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Only you know!!!!

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Scott's, Nov 9, 2009.

  1. Scott's

    Scott's Senior Member
    Messages: 416

    All these threads about low ballers some even started by me but dang its getting old.

    Some prices I read in here are WAY to high and others are WAY to low. Only the person bidding knows if he is low balling his bid and only him.

    A few examples of not knowing

    Up north they do driveways for $4.00 a drive and they say others are doing them for $3.00 a drive

    Down South they do driveways for $25.00 and some are doing them for $10.00

    To the east guys say they do drives for $50.00 a drive and some are doing them for $40.00

    I have seen and been in the middle of some big debates on pricing and low balling .I have been called a low baller and then in the same day was said I was ripping people off lol .

    No matter what people charge there will be others placing judgment and no one will ever win this debate. We all have low balled and we all have price gouged.

    So up north they charge $4.00 per driveway to be plowed and to the east they charge $50.00 per driveway to be plowed. Who is the low baller and who is the price gouger??????

    I have learned there will never be a winner in this debate .
  2. wizardsr

    wizardsr PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,584

    That's why you don't post prices on the internet...
  3. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,249

    Neither are either. It's called capitalism.

    This isn't really apples to apples, because it's a product not a service, but if I get a $.99 burger from McD's are they lowballing?

    If I go to a nice restaurant and pay $10 for a burger are they gouging me? Or is McD's lowballing?

    If you can't comprehend this concept, then maybe being a business owner isn't for you. You are not understanding some basic business principles.

    Go read procut1's posts in the "what would you change thread". Lower prices are not going away, might as well get used to it.
  4. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,249

    Or ask what I should charge, then get into an argument because someone said too low and another said too high.

    Or call others unprofessional, or not legitimate contractors, etc, etc, etc.
  5. buckwheat_la

    buckwheat_la 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,254

    i think it is hard for anyone to really know what a lowballing price is without being in someone elses shoes, Scott and myself have had quite a few "discussions" concerning prices, and rarely see eye to eye on them, but that being said, i haven't got a clue what his circumstances are, nor does he know mine, i would hope that all discussions on this site, are taken with a grain of salt, with the knowledge that circumstances from buisness to buisness, and region to region, are going to be different. I have seen many models listed here, on how to calculate expenses/cost and profit margins, we all have different ways of doing this, and the great thing about plowsite, is it allows contractors to explore "how the other guy" is doing things, or to use the experience of seasoned professionals to help us expand and enhance our own services. But in the end, if you are happy with your buisness, and what you charge, then more power to you
  6. wizardsr

    wizardsr PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,584

    Just sayin'...
  7. iceyman

    iceyman 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,925

    or ask people to price your work out for you.....if someone has a lot they need help with the only way people can help is by giving them and average finish time and let him figure out his price on his own....
  8. Mick

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

    Has anyone ever come up with a definitive definition of "lowballer"? It seems to be "any person who submits a bid lower than mine".
  9. Scott's

    Scott's Senior Member
    Messages: 416

    Thats why I started this thread because I have learned alot about prices in other stated or even town are so different that a guy in MI will call a guy in OH a price gouger or a lowballer when they have no clue. Times are nuts right now bid and move on is what Im learning.
  10. buckwheat_la

    buckwheat_la 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,254

    my personal definition of "lowballer" someone who submits an unrealistically low price without consideration for costs, profitmarigin, or time. i realize this leaves a lot for interpretation, but in then end, you might be a lowballer if: (to the tune of jeff foxworthy redneck)
    -if you can't break even on quotes you have submitted, you might be a lowballer,
    -if you subbmitted a quote just to get a job from someone else (maliciously) you might be a lowballer
    -if you quote a job and have to do it poorly to make money at it, you might be a lowballer
    -if you don't carry insurance on vehicles, buisness liabilty, etc, because your prices are so low you can't afford it, you might be a lowballer
    -if you need to strap a piece of plywood to the front of your truck because your ancient WM special plow is folded in half, you might be a lowballer
    -if you have worked all night, and all day and still can't afford a 6 pack of beer (or pop) when you go home, you might be a lowballer
    -if you have to pay illegal immigrants canned corn to get your jobs done, you might be a lowballer

    Scott, not trying to degrade your thread, just thought a response was needed for Mick
  11. Scott's

    Scott's Senior Member
    Messages: 416

    Its all good. Just trying to put some info out there that I have learned about lowballers or thought to be lowballers.

