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Need some input on how much to charge

Discussion in 'Bidding & Estimating' started by madskier1986, Aug 11, 2012.

  1. madskier1986

    madskier1986 Senior Member
    Messages: 113

    This is my second year plowing and I want to throw a bid in for one of my new commercial clients I picked up this year for other seasonal work. I honestly don't even know how long the lot would take me to clear and how much salt that I would need to throw down.

    The parking lot for my client is fairly simple. It is just under 27,000 sq ft, has only one entrance/exit from the main road, only a small sidewalk to shovel, and the main part of the parking lot is 160 by 145 with one light pole in the center of the lot. (must push the snow the 160 length as there is connecting parking lots.

    What is the going rate for a lot like this? My equipment is a 8-2 vee plow with wings, and I guess that it would take me an hour to plow and salt. Not sure though. I think I would structure the contact either seasonal or per event. And salt is a flat fee per application.

    For the salt, I can get it by the ton at about 72 per ton from the supplier by my warehouse. Would I even need a ton, or can i get by with a half ton?

    Any info would be helpful.

  2. Camden

    Camden PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,604

    Here's my best guess without actually seeing it...Your setup should allow you to plow about an acre an hour. The lot you describe is about 2/3 of an acre. So I think you're on the mark when you say that it'll take you an hour total to plow/salt/shovel. As far as salt use is concerned, I think most people agree that 800-900 per acre is standard. Good luck.
  3. madskier1986

    madskier1986 Senior Member
    Messages: 113

    Thank you, sounds like I am right on track. And the salt info is a huge help. Last year I was using salt by the bag for my two small commercial lots and can't wait to jump up to a salter. Just needed the job to warrant the buy. I am attaching a photo for reference. And thanks again. Parking Lot.jpg

    Parking Lot.jpg
  4. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    Is lot fenced in ? If not,looks like you'll need to take everything to the back.Hopefully the other guys won;t be trying to push snow into each others lot.
  5. madskier1986

    madskier1986 Senior Member
    Messages: 113

    I am lucky there. The lot is not fenced. And for pushing the snow, you are right in that it would need to be pushed to the back. Does that mean I need to push it a few times if a major storm? like a storm of 6 inches and higher.
  6. Mick76

    Mick76 2000 Club Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 2,157

    Hopefully you have the bigger truck.....;)

    In terms of what to charge, you have to figure out your hourly cost of doing business... no one can tell you what to charge as everyones CODB is different and profit margins are different.. I'll post a link to a calc that will help you find out your costs tomorrow once I'm in my office
  7. Rc2505

    Rc2505 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,245

    Make sure your the first guy on site. Otherwise your going to get stuck with the spill over from the other two lots. I hate doing shared lots without fences.
  8. Mick76

    Mick76 2000 Club Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 2,157

  9. Wayne Volz

    Wayne Volz Senior Member
    Messages: 694

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  10. madskier1986

    madskier1986 Senior Member
    Messages: 113

    Thanks for that link. I need to play with it a little more and I can see how it compares to what I figured from the start. What kind of truck would you recommend using? Only have to push the snow about 165 feet a billion of times. (I think that is the distance i said earlier).

    And I hope I am the first one, as it would be second on my route because how close it is to my warehouse.