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Tuesday's Ask the Experts: Bidding and estimating

November 23, 2010
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Tuesday''s Ask the Experts question from a cleaning professional on the International Custodial Advisors Network (ICAN) "Ask the Experts" page: I asked this question before, but what do you guys consider a fair "profit" after all expenses have been paid? I clean for a building that is about $1,700 per month, it takes about 5 hours daily to clean, and after paying employees, payroll taxes, overhead ... I walk with about $150.00 per month "after all expenses have been paid". The place is about 10,266 square feet I try to keep my profit for five day a week accounts about nine to 10 percent, but I don’t know if that''s fair or too low? What would you consider that a fair percentage?
The answer:
Let''s talk about it because I''m not sure what you mean by "fair profit" and "after all expenses have been paid."
First off, you are charging about 16.5 cents per square foot a month and that looks good from a basic janitorial standpoint. If you are providing a lot of special project work, maybe it''s not so good, but still not bad.
Five hours a day amounts to 108 a month and at $8 per hour your basic labor will be $840. Add 20 percent for burden and you are up to $1008 for labor. That leaves
... — Lynn E. Krafft, ICAN/ATEX editor
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