Cleaning & Maintenance Management Online

Tuesday's Ask the Experts: Quick turnover bid

January 25, 2011
Tuesday''s Ask the Experts question from a cleaning professional on the International Custodial Advisors Network (ICAN) "Ask the Experts" page: I am new to the business and I have to placed a bid on a 13,000-square-foot post-construction cleanup for a medical facility for military families. It has no windows, 14 multi-stall baths, four single baths, 20 exam rooms, 8,000 square feet of vinyl composite tile (VCT) and the rest is 5,000 square feet of carpet that will be installed.
They want walls wiped down and a wet mopping throughout before another company finishes the floors. My biggest obstacle is that I just viewed it on 1/18 and the contractor hands over the keys on 1/31, but they still have a lot of things going on in there and I won''t be able to get in until 1/29, which limits my time because of other schedules and it''s only during night hours.
I don''t know how to charge for this. I''m in the Savannah, Georgia, area. I don''t know what the going rate in this area is or if I should be charging by square feet or by the job.
The answer:
To help you put together a bid price at this late date would be difficult. We just don''t have enough information to do so accurately. Since you are new to this, I''m going to advise you to walk away unless you are desperate for the work, and maybe even then.
Here''s why: They are giving you two nights to do this work, 1/29 and 1/30. Unless the cleanup involves just dusting walls and a floor mopping, you will have difficulty getting the work done in time to be out of the way for the floor finishing crew.
They will need considerable time to do a good coating job and have the building ready for turnover on the 31st.
It sounds as if the carpet ... Lynn E. Krafft, ICAN/ATEX editor
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