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What To Charge?

Discussion in 'Bidding & Estimating' started by lindenwood, Dec 6, 2010.

  1. lindenwood

    lindenwood Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    I need help giving an estimate to one of my customers for a commercial plow job. It barely takes me any time to do the job, usually around 50 minutes at most. It is a small lot at an automotive shop. They also want me to lightly hand salt the walkway and clear it near the entrance, which takes around 15 minutes or less I bet.

    So what are the standard rates everyone charges? Is it like $100 per hour or something? For the two dental offices I plow, I only charge $100 for the small parking lot office, and $200 for the larger office. These are set flat fees that we agreed upon for each office? Should I change my rates for the dental offices or do they sound about right?

    How much do you guys charge by and how? By the hour? I don't have a salter, I just clear the walkways by hand and sprinkle a little salt for traction on walkways. I use a Boss V Plow on my Sierra 1500 HD.

    Thanks in Advance Ya'll
  2. lindenwood

    lindenwood Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    Also, How much should I charge for residential driveways? Usually every job requires a small amount of clearing walkways by hand and sprinkling a little salt for safety reasons for the customers/residents.
  3. Cmbrsum

    Cmbrsum Senior Member
    Messages: 141

    For small lots, Walgreens to maverik sized, I charge about $60 to 70 + .17 lb for salt. But these should be done in 20 min or so. Utah prices. will change depending on where you are at.
  4. Rc2505

    Rc2505 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,245

    You need to know your costs, before you set your pricing. If you don't know your costs, then how do you know at the end of the season wether or not you made money or lost money? Just because I can plow for 80 dollars an hour doesn't mean you can do it for the same price and make money.
  5. lindenwood

    lindenwood Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    My costs are pretty basic. Just gas to get to and from the jobs, and around 10 bags of salt/deicer, sometimes more. And wear and tear on my vehicle would probably go in the cost bracket.
  6. procutsnow

    procutsnow Member
    Messages: 49

    I hate to be the one to bring it up..... Liability Insurance. Day one stuff, espeically if you are responsible for Ice Management.

    Good Luck
  7. lindenwood

    lindenwood Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    I do have liability insurance so no worries. Thanks for asking. So I'm thinking $100 per hour is a good rate.

    What do you think about that rate?
  8. JB1

    JB1 Senior Member
    Messages: 182

    sounds like a good price to me, you have really been doing your homework.
  9. Rc2505

    Rc2505 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,245

    Ok so wear and tear, gas, de-icer, and liability insurance. Thats all of your expenses? How about replacement costs on your equipment, maybe labor, vehicle insurance, workers comp, taxes, profit, office expenses, cell phone, I mean the list goes on and on. Now by no means am I saying you need to raise your prices, but you need to realize what it actually takes to run a sucessfull plow buisness. If you know your costs, and your margins, it's alot easier to bid, and get jobs. When you just pull a number out of the air, then all your doing is guessing, and chances are if your guessing, you should sit at home and watch the pretty snow flakes. Education is key, the more you know about your own costs, the easier it is to educate some one else ( property owner or manager) to be able to sell your services.