Running a fence business is hard work, but it can be very rewarding. If you're new to the business, finding work and bidding on jobs can be intimidating. It's often a lot more complicated than just "time and materials".
Use this article to find some simple tips for winning fencing jobs to keep you busy all year long.
1. Research local prices
Find out how much other fence contractors in your area usually charge. You can do this by calling other local fence contractors or doing some research online.
Check out ProMatcher's Fence Cost Report
to see how much companies in your area usually charge. Don't feel like you have to lower prices to win jobs.
2. Avoid giving estimates over the phone
It's important to see the job site in person before putting together an estimate. When meeting with a potential client, make sure to dress professionally and show up on time. Making a great first impression can help you win the job.
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3. Don't forget about overhead
Don't forget about your fence company's overhead costs. This might include insurance, bookkeeping services, office expenses, employee salaries, and marketing expenses.
4. Put everything in writing
The more detail, the better! Protect yourself by putting everything in writing. Specify exactly what your quote covers (and what it does not). This helps to avoid any confusion later on.
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5. Consider all factors
It's not just about time and materials. Here are some important factors to consider:
> Your travel time to the job site
> Site conditions and terrain
> Crew size and local labor rates
> Permitting fees
> Required fencing materials (posts, gates, panels, hardware)
> Desired finish or stain
> Equipment needs
6. Deliver the bid in a timely fashion
Don't wait too long to get back to the customer with your estimate. If you can, you might even drop it off in person. It doesn't hurt to leave behind a brochure or a business card as well.
7. Keep references on hand
If a potential client asks for references, you need to have them ready to go! Your most satisfied customers will be happy to vouch for you. It can also help to build a solid portfolio of online reviews. Many consumers trust anonymous online reviews as much (if not more than) personal recommendations from friends and family members.
Create your free ProMatcher account today! We help fence contractors find new lead generation strategies.
8. Buy a template
If you are not sure where to get started or you don't feel comfortable doing it on your own, you may want to think about buying a bid proposal template - specific to the fence industry. You can then customize that template to fit your exact needs. You could also consider using a fence contractor bidding software to prepare your bids. These software applications use tested formulas to put together accurate estimates.