You might assume that the best fence builder at the right cost always gets the job. However, many times how the project is presented to the client through the proposal is the main factor in getting hired. Sloppily written and disorganized proposals will not only reflect on your ability to do the job correctly, but will confuse the client on the project's cost and specifications. The cost-plus contract is a common way to write a fence installation proposal.

Write your contact information at the top of the proposal. This includes your address, phone, email, any state licenses and the payee name the client should use.

Describe the task to be completed in the first paragraph. Detail the type of fence to be built, how it will be secured in the ground and its length. Additionally, consider enhancing your proposal with a simple drawing of the fence from an above view.

List the materials needed to build the fence in the second paragraph. Show the client what materials they will have to pay for to have the fence built. Include all needed materials. Do not forget any concrete, gravel and fasteners needed. You do not need to list how much material will be required for the whole project.

State your price to build the fence in the third paragraph. Your price can be a percentage over the cost of materials. Thus, you can state that your price is "cost plus 50 percent," which means your labor cost is half of the materials cost. Alternatively, you can state your price as "cost plus "$10 a linear foot," which means you will make $10 for every foot of fence you build above the material cost.

State how you expect to be paid in the fourth paragraph. It is important to make clear how you expect the materials to be paid for and when you will receive your money. Include any deposit money and if you will need payment in increments or one final payment at the end of the project.

List any guarantees and insurance that you carry in paragraph five. Specify what work you guarantee and how long you will guarantee it.

Sign and date the proposal and leave a place for the client to sign. You can include a sentence that limits the time they have to accept the proposal. If your client signs the proposal, it becomes a binding contract.


Since a signed proposal is a legally binding contract, consult an attorney if you are unsure of any provision you should include.


If you are not a state-licensed contractor, check to see what dollar amount limits you can put in a proposal.