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Did I charge too much?

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by 91dodge, Dec 23, 2010.

  1. 91dodge

    91dodge Junior Member
    from Utah
    Messages: 5

    I am new to the industry and realize that my time and use of my equipment shouldn't be cheap nor should I low ball since I pride myself on performing quality work like the majority on this site.

    Here's the situation a company calls me after a huge storm hits and lands 14 inches of snow, now their protocol in the past is to wait until its bad to have their lot plowed and when it snows 2 to 4 inches they drive on it and hope it melts which it usually does in a week or two. The lot is about 1 acre in size and is L shaped with obstacle's to plow around and also has a sidewalk that is about 6ft wide and 300 ft long. This is the first time I have plowed it and it took me about 1.5 hours to get it cleaned up because the snow was a little heavy, if plowed in a normal situation 6" say it would take about 20 min. to plow and 15 min to hit the walks. I charged them $200 for this push and would normally charge $100 but do to their lack of not wanting to contract with me and use the cheapest person available I felt that this was a fair price. Found out today he couldn't believe I gouged him for that much and now wonder if I was a little high on my price?
  2. bighornjd

    bighornjd Senior Member
    Messages: 249

    I would have done it for $25.

    j/k. I won't say if that is high or not, but regardless of price the guy sounds like a cheap bast@rd. Anybody who lets a lot get that bad before plowing or lets cars drive over it for a week while it melts is just plain cheap. I wouldn't even do an account like that but that's just me. Explain it to him like this. He could have paid you $100 twice, but instead he's paying $200 once. You moved twice the amount of snow, took twice as much time, and put twice as much wear and tear on your equipment. This is a good example of where written contracts with trigger amounts come in handy. I see your new here. Welcome to the site. I suggest doing a lot of reading on here as there is a lot of good info to learn from and it seems as though you could stand to learn some from others rather than the hard way. Good luck!
  3. 91dodge

    91dodge Junior Member
    from Utah
    Messages: 5

    Thanks Bighorn thats what I told his secretary EXACTLY what you said and she said this is how he always does the snow removal I was feeling a little guilty for charging him so much since it was a side job for the day and after he said I gouged him. Guilts gone now and I will learn as I go but this site does offer some really valuable advice!
  4. blizzardsnow

    blizzardsnow Member
    Messages: 83

    Never apologize for making a profit. 1.5hrs should have been real close to 200 bucks. I'd say you were fair.

    STIHL GUY Senior Member
    from CT
    Messages: 663

    well your $200 richer and dont have to worry about dealing with that pita/cheap owner anymore
  6. MahonLawnCare

    MahonLawnCare Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 852

    you were fair. retards posting on craigslist have ruined the pricing perception of the avg. person
  7. mycirus

    mycirus Senior Member
    from Mass
    Messages: 589

    If you are so much, then where is the last guy that did it who was probably cheaper?

    REAPER 2000 Club Member
    from 60050
    Messages: 2,230

    You can plow almost a acre in 20 mins?

    Thats pretty fast and 15 to do a 300' walk? Please show me the way.

    The price sounds fair if that is the actual size of the lot. Real measurements help justify cost to a owner at times. Maybe not this guy but most owners realize some work goes into clearing snow. I would stay away if it is that much of a pain to do for him.
    Plowing brings enough grief without guys who think they can do it better or cheaper but are paying you to do it.
  9. jdilliplane1

    jdilliplane1 Senior Member
    Messages: 110

    it was fair. I try to aim my pricing around a 100/hr, so don't feel bad. He sounds like a cheap ass, so let him call someone cheaper next time
  10. plowman4life

    plowman4life Senior Member
    Messages: 557

    dont feel guilty for charging what you are worth. around here 14" of snow on 1 acre especally b/c it was an after the storm non contract job plus sidewalks. would have been $275+ COD.

    and if you dont know COD its Cash on delivery. meaning cash upon the completion of services.
  11. thelettuceman

    thelettuceman PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,218

    Yes, That Was A Fair Price. Agree With All Of The Above
  12. vt properties

    vt properties Senior Member
    from vermont
    Messages: 194

    You were very fair on pricing...generally I aim for 100 per hour of plowing...i'm not sure how you can plow a acre in 20 min in a pickup, I wouldn't stress one bit about it, this client seems doesn't care about snow removal whatsoever .
  13. wideout

    wideout Senior Member
    from iowa
    Messages: 727

    Thats $133 an hour! i would say if you in a truck your high imo!
  14. vt properties

    vt properties Senior Member
    from vermont
    Messages: 194

    I believe ther is quite a bit of sidewalk involved, and I erred in my previous post as sidewalks are definatly a extra charge. For 300' of walk 6' wide would be around 40-45 to shovel.
  15. wideout

    wideout Senior Member
    from iowa
    Messages: 727

    I agree there is an extra charge for walks and that's a big one but it still seems high! Maybe in your area that's the going rate to do that I guess but if I charged that much where I'm at I wouldn't get a call to do it again.
  16. dforbes

    dforbes Senior Member
    Messages: 247

    I would have charged double that. I know the guy bitched, but now he thinks your willing to come in after the end of the big storms and plow for $200. 14 inches of snow is hard on equiptment. He will call you next time he gets dumped on.
  17. jasonz

    jasonz Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    suppose you broke something while plowing and you did it for $100 would it still seem worth it. I he feels its unfair let him find someone else to do it cheaper (and he will) but customers like that are not worth the headache. I remember doing driveways with my bobcat and I passed this one guys house 3 times and each time I went by the price went up because the snow kept piling up, and he couldn't understand why it was more money.
  18. Lsanzerr

    Lsanzerr Junior Member
    Messages: 18

    I with Jason, 14 inch is a lot of wear and tear on your equipment. In the long run any customer that looks for the lowest price usually you dont want as a customer in the first place. 200.00 was very fair, personally I think you cut him a break. Don't thin twice about it. An honest days pay for a good job.
  19. Wayne Volz

    Wayne Volz Senior Member
    Messages: 694

    Forget you ever met him

    I would forget his name and number. 200 dollars for 14 inches of snow on any size lot is too cheap in my opinion. Then you add 300 feet by 6 feet or 1800 square feet of walks with 14 inches of snow thrown in for free? I realize you did not say you did the walks for free, but in reality I think you left money on the table.

    Good luck but I would not work for him again.

    Don't forget why we all do this and it is not to for FUN!
  20. ontario026

    ontario026 Senior Member
    Messages: 228

    Keep in mind I do about 32 residential drives and 4 small lots, but no salting. no walks and 2" trigger normally average close to $125 per hour..... my 1 per push lot is probably only 1/3 acre and there is no way I would only push it after 14" accumulation... I know my trigger is 2", but if we had 14" of snow in a single event (I guess depending on time frame) it would get pushed probably 3 times... for a total of almost $150.... but if someone wanted me to come in and do the same lot with 14" of snow on it, you'd be sure I'd be probably atleast $200 to compensate for the extra beating on equipment!