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My situation, how do I get more work..

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by NeoThoR, Jul 30, 2007.

  1. NeoThoR

    NeoThoR Junior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 28

    Ok well here is my situation.

    (Not even the end of summer and I'm thinking of snow!!) :)

    I bought an ATV last winter from my cousin. It was a sweet deal that I couldn't pass up. One of the reasons I got the ATV is to make some extra money during the winter. During that winter me and my cousin sub contracted for a guy(Shake's Lawn Care of Indianapolis). We would salt and plow all the walk ways around this church. Which took our 2 4wheelers about 2hrs to do.. anyways.

    Along with this I sub contracted for my other cousin (Living Green Lawn Care of Indianapolis). He had me do 2 Taco Bell parking lots, which I did alone. Needless to say that took awhile. Specially when you are on a 4wheeler in the middle of winter.. haha.

    Ok yea.. back to the point of this post. Sub contracting isn't the best way to make the "good" money. Of course the people making all the money are going to be the guys with the contracts. I know this.. and I also know that plowing, just like lawn care, is a cut throat business. With my cousin being in the business I know this all to well. I do not plan on trying to take anyones contracts.. or whatever. It's not like I could with just an ATV anyways.

    I want to try to max my potential for money. Driving half way across town to plow a couple of Taco Bells.. well it doesn't seem like thats going to get it done. Specially with gas prices and the fact that I'm hauling around an ATV. But I do plan on plowing the Church. Specially since it's so close to my house.

    One more thing.. I am not an official business. I also do not plan on becoming one.


    1) Who or what do I target for customers?
    2) Can I legally plow for businesses?
    3) There are alot of small business around my house. Alot of them having pretty small parking lots. Should I try to pick up the work.. or is that screwing someone else over?
    4) When should I start advertising?

    I plan on advertising around my neighborhood and the neighborhoods around me. Hopefully I can get a hand full of jobs..
  2. YardMedic

    YardMedic PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,266

    Well, I think this thread can end here because of the above statement, but I'll humor you & answer some questions

    You are not in the right league to be soliciting customers without preparing yourself to do things the right way as a contractor
    No. Next question?
    Given that you're not a business, have no intention of becoming one, and won't do things the right way as contractors do, the answer is that you should NOT pick up work because you are screwing others AND the customer
    When you get insurance, register as a contractor, and get a truck to do this the right way
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 30, 2007
  3. exmark1

    exmark1 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,320

    I agree with everything said above! 100%!
  4. snow problem

    snow problem Senior Member
    Messages: 118

    That post is a joke right, plowing a taco bell with a ATV. Like what was said above, get everything in order, buy a truck and keep the ATV for the sidewalks
  5. bribrius

    bribrius PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,609

    funny. hmm. should i open a lemonade stand or plow with my atv? either way your a adult so you are technically a business just dba.
    i say go for it. plow them all. HAHA

    you can put a big sign on the four wheeler back rack advertising your plowing. or pull around a little cart with a big sign on it. if you went with a garden tractor you could plow them out with the little tractor and mow the grass in the summer. some will expect insurance. strangley enough though many small businesses dont care if you have insurance. you will be liable for any damages of course so dont run into the trash can in the taco bell drive through with the atv. (assuming that individual taco bell is privatley owned).
    maybe if you make enough cash with the atv you can buy awd subaru and plow airport runways.

    GET ER' DONE.!!
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2007
  6. NeoThoR

    NeoThoR Junior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 28

    Wow.. so 3 out of 4 replies are smart ass remarks.

    I should have guessed.

    Funny thing is .. the subaru would probably do just as well as the 4.8L Silverado you have..

  7. snow problem

    snow problem Senior Member
    Messages: 118

    If really plowed a Taco Bell with your ATV, and I have no reason to believe you are not telling the truth, then if you want to make money plowing you must be productive. Plowing a parking lot with an ATV is not poductive and must take you some time. I guess most of us on this site can't believe that someone would plow with and ATV and want to take on more work only usIng that ATV.
  8. bribrius

    bribrius PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,609

    i did have a subaru when i was younger and it wouldnt take a decent plow. if it did i would buy another one and would plow with it. the subaru did do real well on small trails though. had lots of fun it it. kept blowing cv joints and clutches but other than that........
    . its the fact that you want to COMMERCIALLY plow with a atv that draws my attention. eight inches of snow with a atv blade is a lot of time.
    you said yourself how time consuming it was and "especially on a four wheeler in the middle of winter". .yet your asking how to get more work while at the same time saying you dont want to be a business but want to know if you are legal. im all for entepeneurship and im not the one on the atv plowing however you answered your own questions in your post while asking them. you may not like some of the advice you get on this board. realize though your the one asking for the advice. we all ask questions and we all get answers we may not like at times. take it or leave it. perhaps you should reread what you posted. and reread what everyone else has posted. it may become more clear.
  9. YardMedic

    YardMedic PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,266

    What you should have done is expected the negative response based on the description of your situation. If you expressed an interest in doing the right thing despite whatever you might be doing now, we'd show more compassion & support. Asking advice with the disclaimer "I am not an official business. I also do not plan on becoming one" is just asking for ridicule from those of us who take this seriously. I do wish you well, hoping that you'll learn your current way is not the way to make a name for yourself in business.
  10. dmontgomery

    dmontgomery PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,238

    if you wanted serious answers, then you should appear serious about doing this the right way, other wise you are part of the problem those of us that do run legit businesses have to deal with.......why would we be serious????
  11. mayhem

    mayhem PlowSite.com Addict
    from Peru MA
    Messages: 1,016

    How are you getting your ATV across town to the Taco Bell in teh first place? I am assuming (hoping really) that you're not riding it there.

