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Build shop at your house, or remote location?

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by StormRanger, Nov 9, 2010.

  1. StormRanger

    StormRanger Member
    from NorEast
    Messages: 72

    Im just curious where most of you have your shops, and maybe some pro's con's of where to have it. I plan on building a 6 car pole barn/shop, but im not sure if I want to buy a small lot to keep everything on, salt bin, mulch bin, equipment trailers, or just have it all at my house.
    House would be nice, so if I have to work on anything, I can walk outside and work on it, plus I can keep an eye on everything.

    Curious where your shop is, and why?
  2. bskiball

    bskiball Member
    Messages: 64

    Right now everything is at my house with off season items stored at my Dads barn. Looking for a shop though so when I get home I can feel like work is done. Outgrowing my space at home anyways. If you are self employed you are most likely work all the time and I think off site shop would force me to slow down a little. Good luck.
  3. espyj

    espyj Member
    Messages: 53

    I'm going through this dilemna right now. I'm limited to a 1500 sq ft pole barn at my personal house. I also currently rent an office for my real estate/property management business. I'm thinking about getting a commercial building with a small office + shop + parking lot and combining my lawn care/snow removal & real estate businesses at one location.
  4. Lugnut

    Lugnut Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    Depends on your business size. If you have alot of employees, do you really want them all coming to your house everyday? Do you want the guy who didn't work out, that you had to let go after 2 weeks knowing where you live?

    If you are a smaller operation with a few employees it is nice to have everything at your house if you have the room and don't have zoning issues to worry about, I am actually planning to build a 60x40 shop on some property I am purchasing with an existing house, putting an apartment above the shop for myself and renting out the existing house. In time I will demo the house and build for myself in its current location, and using the space above the shop for an office/climate controlled storage/maybe a pool table and man room type thing.
  5. BlackIrish

    BlackIrish Senior Member
    Messages: 902

    If I could I'd live beside my shop. There are pros and cons to both but on site security is priceless.
  6. RLM

    RLM PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,270

    My shop is next to my house. My question to those who's aren't, when you recieve a service call for say salting, how do you handle it.
    My salt bin is right here so I just load & go. If my shop wasn't here, I'd have to go somewhere else, which would dramadicly increase responce time. Using bagged it wouldn't be as big an issue, but with bulk it is.
  7. Rc2505

    Rc2505 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,245

    I currently rent a shop less than a mile from my house. That being said I am looking for some property out in the country so I can consolidate everything to one location. Last October I went to my shop to find it had been broken into. For my regular warm weather work I install medical equipment, and it uses stainless steel tubing for it's operation. I lost 125,000 dollars worth of equipment, tools, and supplies. My insurance found a loop hole and paid less than 50,000 back. So I figure I have paid for one shop already, and still have to pay for another as I move it all to one property, where it will be secured by smith and wesson, ruger, and winchester.
  8. BillyRgn

    BillyRgn Senior Member
    Messages: 728

    I also have a shop less than a mile from my house, takes 5 minutes to get to and I don't have to look at the equipment and trucks all the time, it Is in a short dead end street one way in one way out, it is a commercial/industrial use condo. We have tons of cameras and several tenants so there is usually someone around
  9. OC&D

    OC&D PlowSite Veteran
    from Earth
    Messages: 3,064

    I'm a one man band now, so I just work out of my garage with a single truck. I have a buddy where I can get bulk salt, so that's not an issue.

    The one thing I will add about running your business out of your home is that you might want to check with the city/municipality to be sure that you won't have any issues. Even in the country, on acreage you can have problems. I had a good friend that built a 40'x80' shop for his cabinet business on his 20 acre lot where his house was. It was fine for a couple of years until someone bought the parcel next to him and built a house on it. They went squealing to the township because they didn't like the UPS trucks and whatnot stopping in every day, and the township made him move his operation. Zoning and neighbors can give you some real headaches. Check this out before you invest any money either at home, or buying/leasing other land and buildings, otherwise, you may end up like my buddy, who had $150,000 wrapped up in a nice shop that he got a total of 2 years use out of, and now it's a glorified storage shed.
  10. RLM

