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LIGHT Residential clearing

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by tricitylawn, Dec 11, 2011.

  1. tricitylawn

    tricitylawn Junior Member
    from 23805
    Messages: 4

    Hello All,

    I am a new start-up in the lawn business and am thinking about offering light residential snow clearing for this winter. I am from Virginia so when we get snow it is usually wet and heavy, but not too much. Last year was a good year with I remember 2 or 3 good snows (good here is 4 to 8 inches). When I say light.... I mean light.....clearing with shovels and possibly a snowthower. Most city's here require you to clear the sidewalk in front of business/home after a snow so I am looking to do some of those and pitching the lawn care for next season while I am at it. Not looking to get rich just a way to get the name out there and do a good job. Will use mostly shovels and a simple spreader with the guards to keep the salt/sand spread to a manageable width as not to damage the lawn. here are the questions?

    1. Whats a good inexpensive snow-blower? And should I get single or two stage?

    2. What is a good ice/snow melt to use that wont harm the grass?

    I am looking at the small sidewalks/driveways less than 25 feet long as my target. Thinking $20 to clear and salt/sand. Mainly the older people who cant or just dont wanna do it themselves. Any advice would be great. Thanks

    Mike
     
  2. bakertime

    bakertime Junior Member
    Messages: 17

    Not trying to knock your idea here, but can you really make money at $20 a drive? Doing it with a snow blower, that seems like it wouldn't even be worth your time. I know you're trying to drum up more business for the summer, but working for free or cheap is going to get old kinda fast.

    IMO, a good powerful single stage snow blower would do what you're talking about just fine. Do lots of research before you buy, as there are a lot of poor choices in that realm. The advantage is that 1 guy and get it in and out of a truck pretty easily. The low-end ones will have a hard time with the wet stuff, but if you get one that's powerful enough it shouldn't be a problem. Alternatively, you can get a two-stage and some sort of a hitch-mounted platform with ramps so you can get it up and down by yourself.
     
  3. Dr Who

    Dr Who Senior Member
    Messages: 637

    Do not hold your breath on that! Just becasue the city require it does not meen people will pay for it.

    Its the same here, we do not get much snow and when it does your required to keep the city walks clear, do you think many people will pay? No they just wait a couple days for it to melt on there own.
    I have done drives and had the customer refuse to pay me to clear the city walkway.
     
  4. tricitylawn

    tricitylawn Junior Member
    from 23805
    Messages: 4

    baker

    so what would ya suggest as a good price. was thinking about a reciever hitch thing if blower isnt too heavy. and most i am sure are gonna be with a shovel. and most will be just sidewalks and front walk/steps. thanks
     
  5. mike thunder

    mike thunder Senior Member
    Messages: 110

    Don't do it to just get your name out there, you're time and money would be of better use using traditional advertising methods. Go for profit or stay home.
     
  6. tricitylawn

    tricitylawn Junior Member
    from 23805
    Messages: 4

    okay

    okay say I got for profit. lets say i am doing 25-50 ft of front walk, and the same feet of driveway.(single car wide). clearing all with shovel, and salt it what is a good price that i can get the jobs and have a $ or 2
     
  7. mike thunder

    mike thunder Senior Member
    Messages: 110

    Here in Michigan we start at $35.
     
  8. djt1029

    djt1029 Senior Member
    Messages: 211

    For something that size I'd be looking for more then double your price, and my clients happily pay it.
     
  9. tricitylawn

    tricitylawn Junior Member
    from 23805
    Messages: 4

    okay so I got 35 to start. thats about right. if i can get several in the same block would be even better. I am just south of Richmond Virginia. Think i am gonna order a "snow plow" pusher. 24" and a 36". already have some 'thrown' shovels. see what i can do. be my luck we have a light winter. OKAY..... any suggestions on the ice melt?
     
  10. KEC Maintaince

    KEC Maintaince Senior Member
    from N.J.
    Messages: 265

    toro single stage snow blower or a comparible make/ model
    a couple shovels
    bagged salt and some calcium
    id start pricing some where in the 35 dollar range foor single car drives and walks.
    i am taking a shot in the dark about your area as far as priceing goes
    base it on like 15-20 minutes work or so.
    also keep in mind that having one blower if it goes down you are screwed and have to shovel. bank on getting 2 blowers.
    dont waste your time or money on getting a plow until you have some clients and can protect your self better..
     
  11. djt1029

    djt1029 Senior Member
    Messages: 211

    You won't regret going with the pushers over shovels for lighter snowfalls. For ice melt the only thing i've found worth using is Peladow calcium pellets, it'll melt anything, Buy yourself a cheap broadcast spreader if you dont have one and run it through that.
     
  12. kg26

    kg26 Senior Member
    Messages: 300

    You don't need a spreader just doing it with you hand.