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hourly rate for fencing and cutting back and clearing

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 hi  

after some  opinions  and advice  have done a search on here and seen a few threads on simular question  but didnt  wan to hijack anyone elses post .

normally prefer to do a job per metre or  by the job  but got a customer insisting  on hourly rate :-(  job consists of  patching and new fences and gates. no tractor or thumper to allow for on this one .  but all my other fencing tools and experience  to be used  . and the cutting back  and clearing work. would involve me supplying and using my own  ppe ,fuel, chainsaw , and polesaw   have my chainsaw ticket and carry my own public liability insurance .

 

when i mentioned £18.50 per hour  for the fencing work 

and £22 for chainsaw clearing work   you would have thought i was robbing them  with how they reacted .  i would of thought £18.50 was a bit  cheap per hour as i know  a local gardener who is on £17 per hour and only tools he supplies is a pair of secateurs . are my rates really that far out ? or am i in the right ballpark  . 

 

thanks in adavance 

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ah , now i bet the local tree surgeons ( ie a gardner that owns a chainsaw) would be a lot dearer than that for chainsaw work. its hard work chainsawing and you have ticket you say that costs £3000 + to gain,  are you removing the hag or leaving on site? 

 

i know its not ideal to price hourly as folk always think you are taking the ****, but i always find that a repair / patching always throws up more unforseen problems than originally thought.

obviously differing rates for different parts of the country,

 

what does the new fence work entail, ? chapping with the slave / maul. re using old wire, stripping down old fence?  i think you are very cheap at that, get the customer to ask a Tree surgeon/ landscape gardner/ fencer as they appear to pass themselves off as all three professions for thier price, 

 

 

and see what spec of fecne they intend to put up, the manufacturer of the materials,  see if they use thier ' expertise' in thier numerous chosen fields to allow for pressure points of livestock for livestock behaviour, most of them have never stood in a field of cattle sheep let alone worked with them  or offer insight into how they behave and react , 

OR do what everyone else is doing now to justify high prices , just blame Brexit , appears to work for everyone else.

 

hope thats of help.

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thanks for the reply  chainsaw  and pole saw clearing work involves  cutting back to be able to fence to boundary and trim up high enough to allow them to  be able to drive a tractor along side the fence for topping the grass.

 fencing work will involve some patching work  including old  gateposts  to be dug out and replaced old posts have been concreted in . new gates to put in from a fresh posts to be concreted in so will dry mix them . some old fencing to be stripped out for new fence to go up .as the fence is mainly for cattle have adviced  them (hope they listen )   to use 6ft posts instead of 5ft6 . 2.5m spacing  8ft strainers  40mm barbed staples and either tornado r8/80/15 or x fence   netting with 2 strands of ht barbed wire above 

some cleft post and rail to go in to i think .

some of it will all be hand work  but they  told me they have the use of a basic post thumper  so dont want me to allow  for thumper .

but   as i said will be using all my other  fencing tools  and own chainsaw and fuel and ppe

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As in basic thumper does that mean a permiter type thing?

Digging out old conveyed in gate posts . that's bloody hard work.

I use 5ft 6 posts for cattle with no issues or complaints.

6 ft for drove roads. Or wet bits water troughs.

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they just said  a basic post thumper  so guessing there borrowing it and  will be basic like the old parminters  got the feeling from looking around there would be a fair bit of stock pressure on fences  so suggested  6ft posts .  is £18.50 a hour really that expensive for a experinced guy with his own tools and insurance?  i wouldnt of thought £20 per hour was  to much . seem to be working harder these days for less reward 

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£20 seems reasonable to me to cover your fuel. Time. Wear and tear of tools.

