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Well.... when you put it like that.

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by MJay, Dec 25, 2010.

  1. MJay

    MJay Member
    Messages: 58

    New customer was surprised that I charge per 4"push, expected to pay same amount no matter storm total.
    I asked whether he mowed his lawn once the grass grew a certain height, or waited until the end of summer and mowed the total height grown.
    "Well...when you put it like that."

    Interested to hear how you put it.

    Good luck guys. Make money, and come home safe.
     
  2. Camden

    Camden PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,598

    I do one price no matter how much falls. The simplified pricing has gained me ALL of my major accounts.
     
  3. cubicinches

    cubicinches PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,412

    Same here... One price.
     
  4. RLM

    RLM PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,270

    We charge per push here (or seasonal), it is simple, we push it is that amount per push plow with the storm whenever possible. If we cant keep up & we have 6 inches or more shame on us we eat the extra time. BTW in 15 years we havent been asked to (or I dont recall) doing a quote per storm or per inch, its a regional thing I think.
     
  5. Rc2505

    Rc2505 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,245

    I agree with RLM. Around here for the past 10 years or so, everyone wanted a per inch, or per stom price. I refused to do that this year, and actually landed 6 new contracts. I do everything by the push now with a 2 inch trigger. I never take advantage of the customer, and only push at 2 inches or more. If it's going to be a 3 inch event, I only go once at the end, but if they are calling for 4 inches or more, then it will be at least 2 pushes.
     
  6. dayexco

    dayexco Senior Member
    Messages: 312

    depends on the customer. some need 24 hr access, and want bare pavement the whole time. those i try to push towards seasonal so there is no argument during the billing on how much time was on site. have some customers that won't have to be open until 6 a.m....some factories, etc...and they want to pay to push once, they don't want us in there 3-4 times during the storm...we wait until done, or just before open time...hit it with the loaders/pushers...couple of pickups with plows...get it done.
     
  7. cubicinches

    cubicinches PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,412

    We don't offer that option... If they want to wait, and expect us to plow 18 inches, they can find someone else.
     
  8. thelettuceman

    thelettuceman PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,216

    I have two prices: One for snow and one for a blizzard as determined by The National Weather Service. TNWS is a neutral body between me and the customer. My customers understand that if TNWS says it's a blizzard, they have to pay the higher price. I have seen contracts that are so confusing, I can understand why the customer complains. I am not criticizing you. You should run your business the way you want. I am just throwing my ideas out there.
     
  9. dayexco

    dayexco Senior Member
    Messages: 312

    we have the capability of handling the 18"...or considerably more for that matter, and charge them accordingly...maybe we're the type of contractor they call when others give up?
     
  10. cubicinches

    cubicinches PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,412

    Do you have a lot of guys give up in your area?

    We've never given up, we just leave the per push customers who only want to pay once per 18" event to heroes like yourself. :waving:
     
  11. Camden

    Camden PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,598

    x2 I'd never let one of my lots pile up with that much snow :dizzy:
     
  12. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    Per storm and per push pricing is very different. Need to make sure the customer understands. I always did my stuff per storm. More than 12 inches I would maybe charge 1 1/2 storms. Three plus visits charge for two.

    Blizzard conditions don't really have much to do with snowfall amounts.
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2010
  13. dayexco

    dayexco Senior Member
    Messages: 312

    i truly don't see where "hero" enters into this picture? some of our customers, want the property plowed once the snow is done. they're not keen on the idea of paying for multiple pushes on an ongoing snowfall, and i'm not keen on justifying how many trips we made there. properties like that, it's far easier for us to bring in the loaders and loaders w/pushers, and just get it done.

    as far as what they want to pay for....they are "the" customer. it would be in my best interest to accommodate their wishes as quickly, and as economically as i can for them. it appears, different contractors approach their plowing different than others do, huh?
     
  14. cubicinches

    cubicinches PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,412

    Positively they do... Which was the point of my original post in which I merely stated that we don't offer the option of waiting until the end of a major storm... To which, I believe, your reply insinuated that we were giving up. No?
     
  15. EvenCutLawnCare

    EvenCutLawnCare Senior Member
    Messages: 207

    Do you not offer that option because you are not equipped to do so?

    I cater to the desires of my customers. We have a couple very large factories that are closed fri-sun. If it snow 18" over the weekend we go sunday night and clean it. We charge hourly so it makes no difference to me how its done
     
  16. RLM

    RLM PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,270

    To you guys that wait for the snow to pile up, what happens if there is an emergency, fire, etc. If it happens it would be intresting to explain to insurance co. Our fire marshalls would have a fit here. Even buildings that are seasonal here (we do a YMCA camp) require acess for emg. equip. We are fully equiped with wheel loaders, skidsteers & V plows on most trucks, but waaaaay to much can go wrong pushing that much snow, stuff gets hidden under the snow pack, snow settle out & get very heavy, pushers can get overloaded quickly. What Im getting at is we can & have handled it with out incident, when we have to, if conditions are so bad we have to wait out a storm, which I have done. With the liabilities involved we prefer not to & will not take on an account that has those stipulations on a regular basis though. There are so many inherant liabilities in the industry....why on earth would you want to create more.
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2010
  17. cubicinches

    cubicinches PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,412

    Nope

    We're in an area which is very prone to high accumulations of lake effect. We deal with large accumulation often. As was stated earlier, we only have one price per visit, so we don't allow a per push customer to dictate that we don't plow until the end of any specific event. Under our pricing structure, which is the norm for our area, customers like that are only looking to pay less. If they don't like our policy, they can move on. I've never lost a wink of sleep over not getting a customer that is looking for the cheapest way out at my expense. In an area where 2"-4" per hour accumulations are not uncommon, we don't sit around waiting for it to end.

    It doesn't matter if you're plowing with loaders and 20' push boxes, or S10 pickups and 6' blades... 18"+ of snow is tougher on equipment, and consumes more time. If we billed hourly, maybe we'd do it differently... but we don't.
     
  18. cubicinches

    cubicinches PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,412

    All excellent points. These too, are all considerations which weigh into our policy of not waiting.
     
  19. dayexco

    dayexco Senior Member
    Messages: 312

    i can send a pickup/blade over to those sites, if necessary, make a blast in, blast out to keep any fire lane open if/when required/necessary. i'm curious, you within your contract....hold yourself liable for an act of God? what happens were you NOT able to because of high winds, snow fall, ...and prevent you from getting into the facility or plowing it for that matter, and a fire broke out? the property owner, fire marshall coming after you? i think i'd have an attorney review those provisions within your contract. personally, i'd refuse to assume that liability.
     
  20. EvenCutLawnCare

    EvenCutLawnCare Senior Member
    Messages: 207


    Very good points. We rarely see an 18" storm around here. I didn't mention this but we do keep driving lanes open at these properties, we just don't plow the parking areas until they are needed. Its better for us to utilize our resources elsewhere during the storm and clean them up later on.