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It's your business

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by IMAGE, Jan 30, 2009.

  1. IMAGE

    IMAGE Sponsor
    Messages: 1,747

    I want to clear something up for the people on here who seem to not know who runs thier business.

    YOU DO!!

    Now repeat to yourself

    "I am the business owner, and I set my prices. My prices are fair, and I do a good job. I make sure to fulfull my contract obligations. I will not let the customer set my price, or require me to work free. The customer and I have a service agreement that they signed in november, and I will not lower my price now just because they asked. I also will not do free work such as ice scraping or free salting because it costs me real money and the customer is tying to take advantage of me. If I let them, they will continue, instead, I will inform them its an extra charge, because it is not included in the prices we agreed on last fall."

    Seriously, I see so many posts on here that are people asking what to do because the customer asked them to work for free, that i get sick. Remember, its your business, dont let someone take advantage of you. Property managers usually are the worst, they know what they are doing, and they have a fresh stream of newbies every year to take advantage of. They will set the trigger high, or request it "on call" or "when authorized", they will want a "per push" price, with no increase when the ****(snow) gets deep, and they will want all the compacted snow/ice from other 'under trigger' events cleaned up also when you come out for a normal service. When you accept thier cheap terms you have effectively made yourself an employee, and they will take advantage of you.

    So please repeat the above statement, and remember that its YOUR BUSINESS, and YOUR PRICES on YOUR TERMS. You can decline work, you can drop customers, you can manage your business yourself. Dont let the customer do it.

    Rant Over
  2. coldcoffee

    coldcoffee Senior Member
    Messages: 776

    LOL...great post :drinkup:

    Quick story:

    This morning I wake up draggin butt, because we had a good storm yesterday, about a foot of new snow. Ten minutes later I get a call from an account, stating the GM would like me to come in some time today so I could do them a favor, but no hurry. I figured I better just get moving, so I go outside to warm up the truck. Few minutes later there's a knock at the door...who the hell is that? I answer, and it's a guy from a development up the road, His next door neighbor is a good client who's yard I built. He lives in a 450K home the cheapest one in the development, my clients is about 750K. He landscaped his own yard and it shows. He's always trying to pick my brain for free advise on his yard. He's a really nice guy, but about the cheapest sob that I have ever met in my life, it's a joke around his neighborhood and from his wife. He was almost begging me to come and plow his drive out because he got stuck good this morning, mind you I helped him out 2 years ago for the same problem. I told him then, I'll do it this one time provided you never ask me to do it again...he agreed (because I don't do residential). Later that summer, I ran into him at the store and he bragged to me how he only had to plow one more time that season...I had smoke coming out of my ears! He starts to reach for his wallet and says "I see you already have your truck running, let me just pay you now". I asked when was the last time your drive was plowed? He said, it hasn't been plowed yet this year. WTF? I said "put your wallet away, I'll look at it when I get back...the truck's warming up for an important client, it's how I earn my living". So...I stopped by like I said I would and couldn't believe the mess...no markers, a curved drive, can't push it forward, can't push it across the road...might get stuck just backing in. I started thinking about the new tranny that I had put in last week and the rear u joint that needs replaced now along with one going in a front wheel. I like helping people out when I can, and I have a hard time saying no sometimes...I like to think that it's good karma, I guess. The next question that I usually ask myself is, would they do the same for me? The answer came as fast, without hesitation. I proceeded to write a long "so sorry I can't help you" note. The pen was almost going through the paper half way through writing, because I was getting angry as I was writing. I was nice though and made a few suggestions about who to call about bringing in the right equipment. Chances are, he will find some poor new guy to buy his song and dance...and I will probably get a call about a truck stuck in the middle of the drive. I'm guessing he had to be pretty desperate to ask me anyway, as I was probably his last hope...serves him right! I know he's too cheap to pay for a loader, I won't even offer. Last time I was going to do it for nothing...just because, but he insulted me w/ $20, which I'm sure he thinks is all he's going to pay this time. We now have the potential for an even bigger storm in just a few days...I'm guessing he might not have it resolved in time. Whatever happens, I'll get some picks maybe after the next storm or if I get that call about the guy who gets stuck...this is goona get good!

    OK...not a quick story...I lied :p
  3. augerandblade

    augerandblade PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,054

    tymusic:gunsfiring:Image Im with you on that one.
  4. elite1msmith

    elite1msmith 2000 Club Member
    from chicago
    Messages: 2,762

  5. HALH VT

    HALH VT Senior Member
    from Vermont
    Messages: 128

    Only one answer to that . HEAVY EQUIPMENT. The biggest heaviest thing you can find to rent or subcontract. Full summertime earthmoving rates. Client accepts ALL damage.
  6. Mick

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

    Or someone on the Internet you haven't even met.
  7. QuadPlower

    QuadPlower PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,056

    IMAGE, when you said "YOU DO!!" were you saying that everyone on PS runs your business? If so, where's my cut. LOL

    I hear ya. Everyone seems to forget that they have a contract with the customer. If they don't then its their own fault. Re-negotiate in the off season.

    Very rarely does a customer come up to me and say, "I know we agreed on a seasonal rate, but it has snowed way too much. Here is an additional $100 and from now on bill me per time."
  8. ford550

    ford550 Senior Member
    Messages: 407

    Amen IMAGE......