In a prior article we discussed subcontracting for a Day Care Center and mentioned using the right chemicals and procedures.

However, what happens if the building service contractor who actually owns the contract is reluctant to have you, the subcontractor, conduct a bid walk? And instead wants you to give him a price sight unseen?

My first reaction is that this company already has a service in mind and is simply using your submission as one of the three required bids. It would be highly irregular for you to quote him a price and not even have seen the facility or final job specifications, dimensions, content of the rooms, floor surface (carpet, vinyl), number of rest rooms, kitchen/break room area as well as a count of children and staff.

If he continues to be reluctant to lead you on a bid walk, I suggest you go on to other real opportunities since this does not seem right at all. If he does allow you to conduct a bid walk, you can simply take a legal pad and make notes including the above mentioned items I listed. Ask open ended questions for clarification on the standards, how long the Day Care has been open, any past infestations or safety issues and of course, etc. Also question him and/or the manager of the Day Care regarding their opinions of first impression, tasks that the staff may handle and history of prior service providers.

If this is a new contract for the BSC, you may need to check out their background/reputation for paying their bills on time. Some of the clauses in the subcontractor agreement need clarification. One key one was that if they do not get paid, you will not get paid. If you agree to those terms you may end up working for free.

Your comments and questions are important. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean...

Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678-314-2171 or