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low baller or better businessman ?

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by nekos, Dec 3, 2005.

  1. nekos

    nekos Senior Member
    Messages: 586

    this just kinda came up in another one of my post's .
    why is every one that charges less a low baller ?

    i never concerned myself much with low ballers until about a year ago when i was reading a post on lawnsite.com.
    there is a guy that charges close to half of what the other land scape company's in his area charge. his business model is basically to make his money on volume instead of quality. his crews do good work though !
    he found ways to lower operating costs and was able to charge his customers alot less then every one else !
    this guy is fully insured , does fairly good work from what i hear and well ... has a LCO that most people on that site could only dream of having !!!
    he made something like $6 or $7 million last year and he just keeps growing.

    now i ask , is he a low baller or just a better business man ?
    and what would you do if this guy got into snow removal in your area ?
  2. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    I would ask: what is a millionaire doing plowing snow and not on vacation laying on some beach, knocking back a couple of long necks?:drinkup:

    If some one no matter how successful they are in an other area is and they start plowing for gas money there a low baller.
    The rich business man is not going to charge less just because he makes a lot of money cutting grass. He has operating costs just like you do. So his prices will probably reflect what the market will bear. If he really was a low-baller he would not be a millionaire.
  3. kingriver

    kingriver Senior Member
    from alaska
    Messages: 216

    I believe as long as their are other prople willing to do the same job as you, and sometimes better--but not always--the term (lowballer) will always be with us. We are considering running an add in the local paper (next year) and advertising a set amount for any and all residential driveways within the city limits. Will I be a (Lowballer) att, or a business man looking to make a living, I ask??:cool:
  4. Brian Young

    Brian Young PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,394

    I made a comment on lawn site this past spring, I was not the millionare but we did ok. I was dubbed a "low baller" and I was only a few dollars less than my competitors. I have almost zero overhead so why should I try to be within .50cents of my compatition when I can make money doing it at a rate that is a few bucks less. And at a few bucks less, well thats not going to bring down the market any. Why should I try to compete with a guy who is 100k in debt, his price is typically going to be higher. I plow for a larger landscape company and I talk to the owner quite often and I asked him some questions about bidding. He went as far as to tell me that I was too high and not high enough on a few bids. But the greatest advise he gave me was not to pay attention to what everyone else is bidding as long as you can make a profit it doesn't matter what anyone else is bidding.
  5. Gusco

    Gusco Senior Member
    Messages: 117

    To me, when someone says they have been low balled. That means:

    1. Someone out bid them! and they take it personally.

    2. Someone can do it cheaper because they salt in bulk instead of bag by bag or have a fleet that can run the route efficiently!

    3. They are new, just got a plow, and think they will make millions!!

    4. They are just plain idiots that cant get there own contracts and low ball themselves and still cant get contracts!!!!
  6. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    Last edited: Dec 3, 2005
  7. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    First is to agree on a definition for "Lowballer"

    I have proposed this definition before, but it seems timely to bring it up again. With this, I do not intend to include anyone just because they bid lower than anyone else. I do not intend to include the "shrewd businessman". I do intend to include the person who is unable to determine his/her own costs so as to come up with a bid. So what I came up with is:

    Lowballer: a lowballer is anyone who deliberately and knowingly uses another person's bid as a guide to design a lower bid for the same site.

    Yes, this will include some people who participate in "reverse auctions".
  8. Sno

    Sno Senior Member
    Messages: 320

    "this guy is fully insured , does fairly good work from what i hear and well ... has a LCO that most people on that site could only dream of having !!!
    he made something like $6 or $7 million last year and he just keeps growing. "

    He is by no means a Lowballer then is he?
  9. Hmebuildr

    Hmebuildr Senior Member
    Messages: 115

    Until such time as everyone charges the same price across the board someone will always be the lowballer and someone else will always complain that they got beat out.
  10. Sno

    Sno Senior Member
    Messages: 320

    For some maybe,

    To me, Lowballer means someone is servicing for less than their true cost just to get an account.

    It's pretty obvious and many do it for several reasons.

    And even more get burnt over it.

    I'm with ya Mick... It's happened to me a few times. I now keep my bids and prices to myself.

    You wont see me posting exact prices on here.
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2005