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Opinions on bid

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by rider1000, Mar 6, 2001.

  1. rider1000

    rider1000 Junior Member
    Messages: 3

    Tell me what you think guys.
    This goes with a seasonal contract mowing/snow removal.
    1.Parking lot #1 69 X 92= 6,348 sq.ft.
    2.Parking lot #2 179 X 150= 26,850 sq.ft.
    3. Dock 79 X 163= 12,877 sq. ft.
    4. Drive 39 X 135= 5265 sq. ft.
    plus some sidewalks figure 5 hrs. to clear?

    Bid 2" - $310.00
    2-4" - $511.50
    4-6" - $682.00
    over6" - $852.50 plus salt & magic open P.O.

    am I close?? appreciate opinions
  2. Eric ELM

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

    Most of the plowers that do lots are out plowing or have been and are probably wore out and not posting. I only do residential big driveways, but from what I have read here, the lots are where the big money is at. Going by that, I feel you are not charging enough on this bid. I make over 4 times that amount in 6 hours just doing my 61 res. driveways and you said that would take you 5 hours. A minumum 2 inches of snow would only be $60 an hour at this rate. Either lots are not as good of money makers as some say or you are way under what you should charge.

    I noticed your other post about nobody answering your post, so I thought I would give you my 2 cents worth and bring this up to the top again.
  3. DanG

    DanG Senior Member
    Messages: 240


    I can't see where it should take you that long to do it.

    Five hours seems awful long to do that little work.
    How many feet of walks are you talking about?
    Are they next to the lot edges? If they are you can just drive down them with the plow to clear them.

    Are they are all located near each other?

    It's just about an acre of plowing when you add them all together and if they're all easy flat lots I could see maybe 1 hr to 1 1/2hr do them plus the salting.

    Here most storms are in the middle-upper end of your price ranges as far as the amount of snow say 4-6" @ $682.00 even if you took 2hrs to do it it would be around $350.00 an hr.

    And I know I can plow an acre alot faster then I can mow an acre.
    I don't know of anyone who gets that to mow an acre(I wish I did). :)

    If I did I'd be rich .


    D.G. Enterprises
  4. earth works inc.

    earth works inc. Member
    Messages: 37

    Rider: being close to you somewhat, i would say if you think this is going to take you 5 hours to plow then i would say you are a little low.

    i average any where from $100 to $150 per hour. personally, i wouldnt go below 100 per hour.

    as to 5 hours plowing it depends on the site conditions. would there be alot of vehicals left in the lot at night. does the loading dock area need to be back dragged. etc.etc.

    i would bump it up a little. also price the sidewalks seperatly. most of the times we will clear sidewalks on less than 1 inch. Dont forget the SALT.

    OBRYANMAINT PlowSite.com Veteran
    from ohio
    Messages: 534

    i agree with dan you have a little over 1 acre of lot which can be done in an hour or so with up to 4" the walks you do not mention amounts ....all lot areas here for me would never go for more than 200.00

    walkways .... need more specific info

    overall to me seems a little steep but what kind of mowing is involved? that may also have an effect on plow rates if it is a year round contract

    [Edited by OBRYANMAINT on 03-08-2001 at 10:52 PM]

    PINEISLAND1 PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 664

    Since things are so regionally specific in this line of work, I will give you an idea of our area only. I would compare this to another facility I do thats about 50,000 sq. ft. It is a 2-3 truck hours job up to about six inches. I bid everything here around $125 per hour, and find I am high compared to most of the competition, by a lot sometimes.

    My preference would be to get a seasonal price on this, based on average number of events at the trigger depth they request. Multiply by the time you estimate it will take each event, add some for an oops factor, and you have a bid. Usually I offer a small prepayment savings, like 5 %, and get them to pay me the whole shot by November 15.

    So, here that would be a $4000-$5000 annual bid, at 2 inches, for the lots. Sign a three year contract, and your all set.

    I couldn't comment on the sidewalk pricing, since I dont do any of that here.

