1. Welcome to PlowSite. Notice a fresh look and new features? It’s now easier to share photos and videos, find popular topics fast, and enjoy expanded user profiles. If you have any questions, click HELP at the top or bottom of any page, or send an email to help@plowsite.com. We welcome your feedback.

    Dismiss Notice

To Big of a Commercial Bite?

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by sdplowing, Jul 19, 2007.

  1. sdplowing

    sdplowing Senior Member
    Messages: 108

    I've been doing residential plowing for the last 7 years, last year was on my own. A new hotel is being built near me with a 110 space lot. I'm not sure about other details such as sidewalks and what not because the building is not yet completed. My question is, would this be too much for a first time commercial? I have a 3/4 ton with an 8' plow, a lawn tractor I could clear walkways with. I don't have a spreader yet, but I would get one. Any input would be appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Sean
     
  2. sdplowing

    sdplowing Senior Member
    Messages: 108

    So I take it this was a bad question.:confused:
     
  3. bribrius

    bribrius PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,609

    naa. never hurts to try.

    you may not get the contract anyway. i would worry about it if and when you get it.

    if you do i imagine you will be sub ing out most of your residentials? most likley you would also be subbing part of the hotel complex work. they will most likley want the snow hauled away a couple times a year to prevent big piles. may also want the tar scraped down by a grader or loader type set up so its down to the bare tar. worry about it if you get it. then put the pieces together.
    depending on what it pays this could be the opportunity to buy some more equipment.
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2007
  4. QuadPlower

    QuadPlower PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,056

    110 spaces is not that big. You should be able to do it with your equipment. But depending on what it you figure to get paid, I would get a back up truck.

    Is there a place to put the snow or would you have to haul it away? Most hotels are not full all the time. You could put in the bid/contract that you will use up some corner somewhere to pile snow.

    Let us know if you can actually bid it. Start now finding out who will be managing it and if they are looking to bid it out.
     
  5. JohnnyU

    JohnnyU 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,040

    That's BAD advice.

    You should plan everything out before submitting the bid to them. Everything from equipment required (under all storm conditions), salt/deicer required, sidewalks/doorways, etc. All of this should be planned before you submit the bid in the even that you do win the contract.

    How do you plan to clean in between cars if some are left in the parking lot, surely they wont let you leave the snow in those spots.... There is quite a bit to think about here.
     
  6. sdplowing

    sdplowing Senior Member
    Messages: 108

    Thanks for the advice, I didn't even think about things like that. Maybe I'll start with something a little smaller and less complex.:drinkup:
     
  7. bribrius

    bribrius PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,609

    naa. if you want the job bid the job. you have up until they decide you have the job until the snow flies to plan it out in detail. chances are if you dont have something you need you can buy it, rent it, lease it, or find a sub who does have it. im not saying you shouldnt think about the job. you have to plan out how much your going to bid and talk to them to find out what is expected. i wouldnt just walk away from it though because you fear you cant find a way to do it. check on insurance. some require three million, some five million etc. also have them clearly explain to you what they expect and you clearly explain what you will do . and see it in writing. then bid knowing what problems you may encounter THAT YOU WILL WORK AROUND AND FIND SOLUTIONS TOO.. your going to scare the guy johnnyu. its a parking lot with snow and with seven years residential im pretty sure he can figure it out.
     
  8. JohnnyU

    JohnnyU 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,040

    I'm not trying to scare anyone, I'm just offering him another bit of advice. Have you ever plowed a Hotel/Motel? They can be a major pain in the butt, especially if their lot is laid out as poorly as most and are busy at all. They're typically not something to try to conquer as your first commercial endeavor.

    That said, I didn't tell him not to bid it, I encourage people to expand their businesses and grow with the market, however it is important to know what to expect and be prepared for anything. Based on most hotels/motels around here, I would plan on having two trucks, either a couple blowers or a quad for sidewalks and some type of equipment (skid steer or small loader) for emergencies. I only mention this because he may not have thought about all of the what-if's.
     
  9. scottL

    scottL PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,600

    Back up plow truck or contact another plower and work out a back up deal in case you break down. Salter will be needed. Depending upon sidewalks get a blower and save your back.

    110 stalls is no big deal as long as you can budget your time with your other accounts. Set expectations up front and you should be cool.
     
  10. sdplowing

    sdplowing Senior Member
    Messages: 108

    Would it be possible to tackle this myself? As of now I only have a handfull of drives that I plow. I have a blower and/or a lawn tractor that I could put a blower on. If I did win this bid, would it be too much to take on more residential accounts without adding another truck? What I would really like to know is how long it would take to clear the lot and walkways? I know you guys can't give an exact number, but any guesses? All the info I have is a hotel set on a 3 acre lot with 110 parking spaces.

    Thanks,
    Sean

    P.S. This heat SUCKS A$$!
     
  11. JohnnyU

    JohnnyU 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,040

    It's definitely within your time frame, it may even be within grasp. I was simply suggesting that you look at this thing from every angle, considering the absolute worst case. Where I am located, we usually get 5-7 storms usually in the 3-6" average accumulation range. This past season we ended up with two 10" plus storms plus some major blowing and drifting. I ended up subcontracting a a buddy with a Caterpillar IT-28 just to clear some of the accounts with 3-6' drifts.

    This doesn't happen every year, but it easily could. All I'm saying its that you need to be prepared for anything when jumping to the commercial level.
     
  12. ADLAWNCUTTERS

    ADLAWNCUTTERS Senior Member
    Messages: 212

    110 car spots is no biggie . You can do that with your truck while it's warming up before you start your route.