Estimating landscape maintenance jobs accurately makes or breaks your sale. Read on for the what, why, when, and how of getting accurate landscape maintenance estimates.
The green industry accounts for 129 billion US dollars of annual revenue and is growing at a healthy rate. That’s great news for you. But it also implies that there will be fierce competition for every landscape job.
Getting a new job requires nailing your estimate as the first step.
If your quote is too expensive, you risk losing customers to less expensive rivals. You’ll leave money on the table if it’s too low. Customers who see terribly low costs can also worry about what’s wrong with your services.
So, what is the best method for accurately estimating landscape maintenance jobs?
In this blog, we find out.
We’ll discuss the most effective method for estimating landscape maintenance projects to help you win more work and earn more money.
Table of Contents
What does the typical sales process look like?
You come to know of an opportunity. Or the prospects you have been nurturing finally decide to give you a chance to send a landscaping proposal. You have a proverbial foot in the door.
Now, you set up a meeting with the property manager on site. You want to show up prepared, so you look up the site on Google Earth. Then, you start measuring sites manually by clicking on the map – for hours.
But something else came up, so you could not complete the clicking process. And now, it’s time to meet the property manager. You show up with half-baked property intelligence. This means you have a very vague sense of the estimate. You fail to ask the right questions about the budget.
You go back to the office and resume clicking. But you are not sure if there is turf beneath that tree and don’t know the number of shrubs in the flower bed next to the main driveway. So you go back to the site again.
Days pass by; the submission deadline is near. You manually enter the measurements into your estimation spreadsheet. You or your team do the production review. But then you realize the numbers need to be tweaked because the prices have gone up, and it’s hard to sustain the margins.
You still have to work on the landscaping proposal, and don’t want to ask for an extension on the submission deadline. So you wrap up the estimates in the Lord’s name and start to work on the proposal. Let’s say, you just made it on time.
Imagine multiplying the above sequence of events by 40 because that’s the number of bids you want to submit in the peak months.
What is the problem with the typical sales process in estimating landscape maintenance jobs?
Here are the problems:
- Sales reps measuring the site manually miss out on selling time
- Manual site measurements have an inherent error hurting estimates
- Inaccuracy in estimating costs leads to over or underbidding
- Not being able to move enough deals through the pipeline
The cost of a mistake is high: if you bid too high, you run the danger of losing business to your rivals; if you bid too low, your margins would be low. If, due to a lack of time, you frequently resort to guesstimates, that is really bad for your business.
All things considered, when it comes to establishing a repeatable sales process that wins consistently, estimating costs accurately and on time is the key.
A fast and accurate estimate can assist clients and organizations in staying within their budgets while reducing the chance of expense increases.
How to get costs accurately while estimating landscape maintenance jobs?
To operate efficiently at volumes, you need systems in place that deliver consistent outcomes on a repeatable basis. Accurate estimation of labor, equipment, and raw material requirements is crucial. Without this, you are bidding in the dark, and it’s impossible to proactively work on maintaining and boosting your margins.
Never before have material prices and labor availability been so uncertain and dynamic. So it’s important that you have a system that gets the fundamentals pricing determinants right. What you need is a process that allows you to:
- Get detailed sitemaps and HD service diagrams
- Accurately obtain site measurements
- Accurately estimate the cost of every factor of production
- View your margins on jobs with high confidence
It is also important to fine-tune your production rates so that your estimates and actuals converge in general.
So what do you do?
Put your takeoffs for estimating landscaping maintenance on autopilot with Attentive.ai
With Attentive.ai’s automated landscaping takeoff software, get accurate measurements to build the most detailed time and material estimates off of your production factors – with zero manual efforts.
Let us see how.
With Attentive.ai, you get auto-generated site measurements for lawns, hedges, mulch beds, gravel beds, hard & soft edges, and tree count. This is based on state-of-the-art AI technology that extracts these landscape measurements on the latest high-resolution imagery.
Then, based on your pre-set production rates and cost numbers, you create estimates instantly by combining them with the auto-generated site measurements.
Since you’re no longer spending hours wheeling off a property or endlessly clicking polygons to measure sites, you can invest time in fine-tuning estimates. Wondering how to choose a landscaping estimating app that offers automated estimates for landscaping contractors? You don’t have to. Read on to know why.
Automated property estimating for landscaping jobs with Accelerate
Let’s understand how Accelerate- Attentive.ai’s end-to-end landscape management software can help with automated property estimating for landscapers.
Automated Estimates Landscaping
Automated estimates in landscaping are revolutionizing how contractors approach project bidding. By leveraging technology, landscapers can quickly and accurately gauge the cost of a project. Accelerate automates the estimation process, making it efficient and precise. You can now bid on landscaping jobs faster & accurately.
How does it work, though?
Accelerate’s automated estimating tools offer a seamless solution for commercial landscape contractors. By inputting the property address, confirming the lot boundary, and hitting proceed, you get automated takeoffs and detailed cost-based integrated landscaping estimates built on the same.
