Include Utility Location Services in Your Proposals

Include Utility Location Services in Your Proposals

Include Utility Location Services in Your Proposals

We strongly feel that every construction, engineering, and environmental project should employ the use of private utility locating. It is estimated that nearly 65% of all underground utilities in the United States of America is considered “privately owned.” This means that those utilities will not be located in most cases, unless a private utility location company is called to provide a utility mark-out.

We are often asked “How much does it cost?” The answer to this question varies of course depending on the number of underground utilities present, the size of the lot, travel time, etc. But what if you could change that? What if the answer to the question was always: “it cost us nothing.” In the highlights below we will outline a few tips that you can use to make sure your private utility locating costs are covered by the client and not your profits.

Client Education

Most project owners won’t request or think about private utility locating because it is either an after-thought, or they didn’t know commercial solutions to these problems exist. The poor reputation of the Contract Locating Industry (Call 811) has left a pretty sour taste in a lot of mouths when considering whether or not to pay for professional utility locating services. Some clients are hesitant to pay for these services because they do not understand the difference between private and contract locating firms. Other will make the false assumption that Call 811 will provide utility mark-outs on all of the underground utility conflicts they have on their project site. Remember, Call 811 will only mark-out approximately 35% of the underground utilities present (even less on projects contained within private property such as hospital campuses, colleges, manufacturing facilities, etc.).

Include It

If you are drafting a proposal to perform work, it would be wise to include a short paragraph or two in the scope for underground utility location. This is a great place to highlight the importance of the utility data to the project and the safety of the personnel. Knowing what utilities you might encounter before it’s too late will help mitigate delays, re-engineering, and help to improve overall safety of your field staff.

We are happy to provide you with a scope and fee that you can include in your proposal, just send an email with some more information to
It is not all that uncommon for companies to markup a subcontractors fees in their proposal. Most will invoice their clients for private utility locating services at cost + 10% (or more). The extra 10% will provide you with a budget to manage and direct the utility location company. After all, your billable time is important too.

Setup an On-Call

Setting up an on-call contract is a great way to lock-in special benefits with Utility Locator, LLC. An on-call agreement is a master service agreement that you would enter into with Utility Locator, LLC that would guarantee our availability and would also provide a reduced rate. This gives you the flexibility of always knowing your budget for our underground utility location services. To learn more about our On-Call Contracts or to request more information, please contact us at or use the form below.

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