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#203227 - 05/14/07 03:17 PM Pricing- Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it???
Hamman Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/08/07
Posts: 168
Loc: North Carolina/Randolph Co.
I am looking to set some prices for bat jobs with and without a year long contract here in the south. What sort of prices do you have for bat jobs and how long do you normally offer for a contract. Any help is appreciated.
_________________________
A man is not remembered for his aptitude, he is remembered for his attitude.


http://www.cravenwildlifecontrol.com

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#203250 - 05/14/07 03:50 PM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: Hamman]
LAtrapper Offline

"Professor"

Registered: 12/22/06
Posts: 2308
Loc: Lower Alabama (Daleville)
If done properly the first time, an extended contract is not required. The bats are gone and cannot re-enter the structure unless new damage has occurred. Each job is priced based on the difficulty of doing it right the first time. A warranty is made that excludes "new damage". If the customer doesn't want to do it my way, he has the option of hiring someone else.

Be very cautious on how your proposal/contract is written. Sometimes my contract covers only a part of a structure. If the customer wants bats removed from one gable vent and doesn't want the other three gable vents on the home screened; my contract and warranty covers only the one vent.

Ron Fry
_________________________
Note to self- Engage brain before opening mouth (or hitting the ENTER key/SUBMIT button).

Ron Fry


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#203472 - 05/14/07 08:00 PM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: LAtrapper]
LT GREY Offline
trapper

Registered: 04/09/07
Posts: 16105
Loc: Central Ohio
LA covers that pretty well, at least 'till Bob Jameson shows up! Ha! \:\) Seriously though, You will no doubt find your answer here on the ADC forum , as there are some really knowledgable people on here and many do bat work. Personally when I look at a bat exclusion job, I have a pretty good idea what material it will take to do it and the man hours it will take to complete the job. Having said that, my price is then $100. per man hour to complete the job. I lose very few bids at that price but there will be some that can't afford it.( Oh well!) You have to know what you're doing and know your work capability of you and your workers. Bid too low and you lose money or just break even. Work hard and fast, (but do a great job) you'll make real good $$$! Best job to date was $20,000. in one week and I'm sure someone like Bob Jameson makes a heck of a lot more, but then he does a lot more bat work over a broader area. It is in my opinion the "real" money maker in nuisance wildlife control!(Just think how many squirrels you have to catch to make $20,000.)!

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#203483 - 05/14/07 08:10 PM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: LAtrapper]
Anonymous
Unregistered


What I did was set a base price for various kinds of structures.

Lets say the easiest ranch house can be done for $350.00 with a one year warranty.

Moving up to a two story you may set a base price of $700.00. Then add on to the base for each dormer, soffit, chimney caps, vent guards, etc...

If you look at it hourly find out what other service industries in your area are charging and base your fee on that.

Keep in mind that the warranty is worth probably about half of the total bid or maybe more if you need to rent a lift or other special equipment.

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#203595 - 05/14/07 09:51 PM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: ]
Bob Jameson Offline



Registered: 12/25/06
Posts: 2329
Loc: SW Pa
Pricing bat projects are relative to several criteria.If you are new in the business or dont have alot of experience you will have to learn as you go and price per hour and materials, rental costs, labor per man etc.

Also the degree of difficulty working on the structure,
accessability to evacuation points,construction repairs beyond normal seal work, guano clean out considerations, roll off and lift rentals, room/board and mileage considerations. There is a big difference in job bid considerations if you are on the road and travel to different states or jobs that would require time spent away from your base of operations.

If you have good knowledgable bat control experience you can charge top dollar. Or what the market will bear at that job or that specific market area or what you feel you are worth. I give a 2 year bat free guarantee. But like Ron stated a job well done with good materials should last indefinitely.

Exceptions that void the guarantee are acts of GOD such as weather, storms, wind, water damage etc. Construction work will also void a contract at times.Its good to take pictures and file the photos on your pc or in your customer files to guard against such events.

Everyone has their own criteria I am sure for bat control and other areas of control work. I tend to bid probably higher then the average. I certainly charge what I am worth and what my experience warrants. I lose some small jobs to some small pest company operators and NWCOs that dont have the overhead or experience.But that is part of any business you cant get them all.