This way, contractors can receive comprehensive estimates that include labor, materials, and equipment costs. This process not only streamlines workflow but also minimizes errors that can occur in manual estimation.
Why Use Automated Estimating?
Landscape contractors are increasingly turning to automated estimating for its accuracy and efficiency. This technology drastically reduces the time and effort needed for manual calculations. With software like Accelerate, contractors can instantly generate detailed estimates, ensuring competitive bids while maintaining profitability.
Benefits of Automated Estimating for Commercial Landscape Contractors
For commercial landscapers & landscape contractors, automated property estimating is a game-changer. It allows for the handling of multiple projects simultaneously, ensuring each estimate is tailored and precise. This level of detail and accuracy strengthens client trust and enhances the potential for winning bids.
Streamlining Landscape Maintenance Estimating with Automation
Integration with Landscape Maintenance & Construction Templates
Depending on your needs, Accelerate integrates automated estimating with landscape maintenance or construction templates, providing a holistic view of project requirements and costs.
This integration is particularly beneficial for commercial landscaping companies, where both divisions have multiple projects going and ongoing costs and resources need careful management.
Automating the Estimation Process
With Accelerate, there’s no need to wonder how to get automated material estimates for landscaping jobs, be it maintenance or construction. Automated estimating for landscaping contractors ensures that software does the heavy lifting for the entire bidding process. From takeoffs to final proposal submission, every step is streamlined. This automation saves significant time, allowing businesses to focus more on execution and less on paperwork.
Automated estimating in landscaping, especially with tools like Accelerate, is transforming the way contractors bid and manage projects. It brings precision, speed, and efficiency to a process traditionally fraught with uncertainties and manual labor.
And once you’ve won a project, it’s time to get your crew to perform. You can use sitemaps with detailed property features color-coded and marked to guide your ops teams better. But to ensure that there are no gaps in communication between your client and your ops team, you need an on-site companion.
Let’s dive deeper into the aspect of improving site documentation.
Problem: Lack of Site Documentation In Landscaping Maintenance Jobs
One major hurdle faced by many landscaping businesses is the lack of comprehensive site documentation. When crews don’t have clear guidance on site conditions, they are more prone to encountering hidden obstacles, uneven terrain, or excavation trenches. This not only poses safety risks but also hampers operational efficiency.
Enter Attentive OnSite. Exit site documentation woes.
Add Real-Time Notes on HD Sitemaps
Attentive OnSite App enables you to add real-time notes on high-definition sitemaps. Crews can view geo-tagged notes that provide valuable insights into specific areas, highlighting potential hazards, obstacles to avoid, or areas that require special attention.
Use Geo-Tagged Notes For Detailed Instructions
The efficacy of crew instructions is pivotal to the successful execution of any landscaping project. Traditional communication methods often fall short in conveying precise details, leading to misunderstandings or overlooked tasks.
Our OnSite app amplifies crew instructions by incorporating geo-tagged notes and detailed directives directly on the digital map. These detailed instructions ensure that your crew is aligned with project requirements and minimize the chances of errors, improving task accuracy and operational efficiency.
Add Site Images To Ensure Safer Operations
Safety is a top priority in landscaping operations. The lack of proper site documentation can lead to hazardous situations, potential injuries, and even legal issues.
Our app empowers crews to capture site images, offering visual documentation of the site’s conditions. By proactively capturing site images, your landscaping business can avoid potential lawsuits, plan smoother operations, and prioritize safety.
Ultimately, as your crew does an excellent job on the site, you impress your customer, earning repeat business- which is THE goal.
Summing up the benefits of accurately estimating landscaping maintenance jobs
So, if you have ever wondered why do commercial landscape companies use automated estimating, you must have a clear-cut answer now.
We empower your sales team to multiply your growth. Specifically, you can:
- Save time on creating takeoffs and estimates
- Develop and send out more proposals especially boost your hit rate during peak seasons
- Optimize your bids and avoid over and underbidding
- Invest time in boosting lead generation and nurturing customer relationships
Attentive.ai is helping the most successful commercial landscaping companies automate their entire landscape sales process. How? With Accelerate sales module. Book a personalized demo to learn more today.
How do you estimate a job of landscape or construction?
Estimating landscape or construction jobs starts with precise site measurements. An accurate takeoff includes measuring the property features, including lawns, hedges, mulch beds, gravel beds, hard & soft edges, and tree count and combining it with project area, occurences, time, materials, and labor costs. Automated property estimating for landscaping companies enhances this process, ensuring accurate and competitive bids.
What do most landscapers charge per hour?
Landscapers’ hourly rates vary based on factors like location, services offered, and experience. On average, rates can range from $50 to $150 per hour, reflecting the complexity and scope of the project.
What is the markup on landscape materials?
Markup on landscape materials depends on factors like supplier pricing, demand, and business goals. Generally, a 20-50% markup is common. It ensures covering expenses, labor, and overhead while maintaining profitability.