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Just checking my prices..

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by godjwood, Jan 3, 2011.

  1. godjwood

    godjwood Member
    from ri
    Messages: 31


    I am from new england and just started plowing last year. I did a lot of research on this site and talking to people. Last year we mailed all of our landscaping customers and put up some yard signs got about 35 customers.

    I based my pricing at about $40 minimum per drive up to 6", 6-9 was 40% more, and 9.1-12 was 40% on top of that.

    This year, we picked up about another ten, lost another ten. I am pretty sure we are charging a lot more than others in the area.

    But now that I already set all the prices, I am starting to realize that my pricing doesnt realy make sense. For example, if you plow someones driveway 2x at 6", that means they will pay $40+40= $80. However, if we dont get to them until we have 12", that means they are usually paying about $75. Shouldn't they be paying less if we only have to come once?

    So I was thinking about adjusting that. Also I have come to realize that driveways that have the garage directly at teh end that you have to backdrag definately suck and should be priced higher. They take at least twice as long then one you can just push the snow to the end.

    Lastly, I think we should start "cleaning up". just clearing the end of the driveway. I should not be charging full price when we are just clearing the end of the driveway. Hmm maybe if we show up and thats all we do it should be $30. And if we have to plow the whole drive should be the normal price.

    Brainstorming a bit here I suppose, feedback? tx
  2. hydro_37

    hydro_37 PlowSite Veteran
    from iowa
    Messages: 3,790

    almost all drives we do..the garage is at the end.....backdragging is part of the game
    cleanng the end is free...unless the customer calls and wants it done "now"... thne we chage a nominal fee
  3. KEC Maintaince

    KEC Maintaince Senior Member
    from N.J.
    Messages: 265

    if you start charging too much they will get some one else.
    nickle and diming customers they will get some one else.
    keep your customers happy and take care of them they will keep you. its not worth losing a customer over 40 bucks you will make it up in the long run.
    yes if they want it done now charge accordingly but see how they work out in your schedule.
    are they elderly people< are they people with kids are they people who will be coming and going in the snow . base it upon these principles.
    the elderly people i do i do as much as possible what if there is an emengency and they have to get an ambulance in to get some one out i dont want no one falling to get to the patients.
    so if i do them 3x i may only charge for 2 . in the end it makes you look good and seniors have a lot of friends
  4. LB1234

    LB1234 Member
    Messages: 91

    we figure everything into time...not per driveway. One of our "driveways" is over three hundred feet long up a hill and is shared by three customers (its an easement)...where other driveways are lucky to fit there car plus a few feet front and back.

    with that said, I bill my storms out in five inch increments...1-5, 6-10, 11-15 and 15+ and <1. For residents I figure one pass for five inch storms, two for 6-10, and so on. the 15 plus are billed per pass along with the less than one inch. the less than one inch requires a phone call. The way I price is basically factor in travel time to and fro plus time to perform the job...that is my 1-5 price. I then take the time to perform the job and add to the 6-10 & 11-15. I don't simply do a percentage. Its based on time to perform the job.
  5. bristolturf

    bristolturf Senior Member
    Messages: 435

    like kec said, you need to really base the amount of pushes on based on the clientel. We discuss with them what there working scheduel is like. If they are out the door by 9am and not back until 7pm well then we make it a point that by no later than 8am a truck is there and by 6pm a truck is there. Just let it build up during the day. For someone who isnt working such as an elderly person we will visit more, but usually adjust out pricing for them somewhat. Same with on the weekends, plow slightly more but adjust the pricing.

    As far as cleaning up the driveway enterances. We include it as a seperate charge, and put it in the quote. We will make sure its clear when we leave after the last plow. Based on when we plowed it, we will come back again and clean up the enterance for a minimal charge usually 15$ or something like that. This is completely optional. If they dont want this service, we dont provide it or if they decide that they want it done as needed then its a $20 charge for that.

    Garages do so but they are a part of the job. unless its a real PITA account where snow pushing is very limited (One place where we have to push it to the end of the drive then get out and use the snow blowers to throw it into the back yard) we will charge more.

    The one thing i recommend is some sort of pricing structure past 12" Theres a good thread in another section basically about a guy that got dumped on with like 22" of snow and didnt have any precautions for snow totals after 12" and is stuck plowing that. We too had a storm christmas day that dumped like 12-14inches in some spots in about 3 or 4 hours over night. I know some guys will say after 12" its x amount per inch after. There may be a time you show up to someones house especially if its been snowing all day and there could be 18" on the ground. It would suck to only get $72 for that push. You dont need to charge and astronomical amount maybe only $10 per inch after 12 inches.