    If you already have a truck that you use to move your ATV around, then strap a plow on it and start being more productive...but not wihtout liability insurance to cover your customers when you tear up their sidewalks or ram something.
  12. NeoThoR

    NeoThoR Junior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 28

    Yea I know it wasn't productive. I've learned my lesson with that.. and trust me it won't happen again.

    I mainly want to do residential. Which I see no problem with this.. even if I'm not a "legit" business. But maybe some of you do..

    I personally see an ATV being more productive plowing neighborhood drive ways, etc. Than a big truck.. specially when the truck has bigger fish to fry.

    I have a 2003 Chevy S-10 ZR2. I know a couple of people here who plow with this truck. But I for one don't want to screw mine up. The front end of ZR2's are not very tuff. Ball joints love going out.
  13. YardMedic

    YardMedic PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,266

    Commercial or residential, it's all the same business and you're providing service as a contractor who is liable for the damage you could cause. Say nothing about getting whacked by a semi out by the road while on someone's property. Liability for yourself is enough of a concern, but you have customers who are not expecting to pay for damages to their property or injuries you sustain while on their property. By NOT having all of your responsibilitie in order, you're undercutting every contractor out there who ARE doing the right thing. You're either (1) lowballing because you don't have the expense we have, or (2) charging the same as we do & pocketing the amount that should be going toward insurance, business registration, and so forth.

    Trucks are awesome for driveways, even if not as maneuverable as an ATV. It's not unheard of to do 8 driveways in an hour, and many can be done as neatly as you might with an ATV, AND there is more pushing power.

    You can take or leave the words of wisdom here; it sounds like you have your mind made up anyway. Do what you will, but don't be asking for advice if you're not going to appreciate and/or consider it.

  14. snow problem

    snow problem Senior Member
    Messages: 118

    This post is crazy, you initial said that you wanted to plow a "church" parking lot with your ATV. Then you stated that you want to do residetial, which you never stated in your first post. You ATV will not be productive doing driveways, get a small jeep or small pick up and stop jerking the rest of us around.
  15. NeoThoR

    NeoThoR Junior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 28

    No actually I said I plow the sidewalks at a church.

    The guy I sub contract for does all the heavy plowing.
  16. Brian Young

    Brian Young PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,382

    If I were you I would sell the ATV, buy a buttload of shovel's and stick with shoveling off little old lady's staircases. Its too bad you weren't serious about becoming legit, guys around here make a killing doing sidewalks, I know I pay them! They usually are out 3 times as much as plows are. You might want to re-think you business or lack of business decision.
  17. NeoThoR

    NeoThoR Junior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 28

    Well if I could actually find work that is worth my time I might go legit.

    In the long run I'm guessing it helps alot.

    I've been driving around looking at potential business.. and trying to brain storm on actual work that I can be productive with..

    I know my old apartment had TONS of sidewalks. I'm talking easily 3x the length of sidewalk vs paved roads.

    Anyways.. another question.

    If you sub contract for someone doesn't there insurance cover you?
  18. YardMedic

    YardMedic PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,266

    Actually, the concept behind a sub is for the contractor to get out of liability for someone working for them. You'd probably be on your own
  19. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 7,921

    SUB = SUBcontractor works for the contractor, but not as an employee.

    sub does not mean a substitute plower.....

    I'm building a house my self, I'm the contractor.
    Then I hire a sub-contractor to do the dirt work.
    They are still a contractor, A stand alone company.
    They will need to have their own Insurance.

    Why would I, the contractor want to insure someones company and workers?
    If you are an EMPLOYEE, Then you should covered be under their (the subcontractors or contractors) INS.
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2007
  20. rfed32

    rfed32 Senior Member
    Messages: 473

    all i know is i made a killing as a sub....no headace of having to do billing for two weeks after, or dealing with people falling, or any of that other bull **** that comes with it...i have 3drieways and two parking lots that i do on my own for my own BUSSINESS which is LEAGAL and INSURED and is working on getting bonded (dont need it right now doing all small stuff for my bussiness) anyways i think if you want to think about doing stuff on your own u need to read alot on this site and you should get at least a year under your belt as a sub in a truck...jmo

    and dude ill even help you out....kinda....i have a western unimount for sale for an s10 make me an offer and its urs...i have mount wires blade pump all u need is controler....i used it on small lots and all...it was great on storms under a foot if it was over a foot id plow every 6-8 inch
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2007