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planning for next winter

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by BossPlowGuy04, Jun 4, 2008.

  1. BossPlowGuy04

    BossPlowGuy04 Senior Member
    from novi Mi
    Messages: 134

    hey guys its been a while since i've posted here, as some as you may know last winter was my first winter plowing and took an easy. well this year i picked up a few contracts that want plowing along with lawn maint ect. my problem is a few of these parking lots are very large in size and i'm a one man show and don't think i can clear all these lots and my drives in a timely maner. last winter i had 20 drives "also lawn customers" and 2 parking lots. well this winter i know i have the 2 lots from last year and at least 10 of those drives, i also have a storage unit, a church "that has a very large parking lot", and about 4 other lots. i'm just trying to figure out how to get all this done in one night. last winter it took me about 8 hours to get all my stuff done working by my self. i figure if i add all these new accounts i will not be able to finish in a timely manner. i'm also trying to avoid buying a second truck at this time because i don't feel i could use it all year round and don't want a truck sittling idel for half a year. i was thinking about renting a skid steer with a push box on it. My question is about how much should i expect to spend on rentals to i rent it for the entire winter or every storm. also is there a way to move it from parking lot to parking lot or do they normaly sit at one site for the entire winter? also how will a skid steer fit on a trailer with a 10ft or so push box?? do you have to take the push box off?
    thanks in advance hope this isn't a stupid question
  2. plowman4life

    plowman4life Senior Member
    Messages: 557

    question one. renting monthly will probobly be around 4-5k a month times however many months your season is.

    you move it from place to place with a trailer. but be careful b/c towing in the snow can get hairy.

    fitting a skidsteer and a pushbox on the trailer is pretty easy. if its a wide trailer. take the push box off and slide it length wise up the side of the trailer and then put the skidsteer next to it. of if it is wide enouph to fit right in attached you could do that to.

    it may take more time to load and unload a skidsteer to plow with than it would to just plow with the truck. b/c it will take 2 people to get that pushbox on and off the trailer. so it may not save you time or money to do that. your best bet is to rent it and leave it on the biggest lot and charge them for the equipment. and pay someone to operate it in that lot. thatway you can take care of everything else while thats getting done
  3. hydro_37

    hydro_37 PlowSite Veteran
    from iowa
    Messages: 3,790

    Try to find someone to sub for you. They own their own truck and you just pay them.
  4. JD Dave

    JD Dave PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,194

    4-5K/month, for a skid to rent? I'm sure you can find one for way less then 2k/month. I'd try and find a sub with a truck to help you out or if you go with a skid go with an 8 ft pusher, that way you can just load and go. Trailers in a snow storm are a PITA and it ties a truck up that could be plowing instead of hauling the skid. Trying to rent a skid/storm is almost impossible to try and corodinate. JMO
  5. dmontgomery

    dmontgomery PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,238

    My church rented a Backhoe and a 16' pusher for $400 per month and $40 per hour of use.......
  6. EaTmYtAiLpIpEs

    EaTmYtAiLpIpEs 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,607

    I do 25 drives, 2 insurance company lots, a super 8, and i use to do a mcdonalds but idk if I want to do that anymore. I dont have an issue but you being new to this it will be harder. once you get a rythm going you will be fine.
  7. BossPlowGuy04

    BossPlowGuy04 Senior Member
    from novi Mi
    Messages: 134

    i think after last winter i have the hang of it now, but as of right now i have about 10 lots that say they want me to plow now weather or not they sign up officaly in the fall we will see. 3 of these lots are large i'm guessing about 1-2 hours each and the other 7 lots are about 20min a pice. and i can have all the drive ways done in about 2 hours. so i guess we will see thanks for all the comments keep them coming.
  8. Plowin in VT

    Plowin in VT Senior Member
    Messages: 233

    Up here, a seasonal rental on a skid steer will run you $1,000/month with a 5 month minimum, but that doesn't include the snow pusher, only a dirt bucket, so plan on adding another what, $1,400 to buy a 10' box, and then you'll be looking at another $600-800/month for renting the trailer. Right now, you're looking at close to 10k for a piece of equipment that you don't even own! For that 10k you could get a decent truck w/a plow, and move snow much faster than you could after wasting time unloading the skid steer, getting the pusher off & attaching it, and then loading the trailer after plowing the lot.

