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Price checking (opinions on a bid)

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Brian Young, Oct 19, 2007.

  1. Brian Young

    Brian Young PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,382

    I was called to bid a retail store at the very edge of our snow belt and I was wondering what you guys thought as far as pricing. The parking lot is roughly 100 yards wide and 150 yards long. There are a few light poles and islands but nothing major as far as obsticles. The sidewalk spans the entire length of store front. 1" and 2" snowfall prices. Any thoughts?
     
  2. forestfireguy

    forestfireguy PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,276

    So it's 3.375 acres, an 8 ft plow should be able to push 2" in about 3.5 hours. We try to get 125 hr here. What are you getting per hr? Don't forget salting..............
     
  3. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 27,997

    Need more info please.

    Can you just wing it all to one side, or does it have to be stacked at one end??

    Do you have to keep the sidewalk clear at all times?? Or just before the store opens in the morning??

    As far as pushing, if I can wing it all to one side, so it's just push straight with plow angled away from the store, back up, straight, back up, until I get to the other side of the lot (curbs and lights obviously worked around), I'd do it for a flat fee of $600 / month, based on an average of 18 events at 2" for the season. That's without the pricing for the sidewalk, stacking, salt, anything extra, just cleaning the parking lot.. $800 for 1" snowfall.
     
  4. Brian Young

    Brian Young PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,382

    I "HEARD" the last company had 5 trucks with 7 1/2 with wings and it took them 2+hrs. The back of the building is a good solid hour. I was just over 300.00 just for the push, and sidewalks per time. Salting was seperate.
     
  5. Brian Young

    Brian Young PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,382

    It snows an average of 130-170" of snow a season up here. "18 events" happens in the first few weeks of the season in that area,lol.
     
  6. Brian Young

    Brian Young PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,382

    Is that 125 per hour per truck? Around here your lucky to get in the high 40's low 50's per hour per truck.
     
  7. cwags73

    cwags73 Junior Member
    Messages: 19

    I would not start the truck for that kind of money. If you can't pay 85.00 an hour, pick up a shovel. It's one thing to sub at that price, but anyone who is the primary contractor should get 85/hour as a minimum.
     
  8. MB3

    MB3 Senior Member
    Messages: 123


    Around Allentown, you are luckey to get $70 an hour, most trucks go for 60-65 an hour, just for plowing. I would go with the hour rate this year, and see exactly how long it takes you, and then adjust the price next year. this way, you will get your money, the owner will be happy, and everyone wins.prsport
     
  9. Brian Young

    Brian Young PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,382

    Yeah I agree BUT.....
    The problem is every one has a plow truck which brings down the "supply and demand" factor. Our city, including the county areas have a population of roughly 135,000, so not a huge city but decent sized. In a city this size there are probably 75-100 legit landscaping/snow plowing companies and probably another 500 that just have a plow on the front of their truck and go plowing with a buddy or two and have absolutly no idea on what to be charging.
     
  10. JeepPlow18

    JeepPlow18 Senior Member
    Messages: 658

    Haha forestfireguy. Thats funny $125 an hour? He wants me to sub and he told me a totally different price. Just kidding, but really he did but its for subbing and im not the primary contractor so its reasonable. I think thats the best laugh I have had all week, he just Pm ed me recently to sub and the $125 and what he told me he was going to pay was very different. lmao haha funny stuff
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 19, 2007
  11. forestfireguy

    forestfireguy PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,276

    As the primary we "try to get" 125 hr per truck, Why should we carry the burden of billing, insurance and all the other costs associated with managing sites for less than 40 or so dollars per hour. Take costs out of that 125 and the actual profits are only worth it if there is volume to back it up. In your case I think you listed a jeep with 6.5 plow( I could be wrong), you wouldn't get 80 hour for that truck as a sub, The other truck with the 8 ft blade I'd pay 80 ish......We never have a shortage of subs, well actually thats not entirely true, we have loads of people interested, it's just hard to find people who are actually as availible as they say they are when the pennies fall from heaven. I'm glad to read also that you feel my offers are reasonable, I was a little miffed until I reread your post...........
     
  12. JeepPlow18

    JeepPlow18 Senior Member
    Messages: 658

    Yea I was just kidding around. And for the jeep I sold that and now im running my 95 chevy silverado 2500 with the 8' Western. Just have the front desk contact me. Forestfireguy I gave you my email add. through a PM. Mike
     
  13. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 27,997

    Okay... so take your 130-170", try to do some due dilliegence and figure out how many times you're going to plow.

    One way is to go to Weatherunderground.com, what alot of guys on this site run at the bottom of their posts.

    You can pull up yearly data for a period of time and try to get an "average" on the number of times to plow.

    Then figure out how many hours it's going to take (3ish) and multiply that by the amount per hour you charge (50-60). So, your per push rate would be about $150-180 for a 2" snowfall.

    Then, for a rate of 130-170", I personally divide my 55" yearly average by 3". I know I can get 6 back to back to back to back to back to back 1" snowfalls and it's more pushes than (2) 3" snowfalls, but that's life when you're basing on averages. That's how I get my 18 per year.

    So, take 150 (in the middle, but again, do your own research for your own area, or at least the area that the account is in) and divide that by 3". You come up with 50 plowing events. This can be tracked also by having 1-2-3 accounts that pay per push to cover operating expenses (fuel, wear and tear per event) and counting those up over a period of years.

    So, take your 50 events, multiply by $165 (again, amount per push for 3 hours @ $55 / hour) and you end up with a seasonal total of $9075. I run my seasonal accounts over 6 months, from November through April, so each month this account would get a bill for $1512.50, at which point I would probably round down to $1500 / month, just to make everything look tidy, even putting it in as a total of $1512.50, or an even $1500 to make it look like the customer is getting a discount.

    I personally like even numbers, it's easier to keep a budget in my head, in case I'm ever out and about and see a deal on something I can quickly calculate whether or not it works.

    Anyways, again, that's with the numbers that I threw out. You have to figure the average numbers for the area the account is in, and what you're able to charge for your area, both to make money, and to make sure you keep the account for a period of years, in case you get dumped on the first year, lose your butt, and lose the account.