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starting a new business

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by adam5557, Feb 27, 2005.

  1. adam5557

    adam5557 Member
    Messages: 88

    Hey I am a 15 year old just getting into the great business of snowplowing. I am going to start out with residential driveways and will have my license by next year , so will be all set.Being my first year i am just going to use my snowblower and can normally do a driveway in under 20min unless 8+inches of snow. What are your reccomendations of how many accounts i should limit myself to ,but i am thinking in the range of 20.Also what is the best way for me to get these accounts..should i use flyers or what?I am just looking for the best way.Any help is greatly appreciated.thanks
  2. johntwist

    johntwist Senior Member
    Messages: 415

    How many accounts you take on is up to you to decide based on a few things. First, where they are and how long each will take. Some guys have 20 accounts that are fairly easy jobs and close to each other so they can easily cover them all even in a big storm. Others may have only 10, but that's because they may be bigger jobs and/or farther away from each other. Remember, when you're looking at jobs off season it seems like it may take only a few minutes to get from one to another. That's a different story when you're driving in a snow storm and what was a 10 minute drive now takes a half hour.

    In terms of advertising, I think most people throw flyers away without even reading them. Most people are notorious for not paying attention to advertising until they NEED the service. So, that being said I'll tell you what I do and you can make your own decisions. I have some magnetic signs for my truck, cost me about $140 bucks for 3 of them and they've paid for themselves already. I take an add out in the local "free" community paper. $100 for December to March, that's also paid for itself. Last, some business cards. Staples will do 1,000 for about 15 bucks. Then rely on word of mouth and be patient. If you want to be more aggressive, advertise in the brochures of any clubs you belong to or even your church if you're religious. Realtors are another good place to try, they manage lots of properties and always need snow removal. Never hurts to stop in and drop a few cards.

    Good luck.
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2005
  3. Underdog1

    Underdog1 Junior Member
    Messages: 17

    i had the same idea at the begining of this season and so far i have done well. me and a buddy shoveled driveways in town for about 30bucks a piece. midway through the season i bought a plow and needless to say...its been going much faster.

    we initially planned on taking on about 20 driveways within an 8mile radius of each other. we couldnt land that many jobs our first season but were sure glad because removing snow is a lot of work when your doing it by hand.

    you need to take in to consideration....how far apart are the jobs? if they are too far apart it will take a long time to get from job to job, especially in the snow. Also consider the time it takes you to unload the snowblower...it doesnt sound like it makes much a difference but when you do it 20 times a storm...it ads up.

    Also....a lot of my clients want me to have thier driveways clear so that they can go to work in the morning...if your going to school your going to have to blow 20driveways a dry off before you get to school?

    you definately have the right idea....just be sure you dont take on more than you can handle. keep up the good work!
  4. wstwind

    wstwind Senior Member
    Messages: 103

    In Minnesota, anyone under the age of 18 cannot legally operate a plow truck for commercial service. Check our local laws and regs. also you may run into insurance problems due to your age. standard vehicle insurance as well as a general liability coverage for your business. Any contract for service must have adequate insurance coverage. GOOD LUCK!!!
  5. Mower For Less

    Mower For Less Senior Member
    Messages: 108

    Maybe he could hire somebody over 18 to drive the truck and run the blower. ;)

  6. Ken1zk

    Ken1zk Senior Member
    Messages: 193

    Here in New York I got a quote for my 16 year old son :dizzy:
    I'd have to sell a truck to pay for the insurance :cry: