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Wednesday's Ask the Experts: Bidding & Estimating

August 25, 2010
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Wednesday''s Ask the Experts question from a cleaning professional on the International Custodial Advisors Network (ICAN) "Ask the Experts" page: I am being asked to bid on a 20,000 sq. ft. grocery store. The floors need to be swept, mopped and buffed nightly. I figure that, with two people, this will take about 6 hours per night. My question is, if I am paying my employees $14 an hour each + overhead costs (mops, buckets, solutions, buffer machine, etc.) would charging 85.00 per hour be too low? In my area, the average per hour rate is very difficult to find.
The answer:
First, I would conclude that you can do this job faster than you have projected.
Second, I would suggest that the excess time will kill your chances of getting the work faster than the hourly rate. At $85 an hour, your nightly charge will be $1020 for the 12 hour session. If you could drop your time to five man-hours, that would change to ... — Lynn E. Krafft, ICAN/ATEX Editor
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