…I thought I’d offer an opinion…
I wrote an article / post on “Bidding”.
It has to do with Over Head and Competition…that’s it.
Case in point…?…I have a client in Canada. She’s the only striper within 400 miles. AND…the only paint store is 45 miles away.
She can ask for a little bit more…without gouging.
I also have a client in the outskirts of a large Texas town. He owns a restaurant. He understood that those stripers couldn’t easily drive 45 minutes to stripe his medium sized restaurant. So…he learned to stripe. THEN…he locked up the entire suburb. He was calling me giggling. He was thrilled.
However, in my large metropolis…EVERYBODY is a striper. I cannot secure those prices.
BUT…here’s the difference…in the other (2) cases…paint costs are much more. Mine aren’t. Again…I’m in a large city with 90 paint stores…! SO…?…my overhead is lower.
Again…it has to do with overhead and competition.
That said…how much for (1) gallon of Seal? How much for (1) hour of work? Then…look at the job. How much product will you need? How long will THAT particular job take. THEN…how much profit do you think is FAIR…to you? Bid it and walk away.
If you get all jobs…and you’re doing “OK”…then maybe you can raise your prices. If you’re not getting any jobs…maybe your “Overhead” is too high. Here’s the part of the equation that’s hard for me to answer. You know the your area better than I. You’ll figure it out. AND…who cares if you leave $500.00 on the table? You’re just starting out and at least your costs are covered. Press on.
Last…bidding is also part “art”. You’ll know…after a while…when to add for extra labor. You’ll also bid a little lower because two jobs are close to your shop and close to each other…etc… Bidding is also part art.
I hope this helps.
AND…make sure you’re a FBE. Being a woman contractor may get you a few extra jobs per year.