1. Welcome to PlowSite. Notice a fresh look and new features? It’s now easier to share photos and videos, find popular topics fast, and enjoy expanded user profiles. If you have any questions, click HELP at the top or bottom of any page, or send an email to help@plowsite.com. We welcome your feedback.

    Dismiss Notice

Please Quote This

Discussion in 'Bidding & Estimating' started by Ocean Side, Jan 16, 2007.

  1. Ocean Side

    Ocean Side Member
    Messages: 51

    Ok, I got a call from a buddy this morning. He lives in a condo complex and he is on the board that accepts and approves bids for year round service. He says that during our ice storm yesterday that the lot was never plowed, or salted, only a quick swipe to open the middle up. The company never came back to clean up or take care of the side walks.

    He asked me to give him an idea of what it might cost. I am looking for thoughts from others before I put in my proposal. It will be for plowing, salt sand, and sidewalk clearing and cleanup of the entire lot. Please put your thoughts in per event or per push as that is how I am debating it in my head. Any input is great and I also like to learn how others would look at it.


    The lot size is 14 spaces surrounding a 29 x 142 parking lot common area. There are no medians or curbs and the only place to push snow is off the lot at one end.

    The sidewalk entry ways are a total of 280 square feet. They are required to be cleared at the end of each storm.

    any input would be a great learning experience thanks!
  2. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 28,362

    Soooo.... you have to plow 14 spaces???

    Or the 14 spaces equals the area, 29x142?

    The sidewalk is about 28' x 10' or is it more 40' x 7'??

    Is there any other drives? Or just this one area?

    Also, you say ice storm, yet the previous company plowed, which is it??

    Is the salting included?? Or is it per request from the customer?
  3. Ocean Side

    Ocean Side Member
    Messages: 51

    14 spaces + 29 x 142 the 14 spaces surround the area, it is wide open no medians

    The sidewalk footage is the total of 7 entrances walkways

    just plowing in one area

    the storm was 1-1.5 "s of snow then ice and sleet

    I was looking for a per push price, per inch price, and a salt price written how you would write it. Thanks!

  4. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 28,362

    At the ends of the 14 spaces, are they all lined up?? Or are there 4 / 5 on each side of the parking lot??

    Also, are there areas to push the snow on the edges of the 14 spaces?? Or do you have to back drag out of the corners??

    And you're talking 29 x 142 FEET, right?
  5. Ocean Side

    Ocean Side Member
    Messages: 51

    Back drag the corners to the middle area 5 one side, 10 on the other and you cannot plow straight to the end you have to back drag out the parking spots then the common area is open at the end so you would have to back drag out the parking spots then plow the common to clean it all out and push it all to the end.

    and yes I am talking in feet! good questions, this is a great leaning experience thanks!

    REAPER 2000 Club Member
    from 60050
    Messages: 2,230

    How about a google earth image?
  7. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 28,362

    Do you have the salt the sidewalks each time you plow, each time it snows 1/4", customer request????

    Same thing with the parking lot, do you salt each time?? Or upon request??
  8. Ocean Side

    Ocean Side Member
    Messages: 51

    <img src="http://i82.photobucket.com/albums/j255/wadeb5018/lot1.jpg" alt="Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting"><br><br>
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2007
  9. Ocean Side

    Ocean Side Member
    Messages: 51

    Sorry I tried google earth first, salt as needed. salt/ sand is per my recommendation on each as needed not excessive they had a talk with the last guy about salting every pass while plowing
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2007
  10. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 28,362

    I'll probably get blasted for this, but I'd charge a flat fee per month, salt included for the sidewalks each time I plow.

    My trigger would be at 1".

    I would charge $300 / month.

    This is how I got my figures.

    I figure $100 / hour for a 8' plow on my truck.

    In my area (you'll have to do some searching for average snowfalls in your area, whether on lawn site, or google something like "average yearly snowfalls (your location)".

    In my area, it's about 15 snowfalls / year, I figure 18 snows for my contracts.

    I run my contracts from November THROUGH April, since we can get some snow in April,

    So, if I figure I plow 18 times, and it's going to be roughly an hour's worth of work ($100), then it's $1800 for the year. Divide that by 6 months, and you get $300 / month. I'm willing to throw in a bag of salt on the sidewalks to get the contract fee.

