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Seasonal Multiplier (Ohio area)

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Mow Right, Nov 25, 2008.

  1. Mow Right

    Mow Right Junior Member
    Messages: 25

    I was wanting to know if anybody has set up a multiplier for regular plow work. For instance if a driveway is $35 per push, what is a seasonal rate for this? I did a search on this but not much came up, also some people are charging a markup or markdown price with protection clauses in the contracts..

    I understand that this is very area specific, but for the NW area that does not have the lake effect, what is your seasonal multipliers?


    - Josh
  2. theplowmeister

    theplowmeister 2000 Club Member
    from MA
    Messages: 2,515

    over the last 20 years I've averaged 12 storms a season.. so a season price is 10 times the storm rate. That gives the customer a brake and me cash up front.
  3. redman6565

    redman6565 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,411

    for me, i establish my number and i multiply it by 25 full plow trips and 18 clean up runs, but i only do commercial work, no residential...
  4. framer1901

    framer1901 Senior Member
    Messages: 805

    Unfortunately you are asking for insider information gained from experience - doubt you get an honest in your area answer.
  5. Rc2505

    Rc2505 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,245

    Josh, I am also from Northwest Ohio, and I find it nearly impossible to even sell a seasonal contract. Mainly because the weather varies so much here from year to year. We get 10 storms one year, and 3 the next. What you will want to do if you are going to try and sell seasonal contracts, is to start keeping track now, and over the next 4 or 5 years, take the average and then charge accordingly. I just don't think many customers will bite on such a large variable such as snow. Good luck though.
  6. Burkartsplow

    Burkartsplow PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,248

    in cleveland we plowed are residentials 25 times last year and commercials over 30. I would take the price per push and multiply it by 25 and there is your seasonal. I give the option to my customers and they dont take it. they know ohio weather and they could lose out. It seems to me that per push is the way to go here in ohio. they get what they pay for and I get paid for the exact amount of work I do. Now I have a lot of commercial accounts that are seasonal and I do what I did before but multiply by 30 trips. they need a more attention and get my seasonal price. They know what they are paying every month and I have income coming in for sure. The commercials make me the money and the residentials are a secondary income that i use for other things, like a trip to somewhere warm at the end of the season with my girl... good luck:)
  7. hickslawns

    hickslawns Senior Member
    Messages: 613

    I don't think you will be able to sell the seasonal contracts around here easily. It is a risk for both parties with our inconsistent weather. We usually only hit drive ways 4-6 per season. I actually can measure 2". Some of these guys will hit them at an inch and tell the customer it was 2". Hope this helps. I think you would have lost money last year on the seasonal, but the last 6-8 years before that you would have been within a plow or 2 if you bid your 2" seasonal triggers at 5 plows.
  8. MeeksCo

    MeeksCo Senior Member
    Messages: 214

    Instead of offering a season contract, offer a monthly contract. Make it either verbal or on paper.
    Set a trigger and a price per push. At the end of the month, submit an invoice with all the dates/times/inches of snow on the invoice and give them about a week or two to pay. That way they feel secure as you will be there when it snows, and they also feel as if they arent getting screwed if you give them a seasonal at 20 plows and you only have to visit 10 times.
    Another perk is that you can increase the price per push as it is similar to a ''per-push'' service. There is no need for a discount because they are not paying for anything up-front.
  9. 04superduty

    04superduty PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,354

    if you do have people that want a seasonal contract make sure that you have a blizzard clause in it.
  10. KGRlandscapeing

    KGRlandscapeing 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,660

    Aaron why she makes lots of cash right let her pay for you. one day ill get a rich girl friend well first i gotta get hot then i gotta get some game ahh that seems like alot of work. Anyway here nobody bites at the per push. Funny how this state is. Anyway i have pushd 4 times On my cheapest place already. and its only november
  11. Mow Right

    Mow Right Junior Member
    Messages: 25

    The reason I am trying to get season figures together is for my mowing clients. I want to be able to say, pay me XX and I will mow your yard all summer, plow your drive all winter, and have your yard fertilized. Although for just 1 year this wouldn't be a great thing, but if they are a customer for 5-10 years doing this it will even out, and probably be a benefit to both of us.

    I understand this, I think I could sell season contracts around here because I already do a lot of work for my customers and the plowing will just be an addition onto their contract.

    I think you are plowing so much more due to the lake effect.

    I'm with you completely. I don't want to due any large commercials on a season contract. It would just be nice to guarantee my money with residential customers for mowing/plowing by doing seasonal rates.

    What exactly do you put in this "blizzard clause"?
  12. kootoomootoo

    kootoomootoo Senior Member
    Messages: 144

    I am 60% seasonal.
  13. Mow Right

    Mow Right Junior Member
    Messages: 25

    I am only interested in having residentials on a seasonal contract. So do you use some type of multiplier to figure the customer's rate?

    For instance, if it's a $40 per-push account, would you just figure out that with a 2" trigger you will push it an average of 5 times per year and tell them it is $200?

    Do you have a markup or markdown onto the flat rate beyond averaging? Any blizzard clause in the contract?

    Sorry for all the questions...

    - Josh
  14. kootoomootoo

    kootoomootoo Senior Member
    Messages: 144

    Welcome to the free market economy........$40 x 5 = $200 but in the real world you may get $100. $150 a season (20 pushes) is common here.....but what do you do. I have lost track of how many quotes I gave for 200 ft plus drives at $30-$35 and basically got laughed at.

    Look around..anyone and everyone has a plow on something.
  15. hickslawns

    hickslawns Senior Member
    Messages: 613

    Not sure where you are located, but we do not always get snow. We get some, but not always 2" plus trigger pullers. Maybe 5 a year on average that pull the 2"Trigger.
  16. 04superduty

    04superduty PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,354

    basically that if you get over X amount of snow it is considered a blizzard and you get paid more. that way if you get slammed with a blizzard you dont loose $$ when visiting your clients 4 times in one day.
  17. Mow Right

    Mow Right Junior Member
    Messages: 25

    That's crazy, I don't think it's that bad around here. Maybe it's just my client base, but the few account I do have are pretty long drives, but the lowest price is $30.

    I live near Wapak. So if you have accounts with a 2" trigger and we get 1.5" of snow.. would you plow it anyways or not plow it until we get more snow or it melts?

    That makes sense... so if you have a "blizzard" do you add on the money per push then?
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2008
  18. Elwer Lawn Care

    Elwer Lawn Care PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,495

    I'd plow it if they are not calling for more and weather is staying below freezing.
  19. Mow Right

    Mow Right Junior Member
    Messages: 25

    Bump --- ussmileyflag
  20. mike ward

    mike ward Member
    Messages: 79

    Here is a suggestion for marginal areas. We charge 1 push per month as a retainer and we get that whether it snows or not December thru March. If it snows 3 times we got the retainer plus 2 more plows. This is the program we use for residential driveways.