Seasonal Gross

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Member
Ive been wondering about this question for a while, but have been afraid to ask(Its uncomfortable to ask friends about how much they make). How much do you guys gross per season? and with what equipment and how many events? I will gross about $80,000 this season with 3 overworked trucks 3 overworked shovelers and one sander. It looks like we'll have about 15 events if it continues. With the payroll and all my troubles mentioned in earlier threads it doesnt seem like enough.
 

OBRYANMAINT

PlowSite.com Veteran
Location
ohio
GROSS INCOME 100 k at current point on 50 inches so far

3 trucks ,3subbed trucks,2 salters.......not sure if i want to go to the next level .....subbing more out....happy where i am at now
 
OP
S

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Member
Gross income. If it was 80k profit I would be plenty satisfied. I took 3 new places this year and each one was underbid by about a third in my estimation. I know next year to look at how shady places are. All 3 asked for low salt. Low salt plus shade= complaints and icy lots. Next year I'll hit them for all my callback time.
 

JCurtis

Banned
Location
Stamford, CT
Good Idea John, there are probably so many zeros on your gross income figure that we would need a roadmap to find the decimal point!

No sense in making us all sick!
 
OP
S

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Member
Ok John maybe hitting them for callback time is the wrong way to go about it. Maybe a better idea would be to say if you want low salt call someone else. It sure doesn't make me look good to be scraping up ice a week after the storm. I'm probably a lot more vulnerable to liability lawsuits too.
 

plowjockey

PlowSite.com Sponsor
Location
Dayton, Ohio USA
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If you put in the contract that the customer has requested low salt thus allowing for the possibility of ice and liability, and the customer by requesting this takes on all responsibility (or something along those lines) you should be able to cover yourself. I'm no Atty. so be sure to check with one to find the proper way to word it.

Bruce
Happy Plowing
 

John Allin

PlowSite.com Addict
Location
Erie, PA
Site,
My "Hmmmmm" wasn't because of your 'callback' comment. The other guys have it right.

I think you should be charging for going back. If that's the way the contract is written and you have to go back because they are cutting corners - so be it. They may have run the numbers themselves and found that (in their eyes) it is cheaper to have you return than to have you salt more than they are comfortable with. I think you're on the right track.

As to what our volume is?? Well.... for calander year 2001 it will be 8 figures (before the decimal point) and not including landscape work.
 

plowking35

2000 Club Member
Location
SE CT
Many of us have had this discussion before, gross amounts are really subjective. I went and did an install of u edges at a shop that runs 20 trucks. He was on target to gross about 250K for the season. But he keeps 20 fulltime employees plus some PT for sidewalks. Now if the average employee is grossing 500.00 per week, and the winter payroll is about 20 weeks long(the co was in NH), then before overhead his payroll is 192K per year. Add to that the trucks and overhead(and they were reall hard on trucks and equip)then they are breaking even at best.They volunteered all this info with me even asking. I think he was trying to impress me, and get some numbers from me.
I dont give out my numbers, they are between me and the IRS.
Snow work affords me a nice living, and helps buy some extra equip for my business.
Dino
 

thelawnguy

PlowSite.com Addict
Location
Central CT
Gross is sort of irrelevant, you can gross five million but spend six million then where does that leave you? A little behind the guy who grosses 50k and has only 10k expenses.
 

John DiMartino

PlowSite.com Veteran
Location
Walden,NY
Bill,I'm with you,I'd rather have the simplicity of a smaller operation with less overhead.Most big operators around here live no better than me,they have a lot more worrys and hassles though.They gross 400K a yr and costs then 350K to operate-why bother.better off yourself and 2 other guys ,you can make the same money with 1/3 the overhead.As they get bigger they cant keep track of quality as good,they start losing jobs,by the time they realize it ,its too late,and they are scrambling to fill the schedule,and the payments are still big.Most of my work is from big guys who neglected the little commercial sites,and they lost them.
 

PINEISLAND1

PlowSite.com Veteran
Location
Western Michigan
I wanna be the next JAA.

Small time is nice, but I still am in it for the money. If I didnt want the money then I would have exactly ONE truck, one Boss V, one rear plow, and 4 hrs. of work for each event!!
 

John Allin

PlowSite.com Addict
Location
Erie, PA
A good business person, who is growing his/her business in a businesslike manner should (and that's a key word) keep their margins the same, or very near - where they were at the lower level.

Big corporations have stockholders to satisfy. Stockholders want the corporation to make a profit - and a generous one that that. We too (as small businessmen) should follow that ethic. It's not how much money you make as you get bigger - it's the margins you make. If the margins are right, the money follows.

Additionally, large company owners (and I dare say I might qualify here), don't take out all that the company is making. I make (personally, myself) the same money now as I made 4 years ago, however my "retained earnings" have gone up because we have kept the margin in mind as we grow/grew. Retained earnings (equity) is what keeps companies from going out of business. Eventually the retained earnings get to a point where no one can take the business from you.

Prime example.... a company with tremendous retained earnings usually doesn't have much debt because they can pay for things on time, don't have to borrow much (or very little) to make capital expenditures - thus reinvesting in the business. Depreciation then becomes a function of asset management in order to increase the bottom line. Once you get to a certain size you begin running the business from a numbers standpoint, and as long as you hire proper people to ensure quality doesn't suffer - you're then running a successful business.

THIS is what SIMA is attempting to teach people. How to run a business, not how to plow snow.

Don't get me wrong..... staying small (relatively speaking) has it's advantages. However, being large (and profitable) means that you don't have to decide about whether or not to take a cruise for vacation and skip the Symposium. You'll be able to afford both without worrying about whether or not you'll have enough cash to make payroll.
 
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