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Immediate Help Requested

Discussion in 'Bidding & Estimating' started by bigjeeping, Oct 8, 2005.

  1. bigjeeping

    bigjeeping Senior Member
    Messages: 675


    66 home neighborhood
    1.7 miles of road (standard 2 lane)
    just plowing, no salt, no sidewalks/walkways

    large drives, would normally charge $40-45 per drive
    wants an estimate BY MONDAY for 2-5", 5-8", and 8+"
    I asked for a ballpark figure of what they'd been paying but they wouldnt say

    Heres what Im thinkin: (feedback please)
    2 or 3 trucks, probably take 6 hours max?
    Charge $25 or $30 per house.... total = $1650 or $1980, respectively
    PLUS how much for the roads?

    help, please =(
    i want this job!
  2. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 27,862

    You say yourself, you don't even know what you're getting into.

    I'd stay FAR away from this job.

    You've got prices from $25-30 / house. Is that 2-5"? Is that 5-8"?? What??

    That alone is approx. $300 / push difference.

    How long does it take you to drive 1.7 miles @ 15mph? At 10 mph? How wide is the road?? How many passes down the road are you going to have to do with what size plows you're going to be using??

    Are you going to wing it all to one side, then plow all the driveways? Or are you going to plow all the driveways and then plow the road so you don't have any snow humps at the end of the driveways?

    Do you have to get all the way to the house, so you have to shovel the first foot or so in front of the garage? Or do you just need to get the driveway done?

    How long are the driveways? Are they a standard "2 car wide", "3 car deep", flat driveway? Or are they on an incline?

    How much do you want to "NET" / hour? How much are YOUR costs / hour?

    You've got alot of work to do BY MONDAY.
  3. Mick

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

    I sent you a Private Message.
  4. SnowGuy73

    SnowGuy73 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 24,868

    Im going to have to agree with Lwnmwrman22, you have alot of things to figure out yet, also its hard for us to judge being we can't see it.
  5. bigjeeping

    bigjeeping Senior Member
    Messages: 675

    Haha, one way or another I'm going for this job
    I was called last week and have already looked the place over 3 times.
    If they dont take my bid, their loss.. I already told the guy to his face I'd bust my a** to get the neighborhood cleared (not quite the same wording)

    anyway.. i need your help so I dont loose the bid. It's not a matter of me not being able to handle it. I am fully capable. I just dont know how to price it mate!
  6. bigjeeping

    bigjeeping Senior Member
    Messages: 675

    Well I gave you all the info.... here it is again

    If there were 66 houses in a row, which most companies would charge $40-45 to clear, how much would you charge per house if you could clear ALL 66 at THE SAME TIME

    add in 1.7 miles of 2 lane road and there ya go, draw a picture
  7. Vaughn Schultz

    Vaughn Schultz PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,565

    I like the way you think ;)
  8. Vaughn Schultz

    Vaughn Schultz PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,565

    All right this is how I would do it, many may disagree but this is how I would do it

    At 25.00

    2"-5" 25.00 Per driveway TOTAL = 1650.00
    5"-8" 40.00 Per driveway TOTAL = 2640.00
    8"+ 5.50$ per inch TOTAL (12= $4356.00)

    At 30.00

    2"-5" 30.00 Per driveway TOTAL = 1980.00
    5"-8" 48.00 Per driveway TOTAL = 3168.00
    8' 6.50 per Inch TOTAL (12" = $5148.00)

    The privet road I cant really help you with :eek: . I really think this would be good for you. There is alot of money to be made here. It's really going to come down to how badly you want this job. This is going to go alot faster than you think 66 driveways on one street! You have know travel time. Once you get down a pattern you will be knocking these out real fast. A back plow might be something I would look into. From what I can tell no sidewalks. You drive up set down the plow, pull it out (repeat process if needed :D ) drive 10 feet and do the next :rolleyes: . I bet you could do this in less than 6 hours with one truck. Yet I would rather bust in there with to trucks and be out in three. Think about it 6 hours divided by 66 gives you almost 5.5 minuets a drive. There is no way it will take you that long. GET THIS ACCOUNT :D There is alot of money to be made here at 25.00 per driveway (Depending on how much work you do and how much you shell out on labor)
    an 2 inch snow grosses 1650.00 on driveways alone that 275.00 per hour!! You are out of your mind if you don't bid on this. In fact I would bid at 24 per driveway. 25 is a very standard number this will get you right below them. Don't lose this over a buck, there is too much money to be made here.

    Best of luck for you, let me know I i can help.