    If I tried to do that bid here on a per plow basis, my hourly wage would take a hit. They just wouldn't pay $500-$800 per plow, unless it was a big company that was national, not local.
  7. dmk395

    dmk395 Junior Member
    Messages: 19

    So eric can you do 61 res. drives in 5 hours by yourself, or with help?
  8. TLS

    TLS PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,425


    Why the odd numbers in your quotes? Were you figuring a certain $ per hour? 5hrs to clear when?....2 inches or over 6? Forgot your area, but many have said this before, go for at least $150 per hour. Also, what if you get 2 inches of snow, do you charge $310.00 or $511.50? The $511.50 should be rounded up to $525 and so on. No one wants to see that 511.50, too exact sounding. I am not good at looking at #s and seeing it in my head. Those are some big jumps between 4 and 6 inches! Maybe try a 2-4...5-7...8-10...11 and up priced according to storm. How about those sidewalks? Enough of them for a blower? Or just a shovel? I guess there just isnt enough info for us to guestimate for you, but you are on the right track.
  9. Eric ELM

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

    In my post I said 6 hours, that is with a guy running my JD 430 to clean up small areas. I have done them all with just the truck, but it takes 7 hours and probably not quite as good of a job done either. ;)

    They are all with in a 1/2 mile radius, so they are close.
  10. iowastorm

    iowastorm Senior Member
    Messages: 358


    Rather than to throw numbers back into your face, I'll simply ask you: If you get the contract, will the numbers that you've bid make you profitable? Do your numbers take into account your overhead (rent/insurance/phone/taxes/etc.) and for other expenditures (de-icer/salt/gas/repairs/etc). So, the bottom line is if you get the bid and you have the equipment to do the work you the time you've allowed yourself and have covered your overhead and left some margin for profit, you'll be fine.
  11. DanG

    DanG Senior Member
    Messages: 240

    dmk395 & eric,
    I do 40+ drives and shovel the walks & steps that go with them in about 7hrs for a 6" storm alittle longer for bigger ones with one helper.
    My drives are also spread out over a 20 mile radius.
    I wish mine were all in a 1/2 mile or so range. :)

  12. Alan

    Alan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,393

    I've never measured footage on any of my lots, as far as I'm concerned the footage is of no real value. Too many variables between lots of the same size. But I know I've got stuff in that size range by my estimates and I really can't see how you can have 5 hours work there. Just for grins I'm going to measure one that comes to mind and see just how much footage there is on it and compare that to our plow times.
  13. 66Construction

    66Construction Senior Member
    Messages: 315

    I agree wih what Iowa storm said. Make sure you're numbers are high enough to make enough money to live on. Also see if you can find out from other people in he area ball park what they're getting. You don't want to win on a conservative bid and then find out they paid twice that last year. I had this happen once at a restaurant, Luckily I was able to pull my bid. It's not fun at all to have a bid spread stuck in your head while you're doing the job wishing you had that extra money.
  14. plowking35

    plowking35 2000 Club Member
    from SE CT
    Messages: 2,923

    Looking at those numbers for the lots I would say that you have about 1-1.5 hrs of plowing there. We do business that has lots larger than that and one truck can do the entire place in 1 hr with 0-4" of snow, if the lot is empty. If its a day storm while we have less area to plow, it takes longer. Its a 8.5' v plow with a 1/2 mile access road. Another 1/2 hr for walks.
  15. Alan

    Alan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,393

    Well, I measured (roughly) three of our lots that are close together in an industrial park. Some sidewalks involved, a few loading docks that need backdragging. Shuffled the numbers and we're doing just under 40,000 sf/hr. So now I can saw, with some confidence, that your numbers for time on that project are somwhere out in left field. Unless there are some really wierd conditions there you'd better rethink your time requirements.
  16. CCLC

    CCLC Member
    Messages: 91

    Get more per hour. During prime time hours we shoot for $140 per hour. It isn't hard to get. You just have to be reliable and punctual. We haven't lost a commercial snow account in a few years. The only residentials we lose are the ones we dump. We just keep adding to the list.
  17. Majestic

    Majestic Junior Member
    Messages: 19

    I would think a 8 foot plow on an automatic transmission with a snow deflecter bolted on top of the plow you can plow that lot a whole quicker than your estimating.
  18. torque20

    torque20 Junior Member
    Messages: 18


    rider,what would you charge for 4 (four) inches? i kinda like the $511.50 price myself,how about it?
  19. thelawnguy

    thelawnguy PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,011

    I do an industrial park, a bit larger area than yours, last storm 12 inches wet heavy stuff took 4 hours w/pickup with 8 foot fisher. All in one push (not recommended). 3 or 4 inch storm and I can get done in 1 1/2 hours.