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residential plowing

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by PRO PROPERTY CARE, Oct 26, 2003.

  1. Ok, I have some commercial plowing contracts, and thaought i would fill in with some residential jobs..... as secondary clearing...
    how do you guys set these up.. I mean for time frame of plowing. Do you tell residentials they come after commercial, and withing a certain time frame... And what happens if you plow the drive and the next day the city plows the street and fills the end of the drive again,,
    thanks
    mikepumpkin:
     
  2. micah79

    micah79 Senior Member
    Messages: 303

    I have a seperate truck for residentials. It is never good to tell someone that they are a low priority. I have found that the #1 complaint my customers have about their former plowing service, is their lack of timliness. I tell customers that I am not responsible for the birms caused by the city or county trucks.
    My time frame in my contract is 24 hours after the completion of the snow, but I have never had a customer wait that long. I aim to have residentials done within 8hrs of the snow event.
     
  3. plowking35

    plowking35 2000 Club Member
    from SE CT
    Messages: 2,923

    all driveway customers understand they get done after commercial accounts, if thats a problem, they need to find someone else. How has this worked out, I find AS long as you show up before noon, they understand, and are happy.
    Dino
     
  4. micah79

    micah79 Senior Member
    Messages: 303

    I beg to differ.


    I also don't know what you mean about noon. Snow storms complete at different times.
     
  5. plowking35

    plowking35 2000 Club Member
    from SE CT
    Messages: 2,923

    use your head man,
    I was referring to an overnight snowfall, and I was referring to my customers. You are right, we also get complaints from driveway customers about the last plower not being timely. We make sure they understand that they will be plowed after commercial accounts, but that we will get it done.
    During our blizzard last year, we plowed the drives 3-4 x and everyone of our driveways were completed by 11 pm.
    Dino
     
  6. You guys are along the same line as I was thinking.
    Tell them up front my commercial accounts have to be done first.. then they would come right after that, and any call ins wouldnt be done until i do my regular residentials.....
    I was thinking of a time frame of 7 hours end of storm.
    That brings up another question. If the storm ends at 10 pm, would you waite until mornig for residentials , as not too make any noise at there home dureing the night... hope that isnt a stupid question...
    thanks
    :drinkup:
     
  7. micah79

    micah79 Senior Member
    Messages: 303

    I would definately not wait until morning. You need to plow all night. Most customers prefer to have their drive done by work. This can't always be done, but I would not wait until morning to start. I have never had a customer complain about noise at night. I also use a snow blower to do thier walkway and in front of the garage. I do tell my customers in advance, about the blower and that I do plow at night. They appreciate the fact that I start as soon as possible and I dont think that I wake anybody up.
     
  8. a palustris

    a palustris Member
    Messages: 74

    I personally do not plow snow. The people who I know that plow snow though, if they can they just mix the commercials in with the residentials. So if they are going from 1 commercial to another and there are a few residentials along the way, or in the area they get done at the same time. The ones which are way the heck out there get done last.
     
  9. micah79

    micah79 Senior Member
    Messages: 303

    Plowking35

    Sorry, I wasn't starting trouble with you. I just didn't agree with what you said thats all. Now that you clarified, we are on the same page. :waving:
     
  10. plowking35

    plowking35 2000 Club Member
    from SE CT
    Messages: 2,923

    If the snow stops at 10 pm, finish all the commercials, then start your res route. In our case that means the res route would start at about 4 am and be complete by 7 am. That is a best case scenario, worst case is snow ending at 5-8 am, and by time commercials are done its 10-12 noon, then drives are done.
    The way I look at is like this, in my market I might get 6 res pushes all year, and like 12 commercial pushes, that is why we give commercials priority.
    Dino
     
  11. Jay ALC

    Jay ALC Senior Member
    Messages: 124

    Here all residentials wait till commercial work is done. Period.
     
  12. micah79

    micah79 Senior Member
    Messages: 303

    Well mine don't have to wait and I still get my commercials done on time. There is good money to be made doing residentials, so I'm confused as to why evryone is treating it like side money or a second rate service to commercials. You guys are entitled to your opinion, but I have evidence to support that for me, residentials are worth doing at a high capacity.
     
  13. plowking35

    plowking35 2000 Club Member
    from SE CT
    Messages: 2,923

    Every market is different, and if you are making money at it, so much the better. For me setting up a route and truck for maybe 6 plows a year just isnt worth it. In fact we dropped all our res several years ago. However people hear that you plow, or are referred by commercial customers, and we now have 15 drives that we do. But they all understand that commercials come first. Now if we lived in a market where drives garnered 10-15 or more pushes per year than we would approach it different. Case in point 2 winters ago we had 0 res pushes but still has 10x when we serviced commercials, that is why they get priority.
    Dino
     
  14. With the residentials. I figured when I;m plowing one that is a regular, i may end up doing a few more along the street when they see me there.... extra CASH money...

    :jester:
     
  15. jt5019

    jt5019 Senior Member
    Messages: 853

    Our number one priority is getting the commercial accounts plowed out first.We then tackle all the residential driveways.Yes some people complain , but a lot prefer this because if we come out too early the town plows them back in. Then they have to pay for us to come out again to clean up.Commercial accounts is where you make the most money and its important the business opened up for the workers to get in.The driveways can wait a little but you still have to get there in a reasonable time.
     
  16. micah79

    micah79 Senior Member
    Messages: 303

    jt5019

    Come on. Try to be more objective. It was mentioned earlier that things are different in different markets. I don't think you need to know how much I can make doing driveways, but you would obviously be surprised.

    You may make more doing commercial, but it is not a proven fact that it is always the best money for everyone.payup :cool:
     
  17. Michael F

    Michael F Senior Member
    Messages: 203

    I do things a little different than most on here aparantly, but my veiw is still the same. Commercial is more dollars per account, so if you loose them it can hurt. Residentials if you loose one your not going to starve. I route myself & crew depending on start time. I know what time our commercials open & make sure their done just before, as possible (the one that opens at 6am, maybe done a 4am, one open at 7am completed by 6), I think you get the picture. But if we can start a 2am, I'll do some of our RES, first (2-4am). What I try to avoid is plowing them durring traffic (6:30-9:30am), this can turn a 3 min drive into 30 min. By doing this I think we are giving the commercials better service, as there is less time for new accumulation between completed time & open time.
     
  18. digger242j

    digger242j Senior Member
    Messages: 672

    We have one residential. It's a doctor who has a nasty, steep, skinny driveway. He wants to be out and on his way by 6 am, and he gets salted even if there's only a coating. Essentially, he's paying for the same level of service as a premium commercial account, and he gets the same priority.
     
  19. Pelican

    Pelican 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,075

    I used to sub on commercial accounts and began to get calls from residential work afterward. I used to say the same thing, they'd come after the commercial work was done.

    That only worked for a short while, before long the phone calls were coming asking where I was. I eventually gave up the sub work and developed my own residential route. I've got it condensed enough now that I earn a rate substantially higher than I see posted around this site for commercial work.

    The key to profits in residential is keeping the route tight.
     
  20. Michael F

    Michael F Senior Member
    Messages: 203

    Pelican is absoluty correct about the $ in residential. Keep it tight, the $ is there. It is however hard to get it tight. I have one cul-de-sac where I had 5 drive(now 6) in, my wife timed me one night from start to finish 8 minutes, with out drive time to/from site. Would work out to be nearly triple what most bill hourly on site, not bragging, wish I could do it all night though.