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Starting Up

Discussion in 'Bidding & Estimating' started by Watson's Plowing, Sep 21, 2016.

  1. Watson's Plowing

    Watson's Plowing Junior Member
    Messages: 3

    Hi all,
    I am starting up a plowing business in Rual Vermont. I am looking for some pointers on what/how to charge customers. Looking at residential and Comercial bids. I have a 16 Gmc 2500hd with a new Fisher XV2. Also any pointers on a simple contract would be appreciated too.
  2. Defcon 5

    Defcon 5 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,923

    Is this a hobby or gonna be a primary source of income...

    You will need insurance to start with...

    As for what to charge...I can't help you much because I'm in Michigan and your in Vermont...

    Sit down and figure out your costs..Insurance...Fuel..Wear and tear..Etc...What do you need to be making per hour to cover all that plus profit...That plow was upwards of $7k...That's a cost that needs to be covered...
    Mark Oomkes likes this.
  3. JustJeff

    JustJeff 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,481

    And you're really kind of already late to be just setting this up. If I were you, I'd probably find a company to sub for this year and work on your own snow contracts come next Summer.
  4. ktfbgb

    ktfbgb 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,565

    Check out the thread above yours. It's called primarily residential something something. We covered a lot of this just today. Check it out.
    FredG likes this.
  5. ktfbgb

    ktfbgb 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,565

    for the contract you can join SIMA and use one of theirs as a starter and modify it to meet your needs. Then have your lawyer go over it or just have the lawyer make one up for you.
  6. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,395

    What's your plowing experience?
  7. FredG

    FredG PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,413

  8. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    Join sima($$$) just for a sample contract :dizzy:
    One that you will need to have your lawyer read and modify anyway.(+$$$)
    You'll be $$ ahead with one of your own, taken to your lawyer.

    If you do a search, there have been a few contracts posted.

    JMO but I dont think a guy just starting out doing drives and small lots needs sima.
    FredG and LapeerLandscape like this.
  9. ktfbgb

    ktfbgb 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,565

    Ya your probably right.

    Just sitting here thinking about my city has a community college as well as the University. At the community college there is a small business center. They are there to help small businesses start up.

    To the OP if you have a community college near by maybe check to see if there is something like that there.

    Another option would be an online service like Rocket Lawyer. You choose your state and they generate a contract for you that covers the basics for your state. I'm guessing this would be a cheaper way to go.
  10. Watson's Plowing

    Watson's Plowing Junior Member
    Messages: 3

    Thanks everyone for the info. I have been plowing for about 10 years for our automotive shop parking lot as well as a few residential flag downs basically. I am not a beginner just looking to actually get serious this year and make some $$$$$ hopefully. This will be a second income I mean who gets up at 3am for a hobby?? I will have no problem getting bids as we have people call all the time looking for someone to plow. I realized after I posted this thread that it was all basically discussed in another thread. So thanks to everyone who replied.
  11. Sawboy

    Sawboy PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,700

    Second income = hobby. Snow doesn't just come at 3am
    Mark Oomkes and FredG like this.
  12. Watson's Plowing

    Watson's Plowing Junior Member
    Messages: 3

    Last I checked people were on here to help, give ideas, share opinions and tell stories. Not critisize every post that a newbie puts up. I asked a few questions which have been answered in another thread. I don't need the crap from people if you don't have a good idea or just want to critisize people then don't post. Thanks
  13. TCLA

    TCLA 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,707

    No one has given you any crap, or criticized every post you made like you just stated. If you wish to get serious about this look at it more as risk management than just plowing on the side. You will need proper insurance and a legal document in order to do business properly. Last I checked no one here is obligated to coddle you. So far the advice you have been given is pretty solid. As a newbie you won't get solid advice being snarky or demanding.
    reedo, Mark Oomkes, ktfbgb and 3 others like this.
  14. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,395

    Lighten up Francis. Your post raised a few flags. Pull up the big girl panties and take some of the advice given
    Mark Oomkes, ktfbgb and FredG like this.
  15. FredG

    FredG PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,413

    God Lord, I did not see any negative threads, I will be straight up with you. You have to have thick skin and be able to put up with a little banter. A consulting firm would not be able to give you the advise you receive from this board. What kind of guys you think do this type of work? You got to be tough to play in the snow. Give the attitude a break. These guys will give you bad advise and being a noob you will not know the difference if you don't give that attitude a break. :nod:
    MSsnowplowing, ktfbgb and dieselss like this.
  16. ktfbgb

    ktfbgb 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,565

    I didn't see a single reply where someone gave you crap. Like the others said you have to be way more thick skinned than that to run any business. You as the professional have to always stay objective. Never react emotionally when dealing with customers or other professionals. Let's face it after you've been up for 24 hours with hardly a break and your still out there plowing taking care of your contractual obligations and then one of your customers calls bitching that they feel like you did something wrong or whatever you have to maintain controll and stay objective. So if you think people on here are giving you crap which they weren't then how are you going to react in the above situation?
    FredG likes this.
  17. FredG

    FredG PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,413

    24 Hrs is not that unusual, Specially removal, As far as clients go while complaining if your giving them quality service, do Not ever make the first move. Stay cool and wait for them to fire you. Or handle it if they got a legitimate gripe. There is no legitimate gripe if I'm on site. Some snow wizards you can not please, The guy after you will get the same treatment. Regardless maintain your cool.

    I have been known to get rude to slow or non payers, I come by this honestly and usually can not be avoided.
    ktfbgb likes this.
  18. Michael J. Donovan

    Michael J. Donovan Head Moderator, Online Communities Staff Member
    Messages: 1,269

    ok, let's get back on topic...I believe you are receiving some good advice. also, some tried and true, real life comments and helpful tips so don't take it as criticism, but rather, use it to assist you with your business

    thanks and back to the discussion Thumbs Up
    ktfbgb and FredG like this.
  19. FredG

    FredG PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,413

    I thought your advice made sense. Appears the OP is a little touchy for some reason.
    Sawboy likes this.
  20. FredG

    FredG PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,413