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help, i want to start.

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by mustangsrmine, Jan 23, 2008.

  1. mustangsrmine

    mustangsrmine Junior Member
    Messages: 12

    hey everyone your help will be greatly appreciated.

    im thinking about getting a plow truck for next season since this one is almost over and im not really sure where to start and i want to know how hard it would be for me to go out on my own with my own plow and salter or if i should look to working for some one instead. thanks again.
  2. toby4492

    toby4492 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,513

    Welcome to Plowsite. :waving:

    Nice to see another Hartford member.

    You will find loads of information here it's a great site.
  3. jkiser96

    jkiser96 Senior Member
    Messages: 401

    I started out subbing to people which helps you get a feel for the business. After a few years if you feel comfortable with the risk then go for it but remember low-balling will get you a bad reputation with most plowers.
  4. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    I'd say go whichever way you feel comfortable with. There's a lot to be said for starting working for someone else, but you really can't get the idea until you're out there on your own. I've never worked for anyone else. Just read as much as you can about technique, insurance and types of equipment before you make too big a jump. I'd really suggest starting out with an fairly reliable used 4wd pickup (1/2, but preferably 3/4 ton) and a 7.5' or 8' plow. For the plow, I'd go new - you can switch it to another vehicle, but used plows are usually just someone else's junk. Wait on the sander/salter until you determine the demand for it; then you want to figure what's best for you situatioin - tailgate or Vbox model; Single or two - stage; Gas, electric or hydraulic.
  5. Brant'sLawnCare

    Brant'sLawnCare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,756

    Yeah, if you do start on your own next year, let me know, and give me your number, because I got a few calls from Hartford area that I turned down for plowing. I try not to go over there for plowing. Good luck with whatever you end up doing. Any questions, just ask me, I'll be glad to help.
  6. mustangsrmine

    mustangsrmine Junior Member
    Messages: 12

    thanks for the help so far. i kinda have a plow set up my dad is gonna let use his old truck with a western but it needs some work its a 73 i think 3/4 ton. my truck is a 99 f-250 7.3L and im not sure if i should bother putting a plow on my daily driver. my other big fear or concern is contracts & ins. im not sure how 2 do the plowing with out getting cheated out of money
  7. mustangsrmine

    mustangsrmine Junior Member
    Messages: 12

    is ther any reason why you dont plow in hartford?
  8. Brant'sLawnCare

    Brant'sLawnCare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,756

    Basically I don't really need to go over there to plow just driveways. I have around 12 to do in West Bend. Plus this is my first year, and I only have 1 truck for now. So, driving over to Hartford to plow a $40 driveway isn't really worth it when you factor in gas cost for driving a half an hour over there and back. Know what I mean? If it was commercial, it would be different, but I only had 2 people call me from over in that area. Next year I'm planning on getting another truck, so, we'll see how that goes. I hope I can stick by West Bend.
  9. mustangsrmine

    mustangsrmine Junior Member
    Messages: 12

    Oh ok i was just wondering because next year would be my first year to that is if i get everything figured out. Now do you have contracts and ins. or how does all of that work? thanks
  10. Brant'sLawnCare

    Brant'sLawnCare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,756

    Yes, I have contracts per say. I didn't have anybody sign a contract, but that's because I've done business with most everyone of my customers and I haven't had any problems with them paying. I would suggest making up a contract for new customers though. I will be for new customers.

    I also have insurance, both for my business and truck. The truck is under commercial insurance and the business is covered up to $1,000,000 with a maximum payout of $2mil. This all costs around $80/month. Not too bad of a cost. Plus I feel real confident with my agent. That's the part that matters most.
  11. mustangsrmine

    mustangsrmine Junior Member
    Messages: 12

  12. Brant'sLawnCare

    Brant'sLawnCare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,756

  13. gene gls

    gene gls PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 481

    Now would be a good time to get a truck and plow. You will still get a few storms to pratice on. You need some play time to figure out just what to do and how to go about plowing before you offically start. I praticed for a whole winter before I offically started plowing. Every storm is a learning experance, one way or another, even after 12 years. You will need to decide what you will be plowing to start with. If you plan on small driveways, then a Jeep with a 7' plow would be best. If your going to do larger driveways then a 3/4 ton truck and a 8' V plow will be better. As you plow bigger areas, you need a truck with more weight to be able to roll the snow with out the snow pushing the front end away from the windrow. I would not recomend taking any commerical properties your first year. Commericals are a different ball game, most need sand/salt and strictor requirements for service.
  14. ChevKid03

    ChevKid03 Senior Member
    Messages: 505

    I can both agree and disagree with Gene... It would absolutely be a good time to get a truck and plow if you wish to start practicing, however, I think prices will be a little steeper too. Trucks and plows are in demand right now and that would only make them cost more. You could probably save a few grand waiting until late spring or early summer.

    I just started out this year doing residentials. It all depends on what you plan to do. I used to plow parking lots with a 96 F350 with the powerstroke. It wasn't my business and I just worked for the guy, so I knew nothing of his contracts. It's a whole different ball game doing driveways. It's more difficult finding places to put the snow.

    It also depends on whether or not your plan on making a living doing this too... I found a VERY good deal on a barely used plow and bought it on a whim to put on my everyday driver just to do driveways. I ended up doing family first just to start out and get used to the truck/plow setup. Then, I got a few regulars to do after that. I also made sure that I didn't low ball either, I'm not going to sacrafice my daily driver for a few extra bucks.

    Whatever you do, take your time, know where your plowing and be good to your truck and it will be good to you.

    Goodluck!! :drinkup: