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new to the business

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by M&A Property Maintenance, Sep 29, 2006.

  1. M&A Property Maintenance

    M&A Property Maintenance Senior Member
    Messages: 173

    i just have a few questions about billing.
    most of my customers are residential driveways, and i'm not sure how to charge if i have to go back and do it again when we get more than 6 inches. just wondering how you guys charge for 6+ inches?

    thanks for the help
     
  2. Mick

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

    Welcome to PlowSite. See if this helps you: ( To others - I've got this as a Word Document and it's been posted before)

    There are three main strategies to pricing - Per Push, Per Inch and Seasonal. All those are based on the “fourth” stategy - Per Hour.

    Per Push - I will charge you $xx each time I clear the snow from a given area.

    Per Inch - I will charge you based on the total number of inches that gets cleared from a particular area.

    Per Season - I will charge you $xx for pushing any amount of snow that falls during a particular time period (ie: Nov 1st to Apr 1st).

    Hourly - I will charge you $xx per hour for the period of time I spend plowing snow from a particular area.


    The most common strategy is a combination of Per Push and Per Inch. In this you will have a “trigger” or depth at which you begin plowing. Say your customer wants a 3” trigger. He is saying he can drive on anything under 3”. So, you wake up and find 3.5” in your driveway. Do you plow? What if the customer disputes that there was over 3”? Now with this strategy, you will most likely structure price increments - ie” with a 3” trigger, you would charge, say

    $30 - for 3” to 6”
    $45 - over 6” to 9”
    $60 - over 9” to 12”

    To cover your behind and to account for those perhaps rare instances of more than 12” snowfall, you could do something like “over 12” - $60, plus $1 an inch over 12”.

    Per inch - This is generally only used for accounts requiring a very high degree is service, such as where absolutely no accumulation is tolerated and involve anti-icing by using chemicals to melt falling snow. An airport might be an example. Here, you would rely on a third-party weather service to determine snowfall.

    Seasonal - Here you indicate a price (say $1,000) to provide service for the season. With this, you will want to have a contract that is very specific and to what services, when they will commence and what will entail added charges. Example - you determine the average snowfall for your area to be 50” per season and with a 3” trigger, you expect to have seven “events” per year. What happens if it snows 80” one season and requires ten pushes? What if you get seven 2” snowfalls back-to-back? For a Seasonal account, the best strategy is have a three- (or more) year contract. This way, you take advantage of the “law of averages”.

    Hourly - You will charge so much per hour for each piece of equipment used and different amounts for different sized equipment. This may include plow, pusher, dump truck, sander, loader etc.

    How much to charge in each of the above situations is determined by local custom. It’s been tried here on Plow Site before and the variance between areas was pretty surprising.

    I mostly use a variation of the Per Push / Per Inch and offer a price for plowing anything up to 12”.

    I hope this helps a little.
     
  3. Mick

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

    To answer the part of your question related to what to charge if you make a return trip - again this varies based on tradition of your area. I charge based on the number of inches which fall in any 24 hour period. So it doesn't matter how many times I go back - the customer will pay the same for that amount of snow. Some charge a lesser amount for a "clean up". Some will charge a certain amount for the first trip and half that for any subsequent trip - it all really comes down to what you and the customer work out.
     
  4. M&A Property Maintenance

    M&A Property Maintenance Senior Member
    Messages: 173

    thanks Mick!! you have been very helpful:)