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bidding commercial lot for dedicated plow truck with no accumulation and salt

Discussion in 'Bidding & Estimating' started by Bean5912, Mar 18, 2014.

  1. Bean5912

    Bean5912 Junior Member
    Messages: 10

    hi guys, i looked through the forum and couldnt really find what i was looking for. i am just starting to get into the commercial aspect of the business and have received my first request for a hotel parking lot that requires a dedicated truck to plow the entire duration of the storm ( no accumulation to the best of ability). How would i price a job where we could get 2" of snow in one hour, or a foot of snow over 24 hrs? also i saw mention of a "retainer" for dedicated trucks.

    how would i charge for salt for this situation as well... would i just provide a normal price like i would for a season for residential? ( price x expected visits per season) i am in upstate NY. i appreciate any and all of your time.
  2. fatheadon1

    fatheadon1 Senior Member
    Messages: 406

    time and material put and hourly rate on the truck and salt per ton or bag applied
  3. andersman02

    andersman02 Senior Member
    Messages: 756

    Wow that is going to rack up some $$

    Only way I'd do this is hourly w/ materials. Yes I'd add in a retainer. Ive never bid this type of deal but that's how i'd do it.
  4. SnowGuy73

    SnowGuy73 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 24,870

    Agreed. Should be fun!
  5. bhmjwp

    bhmjwp Senior Member
    from kcmo
    Messages: 309

    Brings back memories. Plowed a lot of years and have run into this before. Let me say that is what they want but can not afford. 1 st problem is the hourly rate will make them laugh. Times that by 12 hours or more in some storms and away we go. I had a commercial request this, after the first billing they went nuts. Glad I did not wait and do monthly invoicing.

    I would give them a seasonal or per push every so many inches, and explain the dedicated plow problem.

    But what ever you bid, just remember how demanding they will be and factor into price.

    I had one hotel that paid their help $8 an hour max. Fired me, bought a truck with plow, hired me back after their employee's hit 5 or 6 cars and his insurance rates went nuts.
  6. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    Yes find out first if this is a new request or if they did it before,then go from there.
  7. maxwellp

    maxwellp PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,123

    That would be the only account you will need.
    T & M or 30K for the season.
  8. rjm06590

    rjm06590 Member
    from de
    Messages: 56

    The company I sub for has a few very large commercial accounts set up this way. They charge roughly $140 an hour per truck, $220 for skid or hoe. I've gotten 12 hours for small 3" storms with two other trucks, 3 back hoes and a skid steer on site.
  9. Flawless440

    Flawless440 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,543

    Is this place big?
    Price per push 2-4" price 4-8"price
    Per salt drop.

    If the place is under 2 hourz to push. Dont need a truck on site. .

    Sounds like problems to me
  10. Bean5912

    Bean5912 Junior Member
    Messages: 10

    anndd the landscaping season ripped me away from the topic lol..The place isnt crazy big but they require a vblade , cars cant be blocked in etc etc. The property owner said he never does contracts. It snows ,you bill, he pays.. i have been doing landscaping work like this with him because of his reputation ( a man of integrity and pays his bills and keeps his word ) and i havent had issues with payment, but that is landscaping, snow and ice is a whole new world... its a hotel with a restaurant attached to the side of it. if we had one big storm there is no way i would be able to tend to the property and others without accumulations building and getting screamed at, not to mention the tedious task of walkways and around cars.
  11. Buswell Forest

    Buswell Forest PlowSite.com Addict
    from NH
    Messages: 1,668

    Then try your best to discuss the terms via email, and back them up to the cloud so you can't lose them...and hire a man to run a truck- either there or on the other accounts.
    If you have done work for the man, and you trust him, it sounds like you can make some bank here.
    But don't bid to get the job..bid to make money. Sounds like hourly plus materials is the only way to do it.
  12. Bean5912

    Bean5912 Junior Member
    Messages: 10

    Right , the problem
    Is basically he wants a price per event with no accumulation, not a seasonal price. He wants zero accumulation during the duration of a storm which means there really is no way to take on any other accounts for that property. I'm
    Not gonna go buy a truck and hope it snows to make my money back. Just didn't know if this is something you guys with more commercial experience have run into. It's not like I can go plow at 3"
    And come back for another few inches. This is a 3 hour or so job every few inches .
  13. 90plow

    90plow Senior Member
    Messages: 739

    There's zero tolerance and then there's what I call keeping the lot open.
    If it snows 6" over 8 hours for example. I plow the main roads through the place and keep entrance ways open as well as walks. Say for 6" it's $100 to plow and $200 per salt app. I charge them $100 once for the plowing. Then every time a salt app. Is needed they pay $200 and that covers plowing the entrances and roads as well as salt. Works for me on smaller stuff might work for you in this situation. Never had a complaint yet.
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2014
  14. cet

    cet PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,257

    If you are putting 1 truck in there it will have to have accumulation. At what point do you start plowing? You can't start at 1/2" so you will have some snow on the ground. Even if you pre salt there will always be snow. That is an impossible request.
  15. Whiffyspark

    Whiffyspark 2000 Club Member
    from SOMD
    Messages: 2,403

    Sub contractor...
  16. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,251

    Listen to this guy.

    Pretty sure the guy doesn't really understand what he wants.

    Listen to this guy too.
  17. maxwellp

    maxwellp PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,123

    This could be a big money maker or a big pain. Put it all down in a contract. If they sign it Bill it after each storm. I don't think they understand what this will cost. Depending on your hourly rate a storm that would be say 3 inches would cost 2-3 hundred. Could instead cost $1500-$2000 because the you have a truck siting on site. Do they really want a 0 tolerance? As for me I would not do it, if they bailed after a few snows because of cost I would be screwed for the rest of the winter. I would give them a per push price with a 2" trigger. If they did not like that send them to the competition.
  18. Defcon 5

    Defcon 5 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,923

    That's a Red Flag to me......Why is he looking for a new Snow Removal

    Contractor???......What happened to the company that serviced this account last year???......

    What size of place are we talking aboot here???.....Please don't say average size....Measure the site...You need to explain to this man with integrity that dedicating a truck to his site is going to be costly...
  19. 1olddogtwo

    1olddogtwo PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,174

    Crazy contracts are out there. We have a couple that require sidewalk crews on site 2-3 hours before it snows salting. EQM must be running one hour before snow as well as salted when the 1st flake falls.

    They pay dearly but this is what they want.
  20. Bean5912

    Bean5912 Junior Member
    Messages: 10

    The previous contractor is a large
    Company around here, I was servicing his family members over the winter with plowing and even the 2 owners homes. The owner of the hotel told
    Me the guy did a ****** job ( which I could clearly see when I did a wall around in march for landscaping stuff) but I heard that the guy is a hassle to deal with that's why the current contractor left, not fired. They are very demanding and don't like to spend money ( they are cheap Americans, not foreigners lol). I had a bout the other day over some landscaping stuff because I gave the guy a proposal for a seasonal contrCt , landscaping and snow and ice mgmt. he picks the contrCt apart and calls me to do things and expects me to drop
    What I'm
    Doing . I don't know how long I will keep this because I am
    Not too
    Comfortable with no contracts. Especially plowing. It's just a good
    Paying account and centrally located and a very high profile property that gives me a lot of exposure.