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bidding

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Tdilts, Nov 13, 2001.

  1. Tdilts

    Tdilts Junior Member
    Messages: 2

    I am north of Baltimore,MD and going to purchase a plow and I have some apartment complexes that want me to submit bids for them. Could anyone help me on how to figure out what to competively bid without being to low. One of the properties reguire sidewalks and salt. Thanks
     
  2. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    Tdilts - Welcome to PlowSite. It's going to pretty hard for anyone to answer your questions, but a couple of items might help. First, what prior experience in snowplowing do you have? How big are these apartment complexes? What size of truck and type of plow do you have? One caution - some apartment complexes are really too big for a truck and plow. Another caution - In case you don't already know, make sure you're insured for commercial. Are you able to calculate the time it'll take for this site? Then you could multiply by the hourly rate you want. The next thing would be to figure how many pushes for the winter if you're giving a seasonal rate. Of course, without knowing your experience, I might be telling you what you already know. Any additional information would be helpful.
     
  3. Tdilts

    Tdilts Junior Member
    Messages: 2

    I have never plowed before. The complexes are small. (50 units). Last contractor was charging about $350 per clearing. I have a 85 Chevy Blazer 6.2 Desiel Was a military truck with 29,000 miles. I have not gotten a plow yet. Was going to get a Meyers 7.5' plow. Any recomendations on this. Thanks
     
  4. SnoJob67

    SnoJob67 Senior Member
    Messages: 384

    Two suggestions; One do a search on Meyer plows. Two, forget what the last guy charged, but keep it in the back of your head.

    I'd measure the areas, noting any areas that are broken up with islands or other obstacles. Anything that is wide open, I'd figure could be done at a rate of an acre per hour. Any small areas that are broken up I would figure about 1/2 of that. Add up the time totals and multiply by an hourly rate.

    Let the customer know that return visits to clear spaces will be charged accordingly. Tell them that if it takes 1/4 of the time it takes to clear the lot, you will charge 1/4 of whatever your per push price is. If it takes 1/2 as long, it will be 1/2 as much as a full push. This way, if you end up waiting for cars to move, or whatever, you get paid and the property manager understands that the clock is ticking.
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2001
  5. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    You've never plowed snow before and you're going to learn in an apartment complex?? Three words of advise - 1) VERY good insurance (vehicle and general liability) 2) learn about backdragging and plan where you're going to put several snowfalls and 3) spend a lot of time on Chuck's site: http://www.snowplowing-contractors.com/
     
  6. jlmac

    jlmac Junior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 16

    Just my opinion, but apartment complexes can be tuff. Tight spaces, alot of backdragging etc. The designers of apartment complexes seldom take a college course in "practical layout" for plowing storage purposes. Each individual owner has "his or her" opinion on how the complex should be plowed. Be prepared for complaints. Some have nothing better to do. Also $350 per push with a 50 unit complex equal $7 per owner. I don't do condos or any residential anymore but for some reason that seems very low. What else can anyone get these days for $7.00. If, just for the sake of example, you were charging $75 per hour to plow that would work out to be $1.25 per minuite. You be spending approximately 5-6 minutes per owner. Does that seem reasonable?