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A Quick Introduction (the Longish Version)

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by mafesto, Dec 6, 2010.

  1. mafesto

    mafesto Junior Member
    Messages: 15

    Hello everyone.

    Well, after lurking around this site for a while, and spending way too much time on here (I think it’s almost an addiction sometimes), I feel it’s time to introduce myself to the plowsite universe.

    A little about myself:
    My name is Warren. I’m in the Oakville area. I’m in my late 30’s, and I started my lawn/snow maintenance business in the spring of 2007. I spent a year working with, and being mentored by, a good friend during the 2006 season, and he’s been doing this stuff since the ‘80’s. It’s been amazing to have someone who I can talk to for advice.

    I’ve mainly focused on residential properties. I have 2 Toro Snow Commanders and one full-time helper. We’ve been doing about 40 driveways / season over the last few years. I was using an old Explorer and a utility trailer.

    This year, I took an opportunity to buy out another small business. It included a plow truck and 8 driveway contracts, already signed and ready to go. The truck is a '96 GMC 1500 (214000km/133000miles) with a Meyer 7.5. The money I make from the new contracts covers about 60% of the cost to buy everything. It seemed like an effective way to get into plowing.

    I felt that a plow would be useful because we were beating up our Toros (and ourselves) too much if it was wet heavy snow, or when we came back to clear the windrow after the town plow did the streets. I’m going to be using a combination of blowing and plowing this year to see if that helps with our efficiency.

    Yes, like most people, I have pretty lofty dreams of where I’d like to take this business, but I’m not in a rush to bite off more than I can chew either. I’ve already turned down an offer to quote a church parking lot. I didn’t feel confident that I could service it properly, yet.

    We’re debt free and working on building our reputation, I want to do this right.

    Thanks for listening to me ramble ;)

  2. 06dmax

    06dmax Member
    Messages: 67

    sounds like you got a pretty good plan and have a stable base of operations
  3. T.French

    T.French Member
    Messages: 45

    Hi Warren.Sounds like you are starting the right way.Welcome to Plowsite.Be Safe and have a GREAT winter.
  4. First off Good Luck to you! Sounds like you have a pretty good idea and plan of what you would like to do with your business. You did not mention insurance in your post so unsure if you have it or not, but at a minimum you should probably have Commercial Auto Insurance and General liablity insurance. Since you mentioned that you have an employee, you may need workers comp insurance also. You will find that these things can get quite pricey, and eat a good portion of your profit margin,especially when just trying to gain a foothold in your local industry. I'm not trying to discourage you, but I know that my first couple of years got tight and even had me wondering if it was worth it, untill I was able to acquire additional equipment to take on a larger variety and also better paying jobs. Keep a good work ethic, stay motivated, do quality work and don't promise things you can't deliver and things will work out for you I hope!
  5. mafesto

    mafesto Junior Member
    Messages: 15

    Hi Guys,

    Thanks for your kind words, and yes, I've put a lot of thought into where I want to take this business. I plan on being here for a while, and have set a lot of things up that'll help me grow once the economy picks up.

    NPMinc, in response to you about insurance, yes. I have a contractors policy and worker's compensation. I appreciate the question though. I didn't think of mentioning insurance until after I had already posted.

    I'm also super strict about safety gear too. This stuff isn't worth getting hurt over.
  6. JohnnyRoyale

    JohnnyRoyale 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,935

    Hey Warren, Welcome to Plowsite!
    Join us on the Canadian Weather Thread.
  7. warren, sounds like you are have covered your bases quite well! Wish ya the best of luck!