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Dreamers, Fence install pricing

Hi all

would be great full of some help with this

i went to quote a 30ft fence and gate install that needs to be in place before rspca let the client have the dog.

told the lady it would be £300 plus as an estimate as she was asking. I am new to this so I was half guessing and put on the spot but had an idea, she the Said I was hoping it would be under £200 I said I’ll see what I can do thinking to myself no way can I do that we have a dreamer

i then said for around £270 I could install steaks and pet mesh if this is suitable,

she spoke to her husband and cam back to me saying they want a 6ft fence that will let light through and a gate at the end with stone steps that have to be moved and put back to go over a stone wall through the gate

I come to a price of £575 which was lower than I’d like and I got the old

“I’ll have to speak with my partner”

am I too cheap, too exspensive? Or is she a dreamer

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  • PRO


    No one can know if you're too cheap or too expensive. Only you can know this by working out the cost of materials and the time it will take you to complete the work.

    Under no circumstances should you let the client pressure you in to meeting their desired price.

    Be prepared to walk away if it doesn't feel right.


  • PRO

    As Phil said only you can really judge, as you need to list all the materials, labour, delivery and waste disposal. 

    Try this materials calculator

    Fence Panel Calculator
    To use this calculator simply click on a panel, gravel board option and post type. Select your chosen height of fence from the options available and…
  • PRO

    Professional Lap Panel Golden Brown 5 GP6 £122.45
    No Gravel Board 5 £0.00
    75mm x 75mm Sawn & Treated Softwood 6 338 £33.90
    Fence Panel clip x 4 5 CLIP4 £12.00
    Postcrete – fast setting concrete – 20 kilo bag 9 POST £60.66
    Planed Treated Post Cap – 75mm x 75mm (3″x3″) 6 CAP33P £3.00
    £232.01 including VAT

    Plus the gate and labour etc.

    She's almost certainly a dreamer.

  • I’m not pressured by the client just my 2 year old daughters need for food and a good home and a stress free life because the bills are paid also I don’t want to under charge and end up working 2 days on my own for not much profit or costing and/or me looking an idiot for not doing a good job 

    I done a fence before with a friend that went wrong we were sold concrete posts that were not cured correctly they were cracking even though we treated them like glass rods and a two day job turned into a week and the profit was eaten by new posts I realised the posts we originally got were half the price of everywhere else after we got them we put a 75 ft fence in for £1200 or there abouts with double sided panels and rock faced gravel boards I’m thinking now it should of been double the price 

    some things have to be learned the hard way

    the thing I find hard is telling the customer the price when it’s over a few hundred i always feel I’m over charging I’m getting used to it now it’s a strange feeling telling people I want an amount of money off them that at the moment I could never afford while I’m working out of a car trying to make a real business.

    coming from engineering and starting a landscaping business I sometimes wonder if I pay to much attention to detail when it comes to putting a fence up to me 0.5 mm is a big gap but I’ve seen people just put a fence up with no string line no measurements of land gradient one company I worked for made us dig all the holes before the posts a panels were on site and it was that big green security fence you can imagine how that went what I’m saying is do I take long because I take care therefore my price is high should I be just walking posts in 2ft deep and bang the panel on and move on I like my posts to be the same height or equal steps on a gradient


    • PRO

      Describe one of your typical Quotes (ie how do you set it out, what level of detail do you provide)?

      If it simply says 'Install 20ft run, 6ft high closeboard using blah blah' £xxxx.xx, a customer may well baulk at it....

      If it details (.....almost a work method) the products used, the quality, the work involved - then they have something to gauge the price against and 'educates' them into what it actually takes to complete a task.

      You know, we know, but the clients don't.

      You've got a 'sell a job' and I don't mean any high pressure sales tactics. Make sure your Quote is complete and mentions you'll be removing all waste, leaving their little palace all nice and tidy for them to enjoy etc.

      Remember, most of the public believe a fence can be installed between the TV Advert break and the End of a Gardening program.

      That's what they see on TV, no reality, no mention of costs they expect it to cost little.

       p.s. never apologise for the cost in your quote to a customer. If you know "your costs" + "product costs" + "profit" - it is what it is.


      • Hi Gary I usually go into a lot of detail on my written quotes, I usually put materials under one cost and labour separate waste disposal separate and on jobs that are more involved I break them down into stages this helps me price the jobs and hopefully gives the client an understanding of what is required to complete a task

        for example

        phase 1 site clearance 

        phase 2 construction of fence

        phase 3 clean up and inspection

        or something along those lines related to the job

        And for each phase do list all materials and for labour I write the tasks to be completed sometimes priced separately but usually I put the total material cost and total labour cost and list the details if that makes sense 

        on this occasion it was a verbal quote as I was busy and the lady kept calling me so she hasn’t seen the paper version but sometimes I wonder if it’s worth tho paper ink and time 

        you know when you just get that feeling 

        they’re dreaming haha

        • PRO

          I’d agree then - A Dreamer...and Gut feel is often right. 

          Just a comment, keep the breakdown limited to the tasks, and just submit a total price - all in.

          Stops cherry picking and removes  the temptation for them to get you justify a unit cost or phase/section.


  • when i first started out an old builder told me that as a rule of thumb labour is about the same as the materials if you are unsure . 

    if it is a new fence line it will be much easier to do that a replacement fence .

    i quoted a fence last week £730 labour the customer offered me £300 i told them best he looks for someone else 

  • Starting at £10 for foot of fence... I spend more than that on materials alone... add into that a gate i’d say your way to cheap right from the off.

    i echo what others have said, price according to YOUR needs. And if you’re as accurate in construction as you say, charge more again!!

    also agree with Gary, just give one price, don’t break down the labour etc 

    • I quoted 575 for 30 ft that’s £19 odd a foot or am I missing something sorry

      so from all your advice and previous experiences I realise that my pricing is about right for me and I should just go with the price I come to rather than knocking my self down to secure a job because I’m desperately trying to support my family and make a business

      it is hard when the rent due and there’s no money in the bank tho respect to all that have been through this and got out the other side

      winter has been hard on a man thanks for the help all

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