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First time snow removal

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by LCME, Dec 9, 2004.

  1. LCME

    LCME Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    This will be my first year to attempt snow removal. I plan to go door to door thru my neighborhood. Asking if they want snow removal. My equipment is a toro single stage snow thrower, shovels and a truck to get me there. At this time this is all I can afford to invest. My brother in law has a atv with a plow blade. so, if i can't get the job done with the toro I will borrow the atv. Should I have contracts written up. Or, just trust people to pay. Should i bill them weekly, monthly, etc. Any suggestions and/or advise.
     
  2. Dwan

    Dwan Senior Member
    Messages: 879

    A word of caution;
    Make sure they understand that your "removal" is from there driveway onto another piece of there property and not removed from the site.
    Yea a small contract is nice and bill them at least 1 a week so the bill don't get to big for them to pay before they decide to quit and not pay at all.
     
  3. Up North

    Up North Senior Member
    Messages: 921

    LCME,
    I'm just getting back into plowing after being out of it for a few years. So others may have some better advice but I'll throw mine out for you to consider. In my opinion, going around the neighborhood is a good start. And I wouldn't worry about contracts for this year. Personally I'm not big on contracts for residential plowing, commercial is a different story but I think you'll be fine. I'd bill after each snowfall, others may suggest differently but again, for me it's easier to keep up with the paperwork and stuff, plus it's still on the customers mind as well.

    Your equipment should be fine, everyone has to start somewhere and nothing wrong with what you're doing. Just a word of caution, with the single stage Toro you'll have a heck of time blowing the big ridge left from the city plow at the end of each driveway (I've been there, done that). You may be using that ATV more than you think. Also don't forget insurance! Those snowblowers can throw a rock a LONG ways... :yow!:

    Good luck and have fun!


    P.S. I'd leave the salting to the customers...and make sure they know that. You may need to hand out a memo stating that for legal proof. Maybe someone else can chime in on that as I don't know the legalities. If they slip on some ice or something it'll be their negligence and not yours.

    Buck
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2004
  4. Mick

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

    ln your situation, where you're going door to door, I'd collect upon completion of the work. Obviously they're there so why not just get paid as you go?
     
  5. LCME

    LCME Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    Thanks for the comments, tips, etc. I started clearing snow yesterday for 2 customers. I got paid on the spot. The toro worked well. Got $90 for 2 hours work. Includes drive time to customers, doing the job and back home.
     
  6. Mick

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

    I'd say you're off to a good start. :waving: payup
     
  7. LCME

    LCME Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    How about "Snow and Ice Management".
     
  8. LCME

    LCME Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    Thanks Mick. I have talked to a few more potential customers that i currently have lawn maintenance contracts with for next year. Most people i talk to just want to be able to call me when they need snow plowing.

    Just a thought. When we have a snow storm. I would get on the ATV. Mount the toro snow thrower on the back. put shovel on front. and just drive the neighborhood door to door asking if they want there snow plowed.
     
  9. Vaughn Schultz

    Vaughn Schultz PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,565

    That will do :drinkup:
     
  10. bolensdriver

    bolensdriver Senior Member
    Messages: 603

    Glad you got snow shovels, so when it snows deeper than 6 inches, you have something to use.
     
  11. LCME

    LCME Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    Are you saying the atv plow and/or single stage snow-thrower will not work above 6" snow fall?.
     
  12. rclay11541

    rclay11541 Member
    Messages: 56

    If your not a business just a guy with some equipment working in the snow then dont worry about insurance or anything. Collect the same day you do the work. This year im plowing out all my lawn customers then going door to door. You ask they say yes you plow then you go to the door and collect.
    Just get really close with your brother in law because what you can do in an hour with that snow thrower you can do in 10 mins with the quad.
     
  13. Dwan

    Dwan Senior Member
    Messages: 879

    Working for an income without insurance is bad advice.
     
  14. bolensdriver

    bolensdriver Senior Member
    Messages: 603

    hehe, the ATV will, the single stage might, but it's killing it. ;)
     
  15. Mick

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

    I second that. Insurance is to protect yourself against accidents. Who is more likely to have an accident at any given time - the person who just got their license and is learning to drive or the person with several years of experience behind the wheel? Same applies to any other situation - like plowing snow.
     
  16. Up North

    Up North Senior Member
    Messages: 921

    I'll third that. Except I think the guy most likely to have an accident is the guy without insurance...Murphy's law, always seems to happen.

    Buck
     
  17. Mark F

    Mark F Senior Member
    Messages: 101

    Insure to be sure

    Hey Guys;
    I Fourth It! Don't risk everything you own. Accidents happen thats why their called accidents.