Penn State Extension workshop to cover landscape business techniques

Landscape business operators can gain knowledge that can help them build a profitable company by attending a two-day Penn State Extension workshop, titled “Estimating and Bidding for Landscape Installation,” that will occur in two locations in January and February.

In Bucks County, the workshop will take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 19, and Friday, Jan. 20, at the Penn State Extension office, 576 Penns Park Road, Newtown.

The Allegheny County event will occur from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 8, and Thursday, Feb. 9, at Soergel Orchards, MacIntosh Hall, 2573 Brandt School Road, Wexford.

This course is intended for landscape installation job estimators, small and large landscape businesses, and anyone considering starting a landscaping business. The two-day intensive workshop is designed to help participants understand how to determine the overhead of operating a landscaping business and create a profitable bid. Attendees can ask questions and discuss bidding with other contractors.

Participants will consider questions such as:

 — Do you know your actual costs?

— Are you covering your overhead?

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— Are you making a profit?

Instructors will discuss overhead recovery and its importance to profit; building a bid that works to recover overhead and direct costs; and industry benchmarks.

To keep an existing business healthy, or to start a successful new business, business owners must constantly hone their business skills, organizers point out. This course will focus on proven estimating techniques that participants can start to use right away.

The workshop presenter, Scott Burk, owns Scott’s Landscaping Inc., a mid-size, full-service company in Centre County. He is a graduate of the landscape contracting program in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences and serves as a guest instructor on campus for current students. Burk will share insights on running a profitable, successful landscaping business.

The event carries a $250 registration fee. Participants must register by 11:45 p.m. Jan. 13 for the Newtown event and by 11:45 p.m. Feb. 3 for the workshop in Wexford.

In the case of heavy snow, instructors have reserved Jan. 26 and 27 as alternative dates for the Newtown event and Feb. 15 and 16 as alternative dates for the Wexford workshop. They ask participants to hold these dates. If bad weather causes organizers to reschedule, participants will receive notice in advance.

More information is available on the Penn State Extension website at https://extension.psu.edu/landscape-bidding.