LT Grey is about right on the hourly rate. I charge $150 an hour for myself for on site bat work, consulation and commercial evaluation services.

I bill $100 an hour for my more experienced personnel and $50 an hour for general labor men on the ground and $75 an hour per man in the attic or crawl spaces. When factoring in workers comp. and other business expenses I wont bid much less then that.


So many job bids require a certificate of current workers comp now adays and proof of insurance. I am getting more and more residential jobs requesting a jacket of insurance before providing services.

You must see what the market area is where you are bidding the work and whether you have any competition.I do adjust prices as needed more often then not any more.At times you may find yourself giving someone a break while others you bid as you see fit.Experience will be your best teacher with pricing.

There is a good dollar in bat control if you know your work and can remain the professional in all areas of the word.People will seek you out and pay your price if you have a good track record and references.
_________________________
www.jamesonsultrablend.com
www.wcsbatcontrol.com

Wildlife Pest Control Services

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#203621 - 05/14/07 10:48 PM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: Bob Jameson]
Ron Scheller Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/19/07
Posts: 1070
Loc: Mt. Olive, IL
Great points on the "art" of pricing bat work. Pricing bat jobs is by far the most difficult part of an ADC business. Large bat exclusion programs can often be quite expensive, but I would never say it's the "easy" money maker. Quite the opposite. Bat work requires more attention to detail than any other critter problems, and is the most costly service to provide due to equipment rentals (or purchases), travel and lodging, and many other factors.

More mistakes are made by inexperienced (or lazy) operators on bat work than any other type of work. You can't just be a self-appointed bat expert and then set high prices. It takes years of mistakes (yep, I made them) before you ever truly get a handle on bat work. Besides a very busy regular exclusion schedule, I do about 8 to 10 exclusions every year "following up" other companies that have attempted exclusions. Many have charged extremely high prices and missed a dozen access points on larger structures. If you haven't climbed, crawled, or hung by your teeth from every square inch of a structure, you aren't done yet.

Last year I did a follow-up at a series of buildings where a company charged $50,000 for the exclusion work, and the next year the bats were back in over half the structures. They would not honor their warranty (for reasons I may never know). Within 15 minutes on my inspection I located several classic bat entry points they didn't even notice. I feel sorry for the client, as it was a private Christian College operating on a fairly tight budget.

I have noticed over the past 15 years that new bat control companies will pop up and be around for about 2 years, then vanish. I'm quite certain they think it is easy money, and when they end up with bats still in every structure they "seal", their free warranty work puts them out of business. I would suggest anyone just starting on bat work stick with residential structures and smaller buildings for a while until you get the feel for bat work. You will put yourself right out of business if you are simply going after the big structures for the sole reason of big money. Going back many years, I barely made it past the major learning curve regarding bat work on large structures.

I also come across a lot of bat work following up traditional pest control companies. You know the ones I'm talking about.... the guys who think they can do bat work from "inside the attic" and don't even have a ladder. That's disgusting when they charge "exclusion" pricing to stuff a towel along a chimney flashing panel and the client gets hammered. I was working on a bat job in Jacksonville (IL) last week when the local "bug guy" stopped by. He actually tells homeowners to leave the bats in the attic because they "keep the rodent population down". How do these people get a job, or even sleep at night?
_________________________
Ron Scheller
www.thebatguy.com

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#203714 - 05/15/07 06:20 AM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: Ron Scheller]
Bob Jameson Offline



Registered: 12/25/06
Posts: 2329
Loc: SW Pa
Well said Ron. A voice of experience speaking obviously.I must agree bat work is in a class by itself when considering the degree of detail that must be addressed to accomplish a thorough and successful project.So many want the quick buck that cant walk the walk when it comes down to the fine details that can make or break a NWCO and haunt a client.

It takes a patient, diligent individual to typically do a consistent good job. Some just never develop an "eye" for exceptionally good work. I am referring to not only finding all the problem and possible problem areas but also doing a cosmetic seal as a professional sealer should using appropriate quality materials.Not a slam bam thank you m'am job.