    - Eric
  9. cet

    cet PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,196

    I used to have 34 estate driveways in one subdivision. It would take me 4 hours for a 3-5" snowfall.
    Give us an example of the size of one driveway.
    I also did a golf course road. .6 miles long plus a circle at the end and around a maintenance shed. This would take 20 minutes. I did the road in 4 passes with an 8' Western. The road might take 6 passes. I would say 30 minutes max.

    The driveways might be hard on the electrical system. No driving to recharge fully. Make sure you have good batteries and alternator.
  10. bigjeeping

    bigjeeping Senior Member
    Messages: 675

    here's a couple pics I found on the net of a house in the neighborhood. Most have those large arch drives withh 2 entrances. They are LARGE archs, you'll have to imagine it yourself since the pics arent complete :(

  11. bigjeeping

    bigjeeping Senior Member
    Messages: 675


  12. bigjeeping

    bigjeeping Senior Member
    Messages: 675

    When I mail in the bid what format should I use for the price?




    $24 per house (66 houses) + $200 for roads = $1784

    obviously it would look fancier, but you get the idea...
  13. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 27,862

    There's no way I'd do that driveway for $25 / time.

    You'll have to wing it away from the house, which is the inside of the curve. You can't just whip around the drive letting everything to the outside.

    Are you going to mark all these driveways so you don't tear up the grass?

    You're looking at probably 10-15 marking sticks / drive to do a decent job.

    Even at .50 / stick, you're looking at a $300 investment.

    What are you going to do with the snow if it piles up on the inside of the arch?? At the "pivot" point? Are you responsible for plowing it back? Or is that extra?

    I'm really NOT trying to discourage you about this job, just trying to point out everything that should probably be taken into consideration.
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2005
  14. bigjeeping

    bigjeeping Senior Member
    Messages: 675

    Thhe guy I've been talkin too is really laid back. He expects us to start working within a few hours of the END of the snowfall, and doesnt care if we cant get in too close to the garage doors.

    All of the residents are responsible for marking their drives... even if they werent, whats dropping $300 when I will be taking $10,000+ of their money if it snows more than 5 times!
  15. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 27,862

    Why did the last guy quit / get fired?

    Make ABSOLUTELY sure you have it in your agreement that you're not responsible for ANY turf / sprinkler head damage come spring time if you're not the one marking drives.

    If it were me, I'd try to get an extra $500 and tell him that you'll mark the drives.

    The biggest problem is, this guy might be laid back, but the other 65 homeowners might not be.

    You've got the chance to tear up THEIR property, not this guy's house that you're talking to.

    You could eat up that $10k real fast if people start chasing you down for fixing sod and sprinkler heads, if for no other reason than time next summer when you'll be trying to get other stuff started up after the season.
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2005
  16. Mick

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

    No need to make this difficult. Start from the house end. With 4wd, he'd be able to get there. If there's a concern about packing snow with tires, pretreat with treated salt, but shouldn't really be a problem anyway. I'd say max of four stakes each side. At about .45 each that's $3.60 each drive.

    Actually, you want to think about getting a Urethane edge for those drives and you likely wouldn't need to worry about salting to get to the surface.
  17. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 27,862

    Not to throw a wrench into the equation, and I realize this is a larger account to do this... but I'd also quote the guy a bid on a flat fee.

    If it's an association for the houses, and this guy's the president or whatever, you might be able to sell him a flat monthly fee.

    Take your $1750 / push, multiply it by 18, add another $3,000 to cover a real large storm, then divide by 6, for November, December, January, February, March and April payment.

    You'd have about $34,500 for the year. Round it up to $6,000 / month.

    Some months you'll win out, you'll only plow one time, but other months you'll plow 10-11 times.

    You'll have some more work to do, google "winter snowfall totals" for the nearest city you're by, and you should get records from each year where they'll list the inch total / storm. This way you can go back 10-15 years and see how many storms on average you had, plus how many large "8+" you had and figure numbers from there.

    They may like that better, they can have a set budget, plus you know that check for $6k is coming in, and you can pay your sub / employee drivers to just sit around, not worry that they're not going to be able to help you because they had to go get another job if it doesn't snow.
  18. bigjeeping

    bigjeeping Senior Member
    Messages: 675

    good idea.. but he specified he wants rates for 2-5, 5-8, and 8+, so I'm assuming they've been doing it per push for years.
  19. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 27,862

    Correct, but they may have never had a bid the other way before either. It doesn't hurt to submit one. You're also assuming that the guy is going to be laid back when the snow starts falling too... :)
  20. Vaughn Schultz

    Vaughn Schultz PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,565

    Sorry about my pricing I was under the assumption this was the size of the driveway (standard by me)
    I had know idea they were such giants :eek:

    Good luck,

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Oct 9, 2005