Number of Clients

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by jrblawncare, Sep 24, 2000.

  1. jrblawncare

    jrblawncare Senior Member
    Messages: 121

    I'm sure there are many factors but what is a safe number of clients to service per event.One man-One truck and about a 15 mile radius.I will be doing mostly residential maybe a few small commercials.I'm trying to come up with a safe number..any ideas?THANKS
  2. thelawnguy

    thelawnguy Addict
    Messages: 1,011

    Sounds like my scenario.

    Well I do 2 commercial lots 100k sq ft total and 30 residentials drives and walks depending on size of storm Im out anywhere from 12-28 hours straight. Includes eats/potty breaks. I just picked up another commercial, should take another 3/4-1 hour so depending on the way the season pans out I may drop a couple driveways. For me this is enough working by myself.

    If you are doing plowing only of driveways, say for your lawn customers figure 4 per hour to be safe, 3 per hour if you need to do walks too. For me this will include travel time.
  3. iowastorm

    iowastorm Senior Member
    Messages: 358

    My opinion is that there probably isn't a magic number. Just try to keep in mind that the more work you take on the less efficient you will become. Much of it factors into how demanding your residential customers are? If it quits snowing at 5am and all of your customers need to be plowed by 6am; can you get them all done? How much travel time between jobs? Figure out how long you are willing to work during a storm and the number of clients you can handle. If you finish your customrs early, chances are you'll pick up other residential customers from just driving around. Other than that, you can always expand the year after.
  4. thelawnguy

    thelawnguy Addict
    Messages: 1,011

    "If it quits snowing at 5am and all of your customers need to be plowed by 6am; can you get them all done? "

    My commercials are all promised completion times, but no promises are made for residentials, it could be 5 am or 8 pm, its the same way with most of the residential plowing guys that I know of. Standard clause for my commercial accounts: "Lot to be cleared by X am Mon-Sat, unless storm still in progress, then a path will be kept clear thruout the day."

    Promising completion times for a $40 account just doesnt seem like it could be profitable if you have to be running around, and limiting your number of clients. Avoid it if possible.
  5. iowastorm

    iowastorm Senior Member
    Messages: 358

    I guess I made that comment thinking of my commercial customers. But let us not get so arrogant that we won't touch residential customers. No matter what they're paying, it's still their hard earned money and they are still paying money for a service. I guarantee that if they're not cleared by a reasonable time, they'll be calling and bugging the heck out of you. Granted, they may not pay as well as a commercial job, but if you agree to clear their driveway, you have to give them the same quality service; period.
  6. Lazer

    Lazer Senior Member
    Messages: 399

    Last year my route had 212 driveways.

    Took 5-7 hours depending on snow depth and moisture content.
  7. BRL

    BRL - Veteran
    Messages: 1,277

    30-42 driveways per hour. How many trucks were you using? I don't do any residential, but doing those kind of numbers sounds like a good racket to get into.
  8. Lazer

    Lazer Senior Member
    Messages: 399

    That's MY truck. My company does 600 residentials or so.

    I figure my guys to do 20-30 drives/hour depending on snow amount/moisture.

    I myself do a few more/hour than that. :)

    PINEISLAND1 Veteran
    Messages: 664

    Holy Smokes!!!

    I wanna be like Lazer!
  10. BRL

    BRL - Veteran
    Messages: 1,277

    One drive every 2 minutes! You must have the monolopy on one huge development, and most of them get plowed. That's great! Around here, probably only 1 in 15-20 residentials gets plowed, so I'd spend more time traveling than plowing. I'll stick to the big lots for now.

    BUSHMASTER Junior Member
    Messages: 25

    i want to make as much money on 40 has mmost make on 100 i just keep pickin them up an dropping the old one day i'll get their. work smarter not harder. rather have 20 good money accounts than 50 so so accounts. its all about the cheeze.
  12. Lazer

    Lazer Senior Member
    Messages: 399

    I don't do any particular development.

    I do market to a limited service area to minimuze travel time.

    Provide good service and you get neighbors.

    When we get a late snow and I'm in a rush, I can maintain 1 drive/munite in most of my route. Quality drops, but everybody's plowed by the time they leave in the a.m. If the neighbors isn't, it's an easy sale next season.
  13. thelawnguy

    thelawnguy Addict
    Messages: 1,011


    In my service area it can take the 2 min avg you do a driveway just to get thru an intersection.

    You must have a separate crew to do the shoveling. Myself, I must either do all the plowing then go back with the sb and shovel or do the whole account at one stop.
  14. John Allin

    John Allin Addict
    Messages: 1,327

    Rick Kier in Syracuse figures 6 minutes per driveway, including travel time. He's generating $165 per hour per truck in revenues (charging 'per push').

    Most of our contracts state (for those that require a promised completion time) that we will get the customer plowed on time "provided enough snow falls to allow us enough time start plowing in time to complete the project".
  15. Lazer

    Lazer Senior Member
    Messages: 399

    That guy would never survive using those practices over here.

    Unless they're huge driveways of executive estates.

    At that rate, he'd have to charge over DOUBLE the going rate here.

    As far as shoveling, that is for commercial only. I actually do 1 lady who pays 200.00 for her drive and 450.00 for her sidewalk.

    [Edited by Lazer on 09-27-2000 at 12:26 AM]
  16. Eric ELM

    Eric ELM Husband, Father, Friend, Mentor, Angel
    from Chicago
    Messages: 239

    Lazer, you da man

    I did 61 big driveways last year, 60 the year before all with in 1 mile and I average 1 every 6 minutes. I thought I was moving, but 1 a minute, wow. Those must be small driveways Lazer. Some of the circle driveways I do are about a block long from the street back out to the street again. These all have a big turnaround area by the garages and are all push offs, which is nice.
  17. Lazer

    Lazer Senior Member
    Messages: 399

    I focus on the 16' x 75' driveways.

    Eric, you saw my plow that allows me to do that production. I have a Patent Pending on that unit, so keep that pic unpublished until further notice, thanks.

    I actually did do over 200 when I only had a 8' back-blade, though, but quality suffered when we had a late snow. While I still COULD do 1/minute, it was sloppy at best and I ONLY did that on rare occations to provide timely service and then clean then up real nice the following night.

    6 minutes for a big driveway is great time. Your time increases exponentially in those drives. Prices don't.

    [Edited by Lazer on 09-27-2000 at 01:14 AM]

    PINEISLAND1 Veteran
    Messages: 664


    That was mean, dropping that line about your plow rig, then just leaving us hangin'!
  19. Doug406

    Doug406 Member
    Messages: 65

    I agree, what is this secret weapon?? Dont worry guys, I think i know who this Lazer is and where he lives, I will start stalking him and get secret photos of secret plow. Keep this post a secret though, o.k.!
  20. snow

    snow Veteran
    Messages: 1,002


    email me with a pict of that plow if possible. i won't tell anyone about it :)., thanks.