I dont want anyone to be able to look and see I have been working on a home or building for bat control when we have finished the project. If jobs are left in this condition that individual isnt a true professional in my opinion as of yet.

Stand behind what you do or dont attempt it until you have mastered the art and understanding the great detail that comes with such work.

As stated there is a very big learning curve in this work you better believe. I have trained many individuals in my day. Some were eager to learn and paid attention to the things that I taught and emphasized. some developed very good skills and an eye for the non obvious that is so important in bat control.

Sometimes the eyes cant give you all the answers that you need. You must use your hand and fingers to probe those areas unaccessable to the eyes to pick out suspected target entry/exit areas.Watch out for the wasps and bees. Comes with the territory unfortunantely.

Some of these individuals just took it for granted that they knew it all in a few weeks and continued to make mistakes and go through a job too quickly and missed far too much detail.

Of course these are the ones that dont come back when called. They just cant resolve the problem since they never really developed the detail skills and sincere interest that comes with years of work and pride in what they do.

Bat work is by no means easy and those that feel that it is are either very good or just dont know of what they speak.
_________________________
www.jamesonsultrablend.com
www.wcsbatcontrol.com

Wildlife Pest Control Services

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#203743 - 05/15/07 07:18 AM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: Bob Jameson]
LT GREY Offline
trapper

Registered: 04/09/07
Posts: 16105
Loc: Central Ohio
See, what did I tell ya'? Bat exclusion school 101. \:\)

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#203763 - 05/15/07 07:40 AM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: LT GREY]
Bob Jameson Offline



Registered: 12/25/06
Posts: 2329
Loc: SW Pa
Bat control 101 is easy. Its the 505 school that things really get difficult and determines the caliber of an individual in this field. There are those that never really get beyond 101 as some of us know.

Its the constant download of the critical updates that allows some to move onto a higher education and continue to excel beyond the norm.Bat work is a continual learning experience as I have found. Just when you think you know what there is to know something else unusual occurs.The constant challenge is what motivates me the most even at my age.
_________________________
www.jamesonsultrablend.com
www.wcsbatcontrol.com

Wildlife Pest Control Services

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#203938 - 05/15/07 12:33 PM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: Bob Jameson]
Hamman Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/08/07
Posts: 168
Loc: North Carolina/Randolph Co.
Is there some where i can go and get training in bat work? I want to do a top notch job and I feel the need to shadow someone a few times before I even try and do one of these exclusions for pay. I am also real hessitant to do any for free for the experince, that word "free" gets around fast and is expected for all if you did it for one. I have read a bunch of stuff about it I really want to get some hands on experience with a pro.
_________________________
A man is not remembered for his aptitude, he is remembered for his attitude.


http://www.cravenwildlifecontrol.com

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#204027 - 05/15/07 01:47 PM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: Hamman]
BlueRidge Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/26/06
Posts: 25
Loc: HIckory NC
contact Eric Arnold eric@batsbirdsandmore.com for details.

He does a hands on training class for bats. It is held during August in Ohio and you actually do exclusions on houses with bat problems.
_________________________
Dixon Herman
Blue Ridge Wildlife Control LLC
Vice President, NWCOA
NCWCAA

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#204353 - 05/15/07 07:16 PM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: BlueRidge]
LT GREY Offline
trapper

Registered: 04/09/07
Posts: 16105
Loc: Central Ohio
Well it should be said that some of the things I say on the ADC forum are "tongue in cheek" and can not be taken as gospel. Many things I say are kidding no less, often followed by the trademark \:\) ! Take for example the statement "bat exclusion 101". One should consider I am not serious when I say that. Many trappers do not know me personally and yet there are many that do. I like to kid around but take trapping and ADC work very, very serious. Let me say that I have the utmost respect for my fellow ADC tech's, especially those who do bat work. Bat work while challenging and rewarding is often very dangerous work. One slip and you're a dead man! I have done bat work for a number of companies(5 actually) that either couldn't do it, didn't know how to do it or were afraid to do it because of the heigths. I have also done , or should I say redone, some work that some big name bug companies have messed up! Do I think I'm an expert? Well, I'm as good as there is in the SW Ohio area if I don't mind saying but I am also always learning! That is important. I always strive to be better each and every job. Better than last time with no mistakes. And sure I made a bunch but I always learned from them and I ALWAYS MADE IT RIGHT! I always stand behind my work as I'm sure the others such as Bob, Ron, LA, Barkstone and Vinke do, just to name a few. I can not speak or write as well as Ron or Bobby J! These guys are top notch in the way they put a point across and it is always educational to read their post. I salute these gentlemen in their efforts to share their "wealth of knowledge". I am always a "student" when my fellow trappers speak even though that "grey" is well earned! \:\)

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#204480 - 05/15/07 09:00 PM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: LT GREY]
Bob Jameson Offline



Registered: 12/25/06
Posts: 2329
Loc: SW Pa
Lt Grey we all appreciate a good sense of humor and most know when this applies.Its quite enlightening to all who can benefit from good humor and jesting. I for one greatly appreciate it and I know what you mean most of the time. \:\)
_________________________
www.jamesonsultrablend.com
www.wcsbatcontrol.com

Wildlife Pest Control Services

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#204767 - 05/16/07 08:59 AM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: Bob Jameson]
Barkstone Offline


Registered: 12/22/06
Posts: 1576
Loc: St Louis, Missouri
There is some great information and advise in this post. I do not bid my jobs per hour of labor, I have always bid them based on a formula that is a price based on the exclusion to be done, whatever that is with a minimum to cover the cost of the stop.

For example a 1/4 in gap at 20 feet off the ground is bid at one price per foot, and a 1/4 in gap at 40 feet off the ground is bid at a different price accordingly. Louvers and vents and gaps all have their own pricing structure, as a matter of fact I have an entire book of prices and every piece of exclusion you can think of for any species have a set price and forumula to calculate it the price of having it done.

Of course I have it all in my head and do not pull out the book very often....BUT it has served me well. I can honestly say all of my customers get fair and equal pricing. My bids are if nothing else consistant and I gain additional customers all of the time becuase of the integrity of my bids. My customers love it when I can explain to them how I deduced the amount and when they compare prices to their neighbors and find them identical it really boosts their confidence in me as an honest and reputable professional.

Another future benifit of this system I believe will be when I start taking on employee's and each employee gives the same bid because they all use the same formula. My pricing will be as consistant as a Big Mac and I think that will be marketable as well.

The amounts of $100 to $150 per hour have been mentioned in earliar posts, and that is exactly what I have tried to get to as an average. In other words a really good hardworking technition should be able to make $150 per hour based on my pricing... if he is working to his ability. A slower tech or a junior tech will not do as well $$ wise, and a new guy will chase his tail to make $50 per hour, which is hardly breaking even.
_________________________
Paul R. Ellsworth


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#204776 - 05/16/07 09:14 AM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: Barkstone]
Bob Jameson Offline



Registered: 12/25/06
Posts: 2329
Loc: SW Pa
Being able to justify and calculate your pricing as such is very professional and would be very helpful to many. Especially newer and less experienced individuals entering the field or even those that have been doing this for some time.

I would be interested in reviewing your priceing structure if that is something that you would be willing to share as to how it compares to my business. I can basically look at a job now and determine in a few minutes what I feel it will take to do that project according to my structure in bidding.

This of course comes with time and practice. As with your method you no longer need to reference a guide as you do it often enough to keep you aprised of the costs. Then it is a matter of calculating the total areas to be addressed.
_________________________
www.jamesonsultrablend.com
www.wcsbatcontrol.com

Wildlife Pest Control Services

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#207940 - 05/20/07 07:19 AM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: Bob Jameson]
BBM Pres Offline
trapper

Registered: 05/19/07
Posts: 12
Loc: Ohio
There's already been lots of good information posted here about bat work in general along with some good stuff on pricing so instead of putting in my two cents on bat work in general I'll do my best just to focus on the financial stuff.

Bat jobs can be priced by hourly rate, linear footage, square footage, or a combination there of plus additional charges. Each method has pro's and con's so you'll have to figure out which method is most comfortable and fits your business plan. Additional charges may include travel fees, equipment rentals, delivery/pickup charges, subcontractors, subcontractor materials, and permits to name a few. The cost of the job itself needs to cover your operating expenses, profit, materials, and warranty. Keep in mind that you should be charging not only for your physical work but also for your intellectual knowledge. Bat work is speciality work that required specialty training so don't sell yourself short.