    Ahhh what if you dont like that other person and you would rather do a job for free than let him get that account?:p
  12. buckwheat_la

    buckwheat_la 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,254

    lmao, depends if you hate him for a good reason, lol
  13. big acres

    big acres Senior Member
    Messages: 653

    Buckwheat - I can't agree more with this.

    I might also add...

    "If you find the need to change your name to escape your reputation..."

    "If you can't figure out why you have to replace so many customers year after year, even though you have the lowest prices..."

    The "you might be a lowballer if..." probably deserves its very own thread!
  14. buckwheat_la

    buckwheat_la 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,254

    i tried to do my own thread with it, and Donovan erased it,,,,,,?
  15. wizardsr

    wizardsr PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,584

    From the urban dictionary, just for you guys...

    1. lowballer

    A man who's testicles, in this case referred to as balls, sink too low to the ground. It is implied that in this case, the man is old and senile (not that a lowballer must fit these qualities physically, but could just be thinking that way) and is, most importantly, thinking in a very spineless, immoral, and unethical way. He will usually find ways to scam people, or express his largely unethically-held beliefs. He is not jaded, but usually just a guy who hates people because he's a jackass.

    A lowballer is often mistaken for a hustler. A clear distinction should be made between the two in that a lowballer is just a ****head and a hustler is a G. The distinctions are most often made on a person-to-person basis.

    2. lowballer

    A person who tries to get something for lower price than already set

  16. CMU07

    CMU07 Member
    Messages: 68

    I think this is the best thing I've heard in a while. Everybodys costs are different, as has been stated a thousand times. If someone can work for $20/hour less than the next, so be it.
  17. hydro_37

    hydro_37 PlowSite Veteran
    from iowa
    Messages: 3,790

    Lowballer = someone charging ALOT less then the going rate in YOUR area. JMO
  18. Pennings Garden

    Pennings Garden Senior Member
    from VA
    Messages: 242

    I'm not a lowerballer by any means, and I will probably regard posting this but, I have been bidding on a lot right next door to my office that is owned by a out of state company and even thou I have been a little lower then the current guy for the last 2 years, they would not give me a shot. So this year I bid 20% lower then I would normally do and I got their attention and got the contact, at the signing the manager asks me if he should be worried, I ask why? he says, because of the low price... and I told him no you don't have to be worried and I explained to him I would not be making allot of money of him this winter if we got allot of snow but next winter, after I showed him are a trust worthy company, when I would get my regular price I would make a decent living. After some talking I walked away with a 3 year contract, the first year a little low but the next 2 at normal price. (What the previous guy was getting)

    So does that make me a lowballer?

    I bet he thinks I'm a lowballer...
  19. Neige

    Neige Sponsor
    Messages: 2,215

    Way to go, got your foot in the door, and then signed 3 years. I like it :salute:
  20. buckwheat_la

    buckwheat_la 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,254

    i think the point and/or definition of a lowballer, doesn't include you, and here is why, you did nothing in a malicious or irresponsible manner, what you did was good buinsess, you wanted a contract and implemented a plan to acquire that contract. i honestly believe that lowballers push prices that they can't maintain, or have to cut corners to make profitable, doing snowplowing at such a low rate that you can't afford insurance, or you take salt and don't pay your account. we have all had to have strategies to land accounts, and sometimes that means lowering prices