    Any extra salting, when there's an ice storm, or if for whatever the reason they want the parking lot salted, it's $100 / hour, plus the cost of the supplies.

    Now, again, these are MY prices, at MY area. Many guys on here are going to say "no way can I charge $100 / hour, OR $300 / month for that lot". Other guys on here are going to say "no WAY am I going to work for only $100 / hour, or only get $300 / month for that lot".

    This is what I would charge, do charge for some banks / strip malls that I'm already doing.

    So far this year I've plowed 3 times, about 27 hours, and have collected $12k in contracts.

    Last year I grossed just under $385 / hour doing these prices, so far this year, I'm running just under $450 / hour gross.

    Yes, I've spread about 30 bags of salt out of that gross, but I'll live with that.

    Yes, one of these years I'll get dumped on, even yet this year, I could end up with 20 times plowing, but..... I'd rather be in the situation I'm at now, than scratching my head, wondering how my family is going to keep the house.
  11. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 28,362

    One other thing, I'd never spread sand.

    It just creates such a mess.

    Also, I get my salt from Lesco, this time of year $6 for 50 lbs, if I wait until spring and clear out the local Lesco, about $3 / 50 lb bag.
  12. Ocean Side

    Ocean Side Member
    Messages: 51

    Now with salt included on the walkways, and 100 an hr to plow and salt the lot, are you including shoveling of the walkways as well?
  13. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 28,362

    Yes, sidewalk gets shoveled.

    I'm using 8' Boss V-plow, 22" Toro 3650 snowblower, push spreader for salt.
  14. Ocean Side

    Ocean Side Member
    Messages: 51

    Now what if you were going to bid

    per push

    per salt application

    to shovel/ clear sidewalks

    loader to move large piles

    I have seen the argument so many times on seasonal contract, I would just like to see what it would work out to be on a per even basis. Where I am most bids are on 18 plowing events, and 22 salt events.
  15. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 28,362

    Well, I don't do ANY per push, but whatever your hourly rate would be, would be your hourly rate.

    A per push, you should be able to figure that out. I look at lots like that, and it should be under an hour, give or take.

    Whatever your increase you want for larger snowfalls, that's your call.

    $100 / $175 / $250 for 0-4, 4-8. 8-12 per snowfall in a 24 hour period, from midnight to midnight, something like that.

    Again, just throwing general numbers out, please don't pick my numbers apart.
  16. Ocean Side

    Ocean Side Member
    Messages: 51

    Nope I was just asking questions for clarification from an educational stand point of different aspects of bidding. Thanks!
  17. QuadPlower

    QuadPlower PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,056

    I would ask your buddy what they are paying for it now. It can't hurt and if he tells you than you can get even closer on your bid.

    Lets say he tells you and you were much lower. You can then raise your price up to either above what they are paying and say you will be there to do it or you can go just below and the lower cost difference will give you even more leverage to get the bid.

    I would also see what their contract says. For some crazy reason it might only say plow down the center of the parking lot. Or have noting in it for salt, or trigger amounts, etc.

    It doesn't sound like they are getting other bids. It sounds, from what you said, that he just asked you because he knows you. I would ask him.
  18. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,256

    Ummm, what about the part that it doesn't matter what the other guy was charging, only what your costs are for your company?? And your material costs??

    What if he's higher? Are you going to suggest he lower his price to match the other guy's?

    I won't use red letters or larger type, but you had the guts to chew me out in the GIE thread about pricing and then you tell this guy to just get the other company's quote and base his pricing on that? What kind of advice is that?

    I am in utter amazement.
  19. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 28,362

    I agree Mark. In 19 years in lawn work and 11 years now in snow, I've never asked a client what they've been paying in the past.

    I don't understand the mentality behind this???
  20. Quality SR

    Quality SR PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,830

    Sounds like he is inexperienced, and it is sad to see someone doing that. Thank god he doesn't live near me.....!!!!!!!!! :gunsfiring:
    Figure out how long it will take you to plow, shovel, and/or snow blow for 2".....4".....6"........8" so on.