1. Welcome to PlowSite. Notice a fresh look and new features? It’s now easier to share photos and videos, find popular topics fast, and enjoy expanded user profiles. If you have any questions, click HELP at the top or bottom of any page, or send an email to help@plowsite.com. We welcome your feedback.

    Dismiss Notice

Looking to do snow removal on the side if at all possible. (Newbie)

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by Snowbadger, Oct 7, 2014.

  1. Snowbadger

    Snowbadger Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    Hello everyone,
    I'm new to the forums and hoping to figure a way to make extra money with snow removal. I'm 22 years old, work a full time job, provide the best I can for my family, and also own my first house. I love supporting my family and I'm exploring other options to bring in more income.... I need to find more work as my wife has become ill and cannot return to work anytime soon. I currently work Monday through Friday 8am-5pm. I know snow removal is a gamble because when the snow falls you need to be removing snow and with me working a full time job I would be terrible for contracted plowing during the week.... But during the weekends I could be available 24/7. I have some capital I can work with to get a truck,plow, snow blower, shovels, salt, etc but I'm not sure if this is even feasible in anyway considering I'd be working during the week. I wouldn't mind plowing with a truck or shoveling driveways with a shovel and a snow blower. Anything I could do to earn extra money over the winter. Please try not to bash me as I know this is silly and I've really limited my options but just being honest... I'm a hard worker trying to pick up extra work on the side. I have to take care of my family and I'd like to run my own business someday just trying to get started... I know the insurance costs can be a lot of $$$ so I decided starting my own business would be pretty foolish. I can put some start up costs down and try to sub contract or I read about just shoveling,salting,and snow blowing. I'd really like to just start with shoveling, salting, etc but I dont know what all insurance i would need (general lib?). Either way if someone could give me a little direction or tips would be great. Thank you
     
  2. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,983

    The best solution would be to try to work for a company. See if they can work you in some way.
     
  3. ss502gmc

    ss502gmc Senior Member
    Messages: 473

    The best thing you could do is to sub contract with a company. You would still need to get commercial liability on the truck but the company you sub for should have the GL. Tell them your situation and if you are very lucky they may use you as an extra or a backup if one of there guys has a break down or a no show or a really big storm that they can't keep up with but generally companies want dependability 24/7. Also try to get residential driveways that are flexible on when they need to be cleared. It'll take some work to find those people but they're out there. When I started out at 17 years old I worked for a napa parts store running auto parts and the manager there was a partner to a landscape company who did commercial plowing so I ended up learning the ropes and subbing for him, it worked out because when it was snowing decent they pulled the delivery trucks off the road so it was a win win for me. I then started gaining my own customers from referrals of the guy I subbed for and it was the beginning for me. I work full time now but save up all my sick time for snow season lol. It can be dicey to fulfill both obligations but it's worth it for me and it's always worked out. Good luck!
     
  4. Snowbadger

    Snowbadger Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    Thanks for the input dieselss. I feel this is probably the best option with the least risk to start. I would love to be able to subcontract and run my own truck but with my schedule I don't want to put alot of money on the line to end up not finding work... The most obvious is I need to learn the ropes so hopefully I can find some one in SW PA that will take me. I drive a truck for my current job and I feel I can catch onto things quickly. Should I get a truck and some equipment to better my odds of landing a job with a restricted schedule? Possibly a better wage?
     
  5. PremierSnowPlow

    PremierSnowPlow Senior Member
    Messages: 125

    Give plowz.com a try. It may not be a lot of money but its a start. You pick the driveways you want so you can obviously do the ones you want that fit your schedule. They do require you to carry gl insurance and I believe auto liability. And they require you to 1099
     
  6. jerpa

    jerpa Member
    Messages: 92

    If you have your own truck you will most likely need general liability insurance. I haven't found anyone that subs work out without a minimum of $1 million in coverage and I've had some require me to increase it to $2 million. If you buy equipment driveways would be your best bet since they will be more flexible with your current work schedule. Finding commercial accounts that don't need service quickly will be difficult.
     
  7. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,983

    Don't dump any money into your trk. If you get hired on, you'll be using there equipment
     
  8. Snowbadger

    Snowbadger Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    Will a company even subcontract someone with little to no experience?
     
