess what Im asking is obviously every lot is different and some take longer than others. So how do I break down the price into a snow depth formula on a estimate proposal only knowing approx how long it will take me and idea of what i need to make to make it worth my time. I understand how you said charge $100 and then next push $50. That makes sense. I just dont understand how like you said charge them the 3-6 inch price. Would I use what Terrapro said and base it on $8 inch example, so
    1-3 $24
    over 3-6 $48

    I think Im over thinkin this but if I go into situation where the customer wants a per inch estimate I do not want to short myself.
  5. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,644

    see above for answer to last question.