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

Shoveling roofs.

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Buswell Forest, Dec 27, 2015.

  1. Buswell Forest

    Buswell Forest PlowSite.com Addict
    from NH
    Messages: 1,668

    My commercial customer is asking for a quote to shovel the roof of 2 of their holdings. They need to be done every snow event.
    Not a huge amount of area. The former crew did both in a day with 4 guys. I have seen them, and they humped like Egyptian slaves with a hard deadline.
    One is a gentle incline, about 9 feet to the eves. As a guess, it is 60x30.
    The other is a condo unit, 3 story, with umpteen gable ends, STEEP pitch, decks that catch all the snow you toss- so you have to reshovel the snow.....and THEN you have to reshovel it off the fire lane. I could use my trucks for the last part...
    The condo took the other crew 4 hours. Again, they HUMPED like it was fun.

    My questions..

    Does anyone here do roofs, and if you do, how much is the insurance? I assume it is a separate binder from plowing..
    What do you pay your guys to risk life and limb 60 feet up?
    Should I just pass on this? My crew would be set up as independent subcontractors.
  2. 1olddogtwo

    1olddogtwo PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,174

    Why every event

    1/2 to 24" @ 4 hours a crack?.... sounds fishy to me
  3. JMHConstruction

    JMHConstruction PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,722

    Big liability, I wouldn't touch it.
  4. WIPensFan

    WIPensFan PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,594

    We used to do quite a bit of roof snow removal. We did some small businesses and a lot of resi. Never did it after every event, but some snow years were such that it was done 4-5 times a season. Very tiring work, but good money. We would take single stage Toros up on the roof whenever possible to save on shoveling. Never dealt with extra insurance or safety issues, but this is a different time with lawsuits. At least if you fall you hit freshly removed snow piles:D make sure you charge well and check on liability issues.
  5. leolkfrm

    leolkfrm PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,978

    run forest run!....do you really want to deal with it , or need the money to risk problems
  6. Buswell Forest

    Buswell Forest PlowSite.com Addict
    from NH
    Messages: 1,668

    Built by intellectually challenged people who never considered the damage ice dams can do. Has to be cleared every snow, or big time heartache.
    These guys used scoops, and had it down to a science. I watched them a lot, they worked like rented mules. I always pitied them...
  7. Buswell Forest

    Buswell Forest PlowSite.com Addict
    from NH
    Messages: 1,668

    I hate turning down work, even if it means expanding the scope of my services. But I also know that discretion is the better part of valor.
  8. framer1901

    framer1901 Senior Member
    Messages: 852

    Why not maybe look at local roofers to be your Egyptian Mules? Sub it to them and make sure they're insured. I gotta believe your comp rate would be in the 30-40% range, subbing it thru them, at least here in MI you can avoid that rate and take your cut.

    That way, you can still drive by shaking your head, but your coffee is paid for :)
  9. Buswell Forest

    Buswell Forest PlowSite.com Addict
    from NH
    Messages: 1,668

    It may end up too complicated and cash intensive to fly. The customer is cheaper than a thrift shop leisure suit.
  10. Randall Ave

    Randall Ave PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,582

    You better talk to your insurance agent. And if a roof springs a leak, gonna b your fault.
  11. allagashpm

    allagashpm Senior Member
    Messages: 797

    I wouldn't bother with it either. Do you knw any roofers you could sub it to or give it to them?
  12. BillyRgn

    BillyRgn Senior Member
    Messages: 728

    Run, the insurance is through the roof, huge liability
  13. KildonanSnowRem

    KildonanSnowRem Member
    Messages: 92

    What would you charge for your average resi roof?
  14. Buswell Forest

    Buswell Forest PlowSite.com Addict
    from NH
    Messages: 1,668

    Officially passed on it today. Thanks for the replies.
  15. WIPensFan

    WIPensFan PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,594

    It depended on scope of work. If just roof raking 5' from gutters on single story plus clear drive and front walk from snow pulled down it was like $50-75. Then went up for multiple stories high and possibly flat rubber roofs over porches that needed all the snow cleared off...like $150-200. Then a couple small businesses in older buildings that needed all the snow off the roofs...like $200-300 or more depending on how much was on the roof at the time. Lots of different factors but always made sure it was worth it.
  16. leigh

    leigh 2000 Club Member
    from CT
    Messages: 2,342

    I think you made a wise decision!
  17. Wilnip

    Wilnip Senior Member
    Messages: 592

    The only way I would consider this is if they wanted to pay me so much money I couldn't turn it down. If you have the manpower to do it, I would pay them at least twice their normal pay rate, and charge the customer 3x your normal labor rate.
  18. awhip

    awhip Member
    Messages: 63

    Roofs are great, good exercise and pay well. Insurance isnt that much more for me because i do tree removal. Hopefully we get to do as much as last year. Around here 3-400 for a ranch
  19. Buswell Forest

    Buswell Forest PlowSite.com Addict
    from NH
    Messages: 1,668

    I do the occasional residential roof... $100 per hour per man (2 man team) or I will go ride my sleds.
    The average home is 1.5 to 2 hours start to finish, including clearing off walks, decks, paths to sheds or oil filler spouts...
  20. Yardworkswv

    Yardworkswv Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    I found this YouTube the other day and was kina intreaged by it which I had the $. But I wouldn't want to touch a roof!