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Am I in the ball park?

Discussion in 'Bidding & Estimating' started by BGehl, Nov 12, 2010.

  1. BGehl

    BGehl Member
    Messages: 89

    Hey guys,

    I have been doing about 25 residentials for a couple years now and have been doing fine with it. This year one of my resi's asked me to do his storage unit property.

    I have read several threads on storage units so i feel like i have a good idea of what i'd be tackling. But somehow it always seems a little different when it is your own account.

    I have a F-250 with a 7.5 western on it. I am considering adding wings if i can justify the cost. I am in a buffalo ny suburb.

    It is a 100 unit property. I think this link works, let me know if not: http://maps.google.com/maps?q=821+B...code_result&ct=title&resnum=1&ved=0CBMQ8gEwAA . The larger unit on the right has been extended almost twice as far back toward the little creek that runs in the back.

    It would be a 3 or 4 inch trigger. And he said don't worry about getting too close to the doors. The tenants are responsible for opening that up. There is a lot of room at the back of the property for stacking etc. And they said that in real bad years they have had to bring larger equipment to move piles and he would pay for that if we need it.

    The guy used to plow it himself but is sick and cant handle it. He said it took him about an hour to an hour and a half per plow. I know you guys have talked about looking at how much you make an hour and then base your per push rate off that. Because i have only ever done resi's I am having a little trouble making the jump. But here are my numbers, do i look to be in the ball park?

    I expect to plow about 20 times with a 4 inch trigger with 1.5 hrs per push. So i was thinking $2500 for the year. that would break down to $125 per push. They don't want salt and like i mentioned they would handle the cost of any other equipment.

    Am i too low? Too high? Let me know if you have any other questions.
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2010
  2. BGehl

    BGehl Member
    Messages: 89

    Does any body have some feedback on this? Any thoughts would be appreciated.
  3. TCLA

    TCLA 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,707

    Get the wings. You'll spend less time chasing your discharge.

    That's not a large or difficult facility. The building on the right is twice the size now? That's a competitive number I would think....it's certainly not high. Plan on 1.5-2 hours per push if your minimum depth is 4".

    Good luck to you!
  4. BGehl

    BGehl Member
    Messages: 89

    Yeah that other building is just about twice as big. My local plow shop will charge $400 for the wings, installed. Is that a good price? Any hints on a cheaper set? I can't find any that are available on craigslist.
  5. TCLA

    TCLA 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,707

    Tell them you'll give 'em 350.
  6. BGehl

    BGehl Member
    Messages: 89

    Well i just got back from talking with that customer. We were pretty far apart on our numbers.

    Before i told him my number he said he had one in mind. He was thinking $600 for the whole year !! Yikes! I told him my base rate for a drive is 300, and that place is way more than two drives!!

    I told him my number and how i got there and he started coming around. We settled at $90 a plow for the year which i think is pretty fair.

    What do you guys think? Is this a good comprimise or should i have stuck to my guns?
  7. Mick76

    Mick76 2000 Club Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 2,157

    $90 a plow and its going to take you 1.5-2 hours? So your going to average 45-60 per hour. I wouldn't do it for that price but too each his own.
  8. swtiih

    swtiih PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,179

    So if I have done my math correctly 20 plows @ $90 per time = 1800 for the season.
    300 for drives on your current route. I say pick up 6 more driveways it will be less wear and tear on your truck. 6 driveways x 300 = 1800 for the season.
    For me 90 is to low but I don't know the rates in your area.
  9. TCLA

    TCLA 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,707

    Well, since you asked.......

    Should of stuck to your guns.
  10. mtnzone

    mtnzone Member
    Messages: 82

    been reading this , and since I dont know your rates in the area, but spent alot of time in that part of new york and have an idea of your snowfall. I think $90 is selling yourself way short. Question does te $90 include opening it up and cleanup after??
  11. BGehl

    BGehl Member
    Messages: 89

    Thanks for all the feedback. It is really helpful to think this through with you all.

    I think you guys are right, I am giving this guy a real good deal. But i think i am going to do it for him anyway. I'll give the reasons, but don't think i am arguing, I do agree that my price is low.

    1. He is not picky about what time it is open by. I don't really have room on my route for more driveways so i have reached my ceiling in that regard. But i can hit this after my driveways are finished, so it is money i would not be making otherwise.

    2. I do not need to worry about opening up and clean-up. Except for in heavy snows where more than one push is needed just to handle the volume, I only have to come once. If i were a customer there, that would really tick me off, but that is how he runs his operation.

    3. I probably don't have the ideal equipment or the most experience. Many of you have mentioned that these factors play into your price, and they are not in my favor in either case.

    4. I guess i am a softy. He is a young guy who has been a good customer. Now he has MS and will probably be in a wheelchair for the rest of his life. I know other peoples problems should not change my price, but i dont mind helping somebody out.

    I know i am probably opening myself up for some criticism. But that is how i came to my decision.
  12. linycctitan

    linycctitan Senior Member
    Messages: 588

    As you said earlier, he used to do it himself so it's not like you are lowballing someone else off of the job. If you are comfortable with what you are making to do it, and it is revenue that you wouldn't otherwise have the opportunity to bring in, then I say congrats and best wishes. I do agree that other peoples problems should not affect what you would charge, but there are exceptions to the rule, and this seems to be a sensible one.
  13. Wayne Volz

    Wayne Volz Senior Member
    Messages: 694


    I think the 120 was too low personally. I guess the best thing to ask yourself is what is it costing you per hour to plow 4" of snow? If you are not sure, check out a snow plowing estimator we have available. It takes the guess work out of your bidding. Then when the negotiations begin you know how low you can go if you want to go in that direction.

    Good luck either way.
  14. ToledoSteve

    ToledoSteve Junior Member
    Messages: 5

    Amen! Pay it Forward... It will all come back in the end.
  15. TDR Plow

    TDR Plow Junior Member
    Messages: 12

    Business Karma. Know it, understand it, live it!
  16. pongow26

    pongow26 Senior Member
    Messages: 153