  9. Fannin76

    Fannin76 Senior Member
    Messages: 731

    Also taskeasy they insure you if you don't have insurance
     
  10. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,983

    Yes, and some train you as well. I would start looking in the help wanted. Or you could call landscape places in your area and see if there looking for plow drivers
     
  11. basher

    basher PlowSite Fanatic
    from 19707
    Messages: 8,992

    Sounds different but have you considered looking for work with a sidewalk crew? No cash outlay but you learn the business, could graduate to operating equipment and most contractors want to have some extra sidewalk guys to cover no shows. There is no cash outlay required (unless you don't already own a good set of gloves and winter boots) most pay pretty decent and the work is normally early mornings before the stores/businesses open.
     
  12. Snowbadger

    Snowbadger Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    I have been looking on Craigslist and I'm getting a list of local landscaping companies to call on my lunch today. Hope someone will give me a chance. Thanks for all the help everyone. Very constructive and I appreciate the understanding of my situation. I'll let you know what the responses I get this evening are.
     
  13. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,983

    Basher had good advice as well. SOMETIMES shovelers are paid more then operators.
     
  14. Snowbadger

    Snowbadger Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    Sidewalk crew sound like my best bet. I will be asking around today. Hope to get lucky....
     
  15. JustJeff

    JustJeff 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,059

    Hope you find work. You sound like a good, young, hard working man that's just trying to improve his family's financial situation. Don't know about where you live, but around here there are quite a few companies that take on sub-contractors that can't be available 24/7. They let you work when you can. But it sounds like you're intent on working as a shoveler so you don't have to put out any money on equipment? If so, that's understandable too. I wish you luck.
     
  16. Snowbadger

    Snowbadger Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    Thank you sir. I'm close to Pittsburgh in a area called Washington. I want to sub contract but instead of taking a big risk throwing down all that money I'd rather start at the bottom so I can see how the business operates from the ground floor. First person I called today seems very friendly and willing to give me a shot. Meeting tomorrow to discuss my schedule. He said he'll take me for whatever hours I can work. I got very excited as I thought me not being available 24/7 would really hurt my chances of getting hired. Not getting my hopes up to high just yet. Hope things go well tomorrow. Thanks again for all the support you guys have given me. You've been very fair and informative which I truely respect and appreciate. Hopefully if everything works out I can have my own truck and sub next year.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2014
  17. JustJeff

    JustJeff 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,059

    When you talk to him tomorrow, ask if they use atvs or blowers as well. If you can get on either one of those instead of shoveling it will be a lot easier on your back. Shoveling for 10,12, or 16 hours can wreck a body!
     
  18. Snowbadger

    Snowbadger Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    Will do. Ive been driving a company truck for 3 years now. From a f150 up to a f350 stakebed. I know I havent plowed with them but hopefully just having the experience with no accidents will help me get into a truck more quickly. If not I completely understand. Im not sure how the industry works but I figure its the young guys doing the shoveling and the guys who have done thier time already are driving. This is just an assumption but I'll find out tomorrow with what they could use me for. I have operated many types of forklifts over my career and everytime I'm challenged with a new piece of equipment I learn very quickly. Hope this will go the same way with snow removal. Soon as they give me a chance I hope to do an excellent job to show my ability to learn quickly is one of my best attributes.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2014
  19. JustJeff

    JustJeff 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,059

    By all means, try to get into a truck with them if you can, but that may be difficult because they're going to want all of their trucks out all the time when needed. So that part might be a lot to ask since you can only drive for them during certain times. It's a lot easier to get in with a truck if you're a sub with your work schedule. They usually want their own truck drivers available 24/7 if you're in their trucks. But hell, it doesn't hurt to ask, all they can do is say no.
     
  20. Snowbadger

    Snowbadger Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    Landed a job today. Guy is gonna use me for sholving, driving a truck, bobcat, just about anything that needs done at the time. Gonna start me at 15$ which works for me since I understand I cant demand much having no experience. Guy was very understanding and is gonna work me around my schedule. All weekend. A big client of his is a local outlet mall. Very excited to work. Now just waiting on that snow. You guys helped me alot.