    I am in the process of bidding a condo development, and if I get it, I would be renting a skid steer and leaving it on site all winter, dedicating it 100% to this development.

    If the job will not pay the cost of the rental, insurance, fuel, salary for you (or whomever you have operating it), PLUS profit, it isn't worth doing.

    There's no such thing as a stupid question. One of the greatest things about PlowSite, is that there is such a vast wealth of information and experience. I'm learning new things every day, and loving it! That's why even though it's June, and it's going to be 93 degrees tomorrow, I'm still on here, reading, learning, and praying for snow!

    Just my $0.02.

    Good luck,

  9. EaTmYtAiLpIpEs

    EaTmYtAiLpIpEs 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,607

    this might not be what you wanna do. but you can hire a couple people.
  10. T-MAN

    T-MAN PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,363

    I leased a brand new Bobcat S-250, 2 speed high flow, with a snow bucket last season for $1400 a month (40 hours max per month) no plow. It pushed a 10' FFC straight blade with a rubber edge.
    1 speed machines (not ideal) brand new were $1250. No dirt work is permited, just snow.
    That machine pushed one 5th 3rd bank and about 6 acres of pavement in under 5 hours up to about 4". There was only a 1/4 mile between sites, so we ran with er right down the road during all hours and had zero problems with police.The rubber edge was awesome in cold weather powder type snows as it left zero snow on the rough pavement, and required very little salt to achieve black pavement. That was key with the salt shortage here. The rubber struggled though on the big concrete storms we had, needed the snow bucket more then once to scrape hardpack.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2008
  11. Brant'sLawnCare

    Brant'sLawnCare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,756

    This would probably be your best bet. Just make sure they are reliable, and have a truck that's not gonna break on them all the time and leave you hanging. But it also sounds like you need another truck, if you do get those 10 lots to plow.
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2008
  12. smoore45

    smoore45 Senior Member
    Messages: 526

    Hey BossPlow, send me a PM if you are interested in hiring a Sub. I have been subbing for the last several years and have reliable equipment(see below). I am located in the Downriver area, but I drive all over the Metro area for my jobs. Thanks.

  13. BossPlowGuy04

    BossPlowGuy04 Senior Member
    from novi Mi
    Messages: 134

    thanks i'll deffently keep you in mind
  14. smoore45

    smoore45 Senior Member
    Messages: 526

    Cool. Good luck this summer! :salute:
  15. elite1msmith

    elite1msmith 2000 Club Member
    from chicago
    Messages: 2,762

    where u are going to run into the problem is that storage unit, ill be honest, unless ur getting a really good buck, and i mean top dollar, they are not worth doing,

    i did one for 2 years, the turns are tight in most cases, its like plowing an alley way, you cant throw to the side (unless urs is set up different) and then at the end of the isle, you can just push it, i had to drive around, come from another angle and push it down another area, ropes from the garage doors, can get caught, and ur plow will ripe them off causing damage to the door, for me it just was not worth it. It took over 3 hours to clear, of very hard abusive plowing, and the property was not even that big,,,,,and he would not take any salt

    anyway my point, really think about the type of accounts ur taking, if u cant get the equiptment, it may not be worth doing. Subbing is ok, if you find a good sub, and remember that you still have the headace of managing it....If ur not making big enough money, then ur managing it for free, which puts you at risk, remember 1 happy customer will tell 1 person, 1 unhappy customer will tell like 5,

    Turn down the work you cant handle, its better to keep ur current customers happy then stretch urself thin. I found that schedualing is the key...for example you have a church, that with the exeption of the weekend, can be plowed last, after all ur other accounts are completed, well on the weekends, the church comes first, so have a industrial complexe that doesnt open up on the weekends , and do it last

    dont all get accounts that open at 8:00 AM, i have some that are 5:00, 6:00',. 7:00 9:00 AM, even a few places like bars that open at 11, this gives me lots of time to get things done