    RLM PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,270

    That is a good point OC & D, for us were in an ag district, 5 acre lot min. Nothing but farm fields for neighbors, we have already talked to the farmers that own the street basiclly, they have no intention of selling, we told them to see us if they are going to sell, we will buy the acreage because it will be cheaper than buying a shop in the city (both in taxes & purchase price), but their actually buying more land every year.
    My loader (3 yd machine) looks like a toy compared to their stuff, there latest tractor is a New Holland ???, art 8 wheel (1 of the 4 they own), they had their backhoe (Case 580) next to it, the hood of the tractor was taller than the roof of the backhoe:dizzy:. Insane stuff. There are contractors working out of every other house in my area, the town seems cool with it & everyone pretty much minds there own business.
  11. Brian Young

    Brian Young PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,394

    LOL we were just talking about this tonight. I've been back and forth since 2003. At first I only had 1 truck, a 6x12 open trailer and things were fine at home.....now, I have wayyyy too much stuff, some is at a 12x35 storage location, some is in my moving garage (24ft enclosed trailer) and some is at the house. Its a friggen mess everywhere. Luckily my neighbors are all single women who could care less. We were going to move last spring but there was nothing out there that fit our budget or space we need so we are waiting for this spring. If you have enough room at your house I would say stay put, I hate renting anything! Some places are over 1k per month for a crappy 30'x30' garage, I would rather put that into a mortgage.
  12. Metro Lawn

    Metro Lawn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,306

    To those of you that run out of your house. You need to check the zoning of your property. If it is residential, you run a risk of investing in building a shop ect to only be shut down by the city or county for running a business in a residential area. I had the city inspector basically stake out my house watching for us to come or go so that they could bust us. I have a shop I rent down the road about 2 miles now, but it sucked back then.
  13. Metro Lawn

    Metro Lawn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,306

    I bring my truck home with me and keep it loaded in case of a call. We use all liquid, so I do not have to worry about it sitting in the truck as it does not freeze or get hard.
  14. MSS Mow

    MSS Mow Senior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 983

    I work outa my 32x48' garage at home. No zoning restrictions here thankfully. I wish my house was closer to my work though, as it gets to be a long trip to get back to get sand in the middle of the night. That's why my place is for sale so I can move into town (still rural for most of you folks out there).
  15. JD Dave

    JD Dave PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,194

    I think it depends how large your operation is. I love my shop at home but if I had 20 employees or more I think I'd rather it be somewhere else.
  16. 01lariat

    01lariat Member
    Messages: 96

    Mine sits across the road from my folks. It was really convenient for my father. I live just a half mile away, so it is convenient for me yet.
  17. weekendwrench

    weekendwrench Senior Member
    Messages: 126

    I just stared renting a shop away from my home this past summer. I got tired of having trailers and equipment from one end of my yard to another. All I can say is my house garage, storage garage, and shed have never been cleaner. I love it.

    The lack of tools at home takes some getting used to, but it just forces me to keep my messes at the shop. I also have to say that my shop is 2 miles from my house so the convenience factor is still there. I am almost thinking of buying an old office trailer so I can move my office there or at least have office capabilities there.
  18. Philbilly2

    Philbilly2 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,797

    As stated many times, depends on your size. I worked out of my house with no shop for a long time, now I have trucks and skiddys and attachements and trailers and tools and it is just to much. If I had the space right now, I would put up a building on my property, but for now, I have a shop on the other side of the tracks in town. Not ideal, but it works.

    The only problem that is causes, is my wife likes me around the house at night. Well, night is the time that I need to be spending working on equipment fixing the stuff that gets broke so it can go back out the next day. So as of now to keep the storm calm, I have left my most of my tools at the house so I just bring what needs to be fixed home and wrench on it at the house.
  19. maelawncare

    maelawncare Senior Member
    Messages: 871

    Thats what im running into. I am looking for a shop in town, i only live 1mile out of town. But i dont like all my employees, 4 of them, coming to my house everyday. And im sure my neighbors dont like it either. I have a 30x40' shop with a 18' leantwo off to on side next to my house. Its only 30' away so real nice. I am thinking of finding a small office with about a 1 car garage type in town. So all my guys can go there and then i bring my stuff home at the end of the day to work on in my shop.
  20. plowatnight

    plowatnight Senior Member
    from Mn
    Messages: 305

    Home, Added on after I started out, It's not big enough but it never could be so it is adequate. The thing is, it really is a matter of cost like any other investment. The more you have , the more you have to work or have your work, worked (by others) to make the nut. You can't take it with you so I hope you really enjoy the headache that goes with the lifestyle for those very short years you walk on this earth.