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Old topic - young guy needs opinion

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Snowdog22, Oct 23, 2009.

  1. Snowdog22

    Snowdog22 Junior Member
    Messages: 28

    Here is the story, I have been taking care of a truck stop for the last six years. Mowing, snow removal, and other ground work. New owners have purchased it at the beginning of October and now the fun starts. They are from Chicago moved to town of 1800 people in Iowa and have no reason to care who they hire. I went out on the day of the switch over and met with the new manager and worked out a deal for all season care taking an 8% cut over all to get it. Now the guy who is the handyman around there is cutting my legs out from under me telling them he will push snow for $10 an hour less then me and he can do it faster. What do you guys think?? Should I go lower to keep it or just write it off because they could do the same to him and I would be losing more time over it? Thanks
  2. kickin'a

    kickin'a Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 58

    Tell him good luck with it and you wish him well, But before you do it talk to the owners once again and explain you have been doing this for some time and know what your doing, and that it's not feasible for you to do it at this time for what he is offering. Also let him know if it don't work out for him that you would be willing to come back but you will require a sign on bonus to be put back in the order he is in right now. Most of all be professional and corgual with him and don't act cocky, make sure he knows your passionate about his account and don't want to lose it but you still have bills to pay too. Good Luck.
  3. Peterbilt

    Peterbilt Senior Member
    from IA.
    Messages: 745

    My sister lives in Greenfield so I know your area pretty well. The trouble with loosing an account where you are, is that its pretty slim pickings for replacing it with something else. You also have the farmer with a loader tractor to contend with as well.

    You need to prove to the new owner why you are the one they should be hiring. Chances are the handyman doesn't carry snowplowing insurance. I am sure he thinks that his small business insurance is good enough.

    You need to make them understand that a guy with 1 truck isn't the best option for keeping an account of that size open in any type type of conditions. or use the just because hes got a plow on the front of his truck doens't make hime a plow contractor. Hell, I have a lawn mower, that doesn't make me a lawn mowing contractor.

    Something else to think about here is, if this guy is willing to plow for $10 per hour less than you, maybe he's seen your bid? That could also come back to bite you.

    Isn't small town plowing fun?

  4. Bird21

    Bird21 Senior Member
    Messages: 539

    Only you can really answer that question by putting some thought to it.

    Would you still make a profit at $10.00 less an hour on top of the 8% you already took off?

    Could you get some other accounts and utilize your time there and make the same or more profit.

    Remember you lowered your price once, now again they ask? When is the next time they will ask you to bend over???

    I am a firm believer in my service and I know if I am not going to profit then why should I bust my butt and my equipment just to turn dollars. I don't need the practice anymore and by the looks of your equipment you shouldn't either.

    Hope this helps, I am just getting so sick of people using the slow economy to turn down prices and expect quality sercive.
  5. johndeereguy

    johndeereguy Senior Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 158

    I know where you are coming from with this one living and working in a small town. I have a truck stop here as well that has traded hands a few times, and it always worries me to death. I am sure it would be hard to replace it like J said, being out there in no mans land. Go talk to them, explaine the differance in you and a "guy with a truck". But remember sometimes people like this will just go cheep and think its the best way. I have a 3 acre truck stop not to far from me that a guy does for $50. It sucks when these type of people are around. Keep us posted on what happens, but I would sit down with them with your insurance papers, equipment list and refrences and see what happens
  6. LoneCowboy

    LoneCowboy PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,760

    don't cut your price.
    You already did it once and look, here they are back again asking for me.

    cutting your price says two things.
    1. i've been ripping you off before
    2. I'm willing to cut my price even more.

    it's not a good image to send.
    What you should say My price is low to the bone already I'm barely making it as it is (probably true no matter what) and you are getting the best possible deal.

    I do think you need to go in to talk with the people and explain what you do and how you know the property, etc.
    explain how one slip and fall is easily $25,000 in lawyer's fees alone (I think that's the average number BTW) truckers walking back and forth on a lot that hasn't been done........ yeah, draw them a picture that you aren't expensive, you're cheap at twice the price.

    good luck.

    Make sure you bury the handyman's car :angel:
  7. Bruce'sEx

    Bruce'sEx Senior Member
    Messages: 873

    This handy man works for their company? or this someone else. if he's working for them, just remind them snow work is done mostly at night, and if he's not plowing other places you really think he's going to show up all the time? Your out doing more then just them, your going to be there, thats the business you are in.
  8. jimspro

    jimspro Senior Member
    Messages: 200

    i wouldn't cut my price, i'll bet the guy doesn't have insurance, or more than 1 truck if it breaks down in the middle of the storm, also like the other guy said, if he works for him during the day, how is he able to plow at night and still work a 8 hr shift during the day, if the money is the only thing they are looking at, i would try to find someone else, trust me, you may find a better deal elsewhere
  9. hydro_37

    hydro_37 PlowSite Veteran
    from iowa
    Messages: 3,790

    All great answers.
    Just make it clear to the new owners that you have been plowing it and are there to do it when needed.
    Maybe have the old owner contact the new people for a reference?