Ofcourse without being cheeky if you can give a list if regular satisfied customers then that will help too

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Get I writing agreement to hourly rate

I hate hourly work it can cause too many disagreement yoy know you could spend a day and do one strainer

Or do 200 mtrs so many variables that customer often fail to understand

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I agree they do seem reasonable. Clearing and repair jobs can be a right pain. Especially if posts have been concreted in. If it was easy and they have access to a post driver they would do it themselves ! That's why they called you in. They want your expertise, tools and hard work. If you are happy with those rates stick to your guns. If they don't want to pay it get someone else. They will be working hard for no reward. I personally think they are the cheap side of reasonable.

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Sounds like you want/need the work? your prices sounds far too cheap to me. Id want more like £25-30/hour without knocker but then I wouldn't go without my machine so I would charge even more.

 

Also sounds like their trying to dictate to save cost and I would probably walk away from the job  

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thanks for all the advice and replies guys  not that desperate for the work  but not use to pricing by the hour dont want to work to cheap just would like  a fair rate 

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Sounds like you want/need the work? your prices sounds far too cheap to me. Id want more like £25-30/hour without knocker but then I wouldn't go without my machine so I would charge even more.

 

Also sounds like their trying to dictate to save cost and I would probably walk away from the job  

 

X2.  Your tractor and knocker will sit while you fight with the borrowed unit.  We charge close to Tepapa's labor rates, and I wouldn't want to work any cheaper.

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thanks for all the advice and replies guys not that desperate for the work but not use to pricing by the hour dont want to work to cheap just would like a fair rate

If your not desperate for the work, you can set the price and terms and its up to them to agree or find someone else.

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I agree with tepapa, If I were you I would be saying no thanks and let them find a handyman to do it for those prices. Your in Sussex which is a wealthy area so its your way or the highway

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What starts out as a customer trying to cut costs ends up costing you in aggravation , time, personal and equipment wear and damage. I'd be taking my machine and bashing through the old gate post stumps to save the customer with my own machine. If a weld goes on the borrowed kit who fixes??

Walk away from the borrowed machine. I've had a few visits to Chiropracter in my parmeiter days. No need for the misery. If someone wants to do it by hand let them have it. Many a customer can watch you work giving top advice! But why aren't they doing it themselves?

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What starts out as a customer trying to cut costs ends up costing you in aggravation , time, personal and equipment wear and damage. I'd be taking my machine and bashing through the old gate post stumps to save the customer with my own machine. If a weld goes on the borrowed kit who fixes??

Walk away from the borrowed machine. I've had a few visits to Chiropracter in my parmeiter days. No need for the misery. If someone wants to do it by hand let them have it. Many a customer can watch you work giving top advice! But why aren't they doing it themselves?

people (customers) really don't seem to recognise the direct link between professional machinery/labour and productivity/standard of work do they?!  i think id rather stay at home and tidy the yard then ever use a parmiter again. 

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Just my opinion, the moment someone starts trying to cut costs before the job begins its a big no go for me. If they are being awkward and expecting something for nothing, they arent going to be an easy customer. They could have 3 months work for you, but if its three months of patching / scraping by on an hourly rate, is it worth it? Theres a better chance a price pm job will come up when you are already committed there and you will be kicking yourself. To me it sounds like they are after a 'handyman' who is cheap for a reason. Give them a price, and get paid weekly, or leave it well alone!

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20 pounds per hour based on 40 hour working week as that is what most people in a normal job do these days.

800 pound per week

Allow six weeks ( 30 days holiday a year, as a lot of people get that in. Most jobs). 46 weeks x 40 hours is a total of 1,840 hours

That gives you earning potential of 36,800 at 20 per hour.

 

Now look at costs, these are rough guesses some based on experience.

Fuel 80 quid a week trucks and chainsaws etc ,x 46 , 3,680

Insurance, (you still need it for your kit that is sat idle even if you are using theirs, yours can still get nicked) also for your vehicle you run 6000.00 per year, you also have public liability, possibly employers liability,

Vehicles to maintain, mot, general repairs, oil, grease tyres setc. 1000

Tools to buy and repair 2000.00

Accountants fees to file tax return 1200

Bank charges for transactions made 120.00

Stationery and office gubbins for sending out invoices, possibly a computer etc, 500.00

Rent on a yard or property if you need one, if not there will be cost to keep your current yard in shape, maybe not as high, but also thin it could be earning you money rented out instead of running you own business so let's say 200 per month total 3,200

I Won't include depreciation on assets, but should be taken into account, although it should be slightly,covered in some of,the cost above.

