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Salting charges in canada...am I charging enough?

Discussion in 'Bidding & Estimating' started by JGraham, Jan 8, 2009.

  1. JGraham

    JGraham Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    I have a snow removal / de-ice contract with a property management company for the provincial govt. My question is regarding pricing for de-icing. Currently I'm on cost plus pricing.

    I buy bagged salt up front, then charge them a 20% mark-up. I am chargeing $35/hr for an F350 with an electric tailgate spreader & driver with a 1hr minimum.

    Am I making decent $$ ?.
  2. BigDave12768

    BigDave12768 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,446

    Wow that sounds cheap. But you are in Canada. So maybe things are different
  3. 89smurf

    89smurf Junior Member
    from Sask.
    Messages: 13

    That sounds very cheap to me. I would expect the hourly on the truck alone to be in that neighborhood. Then add on manpower and salt.
  4. JGraham

    JGraham Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    so i should be charging for my pickup with spreader say $35/hr and charge for the driver say $25/hr or just charge $60/hr flat rate for salting plus cost of salt?

    is 20% markup on salt enough?

    thanks for your input
  5. jayman3

    jayman3 Senior Member
    Messages: 372

    I am making 75 per hr min of 4hrs the contractor supplies the salt or grit.
  6. CGM Inc.

    CGM Inc. PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,598

    Boy! Do you want to salt for us?

    Out here I wouldn't do it under 75-80$ for the vehicle and driver (and that is most likely already to cheap).
    Common rates for a plow truck are in the +125$ area out here!
    Storing and handling the salt at 20% a bag isn't barely enough either IMO.
    I would go towards 30-35% at least, the way I think is would I take a bag of salt in my hand to make 2$

    Are you just a one man show or do you run a couple trucks? Overhead makes a big difference!
    If you are a one man show you might make a buck or two, as a company with several vehicles and employees you will not stay in business for long at the rates you charge.
  7. Corman

    Corman Member
    Messages: 30

    Here in the lower mainland we have a minimum call out on the truck + per bag charge (marked up of course). $35 is way too cheap, at least it is here.
  8. big acres

    big acres Senior Member
    Messages: 653

    Your 20% mark-up is to cover your expense of acquiring, handling, and storing the salt. You should be getting at LEAST $60 per hour for the truck depending on your market.
  9. JGraham

    JGraham Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    ok thanks everyone. yes i am a one man show, i do 4 sites for this company, my lots are 0.96 acres, 0.58 acres, 0.44 acres, and 0.38 acres. i plow them all with a JD320 S/S. my contract is a LEVEL 1 service requirement so i am responsible for plowing and ice control. This is my second season for these guys and i'm trying to be comparitive in my pricing so just looking for advice. they called me in september last year asking if i consider doing their snow removal again because they had received nothing but compliments from their clients.
    i have done tons of reading here and find a wealth of info, especially liquid ice control but thats another topic...

    I think next year i will increase my markup to 30% and definitely charge more for the F350/spreader and driver, (me). i am locked in this year but next season for sure.

    What should i be charging for a labourer? i am charging $25/hr this season but maybe that is too low as well?
  10. Corman

    Corman Member
    Messages: 30

    Have you checked around town to see to get a feel for what the going rate is. Here I pay my employees $30 -$40 /hr , my trucks and equipment. It all depends on what the going rate is there.
  11. JGraham

    JGraham Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    WOW, can i shovel snow for you sometime? LOL

    ive talked to a few S/S owner ops but they only do plowing not ice control. i havent really seen anbody else that does both, i hired a guy who does liquid brine and he's charging $40 per lane/KM for anti-ice and i think $75 per lane/KM for de-ice. does that sound fair to you guys?

    I also had to hire a truck for sanding but i've yet to get his bill.