Regardless of the method used to determine the price, you need to understand your hourly worth first. Without this knowledge how do you know if you are making money or loosing it? To calculate your hourly worth take all your business expenses, add to that your desired income, then add your desired company profit. This will give you the MINIMUM amount of money you need to produce to meet these goals and obligations. Next divide this number by the number of BILLABLE hours (a billable hour is what you acutal charge the customer not necessarily the number of hours you work) to get your hourly worth.

For example, if your company has total yearly expenses of $25,000, your desired salary is $50,000, and your desired company profit is $10,000 you have a minimum income requirement of $85,000. Now if you are only able to bill 1,000 hours a year this means your hourly worth is $85 ($85,000/$1,000). This number can now be used with or against (to verify pricing structure) your choosen estimate method. Following is an example of the hourly rate method.

So if a bat job is estimate to take 10 hrs to perform, at a minimum you needed to charge $850.00 just to break even with your current liabilities. Add on materials and equiment required for the job, time required to locate, order, purchase, and deliver materials and equipment plus any potential warranty work to CYA and you might end up with something more like $850.00 base + $450.00 materials & equipment + $340.00 warranty coverage (4 hrs @ $85/hr) and now your project price becomes $1,640.00. This number can be further massaged based on travel distance, overnight rooms, number of trips required (a minimum of two trips are required when doing exclusion), per diem requirements, subcontractors, etc.

As already stated, pricing will become easier the more projects you do but this should at least give you a starting point to "learn from your mistakes."

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#208023 - 05/20/07 10:03 AM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: BBM Pres]
Bob Jameson Offline



Registered: 12/25/06
Posts: 2329
Loc: SW Pa
A very comprehensive representation Eric of bidding bat projects.Excellent post!!!!!!!!!!

We would all appreciate more contributions from you as you find the time. I am sure you are as busy as I am and others at this time of year.During the winter I cant get on a PC ever so rarely. I spent 3 months on the road last winter trapping so I enjoy the time at home in the spring and summer to share with others.

As it breaks down you factor in just about everything I do.But then I do factor in another misc. 10%-15% what I refer to as "profit and loss" to the final proposal. This is to cover the "what ifs", "unexpected costs" and the "extra aggravation" fees many times associated with some projects.Which is in essence my way of CYA>

I had learned this from some of the insurance agents that I have dealt with over the years. It is a justifiable expense and not an expense that most operators factor into a project.
_________________________
www.jamesonsultrablend.com
www.wcsbatcontrol.com

Wildlife Pest Control Services

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#208161 - 05/20/07 02:18 PM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: Bob Jameson]
BBM Pres Offline
trapper

Registered: 05/19/07
Posts: 12
Loc: Ohio
Thanks Bob,

Looking forward to being able to participate more.

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#208379 - 05/20/07 08:13 PM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: BBM Pres]
LT GREY Offline
trapper

Registered: 04/09/07
Posts: 16105
Loc: Central Ohio
Eric, Congrats on your Award for 2007. I read in W.C.T. that you had" been working with wildlife management practices for over 30 years". Was that a misprint? You look like you are only about 40 years old. Or perhaps you have access to the fountain of youth, that being the case, "hook me up". Ha! \:\)

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#208436 - 05/20/07 08:52 PM Re: Pricing bat jobs, how do you do it??? [Re: LT GREY]
Bob Jameson Offline



Registered: 12/25/06
Posts: 2329
Loc: SW Pa
Gosh I thought I was old.LOL I been at this for close to 40 years and almost 60 now. Ole Eric must have found the secret potion while doing a bat guano clean out..... Sorry Eric I couldnt resist. If you have any left how about sharing with me and ole Lt Grey.I think we both could use some. Those black tip 40'ladders sure are gettin a bit harder to hoist up each year.
_________________________
www.jamesonsultrablend.com
www.wcsbatcontrol.com

Wildlife Pest Control Services

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