 

Probably a few things I have forgotten too, such as safety gear and clothing. Maybe a bit of advertising.

 

So this gives costs of around 17,700

So money in bank from your 36,800 is now 19,100

The tax man will want say around 20 percent of this so called profit

Leaving you with 15,200

 

Now you have to pay yourself for a whole year, as no one else is going to pay your holiday.

So that leaves you with 293.00 per week. Or 7.33 per hour take for your 40 hour week.

Now factor in the fact you have to do unpaid hours, which includes quoting, looking at jobs emailing folks, organising stuff. Don't know about everyone else, but I bet I do at least two or three hours a day. So let's just say 10 hours a week. That brings your hourly rate down to 5.86 an hour take home. Which Is not great, cosidering all the hassle and stress that goes with it, I think all of us here can say we enjoy what we do and that counts for a lot. ask yourself are you worth 5.86 an hour or are you worth a little bit more. If you think you are worth a bit more, the only two way to get it is to work more hours or charge more.

 

If you work an extra ten hours a week based on the 46 weeks. It is an extra 9,200 minus tax so 7400. So this works out over 52 weeks, bearing in mind this puts you upto 60 hours a week. Including the 10 non paid hours above too . It would add an additional 2.37 on your hourly rate bringing you upto 8.23 per hour. So you are now working 60 hours at 8.23 an hour. So 20 of those hours should be time and a half if you are working for someone else, I have no idea on how to work that out, but it still is a pretty low wage, the more I think about it, the more I am coming round to,the idea of charging more.. If you are ill / sick and can't work for a few days a year, it can happen even tomthe best of men. Accidents should be covered in the insurance section above. I am covered for accident and illness, but doesn't pay for the first two weeks.

 

I don't think people understand the costs and time involved in running a business. This is just a guess, and the figures are open for debate, I am happy to be corrected, based on one man working alone, that has a tractor and knocker / tracked machine a truck and trailer and a few tools. It's a good job we enjoy our work and are happy in it, as that must count for a couple of quid an hour, otherwise I might respond to,the add at the local Tesco, looking for shelf stackers in an evening. In fact I might apply anyway to give me a bit of spending money after paying the mortgage, house bills and feeding the family.

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Think you hit the nail on the head front. When I first started on my own over30 years ago. I hated sending invoices and kept the prices as low as possible. Then after a while you get bad payers, breakdowns, **** timber, fencelines not ready when they agreed to do it , the need to replace gear and a load of other costs. Then I started to think hang on a minute. As with any other business there are going to be quite a variety of charges per metre for different contractors as well as different quality. Prime example. Had a farmer ring up for an erecting only job. I priced it but didn't get it as the other contractor was cheaper. Fair enough Luke for long me they were cheaper. I have no problem with that. That is business. Anyway they ran short of wire and he asked me to drop some out one evening. When I went out he was moaning about the fence. And could I look. It was stock proof and tight. I t wasn't pretty but I said to the farmer what do you expect. "I wouldn't criticise it. " You want a top end job for bargain basement prices and the two don't go together. I think a lot depends on your customer base and the area you are in. I know a friend of mine who is a contractor said there ar lot of "contractors " popping up in his area at the moment and are charging stupid rates just to get the work. A totally crazy situation. Fencing is hard work and to do it for little or no reward is mad.

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Blooming heck front row, that's a thesis or PHD. In applied business reality.

Well at midnight when you can't sleep because you are turning over jobs In Your head, it was my way of trying to switch off. It is probably all wrong though.

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Well at midnight when you can't sleep because you are turning over jobs In Your head, it was my way of trying to switch off. It is probably all wrong though.

I find a nice drop if malt does the job.

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