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17,000 square feet of sidewalks

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Advantage, Oct 14, 2010.

  1. Advantage

    Advantage Senior Member
    Messages: 766

    I'm putting together a four location bid and one of the places has 17,000 square feet of sidewalk! From 3' to 6' wide all the way around. It's an apartment complex if you haven't guessed already. We do sidewalks but never this much at one place.

    I want to bid per occurrence because I like to stay away from hourly and the contractor they had was hourly. I was going over production rates on some sidewalks we currently do and I'm getting about 3,500 square feet per man hour on a 2" snowfall to shovel and apply ice melt. Does that seem right? And does anyone else have any numbers similar for shoveling and/or snow blowing?

    Obviously we would be using our JD 935's for when the snow gets deep. Also thinking about putting my ATV to work.

    Any input/criticism is appreciated.
     
  2. WIPensFan

    WIPensFan PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,490

    So, a 4' wide by 875' long walkway and one guy shovels 2" of snow off it and salts it? That seems to be a lot of work for 1 man Hr. Maybe I'm missing something.
     
  3. Advantage

    Advantage Senior Member
    Messages: 766

    Yeah it doesn't seem right to me. Part of the problem is our record keeping. I have times and how many people on every site but what I'm missing is what equipment they used like whether it was all shovels or snow blowers or what.
     
  4. Advantage

    Advantage Senior Member
    Messages: 766

    Yeah, the more numbers I crunch and averages I do it's definitely closer to 1000 sq/ft per man hour.
     
  5. WIPensFan

    WIPensFan PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,490

    That sounds much better, I think you're close on that.
     
  6. Mdwstsnow512

    Mdwstsnow512 Senior Member
    Messages: 168

    X2,
    3500 is a bit much, even with a snowblower i would guess.
     
  7. JohnRoscoe

    JohnRoscoe Senior Member
    Messages: 209

    I've never seen more variability than in walks for apartments. We do one with 2.8 miles of mostly 5' walk and it can be anywhere from a few hours for 3-4 guys, to 12 hours for 14 guys.

    I'd consider bidding it hourly for the first year until you get a better feel for it. You can burned real quick if you're covering lots of labor that wasn't part of the proposal.
     
  8. me!

    me! Member
    Messages: 31

    i agree 100%

    we have a office complex, im not even sure how many feet of sidewalk, but im guessing a couple miles. I have had 2 guys take 3 hours and 4 guys take 10. we have been doing this place 5 years and i still dont think i would bid per push on it.
     
  9. Advantage

    Advantage Senior Member
    Messages: 766

    Thanks for the input guys. I will probably have to take your recommendation on going the hourly route. I have just become so frustrated with trying to educate potential clients on why we charge higher hourly rates than most in my area. We have a lot of experience and efficient equipment for any situation which has allowed us to pick up many accounts by offering flat rates because a lot of guys around here charge low hourly rates. I know we would get it done quicker and with better quality than their current contractor. But they see a rate 2x what they are used to and they just don't get it.
     
  10. Mr.Freezzz

    Mr.Freezzz Member
    from Utah
    Messages: 81

    I have several commercial accounts that have 18500+ sq ft. 5'-6' wide walks and entry ways. I use arctic cat 700 ATV's with 48" 3 way plows. Yes they do windrow the snow on one side but at 900 lbs I've never had a problem up to 10" of snow. Its not for everyone it depends on the job but I have done well this way and bid mostly by push. There is a few other items I upgrade on the ATVs to beef them up also.
     
  11. mrsnowman

    mrsnowman Senior Member
    Messages: 126

    We run a asv 30 for walks and love the thing. We put a 4.5 foot blade with a nice 1.5 inch poly edge on it. We plow sidewalks at about 8mph if we know them well enough, otherwise we slow quite a bit. That little machine is awesome. If you have employees, they will destroy your quad. Just be careful.
     
  12. Mr.Freezzz

    Mr.Freezzz Member
    from Utah
    Messages: 81

    Good point here!
     
  13. Advantage

    Advantage Senior Member
    Messages: 766

    If we get it, I have an ATV and 2 JD F935 tractors take care of these walks. What do you upgrade on your ATV?
     
  14. Mr.Freezzz

    Mr.Freezzz Member
    from Utah
    Messages: 81

    Speed worx clutch kit; Fox shocks: Boon dockers programer: tires : Heated grips: Warn 3000 ci : etc